Posted by: SandreS | November 26, 2010


Do all things without murmurings and disputings: that you may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom you shine as lights in the world; holding forth the Word of Life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither labored in vain (Philippians 2:14-16).

The English word “nation” is a translation of various Hebrew and Greek words (such as gowy and ethnos) which are also use to translate such English words as “Gentiles” and “heathen.” The key to nationalism has to do with understanding its place in God’s plan. When one understands God’s purposes they are better able to know how to relate to them. Nationalism is a divine judgment upon mankind, introduced at Babel’s Tower (Genesis 10, 11), and is His instrument of vanity among the Gentiles, for truly “the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing” (Psalm 2:1; Acts 4:25).

Nationalism is a further tool in God’s hand to subject mankind to vanity (Romans 8:20). Men look to governments for the answer to their problems, and even Christians try in vain to influence the predestined course of the Gentiles. The history of nationalism is one of successive failure. Hopes are raised for a “good” government, only to find that “evil” prevails again: one nation after another, one kingdom overthrowing another, one party defeating another, one cause overpowering another, all in vain cycles. God is at the center of it all, “for there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God” (Romans 13:1). Pharaoh was God’s servant (Romans 9:17), as well as was Cyrus (Isaiah 45:1).

We must never forget that “… the most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomsoever He will …” (Daniel 4:17, 25), and that “… He does according to His will … among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can restrain His hand …” (Daniel 4:35). It is God Who rules “over all the kingdoms of the heathen” (II Chronicles 20:6).

We know that “the king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: He turns it wherever He will” (Proverbs 21:1), and in fact, “… He is a great King over all the earth” (Psalms 47:2).

God rules over all nations, establishing their times and boundaries. The who, how, when and where are all determined by Him for His Own purposes.

[God] has made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation (Act 17:26).

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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