Government corruption has been defined as the abuse of public power for private gain. It seems both Trump's and Biden's activities qualify for that.
Such abuse has such a long history that most people have come to think of it as an unavoidable part of politics and government.
While corruption can exist in any human organization, it seems that corruption in government is the worst. The 2013 Global Corruption
, published by Transparency International, reported that people worldwide have the perception that the five most corrupt institutions are
political parties, the police, public officials, the legislature, and the judiciary.
Government corruption has deep roots. Professor Susan Rose-Ackerman, an expert on the subject of anticorruption, wrote that reform would require
“fundamental changes in the way government does business.” While the situation might seem to be hopeless, the Bible shows that even greater
changes are not only possible but also certain to happen.
“At the end of the day, public officials are still citizens and we are all a product of society.” So stated the chief auditor of Nicaragua when
explaining why he felt that government corruption was impossible to eliminate.
Would you not agree that if human society is corrupt, then any government that is a part of it will inevitably be corrupt? If that is the case, then a
government free of corruption must come from outside human society. The Bible describes just such a government—God’s Kingdom, the government for
which Jesus taught his followers to pray at Matthew 6:9, 10:
9 “You must pray, then, this way: “‘Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified. 10 Let your Kingdom come. Let your will take
place, as in heaven, also on earth.
God’s Kingdom is a real government that rules from heaven. It will replace all human governments. (Psalm 2:8, 9; Revelation 16:14; 19:19-21) Among
the benefits that the Kingdom will bring to mankind is the elimination of government corruption. Consider some features of the Kingdom that guarantee
The effort to eliminate corruption “must start at the top,” observes Susan Rose-Ackerman, quoted earlier. Governments lose
credibility when they try to eradicate corruption among police or customs officers while tolerating it among high officials. And even the most ethical
human ruler is subject to inherent imperfection. As the Bible says, “there is no righteous man on earth who always does good.”—Ecclesiastes
Unlike imperfect humans, Jesus Christ, whom God has selected to be Ruler of the Kingdom, cannot be tempted into doing what is
wrong. Jesus showed this by rejecting the most massive bribe ever offered—“all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.” Jesus was promised
this in exchange for one act of false worship to the ruler of the world, the Devil. (Matthew 4:8-10; John 14:30) Even when Jesus was being tortured to
death, he was so determined to maintain his integrity that he refused a drug that would have dulled the pain but might also have left him without full
command of his senses. (Matthew 27:34) Now raised back to heavenly life by God, Jesus has proved that he is fully qualified to rule over the
Many countries hold elections regularly, which in theory allows people to vote corrupt officials out of office. The reality,
though, is that campaigns and elections are prone to corruption, even in so-called developed countries. By means of campaign contributions and other
actions, the rich can unduly influence current and future officeholders.
Justice John Paul Stevens of the U.S. Supreme Court wrote that such influence threatens “not only the legitimacy and quality of Government but also
the public’s faith therein.” It is little wonder, then, that many people worldwide have the perception that political parties are the most corrupt
of all institutions.
God’s Kingdom removes the possibility of campaign or electoral fraud by being a stable, permanent rulership. (Daniel 7:13, 14)
Since its Ruler is chosen by God, the Kingdom is neither validated by elections nor subject to overthrow. Its stability helps to ensure that the
actions it takes are always in the best long-term interests of its people.
At first, you might think that enacting new laws could improve matters. However, experts have found that in many cases, increasing
the number of laws just provides more opportunities for corruption. Additionally, legislation specifically intended to reduce corruption often costs
much to implement yet accomplishes little.
The laws of the Kingdom of God are vastly superior to those of human governments. For example, rather than itemizing an extensive
list of dos and don’ts, Jesus gave what is often called the Golden Rule. He stated: “All things, therefore, that you want men to do to you, you
also must do to them.” (Matthew 7:12) Perhaps more significantly, the laws of the Kingdom focus on both motives and actions. “You must love your
neighbor as yourself,” said Jesus. (Matthew 22:39) Of course, God, who can read the heart, could actually enforce such commands.—1 Samuel 16:7.
The driving forces behind corruption are greed and self-interest. Government officials and citizens often display those negative
qualities. In Seoul, South Korea, 502 people died in a department-store collapse in 1995. Investigators found that city officials had been bribed to
allow contractors to use substandard concrete and to violate safety rules. In other words, government officials accepted bribes from contractors who
knew that paying a bribe would be less costly than using proper building materials and construction practices.
To eliminate corruption, then, people must be taught how to overcome entrenched motives such as greed and selfishness. However, human governments lack
both the will and the ability to implement this type of educational program.
God’s Kingdom deals with corruption at its roots by teaching people how to overcome the wrong motives that cause it. * This
education helps them “to be made new in [their] dominant mental attitude.” (Ephesians 4:23) They learn to replace greed and selfishness with
contentment and interest in others.—Philippians 2:4; 1 Timothy 6:6. (*: For example, see the article
“Is It Possible to Be Honest in a Corrupt
Even in the best environment and with the finest education in morals, some people will choose to be dishonest and corrupt. Experts
admit that this is why human governments cannot eliminate corruption. The most that can be hoped for is that the scope and destructive effects of
corruption can be limited.
The United Nations Convention Against Corruption states that to fight corruption, governments should promote “integrity,
honesty and responsibility.” While this is a noble goal, God’s Kingdom does more than just promote
these qualities—it requires
them of its subjects. The Bible says that “greedy people” and “liars” will not qualify to inherit the Kingdom.—1 Corinthians 6:9-11;
People can learn to adhere to these high moral standards, as the early Christians proved.
edit on 1-10-2019 by whereislogic because: (no reason