I had never heard of Adin Ballou until I read this the other day. Yes, he was a socialist and a utopian. However, he made this exceptionally profound statement about how the Apostles worked to influence their society.
“What was the practice of the Apostles, after the resurrection of Christ, when fully ensued with power and grace from on high? Did they ever slay any human being? Ever threaten to do so? Ever make use of any deadly weapon? Ever serve in the Army or Navy of any nation, state, or chieftan? Ever seek or accept any office, legislative, judicial, or executive, under existing governments of their day? Ever make complaint to the magistrates against any offender or criminal, in order to produce his punishment? Ever commence any prosecution at law to obtain redress of grievances? Ever apply to the civil or military authority to protect them by force of arms when in imminent danger? Or ever counsel others to do anyone of these acts? Did they ever express, by word or deed, their reliance on political, military, or penal power to secure personal protection, or to carry forward the Christianization of the world? I answer confidently, NO.”
Wise words for any time, especially one like this when pandering politicians everywhere exhort us to “take America back for Christ”.
But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; and whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. ~ Matthew 20:25-28