I found a useful comment for fodder:

Christ doesn’t command us to make anyone honor Him as king. No one is suggesting that. I’m convinced that among honest critics of some form of Christ-honoring government, the largest part of them disagree simply because they are approaching the issue from the wrong way.

They are right that you can’t compel people to believe. However, they thus conclude we shouldn’t really be concerned with our government honoring Christ. This doesn’t follow.

We should want a government that honors Christ. Magistrates that obey Him. Ultimately, they either obey God or they do not, and to not obey is sin. It’s evil. That’s at least some of the implied meaning when we are told that “Satan is lord over the earth”. If we have a magistrate who honors Christ in deed (e.g. a good, non-Christian city councilman who acts more or less like a Christian) even if we won’t proclaim Him as Lord, we’re still talking about someone who honors Him in some way.

Reductively, then, we either want God-fearing magistrates or wicked ones. It’s no contest which we ought to prefer. God-fearing magistrates make it easier to become Christians and obey Christ. They bless those they rule. There are myriad benefits.

If we ought to desire God-fearing magistrates, we ought to do what we can to get them. And if we don’t have them, those wicked magistrates we do have are still accountable to God (else they wouldn’t need a savior). And so we must hold them accountable as John the Baptist did Herod.

The common misunderstanding, as an argument, looks something like this:

  1. We cannot compel anyone to worship Christ. We can only share the Gospel.
  2. Therefore, if we have magistrates that do not worship Christ, we can only share the Gospel.

This does not follow, logically, because:

  • We can replace our magistrates
  • We can hold our magistrates to a standard, whether or not they acknowledge the source
  • Our relationship with our magistrates is not reducible to witness or total fellowship

The first point is just a fact about our form of government.

The second point deals with the underlying commitment to the lie of secular neutrality in arguments against Christian government.

That final point deals with the underlying commitment to the falsehood of pietism in those arguments.

The real argument is simple. We should want godly magistrates, so we should work toward getting them, as far as we can.

That’s it.

Many, many Christians who are right on so many things woke and critical-theory-laden don’t seem to be able to place the final piece in the puzzle. All the work they do to fight the evil that they fight is never allowed to do any ultimate good because they don’t think they should do any ultimate good in public life. This isn’t out of modesty. It’s out of silly commitments to bad ideas like secularism, neutrality, pietism, and all the rest.

If we realize there is evil in the world, that magistrates are God’s appointed instruments of dealing with evil and protecting good, that good government makes it easy to be good (thus good government makes it easy to honor and worship Christ), and that there is only Christ and anti-Christ, then it is only by ignoring one or more of those things that we can claim that Christians should want non-Christian rulers.

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