Tag Archives: delegation

The principle of government

It struck me this morning as I read Genesis 1 that it bears witness clearly to the principle of government in God’s creation. In day 4 the two great lights are created specifically to govern day and night (the triple repetition of the word makes a clear emphasis). And in day 6, of course, human beings are given delegated authority from the Creator himself to subdue and rule over the various other animals (again with a triple repetition of the terms). There is perhaps a distinction in that the lights are somewhat passive in their government, while humanity has a much more active task, made all the more difficult by our current sinful condition that prevents us from carrying out the creation mandate as originally intended.

This same theme of government in the universe is also evident in the Book of Revelation, with its constant reference to God’s throne.

Though we humans often despise, or at least complain about, our earthly governments, it is noteworthy that the principle of government is built-in to our world. Government is not required by the Fall, but predates it, and is to be exercised “under authority”, as a delegated function. The failures and flaws of human governments are but a reflection of their failure to recognise that they exercise authority only under delegated orders. Genesis 1 gives us hope, and Revelation comfort, that God is still on the throne. Every time we see the sun and the moon we have a physical reminder that this is so.