There was once a father who wanted to "teach his children well" by bringing them up "in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4). His whole family went to Church every Sunday, learning there to "make sure" that their children were "well educated" by enrolling them in public school, and then college, etc.
He realized that his oldest son by the age of nine began to be drawn to the ways of the world and distanced from the ways of God. As a "lightweight" rod of correction, the father decided to teach the simple card game WAR. After a while, when the son thoroughly understood that the higher ranking cards beat the lower ranking ones, his father created a new game called GOVERNMENT. In this game, the father was Government, and he won every trick, regardless of who had the better card. His son soon lost interest in his father's new game, but he "thought" that it taught his son a valuable lesson concerning the ways of the world, in hopes that his son would reject them.
He was wrong! For he found that his son, who had now reached his early teen years, had been taught in public school that loving and obeying government came first before anything else. He had not only learned this, but had taken it to heart. God was now secondary in his life. He had become rebellious to God, and also to his Dad's pleadings. But the son was still under his father's roof.
Because he truly loved this son, he knew that God's rod of correction must be brought to him a little less gently this time. Since the son was taught to love the government, but was not taught what the government "is," he decided to give his son a one week "civics' course" during his summer vacation. It was "Hell Week" - a week his son never forgot.
Day One - the Tax System
To teach his son about the tax system in a way that was easy to grasp and which allowed him to understand the "benefits" that the "faithful citizens" of that "democratic" government receive, he offered his son $10 to mow the lawn. When he mowed it and asked to be paid, the father withheld $5 and explained that this is "income tax." He directed his son to give $1 of this to his younger brother, who had done nothing to deserve it, explaining from "the government's point of view" that this was "fair" because the younger brother "needs money too." He also explained that he needed the other $4 himself to cover the "government administrative costs" of dividing the money and for miscellaneous "other things" he needed.
He then directed his son to place his $5 in a "household" savings account over which his son would have no authority. He also explained to him that if he was ever rebellious, he would remove the money from the account without asking him. And he explained how he would be taking most of the interest he earns on that money, without his permission. He also mentioned that if he tried to hide any money, this, in itself, would be evidence of wrongdoing and would result in the household government" automatically taking the money from him.
Day Two - Searches and Seizures
He conducted a random search of his room in the early hours of the morning, bursting in unannounced and went through all of his drawers and pockets. When the son questioned why he was doing this, he told him that he was acting on a tip-off from a school buddy of his who casually mentioned that they had both earned a bit of spare cash the previous week.
To further demonstrate the ways of the government, he confiscated all of that money and also took his stereo and television. He told him he was selling these and keeping the money to compensate "the government household" for having to make the raid. He also told him that he was fortunate that this was only a one week course, otherwise he would have locked him in his room for a month as further punishment.
The father brought the point home to the son when he stated, "I'm only demonstrating to you how the government you love so much treats its faithful citizens."
When the son began to whine at the injustice of this, he was told by his father, "Son, you're being selfish and greedy and only interested in looking after your own happiness. You will need to learn to sacrifice your own happiness for your 'fellow citizens' and that since you cannot be relied upon or trusted to do this voluntarily, 'your government' will henceforth use force to ensure you comply."
Day Three - Codes, Rules, and Regulations
To further illustrate the "inner-workings" of the government, he made as many rules and regulations as possible for his son to follow, leaving the purposes for them very obscure and enforcing them arbitrarily. He accused his son of breaking rules he had never told him about and carefully explained that ignorance of the rules and regulations is not an excuse for breaking them. He kept his son anxious about violating commands he hadn't yet been told about. He instilled in him the true nature of government rules and regulations, and how utterly irrational they were. This would prepare him for living under the democratic government he was so attracted to.
Day Four - Voting and the Judicial System
To further illustrate the "benefits" given by democracy, he demonstrated the following to his son:
He, his wife and his younger children got together that morning and voted that the older son should have all privileges removed, be fined, and sent to his room for the rest of the day. When he protested that his "rights" were being violated, the father patiently explain his son's "error" and told him, firstly, that "rights" are nothing more than "privileges" given by government which can be taken away by "it" at any time, and secondly, that the majority had voted for this punishment and that, in a democracy, nothing matters except the will of the majority. But since his government was so benevolent, it's not going to make him stay in his room - we'll call it "time off for good behavior."
To make him "feel" better and further "ease the pain," the father offered to take him to the movie matinee, and then, at the appointed hour, reclined in an easy chair with a newspaper and told him that he had changed his plans. When the son screamed, "but you promised!", the father explained to him that it was a campaign promise and hence meaningless.
To give his son a demonstration of the judicial system, he told him that if he wrote a ten page letter of protest by 5 P.M. that day, he would read his appeal on any grievances he had. The son wrote the letter, the father read it and "handed down" his "opinion" on the matter, telling his son that he had "failed to state a claim upon which relief could be granted." When the son asked him to explain what he meant, he explained that in a democracy, he who is empowered to make decisions can decide in any way that "seems" appropriate, i.e., "out of necessity" or according to "changing conditions." For example, words mean nothing - or rather that the meanings of words are continually "evolving," and may be tomorrow the opposite of what they are today.
His father told his son that he was going to have a word with his teachers at school and ask the teacher to share any merit marks his son achieves, with any ethnic minority students who did not get any merit marks. When his son questioned this policy, his father explained that long ago we abused the ancestors of these people, and so it is only fair that he share the merits around to compensate their descendants.
In addition, the "household government" told his son that his energy, talent and enthusiasm would not secure him work if the quota of such 'abused' people had not yet been filled. He also told him talent stands for nothing - it is fairness and sharing which are important. His father reminded his son that his primary duty is the happiness and welfare of people he does not know, and would never meet.
Day Five - National Security
Without warning, he slapped his son and explained that this is "democratic" self-defense. For in a "democracy" you must be vigilant at all times to stop any "potential" enemy before he gets big enough to hurt you. A "potential terrorist" as yourself must be stopped at all cost. To further "edify" his son about his new god, he had arranged a "special" demonstration with a likeminded fellow-worker. He and his son drove across town to this man's house. The father walked in and started dictating to his friend about his domestic problems, threatened to take his children if he didn't do as he said, and further threatened to use overwhelming force to crush his family into submission in the name of "swift justice." He explained to his son that, according to government "morality," only a coward stands idly by whilst injustice is happening across town. "Its morality" says that all citizens are your brothers, and that problems left to fester will eventually spill over into your neighborhood. Therefore, all of this "must" be done "to insure domestic tranquility," "to promote the general welfare," and "to secure the blessings of liberty" for "the sake of humanity."
Day Six - Regulating "Morality"
The father used some of the $5 "tax" he took from his son and bought a small bottle of whisky and then lectured his son on the evils of buying drugs. His son pointed out his hypocrisy, but the father reminded him that the majority of people drink and that, as previously demonstrated, according to his "civil master" the needs of the majority is the "moral" standard.
His son and three of his sons friends had a meeting that morning to discuss what they were going to do during their summer vacations, and his father broke up the meeting just after it got started by announcing that "the will of the household" had determined that what they were engaged in was an "unlawful gathering." When his son stroked the cat, he asked him if the cat had given its express permission to do that. Since the cat did not give permission, the father punished him for feline harassment.
The father designated a spot in the yard where his son could leave his bike. He told his son that if he leaves it anywhere else, the "household government" will padlock it and demand $50 to release it. He also told his son that if he breaks this law more than three times, the "household government" will confiscate the bike, sell it, and keep the money.
He also pointed out to his son that he had installed a CCTV system in his son's bedroom and a system to record all of his telephone conversations. When he protested, the father accused him of having something to hide. He explained that, according to "civil morality," only "criminals" seek privacy and that "good, dutiful "civil" children" exchange their privacy for the advantages which protective parenthood offers. He reminded him of the boy across town who was caught smoking dope in his bedroom by just such a CCTV system, and told his son that he should agree that this case justifies installing CCTV in all teenagers' bedrooms.
He then told his son that he could no longer use cutlery from the kitchen; the son would have to eat dinner with his fingers. When he asked why, the father reminded him of the youth "down the street" who had stabbed a cat to death with a fork last week, and that if just one cat is saved by the banning of cutlery, this prohibition will be worthwhile. When the son disagreed, the "head of the household" questioned him closely about why he was intending to kill innocent cats, and accused him of being a cat hater.
He also informed his son that a "household pass card" would be issued to him which he must show before he could enter the house, and that the "head of the household" would from henceforth stand guard at the front door. "Every time you come home, I'll politely but firmly take you into the spare room and question you about your movements. I'll be checking you to find out what you have on you, and if you have in excess of $5, I'll confiscate it because it exceeds the house rule for maximum cash allowed. If I was the god of government you love so much, and not your loving father, I would also strip search you if you "looked" guilty of something and detain you in a locked room until you confessed.
Day Seven - The Civil Sabbath
Because his son had been so obedient to his "new" household government, the father gave his son a day of rest. He told him he could do anything he wanted to, as long it conformed to "the sabbath morality" and didn't violate "civil religion" and "government morality." The son asked him to explain exactly what that was. His father said, "whatever makes you feel good and adds to your self-esteem."
Though his father's tactics seemed harsh at the time, his son these many years later reminisces about "Hell Week." Having observed in daily life the truths that his father revealed to him during "The Week that Was," he now gratefully acknowledges the love of his father, and gleefully adds, "it was better to be in hell for one week than for eternity."
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