Editorial – Tyranny and Tyrants

When the fathers of the United States signed the Declaration of Independence, they stated that their reason for making this declaration was that “[t]he history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these States. …” They then listed over thirty complaints among which were, making judges subject to his will alone, creating a police state, depriving citizens of trial by jury and sending armies of mercenaries to support his tyranny. They concluded by saying, “… In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”

Notice their repeated charge was that King George was a tyrant, and they had decided to free themselves from his tyranny. All these excesses, and more, could happen again in the United States or in any nation, but what is more important is to know that the devil is the real tyrant. Human beings become tyrants because they are under his control.

“The time of trouble is the crucible that is to bring out Christlike characters. It is designed to lead the people of God to renounce Satan and his temptations. The last conflict will reveal Satan … [as] a cruel tyrant, and it will do for them what nothing else could do, uproot him entirely from their affections. …

“The work of the enemy is not abrupt … it is a secret undermining of the strongholds of principle. It commences in small things—the neglect to be true to God and to rely upon Him wholly … . Our only safety is in searching the Scriptures and in being much on our knees before God, entreating Him to imbue us with His Spirit, that when the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall for us lift up a standard against him.” The Review and Herald, August 12, 1884

“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:11, 12