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Editorial

Taxation is Theft

Taxation is theft.

There is only one morally righteous tax and that is a tax necessary to fund the protection of property.  Property is broadly defined and would include life, liberty, intellect, labor etc.  Property is the stuff that individuals are born with and acquire over time through inheritance, gift or exchange.  Any other property received is ill gotten gain. Hence, taxation, like stealing, is theft.

It is the constitution of civil authority to protect property and penalize those who steal it.  The penalty should be commensurate with the value of the property as established by the market exchange of the property, in regard to tangible property.  In the context of intangible, the value should be determined by peers.

Background

Productivity:  Property, Intellect and Labor

God acted and created for mankind all the material necessary for life.  “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth”.  Genesis 1:1

God created man in God’s image.  Consequently, man has an intellect that allows analysis, understanding and creativity.    “And God said, Let us make man in our image“.  Genesis 1:26a

God instructed man to be productive.   “be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth and subdue it”.  Genesis 1:28b  The principle of subduing should not be overlooked.  Dr. Henry MorrisThe Biblical Basis for Modern Science, states, “The command to subdue the earth, although couched in military terminology, should be understood to mean bringing all earth’s systems and process into a state of optimum productivity and utility, offering the greatest glory to God and benefit to mankind.”

God specifically command man to act.  “And the LORD God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it”.  Genesis 2:15”   

God expects make to labor  “…and there was not a man to till the ground.” – Genesis 2:5 

 God created man, among other reasons, to labor in His garden and care for it.  Not only to care for it, but to “be fruitful, multiply, replenish and subdue”.  Over the past 6000 years this has not changed.  Man is to be productive.

Sin

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” (Romans 5:12)  Death reigns.  The curse of sin is death and death is pervasive throughout the material world wasting away the necessities of life.  Man must now produce things necessary for life using limited resources.  Under the mandate of Genesis 1:28, mankind observes nature, learns how to harness elements of growth and translate those elements into the production of the stuff necessary for life.  But man does not simply produce a little, he produces in abundance.   “And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.” (Genesis 4:2).  Able and Cain both observed the world around them, took principles that they had learned and produced livestock and crops.  Out of their surplus, they fed their families and made offerings unto God (Genesis 4:3-4).

Civil Authority

To protect a sinful man from sinful men, God gave authority to mankind and rules to follow.  First, he instituted civil authority.  “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.”  (Genesis 9:6) Mankind had become so vile, that God destroyed mankind via a worldwide flood, save for Noah and his family.  Prior to sending Noah and his family forth to “And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.” (Genesis 9:7), God gave them the responsibility to govern. The rule of governance was to judicially take the life of an individual who had non-judicially taken a life.

The principle of this rule was expanded in Exodus 20:10 and subsequent passages throughout the balance of the Pentateuch.  The Ten Commandments, as they are generally called, are the basis for liberty.  The institution of civil authority is the protection of that liberty.  Property broadly understood is the cardinal element that needs protecting.  We should see life, marriage, property, honesty and fulfillment as property.  They belong to us as individuals that God has graciously provided. “For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?” (I Corinthians 4:7)

The heart of the Ten Commandments is best summed up as, “Love the Lord and love your neighbor” (Matthew 22:36-40)  By protecting life, marriage, property, honesty and fulfillment civil authority allows for the prosperity that God desires for man in Genesis 1:28 and Genesis 9:7.  The course of man is productivity.  The perversion of man is to take what does not belong to him.

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? – Jeremiah 17:9

This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. Ephesians 4:17-19

And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled,  Colossians 1:21

Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God

Man is alienated from God and his works are disobedient. “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (I Corinthians 2:14)

In order to protect life, marriage, property, honesty and fulfillment civil authority must have funds for the agencies necessary to achieve that goal.  The benefit is extended to all individuals and hence all individuals should be responsible for the cost.  Taxation for this purpose is necessary and righteously justified.  All other forms of taxation are immoral.

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