Biblical View of
A Challenge to Christians in Hawaii
By Leon Siu
In God We Trust?
Many nations claim to be submitted to God’s sovereignty, but few, if any, really are. Even the United States of America no longer abides by its motto, “In God We Trust.” In fact, the United States, as a matter of government policy, has come to deny that God plays any role whatsoever in the affairs of the nation. It has become politically correct to revile and mock God even to the point of attacking, ridiculing and persecuting those who believe in the Supreme Lawgiver. With its civic leaders and lawmakers in rebellion against God, the United States has degenerated into lawlessness and wickedness, now openly calling “good, evil, and evil, good!”
Hawaii is already in great jeopardy. Instead of trusting in God and His provision, the Hawaii of today has embraced the materialistic American mindset and its hedonistic pop culture. Hawaii is also nearly totally dependent on imported goods (e.g. 95% of its food). Like Americans, Hawaii’s people are deeply in debt, in abject slavery to the almighty dollar. And behind Hawaii’s beautiful façade is a bristling military fortress.
Even worse, as a vassal of the United States, Hawaii has also come to reject God and His laws. Once an independent nation that upheld the laws of Jehovah God as the supreme law of the land, the STATE OF HAWAII became a key to legalizing practices that are abominable to God — such as abortion, sodomy and pornography. Hawaii is used as a “testing ground” for moral outrages depicted in terms like “sexual orientation,” “gender identity,” “same-sex marriage,” “death with dignity,” “hate crimes” and so on.
The STATE OF HAWAII, like its mentor the United States, is foolishly and arrogantly in open hostility to God’s laws. Persisting in this kind of defiant and rebellious behavior will only incur the consequences of God’s righteous judgment.
The Bible makes it abundantly clear that a nation that turns away from the laws of Jehovah God, will suffers the bitter consequences — natural disasters, pestilence, disease, poverty, violence, moral decay, social chaos, conquest, enslavement and death. If the nation continues in its rebellion, rejecting and defying God’s laws, refusing to repent, and standing in hostility to God, that nation faces severe judgment — even annihilation — as was the case of Sodom and Gomorrah. The United States of America, which was once regarded as a Christian nation, has become prideful in its defiance of God’s laws, believing it can mock God and even banish Him from public affairs. This kind of foolishness will surely provoke God’s judgment.
Escaping the Judgment
Humility and repentance are the keys to invoking God’s mercy and turning aside His judgment. Unfortunately, bad court decisions and legislative actions, a crass American culture, ruthless business practices and an immoral popular media have, in recent years, exponentially increased America’s disdain for God’s laws. All indications are that America is heading in the exact opposite direction from repentance and doesn’t seem like it intends to ‘trust in God’ any time soon. America’s inertia toward destruction seems too great to stop.
But perhaps there’s hope for Hawaii.
Just as God delivered Israel out of an Egypt that had fallen under judgment, God can deliver Hawaii from the judgment about to befall the United States. We as Christians in Hawaii are in a unique position to assume our responsibility as believers to declare God’s righteousness over this nation and to call upon Him to deliver us.
The Bible says “If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people, and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and I will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7: 13-14)
God squarely places on His people, the responsibility for bringing about God’s forgiveness and healing. To receive forgiveness for our sins and for God to heal our land, we, the people who are called by His name — believers in Jesus Christ — need to repent, pray, seek God’s face, and turn from our wicked ways.
There is an unfinished matter that must be addressed…
In 1893, the Hawaiian Kingdom, a progressive, literate, flourishing, peaceful, neutral, Christian nation, was seized by a group of malcontent elitists desiring complete economic and political control of these islands. The basic motive for this traitorous act was greed.
The traitors were aided by the United States in clear violation of international laws and formal treaties and covenants it had signed with the Hawaiian Kingdom. Although it admitted soon after that its participation in the overthrow was illegal, the United States did nothing to rectify the wrong.
Instead, fueled by the doctrine of “manifest destiny,” colonialist ambition, the Spanish-American War and cultural and racial prejudices, the United States in 1898, illegally “annexed” Hawaii, accepting it as a gift from the hands of the traitors.
Queen Lili‘uokalani appealed directly to the Christians of America when she wrote to them in 1893:
“Oh, honest Americans, as Christians hear me for my downtrodden people! Their form of government is as dear to them as yours is precious to you. Quite as warmly as you love your country, so they love theirs. Do not covet the little vineyards of Naboth’s so far from your shores, lest the punishment of Ahab fall upon you, if not in your day, in that of your children, for “be not deceived, God is not mocked.” The people to whom your fathers told of the living God, and taught to call “Father,” and whom the sons now seek to despoil and destroy, are crying aloud to Him in their time of trouble; and He will keep His promise, and will listen to the voices of His Hawaiian children lamenting for their homes.”
Thus far, the Queen’s heartfelt appeal has received no response from the American Christians. Instead, over the past 112 years, Christians have participated, both purposefully and unwittingly in the subjugation and occupation of Hawaii. The fact is, Hawaiians feel betrayed and abandoned by the abject silence of the American Christians who could have intervened, affected justice and brought healing to this land.
The plight of Hawaii grew from a combination of gross exploitation, ignorance and mass indifference. For Christians to know what occurred, yet refuse to call for accountability and justice is indeed evil.
Ua Mau Ke Eä I Ka ‘Äina I Ka Pono, "The Life (Sovereignty) of the Land is Perpetuated in Righteousness.” This, the motto of the Hawaiian Kingdom declares a profound spiritual truth. As righteousness (pono) brings life, the converse is also true — unrighteousness (hewa) causes suffering and death — made painfully evident in the unenviable position Hawaiians occupy in the statistics of social ills.
The way to escape God’s judgment for wickedness is to sincerely repent to God, to stop the acts of wickedness, to make restitution and work with God for reconciliation. In this case of an entire nation being stolen and occupied, reconciliation could mean the restoration of the lawful Hawaiian Kingdom. This right to restore the Hawaiian Kingdom is preserved as a viable option under international law. Even though occupied by a foreign belligerent power, Hawaii never relinquished its status as a distinct, independent, neutral, and sovereign nation.
What should be the Christians’ response to the Queen’s appeal? What would be your response?
The Hawaiian Covenant with God
Through its Declaration of Rights in 1839 and its Constitution in 1840, the Kingdom of Hawaii established as its paramount principle: “That no law shall be enacted which is at variance [contradiction] with the word of the Lord Jehovah, or at variance with the general spirit of His word. All laws of the Islands shall be in consistency with the general spirit of God’s law.”
These are not just noble sounding words; they constitute a covenant with God that His law is supreme over the nation. Even though the covenant has been seriously breached, placing Hawaii in jeopardy, the covenant can be restored. The return of the Hawaiian Kingdom would restore not just the people, the boundaries and political jurisdiction, but more importantly, it would restore Hawaii’s covenant with God.
Because of this, Hawaii must repent and return to the covenant that declares and upholds God and God’s laws as Sovereign over the nation.
Continuing a course of rejecting God’s sovereignty would bring catastrophe. Repenting and submitting to His sovereignty would bring blessings and life. Ua mau ke ea o ka aina i ka pono ia Iesu Kristo (The sovereignty of the land is perpetuated in the righteousness of Jesus Christ).
Choosing God to Govern
Its own founding documents committed the Hawaiian Kingdom to being ruled by the laws of Jehovah God.
How does a nation allow God to rule? By submitting the nation to His guidance, by conforming to His will, by being willing followers to His leading, by obeying His laws (order), by seeking His justice, by standing for righteousness in the public square. God promises to bless a nation that submits thusly to Him.
Just as in Joshua’s day when he challenged the Israelites to: “Choose you this day whom you will serve…” over a century and a half ago, a young Hawaiian king came to the same point of decision. Through the 1839 Declaration of Rights and the Constitution of 1840, Kauikeaouli (Kamehameha III) the King of Hawaii, echoed Joshua’s answer: “… but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24: 15) Kauikeaouli committed the laws of the Kingdom of Hawaii (his “house”) to be in agreement with the laws of Jehovah God.
The Question for Hawaii
Today the fundamental question for Christians in Hawaii is not how to bring the United States or the Hawaii State governments to repentance. The question is not which Hawaiian sovereignty group to follow; or the merits of one governing system over another. The fundamental question for Christians in Hawaii today is the same as it has been down through the ages: “Whom will you serve?”
If your answer is, “I will serve the Lord,” then all your choices in all aspects of life should come into alignment with God’s plan and purpose. Shouldn’t your response in the arena of civic matters be governed by the same principle? Should you align yourself with a nation that is in open rebellion against God’s laws, or one that openly declares the laws of God as sovereign?
A New Look at Hawaiian Sovereignty
In recent years the “Hawaiian Sovereignty” movement has gone through a metamorphosis. What began as factions of angry and hurt people demanding retribution for injury, is maturing into a lawful, organized society of sovereigns confidently and methodically moving toward reconciliation and restoration of the lawful Hawaiian Kingdom. What caused this change? It is the realization among more and more activists that God is sovereign.
It is the realization that sovereignty is a spiritual matter, not a temporal one; the realization that sovereignty can only be dealt with on a spiritual level. It is the realization that the wrong committed in the overthrow of 1893, and the wrongs that followed, can only be set right by God; in His way. It is changing the focus from that of “rights” and “wrongs” to that of righteousness, justice and mercy.
Contrary to popular belief, a substantial number of people involved in the Hawaiian sovereignty movement believe that the key to Hawaii’s sovereignty is to uphold God as sovereign over these islands. Without God being sovereign, there can be no real reconciliation and healing of the wrongs. These people agree that the first priority is to hold God as sovereign over the nation, then in humility, repentance and diligence, to allow God to lead in the restoration.
The challenge to Christians in Hawaii is this: Putting aside questions of whether or not it is possible to restore the Hawaiian Kingdom after a hundred-plus years’ dormancy; putting aside questions of loyalty to the United States; putting aside questions of real estate possessions, native Hawaiian rights, indigenous rights, blood quantum and so forth; what would you choose? If as a Christian you were asked to choose between supporting an entrenched, super-power (United States) that is in rebellion against God and His laws, or a rag-tag group of Hawaiians whose desire is to allow God to rule supreme over these islands with His redeeming Aloha; which would you choose?
Think about it. Pray about it. Are you more concerned about comfort, expediency, and convenience? Are your thoughts being ruled by loyalty to a state, a country, a culture or a lifestyle? Do you prefer familiarity and pragmatism to justice and righteousness? Are you fearful of change? Then press in and start seeking God’s mind on the matter. Start renewing your mind by recalling and applying God’s Word …
“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” (Proverbs 14: 34)
“When the righteous increase the people rejoice, but when the wicked man rules, the people groan.” (Proverbs 29: 2)
“The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves him who pursues righteousness.” (Proverbs 14: 9)
“Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord and so bring wrath upon yourself from the Lord?” (2 Chronicles 19: 2)
“Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6: 33)
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8: 31)
“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the Gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24: 15)
“If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people, and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and I will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7: 13-14)
"If therefore, you are presenting your offering at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go your way; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.” (Matthew 5: 23-24)
Quotes from Kauikeaouli, Kamehameha III:
Hawaii Motto, 1843
Ua mau ke eä o ka
‘äina I ka pono. (The life (sovereignty) of the land is perpetuated in
Declaration of Rights, 1839
"God hath made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on the earth, in unity and blessedness. God has also bestowed certain rights alike on all men and all chiefs, and all people of all lands. These are some of the rights which He has given alike to every man and every chief of correct deportment; life, limb, liberty, freedom from oppression; the earnings of his hands and the productions of his mind, not however to those who act in violation of the laws.
“God has also established government, and rule, for the purpose of peace; but in making laws for the nation it is by no means proper to enact laws for the protection of the rulers only, without also providing protection for their subjects; neither is it proper to enact laws to enrich the chiefs only, without regard to enriching their subjects also, and hereafter there shall by no means be any laws enacted which are at variance with what is above expressed, neither shall any tax be assessed, nor any service or labor required of any man, in a manner which is at variance with the above sentiments.”
Hawaii Constitution, 1840
It is our design to regulate our kingdom according to the above principles and thus seek the greatest prosperity both of all the chiefs and all the people of these Hawaiian Islands. But we are aware that we cannot ourselves alone accomplish such an object – God must be our aid, for it is His province alone to give perfect protection and prosperity.
Wherefore we first present our supplication to Him, that he will guide us to right measures and sustain us in our work.
It is therefore our fixed decree,
I. That no law shall be enacted which is at variance with the word of the Lord Jehovah, or at variance with the general spirit of His word. All laws of the Islands shall be in consistency with the general spirit of God’s law.
II. All men of every religion shall be protected in worshipping Jehovah, and serving Him, according to their own understanding, but no man shall ever be punished for neglect of God unless he injures his neighbor, or bring evil on the kingdom.
Choose You This Day Whom You Will Serve …
A grievous wrong was committed in the overthrow of Queen Lili‘uokalani in 1893. It was a crime against the Queen, a crime against the nation, a crime against the people of Hawaii and more importantly, a crime against God. The residual effect of this unresolved crime has been pain and suffering for the people of Hawaii in the form of economic bondage, cultural dissociation and dispossession of land — like orphans and refugees.
What should be done to rectify and reconcile the initial wrong and those that subsequently followed? This is a matter of national policy. This is a godly matter. Only God can heal this hurt; only God can fix this mess. The participation of Godly men and women will be crucial.
Know the facts, fill your mind with the precepts and laws of God, commit to being led by the Holy Spirit, so that you may discern the truth and make honest decisions based on biblical principles. Choose you this day whom you will serve.
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