Standing for Truth and Defending Your Freedom
Standing for Truth and Defending Your Freedom

Enough of Unlimited Government!

by Karen VanTil Gushta, Ph.D.

It has become sadly evident over the past seven years that many voters remained willfully ignorant of the true beliefs of the man they chose to be president in 2008. For those who cared to know, candidate Barack Hussein Obama gave plenty of indicators as to the course he would chart if he were elected.

For example, in 2001, during an interview with Chicago’s WBEZ-FM radio, Obama, then a professor of constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School, stated his view of the inadequacies of the U.S. Constitution:

I think we can say that the Constitution reflected an enormous blind spot in this culture that carries on until this day, and the framers had that same blind spot…. The Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and sort of more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society. 

Since taking office, President Obama has used his influence and the powers of his office to address this supposed oversight, most notably in his signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act. This mammoth intrusion into America’s healthcare system will cause—if left in place—the largest redistribution of wealth in America’s history.

Of course, the great irony is that although he may have studied the origins of the Constitution as a law professor, during his presidency Mr. Obama has ignored the very heart and intention of the Constitution’s framers. They sought assiduously to give us a system of limited government, circumscribed by the consent of the governed. 

“When the fifty-five delegate founders met in Philadelphia in 1787, their paramount concern was how to strengthen the national government while keeping it limited.” So writes historian Timothy D. Johnson in describing the intent of the framers when they gathered for the Constitutional Convention. In his book, Liberty vs. Power: The Founding Fathers’ Vision for America, Johnson notes that in order to accomplish this, they had to find a way to grant the new national government “the authority necessary to ensure it permanence and solvency while ensuring that it lacked the power to become despotic.” The founders had seen enough of tyrants and despots. 

Thomas Jefferson observed: “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.” The Constitution was written to govern government not the people. 

Although the founders never mentioned the principle of “sphere sovereignty,” as Timothy Johnson points out, they viewed the Constitution as the critical means for keeping government “in its proper sphere,” and they recognized that the consequence of governmental overreach is always a loss of our individual liberties. When government invades other social spheres, such as the family or the church, areas in which we are directly accountable to be obedient to God, who is sovereign over all of life, it is violating our God-given right to self-determination within those respective spheres. 

When government exceeds its constitutional powers by mandating that citizens buy health insurance, it is violating the sphere of the economy. When the Health and Human Services department refuses to allow Christians who do not believe in killing the unborn to be exempt from its rule requiring insurance coverage of abortions, the HHS is overstepping its legitimate sphere of authority. The government cannot penalize its citizens when they act according to their religious beliefs without, in effect, taking the place of God in their lives. 

The same is true of government agencies that fail to recognize the God-given rights of families to direct and determine the education and nurture of their children. They are overstepping government’s proper sphere and threatening the liberty of the family to respond to God’s commands, for He has ordained that the father and mother—not the government—are responsible for the nurture and teaching of their children. 

Our proper relationship to any civil authority can only be understood when we recognize God is the Supreme Governor of all things. Not only is He the Creator of all things, He preserves, provides for, sustains, and governs His creation (Colossians 1:17, Psalm 104). So, no matter what the sphere of government— whether in creation or culture, whether through church rulers or civil authorities, whether in the marriage, the family, or the school—it is God who ultimately governs. “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God” (Romans 13:1). 

We need men and women in our civil government offices who understand the constitutional limits of their powers and their true spheres of responsibility. We should only elect those who pledge not to pass legislation that oversteps these bounds. And just as importantly, we must hold legislators accountable so they will not allow government departments and their agencies to promulgate regulations that restrict our liberties. 

America needs to follow the Constitution. Enough of unlimited government!