Ap American History- Dbq Divine Authority

Topics: Political philosophy, Tabula rasa, Constitutional monarchy Pages: 3 (985 words) Published: January 8, 2008
"During colonial period, religion provided the primary rationale for the authority of the king" Evaluate Religion was a primary factor in day to day life in colonial times. Minor decisions weren't made without first thinking what God would "say". Therefore something as important as choosing the king must be done with God in mind. Many believed that God appoints the king directly. Many questions were raised about God's role in delegating authority: Does authority come from God? How do we know that a person is God's pick? Did he assign a given king? Do the subjects have a say? If God's delegate becomes corrupt may the subjects revolt? Is it disrespectful to God if they do? These questions and more prompted the responses we have in Documents A-C.

I will go in decreasing order of strictness against revolt. J. Boucher (Document B) was a big supporter of the monarchy. He believed that God delegate the king as his messenger. Therefore he feels that to revolt would be to spit in God's face (a figurative face of course.) The ultimate freedom in his opinion is submission to the rule of the king. At first glance this makes little sense. I soon realized that this was taken from numerous places in the Old Testament where it is stated that the best way to be free is to serve God. Viz a viz, one can be free by serving God's servant, the king. According to Boucher's school of thought, revolution leads to damnation. If a king is tyrannical who is on a level to protest since all of the kings actions are from God? Who can deny a "gift" from God? To be a naysayer against the king is heresy. It is the role of each individual in the society to squelch rebellion. Boucher and those like him were run out of town so to speak. Boucher returned to England and his beloved monarchy. Slightly less strict and much more accepted were the opinions of J. Mayhew (Doc. A) and those like him. They believe that a king is divinely chosen but is not impervious to evil and...
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