For a long time in the history of mankind this theory was regarded as a satisfactory explanation of the origin of the State, but is rejected completely by the modern mind. The importance of the theory today is only historical. It was an utterly false theory but an immensely serviceable one. Its practical utility was immense. It taught the primitive man te value of obedience and discipline, without which no State can come into existence The belief in the divine origin of the State helped rulers in their task of maintaining peace and order in early societies.
The theory also tells us that in early societies religion was not separate from politics. Many modern ceremonies like the crowning of kings by the heads of churches, can be understood in the light of this theory. Religion helped in strengthening the authority of the ruler over the people. But with the seculars action of politics in the 16th century the theory was given up. This theory is criticized on the following grounds:
The theory does not appeal the theory does not appeal to reason and commonsense.
It is based upon faith which is required only in spiritual matters it cannot suit a discussion of political and secular nature. The theory is thus superstitious and unscientific. It is too dogmatic to appeal to our reason. As a matter of fact, the State grew out of the social instinct of man and as such is a human institution. Human nature and effort have contributed to its growth and development. History shows that men have consciously established governments and overthrown them. We see today that men themselves decide what laws they want and under what sort of institutions they want to live. The State cannot be the handiwork of God or of any other supernatural power. It is a secular institution created by man.
The religious view of the State and of political authority is not upheld even by the New Testament which says: “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.” This implies that politics and religion must be kept separate from each other.
The theory has dangerous implications. Any ruler can stand up and proclaim himself as the representative of God, and thus assume despotic powers. The theory thus encourages arbitrary rule which is against the notions of democracy and freedom. Those who Support this theory are destroyers of human rights and foes of human progress.
Explains with the form of government
The theory explains only one form of government, viz., heredita5 monarchy, where the ruler may proclaim himself as the representative of God. The theory is there may be and have been other types of governments otter than monarchies.
The State has been established by God
If the State has been established by God and the ruler is His direct representative, it implies that the people need not make any effort to improve the condition of their life, as Goc and His representative will shoulder that responsibility. An) attempt to change the existing order means challenging the wisdom of God and His representative. The theory can thus lead to political stagnation.
God is merciful and if He is the creator of the State and has appointed the king, how is it that history of the world is full of atrocities committed by kings? A bad king can never be the representative of the Supreme Good.
In short, the theory of the divine origin of the State is fallacious, but as we have said above, its practical utility was immense. It met a felt need of primitive 5ocities. It gave a religious flavor to the loyalty to the king and thus taught the primitive man the jilts of obedience and law abidingness, without which no State can come into existence.