By Reporter God Free All Men
It was about 10:00 in the morning on a hot, cloudy day during harvest time when the External Revenue Agents arrived to collect the bean tax.
Local Israelite farmers in the valley of Beth Zur were cultivating beans under the free enterprise system when the External Revenue Agents appeared. Operating under the authority of the Bureau of External Revenue Service of Philistine Affairs (ERS), the Agents arrived at the fields armed with lethal force to collect beans.
All of the local farmers were extremely intimidated by the badges, weapons, and authority of the Agents and decided to capitulate to the bean collectors. One can hardly blame them. They were a rather mean looking bunch. Apparently, there was some argument about the word “income” from whatever source derived. The local farmers were reluctant to give up their beans and hated the bean collectors, but a local preacher assured them that they were to give “unto Caesar what was Caesars” and that every “soul should be subject to higher powers” (Matthew 22:21; Romans 12:1).
However, one patriot named Shammah showed up as the Agents were gathering beans. He was totally unintimidated by their legal jargon, show of force, and coercion tactics. He pointed out to the Agents that they were outside their jurisdiction and lacked any authority over a Citizen of Israel. He argued that the Constitution only authorized two types of taxes, direct and indirect, and that the farmers were not engaged in any taxable activity. Shammah exposed the Agents as foreign powers and charged them with seeking to extort beans from sovereign Citizens in the free state of Israel. He pointed out that the Bean Collectors were forcing the farmers into involuntary servitude by illegally demanding their beans. He argued the farmers were engaged in an occupation of common right, had a moral duty to keep what they produced, and that they were not involved in a privilege with the Philistine Government.
Refusing to surrender his God-given rights, his property, or the property of his friends, Shammah rejected their request for fraud. It was a nasty, legal, bloody affair.
Everyone admires Shammah for his courage and convictions. But, to this day the farmers still do not understand their own Constitution or why they do not have to pay the bean tax to the External Revenue Agents.
I asked the farmers if they had ever read their Constitution. They all said, “No.” I asked if they understood the difference between direct and indirect taxes. They all said, “No.” I asked if they understood that they were endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the right to keep and own property. They looked puzzled. Finally, I inquired if they understood the command, “Thou shall not steal.” They all assured me they did not steal. But, they seemed confused about their right to keep beans produced in their own field. In fact, most still do not understand that accumulation of beans is fundamental to freedom.
To this day, the farmers sign papers and volunteer to give their beans to the External Revenue Service. Some even accuse Shammah of breaking the law and fear that one day the External Revenue Agents will arrest him. I asked Shammah about this and he muttered something to me about involuntary servitude in Egypt and then blurted out, “Israel can only remain the land of the free as long as she is the home of the brave.”
Copyright Family Guardian Fellowship
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