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Theocracy

THEOCRACY (thē-ŏk'ra-sē, Gr. theokratia). A government in which God himself is the ruler. The best and perhaps the only illustration among nations is Israel from the time that God redeemed them from the power of the pharaoh by drying the Red Sea (Exod.15.13; Exod.19.5-Exod.19.6) and gave them his law at [[Mount Sinai]], until the time when Samuel acceded to their demand, “Now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have” (1Sam.8.5). During this period God ruled through Moses (Exod.19.1-Exod.19.25-Deut.34.1-Deut.34.12), then through Joshua (Josh.1.1-Josh.1.18-Josh.24.1-Josh.24.33), and finally through “judges” whom he raised up from time to time to deliver his people. From the human standpoint, the power was largely in the hands of the priests, who acted on the basis of laws passed by God, in which were united all the powers of the state—legislative, executive, and judicial. Such a government was, of course, possible only because of God’s special revelation of himself