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10677Re: [Covenanted Reformation] The Civil Magistrate (was re: Question Regarding Political Participation)

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  • Dan Fraas
    Aug 2, 2004
      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "J. Parnell
      McCarter" <jparnellm@u...> wrote:
      > >"Infidelity, or difference in religion, doth not
      > make boid the magistrate's just and legal authority, nor free the
      > people from their obedience to him."
      > It is upon this point in the WCF quoted above that I think Richard
      > erred.

      Dear Parnell,

      What I am about to express may not be in agreement with the opinion
      of any other listmember, but this is my understanding. It is my
      understanding that the true Knoxian position asserts that all rulers
      are ordained of God, but that they are ordained on the condition of a
      covenant between the people and their government. They must rule on
      the basis of the laws of their nation (covenant) which may restrict
      the magistrate's power. If in any point the ruler appropriates to
      himself authority in violation of that covenant and the law of the
      land, in that point he is a usurper. Then he remains yet the
      rightful ruler in those matters where he wields lawful power, but not
      in those areas where he is unlawfully usurping authority from the
      lesser magistrates, the church, or the people. In such cases the
      people ought to seek redress to the ruler and then to lesser
      magistrates, remaining obedient in all things where he wields lawful
      authority. They may take up arms as a last resort to defend their
      lives and liberty if all other avenues of redress have been exausted,
      with or without the aid of lesser magistrates. The principle that
      the magistrate is bound by law (both God's and civil law) as well as
      the people is what distiguishes the Presbyterian doctrine of civil
      government from the Anglican "divine right of kings."

      While he had a right to point out the wickedness of King Charles II,
      > and even to encourage the Parliament to restrain him and bring him
      > justice, Richard Cameron had no right to declare King Charles II the
      > illegitimate ruler of Britain. Richard Cameron was not the

      Well in Cameron's case Charles II's session to the throne combined
      with his covenant-breaking status ipso facto was a violation of law.

      Blessings in Christ,

      Riley Fraas
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