Noah Webster Revealed This Secret to Electing Good Leaders
Well, the stage is now set for an election between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. (Sorry, we left the “J” out of Trump’s name because we heard it so much last week at the RNC, we can’t take it anymore.)
While making our rounds through Media Row for interviews in Cleveland last week, we couldn’t help but remember back to what one of our Founding Fathers said makes for a good candidate for political office. Check out what Noah Webster, the author of America’s first dictionary, said:
When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers, “just men who will rule in the fear of God.” The preservation of our government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute Laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizen will be violated or disregarded. If our government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because the citizens neglect the Divine Commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the Laws.
– Noah Webster, “History of the United States”
In the Christian world, we call this a prophetic statement. It’s spot on.
Noah Webster was a brilliant man. He was also considered the “Father of American Scholarship and Education,” so when he spoke back in the day people listened – and so should we today.
With precision, he declared that if the citizens of America “neglect the Divine Commands (found in the Bible, as his writings reveal) and elect bad men to make and administer the Laws” we would end up with a corrupt government of nothing but:
Lost public prosperity and happiness
We have arrived at this point today, America!
From local school boards and city councils all the way up to the White House and Congress, we have incompetent and selfish leaders – and Americans are sick of it. This is why in 2016 we’re witnessing a political revolution, a demand from our citizens to overthrow establishment politics (established corruption within the system toward our laws, revenues and rights).
But the revolution is missing a key ingredient – a citizenry equipped to understand how God’s laws relate and translate to today’s times, and those who are willing to elect “just men who will rule in the fear of God.” Without these kinds of people, the revolution won’t last. It’s like drinking a power shake that’s missing protein – it may satisfy for a time, but in the end it won’t strengthen the body.
While at the RNC, we saw people groaning, some even crying out, against the wickedness and injustice in D.C. Our message to them, as we had opportunity to engage, was that Americans should not simply seek a political revolution to a spiritual problem. This is why it’s vital for biblical Christians to re-engage their civic responsibility – to get back into the political conversation.
“When the Godly are in authority, the people rejoice. But when the wicked are in power, they groan” (Proverbs 29:2).
We want God’s best for our nation, but we can’t have His best when we don’t know His best. If our government fails us, it’s because we have failed it! The fact that our only choices for president are Trump and Clinton clearly reveals a citizenry that has “neglected the Divine Commands.” (This doesn’t mean God can’t use broken people – He does – but it is certainly an indicator of where we are as a nation.)
So Christians, please re-engage and help in this revolution. And pastors, please remember God’s ways are best for all people and bring prosperity and freedom to all nations, so your voice is more important than ever. If God’s truth is maligned or misrepresented in our government, then simply speak the truth in love and help guide our citizens to understand what “just men who rule in the fear of God” lead like.
Finding and electing good leaders who fit Noah Webster’s description will take time, but as the citizens of this nation learn God’s ways once again, we can point this amazing political revolution in the right direction. It may take a generation, but if “We the People” turn back to God, our elected officials will absolutely reflect those biblical values in their leadership.