Last week I said that full sanity is not possible for anybody until after we die and are supernaturally changed by God. But we all can strive to move in the direction of semi-sanity. Last week we began to look at what a semi-sane country might look like, if we wanted to move in that direction. Today we will come up with more ideas on the topic.
7/In a semi-sane country, there would be honest money. That means no central bank manipulating (and creating) money. Money would be something real, not blips on a computer screen. Silver and gold are good options. But really the key is to want to be honest. If/when we have the desire to be honest, we will have honest money.
8/In a semi-sane Christian country, most Christians would be tithing to their Bible-believing church. The civil government would not be enforcing this. It would just be something that we expect to happen because it makes common sense. God in the Bible requires the tithe (10% of increase paid to His church). When churches begin to respect God’s instructions in this regard, they will be moving in the direction of mature behavior. Unless you have mature people wanting to obey God, you are not going to move in the direction of a having a semi-sane country anyway. God wants mature believers, “who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.” (Hebrews 5:14)
9/There would be no welfare money paid out by the civil authorities in a semi-sane country. People would work, or not eat. (2 Thessalonians 3:10) But what about people who really do run into hard providences, and can’t fully provide for themselves? Churches would evaluate each case, and act as they thought best. They would have plenty of money to help people who really needed help. (Because, see #8, they would have tithing members and thus approximately four times as much cash as the typical U.S. church has today.) Individuals other than just churches would be able to help also, because part of being a Christian is to be generous toward others.
10/There would be no prisons in a semi-sane country. There would be short-term jails, where people would not stay for long. Punishments would be biblical. Thus for example a thief would not go to prison; he would pay restitution (up to several times the value of what he stole). Some cases which did not lend themselves to restitution would be settled with lashes, as the Bible permits. A man beats his wife? Instead of sending him to prison for a vacation at taxpayer expense, why not give him five lashes? (Or one lash, or ten lashes, as each case is evaluated.) He might learn something. Frivolous lawsuits would result in the losing (frivolous) party paying all the expenses of the lawsuit. Again, this is based on a biblical principle–and is very practical. (Deuteronomy 19:15-20)
11/Convicted rapists would be executed. (Deuteronomy 22:25-26). Do we really want to protect people from rape? Of course we don’t, in our insane country. But a semi-sane country would want to protect people from rape, using the means by which God provides protection in His law. Think it would work? Ask an executed rapist if he plans to rape again. See what he says, and then adjust your ideas accordingly.
12/In a semi-sane country, there would be no attempt or even desire to push around other countries. A semi-sane country would have plenty on its platter in trying to run its own affairs. It would be quite willing to leave other countries alone. There would be no need for a standing army, other than perhaps one or two platoons. It might be a good idea to have a few weeks of basic training once in their life for most of the men in the country. (I don’t insist upon such a plan.) Churches would help all their members, men, women, boys, and girls, learn how to use weapons safely and comfortably. A semi-sane country would have people armed and ready to defend themselves, but would never go abroad looking for dragons to slay.
Well, that’s a very rough outline of some of the things that would go on in a country which was either semi-sane, or wanting to move in the direction of semi-sanity. There are countless details which might vary from place to place.
Such a semi-sane country would not be paradise. There would still be evil, there would be accidents, there would be mean people. But the general atmosphere of the country would be better than what we have now, I contend.
Try to imagine a place where ordinary people work and pay their bills and accept responsibility for their actions. While I’m dreaming, make it a place where men and women get married before they start having children, and they actually provide for the well-being of those children. They don’t expect the civil authorities to take care of them. This is a small country which does not try to push other countries around. People can leave this place if they don’t like it. Criminals and deadbeats might not like it there, but they are welcome to leave and go to places they like better. Rapes and murders are relatively rare, because rapists and murderers are executed, so most potential rapists and potential murderers restrain themselves. Life is still dangerous, but it is not quite as dangerous as in most other countries.
Is such a country (or countries–we could have more than one) possible? I don’t know, but I think so. But such a place will not be reached easily. I have been a Christian about four and a half decades. I see little indication that most Christians want a semi-sane country. What can one person do, when faced with the daily insanity going on in this country? It really does seem like one person is hopelessly outnumbered by raving loonies. But I think that is the counsel of despair. One person really can be very important. I can’t do much to help others want to be semi-sane. But I can be a more godly person. I can act in ways that make others consider the value of semi-sanity. If my behavior improves, the country is better, if only slightly. Jeremiah was one person. Paul was one person. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was one person. All three of those people had trouble, and all three of them had to leave much in the hands of God. God was there, and supported them. God is there, and will support us, if we want to please Him.
Someday we may have a semi-sane country, or at least have a country which wants to move in the direction of semi-sanity. I think we will. I think we’ll have a bunch of such countries. They may be small, but they will exist. Maybe I’m lying to myself because I just can’t handle any more darkness. But to end on a positive note, I really think semi-sane countries are possible, and I think we as individuals can strive to make such countries come into existence.