SECRETARY GAULT said that under “the model of government which Christ gave to Israel” “all their rulers were elected by the people.” We asked him for one instance of it, and he refers us to Deuteronomy 1:13, and quotes: “‘Take you wise men, and understanding, and known among your tribes, and I will make them rulers over you.’” But he does not quote enough. In that place Moses is rehearsing what had been done long before. The whole connection is this: “I spake unto you at that time, saying, I am not able to bear you myself alone; … how can I myself alone bear your cumbrance, and your burden, and your strife? Take you wise men, and understanding, and known among your tribes, and I will make them rulers over you. And ye answered me, and said, The thing which thou halt spoken is good for us to do. So I took the chief of your tribes, wise men, and known, and made them heads over you, captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, and captains over fifties, and captains over tens, and officers among your tribes.” Deuteronomy 1:9-15.
Now at whose direction was this done? Mr. Gault says that it was under “the model of government which Christ gave to Israel.” We can easily learn whether it was or not. Moses says, “At that time.” At what time. Turn to Exodus 18:13-26. As Moses sat to judge the people, he was occupied all day from morning till evening in hearing and deciding the cases of the people who came. “And Moses’s father-in-law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee; for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone. Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, … thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens; and let them judge the people at all seasons; and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge; so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee…. So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father-in-law, and did all that he had said.”
There can be no shadow of doubt therefore that the rulers referred to by Moses in the text cited by Mr. Gault, were those who were appointed at the suggestion of Moses’s father-in-law, who was Jethro, a Midianite. Does Mr. Gault mean to say that this piece of advice given by Jethro was the model government which Christ gave to Israel? If not, and most assuredly it was not, then what is his argument and citation of that scripture good for? It is good for nothing, but to show his utter and inexcusable ignorance of the true bearing of scripture. Of all men who have ever put themselves into print, the one who makes the most brilliant success of getting on the wrong side of every question that he touches, and every time that he is undoubtedly the “Rev.” M. A. Gault, district secretary of the National Reform Association. A. T. J.