This is an 11-minute clip from an interview of Matt Trewhella on the Stand in the Gap Radio Show.
You can also listen to the entire 48-minute interview – which is entitled Threats, Mandates, and Coercion: The Biblical Response.
The interview was conducted on Thursday, September 16th, 2021.
The doctrine of the lesser magistrates is demonstrated by the interposition of lesser civil authorities. When the superior authority (like a governor or federal judiciary) acts lawlessly – it is the duty of the lesser magistrates to interpose and not obey their unlawful actions. The lesser magistrate doctrine was first formalized by Christian men in 1550, but has also been seen in non-Christian nations showing it is natural to man.
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America’s founders established this nation as a true federalism. In a true federalism there are multiple levels of government and multiple branches on each level. They did this because they held to a Christian view of man – that he is wicked and in need of a Savior.
They did not want power to rest in one man or a small group of men.
The founders established a federalism so the various branches would check the others if they acted wrongly.
The intent, therefore, of federalism is: if any one branch begins to play the tyrant, it is the duty of the other branches to interpose and resist that branch – and stop the evil. (The duty of the people is to rally with the interposing magistrates).
All public authorities (magistrates) possess lawful authority. If federal authorities do wrong, it is the duty of state, county, and local authorities to step in and stop the evil. If state authorities do wrong, it is the duty of county and local officials to step in and stop the evil.
State, county, and local magistrates take an oath to uphold both their State Constitution and the U.S. Constitution. They do not take an oath of subservience to the federal government, nor do they take an oath to blindly obey the authority above them.
Rather, they take an oath to uphold the constitutions. If therefore, another authority makes law, policy, or court opinion repugnant to the state or federal constitutions – they should not obey them.
God has established four realms of government to which He delegates authority. They are: (1) self-government; (2) family government; (3) church government; and (4) civil government. Each has its own role, function, and limits.
The authority an individual possesses in any one of these four realms of government is delegated authority. In other words, they derive their authority from God. Their authority is not autonomous or unconditional. Their authority is God-given, and thus, they have a duty to govern in accordance with His rule.