Anarchy: The Original Government of Israel

“Apart from You, we have no king, redeemer, or savior.” -Nishmat Prayer

Just as I enjoy religious studies, I also enjoy political studies and seeing where the two mix together. On a political spectrum, I’m a Libertarian – even though my own personal political philosophy is closer to Anarcho-Captialism, which Wikipedia defines as: “a libertarian political philosophy that advocates the elimination of the state in favor of individual sovereignty in a free market.”

Some say that some themes of Anarchy and Torah observance do not mix well, but Scripture says otherwise. Anarchy and chaos are not synonymous, but rather Anarchy is in governing one’s self without an earthly king. This is a concept that is deeply-rooted in Torah observance and was God’s ideal form of government for His people on earth. Samuel deeply supported an earthly form of Anarchy for Israel, instead urging the people that an earthly king would not be in the best interest of the people of Israel in the long run. He warned against this in 1 Samuel and described to them what having a king would look like:

So Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking for a king from him. He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen and to run before his chariots. And he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his servants. He will take the tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and to his servants. He will take your male servants and female servants and the best of your young men and your donkeys, and put them to his work.He will take the tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the Lord will not answer you in that day.”

But the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel. And they said, “No! But there shall be a king over us, that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” And when Samuel had heard all the words of the people, he repeated them in the ears of the Lord. And the Lord said to Samuel, “Obey their voice and make them a king.” Samuel then said to the men of Israel, “Go every man to his city.” – 1 Samuel 8:4-22
Because this was the ideal form of government to the Creator, I would encourage Israel to seek after a self-governance as found in earthly Anarchy while surrendering to the authority of the Heavenly King. 


It is the Lord your God you shall fear. Him you shall serve and by his name you shall swear. – Deuteronomy 6:13