“Every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”
“neither place saying whether or not God saw this as a good thing. Seems a stretch to assume He did.”
Seems a stretch to assume He didn’t. The entire context of Judges has the Israelites chasing after pagan gods. Statism was the ultimate form of paganism. Most of the time they WERE following the Lord’s law, living peacefully and doing well. It was the exception when they turned aside to worship idols. If you count the years, of the 400 covered in Judges, only about 25% of the time is there trouble. I agree that human nature is evil, but I believe that during the peaceful times the Israelites were following God’s law and doing well with no other government than the judges.
Jesus doesn’t condemn governments? He rejects the political mechanism at every turn. He refuses to become a secular king. He demonstrates the wickedness of government. He insists that his disciples follow him in another way.
All government is corrupt.
I do appreciate the freedoms we have, and I am concerned that those freedoms are being eroded away by a mentality that recuses itself of responsibility and foists it upon the state. If we continue in this vein, we will have no freedoms. c.f. Hayek’s Road to Serfdom.
Unbelievers act according to incentives. When there are good laws, they respond to the legal structure in such a way as to maximize their own interests. Self-interestedness is not evil, it actually has many beneficial outcomes.
The Natural Rights have Biblical foundations and are true insights into human nature. They are internally consistent and non-contradictory. Are there any rights you would add to or subtract from this list? You do so at the peril of the others.
I do not advocate vigilante justice, I recognize an appeal to justice for what it actually is, a surrogate for violence, and as such I have a greater appreciation for it. Someone is considered innocent until proven guilty only by the courts, by an impartial third party. God recognized the need for judges, and that’s what He gave them. He recognized the trouble of kings, and withheld them.
Again, the Christian ethic is peculiar and ultimately unworkable amongst unredeemed individuals. The strong would merely slaughter the weak. So, we need a political system that will work for those who are merely under common grace and not specific grace. The system of the Judges was just such a system, and the only workable one humankind has ever observed.