Of course local self-government begins–where else–with the individual. Then it moves to the family, the church, the city, the state and the nation. As the seed is planted in the individual, all other spheres will reap the rewards of it.
As I stated in the post on the last principle, America is the only country in the world with the balance of powers between state and federal governments. Local self-government is unique in its form here in America, creating unique communities all over the country, with their own laws and economic environments. This is individuality in another sense–each community as an individual is distinct from all other communities. And we have the freedom to change our communities or to move to a more desirable area.
What exactly is the “seed” then? It is the principle of self-government, planted in individuals by educating them (internally), and then externally expressed by demonstrating the principles.
What makes self-government “local?” A defined geographic area who govern and finance themselves exclusive of any other area. They choose their own leaders and govern their own affairs, having little dependence on taxes and people from other areas.
Applied educationally, this principle is planted in the students in the way we minister to our children as we educate them, elevating their Christian scholarship and the idea of free individuals. As I inspire my children and cultivate the Biblical intelligence that delights to answer to God and the Holy Spirit, I will begin to see that fruit evident in their lives. I make them accountable for their time, talents and property; help them to take dominion over their environment and become “Lord’s Freeman” and “Christ’s Servant.” (p. 68)
There is much more he covered about church government and its role in shaping the country, but I could post all day about it, so I am cutting it short. 🙂