Patriotism is Wickedness

Extract from Sunday Morning Number 10 from "The Ambassador" of 1868

These kingdoms of men have existed for six thousand years; but when the work has advanced to a certain point, He will set them aside, and interpose the kingdom of His Son. He will pull down the mighty from their seats, and Jesus will rule.

"The Lord shall be King over all the earth; in that day there shall be one Lord, and His name one."

The kingdoms of men will then have been broken to pieces: still Christ's people are at present to be submissive to them. It is impossible that Christ's people can take part in any revolutionary movement. They are prohibited from drawing the sword, and prohibited by the spirit of their calling from taking part in the political movements of their times. They are God's people, "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a peculiar people," who are unconnected with the movements of men. They are in the world, but not of it. It is their part to leave the world to do its own business. Now it is not agreeable to the flesh to conform to this position. The democratic feeling is very strong in human nature. It is the feeling expressed in the words-

"We are our own: who is lord over us?"

Practically it takes the form of patriotism, and makes a man rejoice in being part and parcel of the institutions of the land, and in having the right to exercise the "sacred duty" of defending the soil. More mildly, it makes a man pride himself in the use of the franchise which he calls a "birthright;" and leads him to join with alacrity in the various movements that politicians set agoing for the care of the world on the democratic basis.

Now it is impossible that these sentiments can exist in a breast where the truth reigns supreme. The divine law will extinguish practical politics. It will fill a man with distaste for Gentilism in every shape and form, and substitute the love of God's kingdom, and God's affairs. The politics pertaining to the commonwealth of Israel will become his politics. It is impossible that a Christadelphian can be a patriot or a soldier. "Christian patriotism" is an invention of the flesh. It is one of the "good words and fair speeches" by which the simple are deceived. The political attitude of a Christadelphian is submission to the existing powers, living peaceably with all men, except where the truth is concerned. For the truth we are to contend earnestly, and the weapons of this warfare are mighty, through God, to the pulling down of strongholds; though not so mighty as they were in the days of Paul, when Christ's soldiers were armed with the powers of the spirit. This is our warfare.