The Government Thinks It Can Conquer Sin

By Caleb Keith

Over the years I’ve come to enjoy the series of Jason Bourne movies. Things were no different last Thursday when I went to see the latest sequel. 2016’s Jason Bourne follows the same basic formula as every Bourne film.  Step 1. Bourne comes out of hiding, Step 2. The CIA locates Bourne, Step 3. Bourne stops the corrupt CIA from some nefarious and internationally illegal scheme.  While the movie was certainly predictable, the formula still works especially with the movies new technological focus. The main plot revolved around cyber security and the American government’s absolute control over the entire world’s tech.

This film imagines or perhaps predicts a possible end brought about with the world’s obsession with technology and people’s mindless clicking when it comes to accepting buttons on a page of terms and conditions. While most of the technological claims such as hacking every security camera in Athens, and unlocking encrypted off-network computers remotely via a cell phone are most certainly fabricated stretches of what is technologically possible the core concepts behind these feats should scare you.  The film portrayed what I believe to be an accurate picture of the US government. It showed leaders who preyed on the fear of the people and of the world to claim power and superiority

What the movie reminded me is that the American people have been giving up or have had certain civil liberties stripped in the name of security and peace. The media and political leaders use fear to obtain power and promise that with such power they can put an end to all of the society’s fears. The lies go out, with enough power we can end terrorism, with enough power we can end war, with enough power we can end mass shootings, etc. Christians should know better. After all, we are the ones who believe and confess that the world is full of sin. Sin that cannot be overcome by human goodness, sin that cannot be overcome by human law. The root of everything we fear is sin, so it is foolish to think that a government run by sinful people will ever be the answer to the horrors of a corrupt world. The only real answer to sin is found in the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Sin was conquered not by the power of the sword, but by the power of God in the resurrection of Christ. When governments promise they can overcome sin in exchange for your liberties, they are full of shit and pride. Be comforted by the fact that all fear and death has already been conquered and joy and life are already yours on account of Christ.

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4 comments

  1. This is why I’m switching my party affiliation to the Constitution Party. Libertarians, even those who are not Christians, tend to understand very well the case that you’re making above. The only issue is that they are generally pro-choice, so I don’t think I could ever vote for a Libertarian. The Constitution Party is essentially libertarian, but they are thoroughly pro-life. I think more Christians should abandon the big-government GOP and consider the Constitution Party as the best option for limiting the size and scope of the federal government.

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    1. Thanks, for the comment. I too find myself typically on the side of libertarian ideals, but the pro-choice position is a downfall I will not rally behind. While most people scoff at third parties saying “A vote for a third party is the same as no vote at all.” it is at the very least a vote I can make with a clear conscience.

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  2. There are ways in which the government has made itself to large and ways in which it has abdicated, in terms of serving the people. People like to scapegoat (muslims, immigrants, the Japanese, Chinese, Indians) and powerful people have often preyed upon and orchestrated events which play to these. Desperate people make great subjects.

    However, we have not, as a nation, put together a coherent and modern infrastructure for water, waste management, a sold power grid, we’re still using telegraph poles to support power and communication and we’re still talking over copper wires, roads and bridges are a mess, the medical system is disjointed and charges what it wants, where it wants, when it wants. These are things which most modern, industrialized nations see as common, national efforts but which we see as local and, often, licensed monopoly issues benefiting stockholders. All of these things support a private sector but are not, in themselves, things that are or ought to be profitable.

    We are so busy profiting arms dealers, utilities stockholders, expensive maintenance and construction firms, prisons and private security, and listening to empty promises of returning old industries to struggling places that we’re not addressing the real work to be done in order to support business and industry, a peaceful and prosperous life. We are seeing the effects in drug abuse (profiting drug dealing and foreign cartels), family dissolution, the rise of an economic system driven by and focused by suppliers, not consumers.

    We cannot combat sin but we owe it, out of love for our neighbors, to love them, be honest, seek justice, and do what is right. That is our vocation, as Christians. We do not have to effect change in order to speak what ought to be done. Retreating further from involvement in people’s lives in the name of leaving them to themselves for a notion of freedom which is in no way tied to freedom from sin that is, being more libertarian, is not the solution. Freedom in Christ is not freedom from each other and we do not serve if we teach that leaving people alone is what is best for them. All mankind fell from the exercise of liberty, a disdain for dependence upon God and the order He created. The need of man for woman and vice versa is at the heart of how we relate to all, needing and loving each other. We cannot forget that.

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    1. Thank you for the comment, it interesting that such a short blog can inspire a comment of equal length. I believe your comment especially the last paragraph seems to imply that I am leading people to abandon their civil vocations and their neighbor. That is certainly not the case and having read over my work several times I would conclude that the article itself clearly does not communicate such abandonment either. Note I never said that things like terrorism and violence shouldn’t be addressed. Rather I pointed out that people should be wary about giving away their civil liberties including their right to protect their neighbor so that the government can try and solve the underlying problem of sin. Thanks for commenting its good to see people regularly adding to the conversation.

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