Manning, Snowden, Assange, Wikileaks, NSA. We have seen a lot of news and events circling the topic of secrets, information gathering, and who has the rights to collect and reveal classified information. The U.S. government has deemed it necessary to collect untold amounts of information on citizens without a warrant. Our governing bodies can collect, store, and eventually review copious amounts of what once was private information in cell phone conversations, and personal emails to use against those who may plot our country's ruin.
This is just what we know. I am no conspiracy theorist, but if the U.S. is upset at people revealing facts about domestic espionage on its own citizens through only cell phones, and emails, it stands to reason, there may be even more going on.
I do find it unsettling that we have allowed our officials to collect private information, scan our bodies at air ports, and allow our children to be handled in a pat down all in the name of safety. But let me ask a question; do we feel any safer?
I believe that most of our leaders have the right intentions. I believe most think they can make us safer. However, I also believe our forefathers knew well about the dangers of a government with too much power. I believe too much power lends itself to great corruption. I believe the lengths that have been gone for our safety have only angered more people who now foster ill-will. I believe we have allowed our government to play god by allowing access to our privacy. We have allowed our bodies to be scanned and groped. We have allocated great wealth away from education and medical solutions in order to build weapons of unspeakable horror.
We have fallen into idolatry. We have made our military our god. Our government and its ready defense has become what we trust most. We have given this false god immeasurable power to protect our way of life, to give us freedom, to bring us peace, to ensure us life and cast judgment on the wicked. We have fallen into a blind faith of civil-religion in which our priests are our military, our bishop's members of the federal government, our pope the president, and our objects of worship mere war machines. I don't think this was the plan. Again I think good intentions were behind all this, but this is the strength of evil; taking good intentions and perverting them into something frightening.
When we see more of our children come home from war with bodily or mental injuries, or when they don't come home at all, that should be a sign that something is not right.
Perhaps I am taking this a little too far. I have been accused of being a little too dramatic in the past. However, as a follower of Christ, I put my hope in Jesus first. It is Jesus as God who has established and protects my way of life, he gives me freedom, he brings me peace, and he alone carries out judgment. It is God who I submit my private information, my body, and my hope.
I think fellow followers of Christ need to be careful about blindly accepting what has been going on. I think we have stripped God of his power and handed over to a false god (figure of speech we are not powerful enough to take away God's power).
I believe in order, I believe god likes it when we organize rules and a way of life. However, I believe that power needs to be kept in check, power needs to be divided, power needs balance; otherwise governments become divine wielding Caesars. We need to remember the place of government, firmly placed under God. When God is truncated by our policies, anything will be done to protect us, even if that means violating our freedom.
A god of war cannot save us from the fear of death; we need a god of resurrection. We need a god of new life, a god of peace, a god that can redeem us, our relationships, and our world.