I am always amazed at the willingness for people to take verses out of context in order to justify their positions. How often then do they stretch it to the breaking point to another logical fallacy?
Human nature is a funny thing, though. Not only can we misidentify the result, but we can even deceive ourselves about how we got there. Jeremiah had an experience that boggles my mind at times. It truly is difficult to put myself into his shoes and try to see what he saw. However, Jeremiah was quite familiar with how deceitful the human heart is, how destructive that deceit is and how difficult to cure (Jer 17:9).
Indications are that he anticipated the peoples’ reaction, but it still is a head scratcher in so many ways:
17But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.
18But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, we have wanted all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.
19And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven, and poured out drink offerings unto her, did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her, without our men? (Jeremiah 44:17-19, King James Version)
They could not even see the cause of their problems! How blind they must have been! How deaf!
Yet, how many of us are just like them?
So, what shall we know by their fruits?
Who are "them"?
Deceivers, false prophets, false apostles, etc. Notice it is not a form of government.
However, let me speak facetiously now, perhaps even sarcastically. After all, sarcasm really is nothing more than a fallacy taken to its logical conclusion. I am going to use the same type of arguments put forth by “one-man rule” types.
Essentially, I will show using their own reasoning that by their fruits, you shall know them. Therefore, the “one-man rule” is corrupt, evil and ungodly because of its fruits.
Example 1: The baton passes from a pastor general to the next. He was anointed and appointed by God. People rebelled, even though God had chosen His “one-man”. Therefore, any group that splintered off from that group is not following “God’s one man” and is in rebellion.
Example 2: One man rebels against God’s one man. The seeds of rebellion are evident. The fruits are his paranoid decrees that families must shun each other, certain people are allowed to marry, sermon tapes must be destroyed once listened to and his rulership of fear and oppression.
Example 3: Another man rebels against God’s one man. The seeds of his rebellion are also evident. He starts his own church, who later fires him. He then splits away and creates yet a third group, leaving the previous organization holding the bag not only in regards to the church but financially. There is great discord and disunity.
How about some other examples of “one-man rule”?:
- Idi Amin
- Pol Pot
And so on, and so on, and so on.
Main Entry: dic·ta·torPronunciation: ˈdik-ˌtā-tər, dik-ˈFunction: nounEtymology: Latin, from dictareDate: 14th century
1 a : a person granted absolute emergency power; especially : one appointed by the senate of ancient Rome b : one holding complete autocratic control c : one ruling absolutely and often oppressively
~ dictator. (2010). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. Retrieved July 19, 2010, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dictator