More than Just Conservative (13)

   The fact is that all law is ‘religious.’ All law is based on some ultimate standard of morality and ethics. Every law system is founded on the ultimate value of that system, and that ultimate value is the god of that system. The source of law for a society is the god of that society. This means that a theocracy is inescapable. All societies are theocracies. The difference is that a society that is not explicitly Christian is a theocracy of a false god.[1]

God is a God of covenant,[2] and covenant means there are obligations to be met by both parties. Since God formally gave the law to Moses, He has viewed all departures from His law as acts of rebellion and treason. Even before the giving of the law to Moses, individuals and nations (such as Sodom and Gomorrah) were judged for their breaches of the law.

How could this be? It was known to them, since the original revelation given to Adam.

If we break the commandments, we are judged. Abraham said to God, “…shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?” (Gen.18:25).

Thus the burden of the Old Testament prophets was always to call Israel back to the law, pointing out where Israel had departed.  The prophets did not announce something new to Israel; they were not innovative but were conservatives, endeavouring to bring Israel back to the ancient paths God had laid down, hundreds of years earlier. And they made this abundantly clear: do nothing, and you will be judged.

God through Isaiah the prophet reproached Israel,

if only you had paid attention to My commandments! Then your well-being would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea (Isa.48:18).

Amos warned Israel,

… For three transgressions of Judah and for four I will not revoke its punishment, because they rejected the law of the Lord and have not kept His statutes… (Amos 2:4).

The Bible’s standard individual attitude is promoted in the Psalms:

…his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night (Ps.1:2).

the law of his God is in his heart; his feet do not slip (Ps.37:31).

…how blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who greatly delights in His commandments. His descendents will be mighty on earth; the generation of the upright will be blessed (Ps.112:1-2).

God said that “Abraham obeyed Me and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes and My laws” (Gen.26:5). Jesus instructed us that “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me…” (Jn.14:21). He also indicated that “if you keep My commandments you will abide in My love…” (Jn.15:10).

Paul commands us to “bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfil the law of Christ” (Gal.6:2).

Thus the church has no reason to be conservative, unless that conservatism is based in the law of God. In fact, any person, institution or nation that is not committed to the law of God is ultimately going to be judged by God.

The foundations of all law are in essence religious and theological: they are questions of ultimacy and moral necessity. Law without faith is an impossibility. Every law order is a moral and a theological order, a structuring of society in terms of a fundamental faith.[3]

Christians who say today, “Oh, but we are under grace, not under law,” generally don’t know what they are talking about. Sinful men have always needed God’s grace to relate to Him. If we don’t receive grace, we will receive judgment. Grace is a fundamental necessity for us to relate to God, but law and grace are not opposites in scripture. They are both fundamentals of our relationship with God.

Man has always needed a framework of appropriate behaviour to live by. We get it from the law of God. That was its purpose.

Only when we return to a Biblical foundation for law shall we again have a return to justice and order under law. ‘Unless the Lord builds the house, they labour in vain that build it.’ [4]

 

 

[1] David Chilton, “Paradise Restored,” 1999, p.219.

[2] See Ray Sutton, “That You May Prosper,” 1987.

[3] Rousas Rushdoony, “Roots of Reconstruction,” 1991, p.893-4.

[4] Rousas Rushdoony, “Law and Liberty,” 1984, p.5-7.

Is It OK for Christians to Push Back Against Authoritarian Governments and Other Wickedness?

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Those who forsake the law praise the wicked,
But such as keep the law contend with them (Prov 28:4).

A righteous man who falters before the wicked
Is like a murky spring and a polluted well. (Prov. 25:26)

The Left is always pushing back against government policies they do not like. There’s a right way and a wrong way to do this. Burning, looting, and killing are not the right ways. Our constitutional system permits pushback. The Constitution is a pushback document. In biblical and constitutional terms, we do not have to submit to the political status quo. We can change it. We are not commanded to remain silent or passive. When we see evil, we have a right and duty to push back in numerous ways without violating any biblical or constitutional directives.

What about cultural pushback like we are seeing every day in the United States? Should Christians remain silent and do nothing and just surrender to unbelievers at every level of society? Absolutely not.

Last year I saw an article posted on Facebook with the title “We Must Surrender.” It was written by Carlos Chung, a lawyer, who serves as an elder at Grace Community Church. The article is badly argued and dangerous. Here’s how it begins:

As soldiers of Christ, we are to surrender to unbelievers at every level.
We are to surrender in public and in private, at the macro level and on the micro level, on a national scale and on a private scale. We are to surrender to every secular authority that is placed over us.
As the world becomes more and more secularized, the government will become one of the primary, if not the dominant, aggressors against Christianity. The question becomes, how do we battle against the government when it declares war against Christians and Judeo-Christian values?

Chung quotes 1 Peter 2:13–15 for support of his position:

Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as to one in authority, or to Governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and the praise of those who do right. For such is the will of God, that by doing right, you may silence the ignorance of foolish men.

Notice that Peter says, “every human institution,” not “unbelievers at every level.” Unbelievers at every level do not have “authority” to punish evil doers or to rule over us. The United States government is a “human institution.” The Constitution is our national “Caesar.” Based on the Constitution, we can “petition the government for a redress of grievances” (First Amendment) in terms of religion, speech, press, and assembly.

In addition, the Tenth Amendment limits the power of the national government. This means there are governmental remedies at the state level that Christians can be involved in. According to 1 Peter 2:13–15, all the above are biblically permissible since Christians are acting within our nation’s system of government.

Myths Lies and Half Truths

Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths

Too many Christians believe that the Bible is irrelevant this side of heaven. Due to mistaken interpretations and applications of popular Bible texts to contemporary issues, the Christian faith is being thrown out and trampled under foot by men (Matt. 5:13). While the homosexual community, which makes up about 1% of our population, exercises tremendous impact on our culture and laws, Christians, who make up about 35% of the population, have voluntarily abandoned the culture war, electing to hide the gospel under a bushel instead.

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Chung’s article is typical of Christians who claim that Christians should acquiesce to civil authorities no matter what they tell us to do and be quiet about it. Chung does point out that there are exceptions:

The only time we are free to disobey the institutional authorities is when they command us to disobey our Lord and Master, but short of that, we are to be exemplary citizens, submissive and reverential to the authorities over us. That’s because every authority has been placed there by God Himself. This is what Pastor MacArthur refers to as evangelistic citizenship.

Peter himself makes this point in two places in the book of Acts:

  • But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to give heed to you rather than to God, you be the judge; for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard” (4:19–20).
  • We must obey God rather than men (5:29).

Notice that Peter does not cite these exceptions in his call to “submit … to every human institution.” Did he change his mind? Not at all. Peter’s admonition tells us that we must evaluate our submission to authority (not surrender) in terms of the entire Bible.

Anyone familiar with what we call the “Old Testament” would have known that there were specific exceptions to Peter’s absolutist comments.

Did Paul, as a Roman citizen and a Christian, “surrender” to the Roman authorities in everything? He and Silas were taken by force. Consider what happens when they were brought before the Roman “chief magistrates” (Acts 16:19–20):

The crowd rose up together against them, and the chief magistrates tore their robes off them and proceeded to order them to be beaten with rods. When they had struck them with many blows, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to guard them securely; and he, having received such a command, threw them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks (16:22–24).

According to Chung, Paul and his associates should have “surrendered” and taken their punishment in peace and left quietly. But that’s not what happened. There was an earthquake, the jailer was converted, and later the chief magistrates sent their policemen to release Paul and Silas.

Chung might say, “See, God used their persecution and surrender for good.” Yes, He did. Notice what Paul does next:

And the jailer reported these words to Paul, saying, “The chief magistrates have sent to release you. Therefore, come out now and go in peace.” But Paul said to them, “They have beaten us in public without trial, men who are Romans, and have thrown us into prison; and now are they sending us away secretly? No indeedBut let them come themselves and bring us out.”
The policemen reported these words to the chief magistrates. They were afraid when they heard that they were Romans, and they came and appealed to them, and when they had brought them out, they kept begging them to leave the city. They went out of the prison and entered the house of Lydia, and when they saw the brethren, they encouraged them and departed (16:36–40).

Was Paul damaging his Christian witness by such a demand? Not at all. He was exercising his rights as a Roman citizen. Will some people take exception to him? Most certainly. They took issue with Jesus when He healed and fed people. The book of Acts shows different reactions to the message of Peter and Paul. God’s Word causes division, and Christians are going to be attacked no matter what they do. Consider the following from Paul:

But in whatever respect anyone else is bold—I speak in foolishness—I am just as bold myself. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they descendants of Abraham? So am I. Are they servants of Christ?—I speak as if insane—I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure on me of concern for all the churches. Who is weak without my being weak? Who is led into sin without my intense concern? (2 Cor. 11:21–29)

Jean-Baptiste de Champaigne, Saint Paul Stoned in the City of Lystra

Paul was simply expounding God’s Word, and yet he was attacked. Prior to writing about submission “to every human institution,” Peter wrote, “Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation” (1 Pet. 2:12). Even the practice of good and right (constitutional) deeds and actions Christians are going to be attacked like Jesus, Peter, and Paul were attacked. Submission to authority does not mean silence, inaction, or “surrender to unbelievers at every level.”

More than Just Conservative (12)

The Bible records for us a tale of two kings, Rehoboam and Jehoshaphat. Rehoboam was Solomon’s son, but the scripture tells us that

When the kingdom of Rehoboam was established and strong, he and all Israel with him forsook the law of the Lord. And it came about in king Rehoboam’s fifth year, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, that Shishak king of Egypt came up out of Egypt against Jerusalem with 1,200 chariots and 60,000 horsemen. And the people who came against him from Egypt were without number: the Lubim, the Sukkiim and the Ethiopians. He captured the fortified cities of Judah and came as far as Jerusalem. Then Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and the princes of Judah who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and he said to them, “Thus says the Lord, ‘you have forsaken Me, so I also have forsaken you to Shishak.’”(II Chron.12:1-5).

It is essential to understand the progression here. Israel rejected the law of God; Israel was invaded. The Bible plainly connects these two events; their proximity is not co-incidental. The Biblical principle of sowing and reaping was clearly at work in Israel: “And it came about in king Rehoboam’s fifth year, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, that Shishak king of Egypt came up out of Egypt against Jerusalem” (v.2-3).

God had earlier told Israel through Moses that this is what would happen to them, if they turned away from Him. He said that

…if you do not obey the Lord your God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes with which I charge you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you…the Lord shall cause you to be defeated before your enemies… (Deut.28:15, 25).

The scripture tells us that Rehoboam “…did evil because he did not set his heart to seek the Lord” (II Chron.12:14). God’s commentary on what had happened to Israel was this: “…they will become his [Shishak’s] slaves so that they will learn the difference between My service and the service of the kingdoms of the countries” (II Chron.12:8).

Is there a similarity between the experience of Judah under Rehoboam, and the world of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries? The implementation of political atheism (such as communism, fascism, feminism and environmentalism) hostile to God and the family, constant wars (including the First and Second World Wars), the incessant abuse by governments of their people leading to genocide, murders and enslavement of peoples on a scale never seen before in history, manipulation of national economies by governments for short-term political gain, leading to economic catastrophies such as the Great Depression, unprecedented rates of taxation, along with a host of other evils.

The lesson? When people and nations turn from God, they run into bondage.

Judah’s experience under Rehoboam can be contrasted with her experience under Jehoshaphat, located in II Chronicles 17. Jehoshaphat:

  1.  … followed the example of his father David’s earlier days (v.3).
  2.  [He]…sought the God of his father…[and] followed His commandments, and did not act as Israel did (v.4).
  3.  The Lord established his kingdom in his control (v.5).
  4.  He sent his officials… to teach (v.7).    
  5. They taught in Judah, having the book of the law of the Lord with them (v.9).                         
  6. Now the dread of the Lord was on all the kingdoms of the lands which were around Judah, so that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat, and they brought gifts and silver as tribute to Jehoshaphat (v.10-11).                   
  7. Jehoshaphat grew greater and greater, and he built fortresses and store cities in Judah. He had large supplies in the cities of Judah, and warriors, valiant men, in Jerusalem (v.12-13).

Jehoshaphat was receiving the promise given by the Lord, in Joshua 1:8.

This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.

North’s commentary here is instructive:

Whenever men remain covenantally faithful through obedience to God’s Bible-revealed laws, social progress is not only possible, it is assured.[1]

Jesus Christ made us this enduring promise:

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light (Mat.11:28-30).

Conclusion:

* God identified the rejection of His law (antinomianism), as the rejection of Himself: “Thus says the Lord, ‘You have forsaken Me, so I also have forsaken you to Shishak’” (II Chron.12:5).

* The solution for national apostasy at any time is repentance, and a wholehearted turning to God, including His law, beginning amongst God’s people (II Chron.7:14).

*The Ten Commandments as the only legitimate basis for all law, must then be taught to the nations.

* Obeying God’s law is the key to a nation’s safety & security.

* Who will the church (and the nations) identify with: the rebel Rehoboam, or Jehoshaphat?   

* Our choice is clear: God’s law, or chaos; God’s law, or tyranny; God’s law, or God’s judgment.  

[1] Gary North, “Inheritance and Dominion,” 1999, Ch.18, ‘Miracles, Entropy and Social Theory.’

Jesus, the Mob, Surrender, and Cowardice

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Though you pound a fool in a mortar with a pestle along with crushed grain, Yet his foolishness will not depart from him (Prov. 27:22).

Lessons can be drawn from every event in the Bible because human nature has not changed since Cain killed Abel. Consider that Jesus fed thousands, healed the lame and blind, and even raised people from the dead. Even so, there were those among the religious and political leadership in Israel who wanted Him dead (John 8:58–59).

While reading through the Passion Narratives in Luke’s Gospel, I noticed a few things that apply today.

Facts Don’t Matter to the Mob

When Jesus was before the Sanhedrin made up of Israel’s religious and legal leaders (Luke 22:66), consisting of chief priests and scribes, the following exchange took place:

When it was day, the Council of elders of the people assembled, both chief priests and scribes, and they led Him away to their council chamber, saying,  “If You are the Christ, tell us.” But He said to them, “If I tell you, you will not believe; and if I ask a question, you will not answer” (22:66–68).

No matter what Jesus said, the religious and legal establishment were not going to listen. They had their agenda, and they were sticking to it. They had too much to lose if Jesus’ message was embraced by the people. The argument was only secondarily about theology. It was more about money and control of the people via religion and economics. This might be hard for Christians to grasp, but it’s true as Jerry Bowyer, author of the soon-to-be-released book The Maker Versus the Takers: What Jesus Really Said About Social Justice and Economics, explains:

While He was in the economically dynamic area of lower Galilee, the Jesus of the Gospels never confronted any individual over their wealth. But once he travels south to Jerusalem, over and over again, we see Him confront members of the Judaean ruling class, specifically over issues of economic exploitation.

In the end, they killed Him for that. Ruling elites might get a bit annoyed if you mess with their theology, but they get downright murderous when you mess with their money. The Gospels point to two specific events which triggered the plot to kill Him: the parable of the vineyard (which pointed to their economic exploitation of what belonged to God) and His confrontation with the money changers. (Townhall Finance)

On both sides of the current debate over what started as racial justice issues, what’s really at stake is control of the corridors of power and the people of all races be damned. The elites in both parties want to retain influence of a political system that has been steadily reconstituted to favor power over principles and economic largess over economic freedom. The facts are unrelated to the larger agenda.

The Mob Cannot be Appeased

The People of Israel did not reject Jesus. As has been said, the religious and political leaders feared the people, thousands of whom embraced Him (Matt. 21:1–1114–17). Like what we are seeing happen in cities across the United States, disparate ideologies have joined forces to bring down the system. Some things need to be brought down, like those who were desecrating the temple (21:12–13), but not everything. (In a sense, Jesus was the heir to the Temple. It was His Father’s House.)

The Jewish establishment needed a way to topple the emerging transformational system that would have put them out of work. They couldn’t do it on their own because they feared the people (Matt. 21:46), so they worked behind the scenes to enjoin agents of the Roman Empire to carry out the assassination by false testimony (Luke 23:2) and threats of political reprisals if the local governor Pontius Pilate did not give into their demands:

Pilate made efforts to release Him, but the Jews cried out saying, “If you release this Man, you are no friend of Caesar; everyone who makes himself out to be a king opposes Caesar” (John 19:12).

In the case of Jesus, the mob consisted of the religious and political establishment to maintain the status quo, even if it meant the death of someone like Jesus and later Stephen (Acts 7) and James the brother of John, an action that “pleased the Jews” (12:1–3).

The long-term ramifications of these actions and many more like them that we read about in the book of Acts resulted in the destruction of the temple, the death of nearly a million Jews, the captivity of tens of thousands, and the end of the Jewish nation at the hands of the Romans.

Zechariah predicted the end results of their duplicity:

“I will make it go forth,” declares the LORD of hosts, “and it will enter the house of the thief and the house of the one who swears falsely by My name; and it will spend the night within that house and consume it with its timber and stones” (5:4).

The timbers and stones of the temple were torn down within a generation of the lies that were told by the religious and legal leaders in Jerusalem to eliminate the threat of Jesus (Matt. 24:1–334).

!0 Myths

10 Popular Prophecy Myths Exposed and Answered

As a result of many failed predictions, many Christians are beginning to take a second look at a prophetic system that they were told is the only one that takes the literal interpretation of the Bible seriously. Gary DeMar takes on the task of exposing some of the popular myths foisted upon the public by prophetic speculators.

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Surrender

Both Herod and Pilate realized that Jesus had not committed a crime. Pilate said to the chief priests, “I find no guilt in this man” (Luke 23:4). The mob would not quit with their lies. It’s here that Pilate makes his first surrender to the mob. He turns Jesus over to Herod (24:7), hoping that he will not have to make the right decisive decision.

Herod’s questioning and ridicule of Jesus did not assuage the determination of the mob to see Jesus done away with. Like Pilate, Herod passes the buck and returns him to Pilate. The mob is still in control. Another surrender. They can smell victory.

Cowardice

We shouldn’t be too hard on Peter. He was outnumbered and had no clout with the religious and political authorities when he denounced Jesus three times (Luke 22:31–3461). He “wept bitterly” for his betrayal.

Today’s political leaders don’t have an excuse for their cowardice. They are the people in charge. They refuse to lead. Most of them easily capitulate to the mob. We’re seeing something among religious leaders who support a Marxist organization like Black Lives Matter since it’s the easiest thing to do if you don’t want to be assailed with mob “justice.”

There are cowards in the Republican party:

Never Trump super PAC the Lincoln Project and other anti-Trump Republicans continue to plot to not only take down President Donald Trump, but also the Senate Republican majority, according to a report released on Saturday.

Never Trump Republicans believe that preventing a second term for Trump is insufficient, and that Senate Republicans must also pay the price of backing the 45th president.

Steve Schmidt, who works for the Never Trump Lincoln Project, said, “The analogy would be in the same way that fire purifies the forest, it needs to be burned to the ground and fundamentally repudiated. Every one of them should be voted out of office, with the exception of Mitt Romney.” (Breitbart)

These political cowards have no sense of history. Those who burn down the house of the first will be burned themselves once they are no longer needed by the mob. The mob turns on them like the mob turned on Maximilien Robespierre (1758–1794), “one of the best-known and most influential figures of the French Revolution.”

As the leading member of the Committee of Public Safety from 1793, Robespierre encouraged the execution, mostly by guillotine, of more than 17,000 enemies of the Revolution. The day after his arrest, Robespierre and 21 of his followers were guillotined before a cheering mob in the Place de la Revolution in Paris. (History.com)

Be careful what you wish for, because “[i]t’s an iron law of history that the revolution always eats its own children — as proven time after time in the centuries since.” (Troy Media)

More than Just Conservative (11)

He will not be disheartened or crushed until He has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands will wait expectantly for His law (Isa.42:4).

When Moses was preparing the children of Israel to enter the promised land, he made it abundantly clear that the occupation of the land would be conditional on their obedience to God. The fundamental aspect of this would be their obedience to God’s law:

See, I have taught you statutes and judgments just as the Lord my God commanded me, that you should do this in the land where you are entering to possess it (Deut.4:5).

From this we must learn this vital fact: God’s law and dominion are inseparable. Christians cannot expect to be powerful and influential in the communities of the world, successfully implementing the Great Commission, if we leave aside our tools of dominion.[1]

When Moses had died, God reiterated this fact. He spoke to Joshua:

This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall mediate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your ways prosperous, and then you will have success (Joshua 1:8).

The laws of God were not merely for the children of Israel to utilise in the promised land. It is true that there are aspects of the law which were for that land and that time, such as the seed laws and the land laws, so there are in relation to the law, aspects of continuity and discontinuity which we must properly understand today.

One aspect of this is that the Great Commission is not limited to a small piece of land at the Eastern end of the Mediterranean. Jesus made it clear to His listeners that they were to

…make disciples of all the nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you… (Mat.28:19-20).

But accepting that there are some aspects of the law that are discontinued, is different to  adopting a smorgasboard, or a “take it or leave it” approach to God’s law. We are not free to accept and reject as we choose, but must apply ourselves as obedient servants of God, working systematically through the law to determine which aspects have continuity today.

Thankfully, there is instruction in the scriptures that enables us to see the way. Think of the food laws. The Old Testament provided a number of restrictions in terms of what the children of Israel could eat, with prohibitions on items such as pork, and some forms of seafood.

Have these changed? Yes, for Jesus declared to the disciples

“Are you so lacking in understanding? Do you not understand that whatever goes into the man from the outside cannot defile him, because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?” Thus He declared all foods clean (Mk.7:18-19).

Paul amplified this teaching, warning of those who

…advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer (I Tim.4:3-5).

We can thus deduce that if there are to be changes to God’s requirements for us in the New Testament, we will be informed of these. Consequently, it is utterly inappropriate to glibly conclude concerning the commands from the Mosaic law, “Oh, that’s the Old Testament. We don’t need to concern ourselves with that now.”

Part of the reason God deferred judgment on Judah in Josiah’s day, was Josiah’s humble attitude to God and His law (II Kings 22:8-20).

Will we be like Josiah, or not?

 

[1] Gary North, “Tools of Dominion: The Case Laws of Exodus,” 1990.

Gun Sales and American Liberty

Gary North (garynorth.com), July 03, 2020

Here is a cheering chart.

0gunsales

https://apnews.com/8ddad3189eb8864e9ae6b123e09b6900

This is a chart of background checks to buy guns, not actual sales. But actual sales do reflect the trend of background checks.

The significant fact is not that gun applications are up this summer. The significant fact is the trend. It rose slightly under Bush, accelerated under Obama, and continues to accelerate today.

I think it is safe to say that it’s going to continue to accelerate all summer. I think it’s also safe to say that, if Trump loses, November and December gun sales will go through the roof.

Adjusted to reflect only gun purchases, the number of checks for June was up nearly 136% over June 2019, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents gunmakers. That adjusted figure was 2.2 million, the group said.

“Civil unrest, rioting, looting and calls to defund police are unquestionably motivating factors of why this trend is increasing. Americans are right to be concerned for their personal safety,” said Mark Oliva, director of public affairs for the group.

Oliva said gun purchases are a reasonable reaction to the political climate.

“Politicians who entertain notions of defunding police departments are the same ones who call for strict gun control and even outright confiscation,” he said. “These figures aren’t push polls. They are representative of Americans from all walks of life who are taking action and taking responsibility for their rights and their safety.”

Then the article added something that I find not just mildly amusing but wildly amusing. “Gun control advocates worried that those buying a gun for personal safety may not have enough training to handle or store it correctly.” Yes, that’s the main concern of gun-control advocates. They fear for the safety of the people who buy the guns. They also fear for those around them, who are usually family members. Worry, worry, worry: gun-control advocates are just so worried about the lives of people who buy guns. That’s certainly what motivated Hitler and Stalin to abolish guns. They were just so worried about the safety of people who would otherwise buy guns.

A SYMBOLIC ACT

Buying a gun is a symbolic act. It is loosely related to potential threats to life and limb, but mainly it’s a symbolic act. Somebody buys a gun because he becomes convinced that he is at risk. He is convinced that the police cannot protect him. He is convinced that hoodlums are a threat to his family. I don’t think they are, statistically, because hoodlums stick to their own neighbourhoods most of the time. But, as a symbolic act, buying a gun does register the individual’s lack of confidence in local civil government. Anything that encourages loss of confidence in local civil government seems like a positive action to me. Civil governments are decreasingly reliable.

The Democrats are on record as favouring some degree of gun control. They don’t usually speak about outright confiscation. They speak about registration. But will they take steps to restrict gun sales if they win this year? It’s possible. I think it’s more likely that they will restrict sales on ammunition. They will go about this by the back door. But I would be very surprised if they launch a full frontal assault against gun ownership. The law could not be enforced, and they know it.

This is a blue-collar issue, not a Republican issue as such. Middle-class wives don’t like guns, but husbands who do like guns really like guns. They vote as a bloc.

Liberals don’t really think that there’s going to be an armed revolution of Right-wingers. Anyway, liberal politicians don’t believe this. They understand that the ownership of guns is a symbol. It is a symbol of distrust in the state. That’s why they want to take away our guns. They don’t want this symbol to exist in the American body politic. Liberals trust the state. They don’t want anything to undermine the trust in the state. Having the right to go into a gun store and buy a gun is probably the most significant single American liberty that is related to the distrust of the state.

That’s why liberals want to remove this liberty. It’s not that they think they’re going to be able to ram the welfare state down the throats of Americans if Americans don’t own guns. Americans are generally in favor of the welfare state. There wasn’t any resistance to the bailouts this year. There is no resistance to increasing payments through Social Security and Medicare. The issue is not the welfare state. The issue is the right of an individual to register his distrust of the state’s ability to do the one thing that the state says that it is supposed to do, namely, protect the public against criminals.

This country still has a jury system, and it still has the right to own guns. The jury system is substantive. The right to own guns is symbolic. Both are important for the maintenance of liberty.

This is why I don’t think Americans live in a police state. I don’t think we’re going to live in a police state. The jury system won’t allow it, and the right to own guns won’t allow it. Until both of these are gone, we’re going to retain our liberty as a nation and as a people.

Democrat politicians are lawyers. They’re not in favour of abolishing the jury. Jury trials were their bread and butter.

There are some groups whose civil liberties are being infringed on. The civil liberties of unborn infants are being infringed on. But the public could have stopped this years ago. The public is in favour of it. I don’t blame the Democratic Party for this; I blame the moral blindness of the voters.

I regard Democrats as threats to our economic liberties, but I also regard the typical voter as a threat to our economic liberties. There is nothing unique about Democrats as threats to our economic liberties. They reflect at least half of the population. I trust the free market and technological innovation to stay at least one step ahead of the regulators.

CONCLUSION

I am in favour of everybody going out and buying an extra gun. I’m also in favour of young families having one extra child. There are certain things that we can do to assert our independence of the state, and owning guns and having children are two good ways to do this.

 

 

More than Just Conservative (10)

… Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly? (Gen.18:25)

Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, My Beloved in whom My soul is well-pleased; I will put My Spirit upon Him, and He will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not quarrel, nor cry out, nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets. A battered reed He will not break off, and a smouldering wick He will not out, until He leads justice to victory. And in His Name the Gentiles will hope (Mat.12:18-21).

There is only one place that humanity will ever find perfect justice in this life: God’s law. We can learn one thing from the atheists who turned the twentieth century into a bloodbath: the rejection of God in the legislative, executive or judiciary is always preparatory to the rejection of justice. The Bible warns us of this, when it predicts that “…all those who hate me [God] love death” (Prov.8:36).

Christians have always had a task ahead of them: to preach the good news of Jesus Christ. And this good news has political and judicial applications way beyond what we’ve been content with, for centuries. If “He will proclaim justice to the Gentiles,” and “lead justice to victory…” could this be on any other basis than His own law?

Another of Isaiah’s Messianic promises declares of Jesus that

with righteousness He will judge the poor, and decide with fairness for the afflicted of the earth; and He will strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips He will slay the wicked (Isa.11.4).

Now some could claim,

Well, that’s not our job. The Lord will accomplish all that at the Second Coming.

But the context of Isaiah 11 makes it clear that it’s not the Second Coming, but a logical result of proper gospel preaching. Verse 10 tells us that “then in that day the nations will resort to the root of Jesse, Who will stand as a signal for the peoples; and His resting place will be glorious.”

Christians are called by God to be representatives; His servants. In fact, the Bible calls us “ambassadors for Christ” (II Cor.5:20). These are things we are not to leave to God’s sovereign power to bring about, but are to tirelessly apply ourselves to in our local communities. Yes, the gospel means the changed lives of individuals according to God’s Word, but it also necessitates and demands that the laws of communities and nations change too, according to that same Word. That is also something that honours God, and He requires it.

We do not have the right to say, “thus far and no further.” Nor can we draw a line between what is supposedly sacred and secular; this is all God’s world we are part of.

When Ahab “did evil in the sight of the Lord more than all who were before him” (I Kings 16:30), Elijah challenged him and related his behaviour to the coming judgment of drought on the land (I Kings 17:1).

After three and a half years, when the drought had lifted at Elijah’s word (I Kings 18:41), Ahab sinned again in the matter of Naboth and his vineyard (I Kings 21).  Ahab (through Jezebel) had killed Naboth and stolen his vineyard, violations of the Sixth and Eighth Commandments. Again Elijah confronted Ahab (v.20-24). He didn’t say that he was only interested in Ahab’s heart and spiritual life, or in him experiencing peace with God; he predicted God’s judgment: destruction for Ahab’s wife Jezebel and his whole household, which of course later eventuated (II Kings 9-10).

When Herod committed adultery with Herodias, John confronted him, saying “it is not lawful for you to have her” (Mat.14:4). He was being a faithful prophet to the rulers of the land.

This is what has occurred throughout history since then. John Knox was fearless in his confrontations with Mary in Scotland, who was an adulteress who’d probably murdered her husband.  She was also a believer in the divine right of monarchs, a doctrine completely at odds with scripture. John would not back down, and he triumphed. He was simply doing what Jesus had commanded: “…teaching them to obey all that I commanded you…” (Mat.28:20).

Conclusion:                                                                                                                                      It is high time that the church’s confusion over the law of God was resolved, for it has cost us dearly. The will of God is that His law is obeyed throughout the world, and the institution charged with instructing the world about this is the Church, “…the pillar and support of the truth” (I Tim.3:14).

We must be prepared to do this a lot more, and to stand for the truth of God, as it applies to law, economics, politics and government; in fact, every aspect of human behaviour.

Does God pervert justice? Or does the Almighty pervert what is right? (Job 8:3)

Obedience requires that we get busy.

Two Bibles, Their Notes, and the Present Crisis

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Almost daily I engage in Facebook battles with people who continue to cling to the unbiblical view that we are living in the last days and go through a long series of modifications to what the text of Scripture actually states to keep their end-time beliefs alive. It’s amazing to see the hoops they jump through to maintain their unsupportable belief systems. You can even find such flimsy arguments in scholarly articles. They are so desperate to support their end-time beliefs that the plain meaning of Scripture is obscured.

“This generation” becomes “this kind of generation.” The second person plural “you” in the Olivet Discourse changes from Jesus’ present audience (Matt. 24:2–433) to some future nondescript future generation later in the chapter, “now” becomes “whenever,” and “near” can mean 2000 years in the future.

Wars and Rumors of Wars

Wars and Rumors of Wars is a verse-by-verse study of the Olivet Discourse and related passages. It will change the way you understand Bible prophecy.

The casual reader would not interpret the Bible in these ways. It takes “experts” to convince Christians that the Bible does not really mean what it says. It’s no wonder that many Christians treat the Bible as a book of spiritual incantations that only work in some unobtainable ethereal world.

End-time prophetic speculation has a long history, but it was one study Bible that codified prophetic error and led much of the church down the path of cultural irrelevance.

There was almost no prophetic competition to dispensational premillennialism from the time The Scofield Reference Bible was first published in 1909 and revised by its author Cyrus I. Scofield in 1917. Christians were often encouraged to use the note-filled Bible because its notes were said to include the only correct interpretive system that Christians should use to understand the Bible. Many churches used it as their pew Bible. The Bible was “rightly divided” in terms of Scofield’s seven dispensations. The biblical “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15) became “rightly dividing up” the Bible into sections. By the time readers get to Genesis 8:12, they have been introduced to the Seven Dispensations.

The passage often used to support of Scofield’s version of dispensationalism is best translated as “accurately handling the word of truth”; it has nothing to do with dividing up the Bible into rigid “dispensations.”

Once the Bible reader embraces Scofield’s dispensational system, the system becomes the lens through which the entire Bible must be read. Philip Mauro wrote in his 1927 book The Gospel of the Kingdom that the notes in the Scofield Reference Bible had “usurped the place of authority that belongs to God’s Bible alone. The fact is that dispensationalism is modernism. It is modernism, moreover, of a very pernicious sort, such that it must have a ‘Bible’ of its own for the propagation of its peculiar doctrines, since they are not in the Word of God.”

Mauro goes on to write that “this modern system of ‘dispensational teaching’ is a cause of division and controversy between those followers of Christ who ought to be,” and this is the important part, “at this time of crisis, solidly united against the mighty forces of unbelief and apostasy.” [1] This was in 1927, one year after Oswald J. Smith announced in his book Is the Antichrist at Hand? that Benito Mussolini was the dreaded antichrist.

The publication of Scofield’s Reference Bible and its focus on an imminent (any moment) rapture transformed the mindset and practices of millions of Christians to abandon the belief in a comprehensive biblical worldview at the time when a new breed of secularism was rising in the areas of education, law, politics, journalism, science, medicine, media, art, music, film, and every other area of life.

The then present crisis seemed to authenticate Scofield’s bizarre interpretations:

Scofield’s text appeared just in time for believers to respond to European developments in the summer of 1914. As one Pentecostal Journal headlined the outbreak of war, “The nations of Europe battle, and unconsciously prepare the way for the return of the Lord Jesus.” When an older prophecy book was reissued in 1915, the editor remarked, “Armageddon has now become a household word.” In the words of evangelical pastor Reuben Torrey, observing the world’s conflicts, “The darker the night gets, the lighter my heart gets.” [2]

These predictions were made more than 100 years ago in terms of prophetic certainty. They were wrong. The only things that have changed for today’s prophetic speculators are the dates and the players on the international and nation chessboard. One thing, however, has remained the same: millions of Christians are still waiting for an end-time event to rescue them that is not coming.

Dispensationalists have regularly taught that the next prophetic event is the “rapture of the church.” Supposedly the prophecy clock starts again when the church is raptured prior to a seven-year period (there is not a single verse in the Bible that mentions such an event), when the world will encounter someone called “the antichrist” (see 1 John 2:18224:32 John 7 to see that there were many antichrists in John’s day), a rebuilt Jewish temple (nothing in the New Testament says anything about a rebuilt temple), the antichrist making a covenant with Israel and then braking it (no such verse exists), the slaughter of two-thirds of Jews living in Israel (fulfilled in events leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70), and a hell storm of tribulation around the world. [3]

 

The Rapture and the Fig Tree Generation

Did God stop the prophetic clock regarding Israel, thereby postponing the 70th week of Daniel’s 70-weeks-of years prophecy by inserting a nearly 2000-year gap called the “Church Age”? Will God restart the prophecy clock at the beginning of the 70th week (seven years) once the Church is taken off the earth in the pre-tribulation rapture?

Millions of Christians believe this fake prophetic system that has led them to believe that they cannot and should not do anything to change the moral condition of the world since these prophetic events are inevitable.

The Geneva Bible

The Scofield Reference Bible was not the first Bible to include notes. There was an abundance of notes in the Geneva Bible, [4] first published in 1560 and developed by English refugees in Geneva, Switzerland, who fled there during the reign of Queen Mary I (1516–1558). Mary had persecuted Protestants and restored England to Roman Catholicism after the death of Edward VI. “When Mary came to the throne in 1553, Edward’s Reformation policy was reversed. Some of those responsible for making [English] translations (e.g., John Rogers; Thomas Cranmer) were burned at the stake; others sought refuge on the [European] continent (e.g., [Miles] Coverdale), along with shiploads of Protestant refugees from England.” [5] From 1560 to 1644 at least 144 editions of the Geneva Bible were published.

The First Study Bible

The Geneva Bible has been described as the “first study Bible” because of the thousands of notes included with the biblical text. It was the Geneva Bible that almost everyone in the English-speaking world read. Even the men working on the translation that would come to be known as the King James Version (1611) “continued to quote from the Geneva version” because it was “the one familiar to the congregations they addressed.” [6] David Daniell notes that “many of the almost one thousand biblical references in Shakespeare come from the Geneva text.” [7]

The Geneva Bible was truly a “free market” translation. There was no official church or civil authorization that declared that it should be the Bible for the people. “The people loved it for itself and its history.” [8] The elucidation of the text that came from the marginal notes added to the readability of Scripture for families.

No Outline of a Prophetic System

It’s important to keep in mind that during this period of persecution, the Reformers did not outline a prophetic system that predicted the near end of the world even though some predicted a near end of things. Martin Luther, for example, “did not believe that the kingdom would triumph on earth and in history. In fact, he expected the world to end soon…. In contrast to Luther, John Calvin believed that the kingdom would ‘have a yet greater triumph in history prior to the consummation [the Second Coming],’” [9] so much so that “the kingdom of God … [will] be extended to the utmost boundaries of the earth … so as to occupy the whole world from one end to the other.” [10]

It was Calvin’s shared optimistic eschatology that found its way into the notes of the Geneva Bible. To cite just one of scores of examples, the note on Zechariah 9:11 in the Geneva Bible reads, “God showeth that he will deliver his Church out of all dangers, seem they ever so great.”

Prior to the rise of dispensationalism, there was a realistic optimism even when persecution was all around them. They followed Paul’s comforting words: “But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all… Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Tim. 3:912). Paul wrote this to Timothy nearly 2000 years ago. Christians didn’t give in to the evils of the day and claim that they would be rescued by something called a “rapture.”

Andrée Seu Peterson writes, “Optimism precedes perseverance… The pessimist’s problem is all in his eye. His eye is defective.” Events, even the most severe and glaring kind, do not nullify the biblical message of the progress of the gospel and the application of God’s Word to every area of life.

George Mueller (1805–1898) is one of the biggest I know of. That crazy guy decided to distribute tracts and to witness among the Jews in London, and he reports, “I had the honor of being reproached and ill-treated for the name of Jesus” (The Autobiography of George Müller). Must be a blessing in there somewhere, right? That’s like the Apostle Paul saying, “I will stay in Ephesus until Pentecost, for a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries” (1 Corinthians 16:8-9).

Come again? If there are “many adversaries,” how does he see it as a “wide door for effective work”?

That’s how an optimist sees. [11]

This is no reference to an escape hatch for the Church but only the promised claim that God will sustain and maintain His Church even when persecuted, and that includes Christians being burned at the stake for attempting to do something as logical as translate the Bible into English.

The English Protestant scholars who produced the Geneva Bible … were fully conscious of the role which they hoped it would play in the religious wars of the truth. In an age which bears witness to “so horrible backsliding and falling away from Christ to Antichrist, from light to darkness, from the living God to dumb and dead idols,” and in a time of “so cruel murder of God’s saints” under Queen Mary, the translators explained that God’s divine providence still continues to work in time and history “with most evident signs and tokens of God’s especial love and favor” towards his saints. Now, the surest way to be mindful of “these great mercies” is “attained by the knowledge and practicing of the word of God.” [12]

The Genevan translation and the ever-present notes were designed to explain “the course and progress of the church within time and history” [13] and the ongoing work of reformation that was needed in light of the religious and political struggles that they still faced. “Without this word,” the “Epistle” to the Geneva Bible states, “we cannot discern between justice, and injury, protection and oppression, wisdom and foolishness, knowledge and ignorance, good and evil. Therefore, the Lord, who is the chief governor of his Church, wills that nothing be attempted before we have inquired thereof at his mouth.” The editors and translators believed that the Geneva Bible would have a role “to play in advancing the Reformation in England.” [14]

Go, believe, and do likewise.

  1. Philip Mauro, The Gospel of the Kingdom: An Examination of Modern Dispensationalism and the “Scofield Bible” (1927), Introduction. Emphasis added.[]
  2. Philip Jenkins, The Great and Holy War: How World War I Became a Religious Crusade (New York: HarperOne, 2014), 138.[]
  3. For a detailed study of the “rapture,” see Gary DeMar with Francis X. Gumerlock, The Rapture and the Fig Tree Generation (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 2019).[]
  4. For accessible histories of the Geneva Bible, see Patricia Serak, “The Geneva Bible: An Historical Report” and William H. Noah and David L. Brown, “Introduction to the Geneva Bible.”[]
  5. Paul D. Wegner, The Journey from Texts to Translations: The Origin and Development of the Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 1999), 300.[]
  6. Benson Bobrick, Wide as the Waters: The Story of the English Bible and the Revolution It Inspired (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001), 215, 254.[]
  7. David Daniell, The Bible in English: Its History and Influence (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2003), 354.[]
  8. The Geneva Bible: A Facsimile of the 1560 Edition, ed. Lloyd E. Berry (Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 1969). The quotation is from John Eadie, The English Bible: An External and Critical History of the Various English Translations, 2 vols. (London: MacMillan & Co., 1876), 2:51–52, as cited in Lloyd E. Berry’s “Introduction” to the Geneva Bible, 22. Quoted in Avihu Zakai, Exile and Kingdom: History and Apocalypse in the Puritan Migration to America  (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 38.[]
  9. Gary DeMar and Peter J. Leithart, The Reduction of Christianity: A Biblical Response to Dave Hunt’s Theology (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 1988), 236, 237.[]
  10. Quoted in Greg L. Bahnsen “The Prima Facie Acceptability of Postmillennialism” in Victory in Jesus: The Bright Hope of Postmillennialism, ed. Robert R. Booth (Texarkana, AR: Covenant Media Press, 1999), 80.[]
  11. “The Sunny Side,” World Magazine (Nov. 25, 2017), 63.[]
  12. Zakai, Exile and Kingdom, 38–39.[]
  13. Zakai, Exile and Kingdom, 39.[]
  14. Zakai, Exile and Kingdom, 41.[]

More than Just Conservative (9)

For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; He will save us (Isa.33:22).

It is the nature of humanism (the world’s second oldest religion), to replace the commands and laws of God with our own. But this behaviour always comes with a price: God’s judgment. He spoke through Hosea,

...since you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your children (Hos.4:6).

This is what we have observed from the garden of Eden, till today. Hitler, early in his rule of Germany, spoke of his as the “thousand year Reich.” Thankfully, it was only twelve years before the Third Reich perished in the war-torn ruins of Berlin.

The salvation of God is to be reflected in the totality of our lives, our families, our communities and our nations, and the above text illustrates this fact: the judiciary, the legislature and the executive are to obey Jesus Christ. When a nation submits to God completely, the promise of God is that “He will save us.” This was evident in Israel’s history, and will indeed be evident in the future.

But Israel didn’t want that when Jesus was around. In the Parable of the Nobleman (Luke 19:11-27), Jesus predicted what Israel’s attitude would be towards Him: they would say, “…we do not want this man to reign over us” (v.14). And when He was on trial, they declared to their pagan governor Pilate, “…we have no king but Caesar” (Jn.18:15).

There was nothing new about this. Ever since they had left Egypt, Israel had spent most of the time in rebellion against the Lord. The brief interludes of revival under godly kings were atypical of Israel. Thus Isaiah had to acknowledge around 700 BC, that

an ox knows its owner, and a donkey its manger, but Israel does not know, my people do not understand …where will you be stricken again, as you continue in your rebellion? The whole head is sick and the whole heart is faint (Isa.1:3, 5).

Later, Israel reached the peak of its rebellion, when they got rid of the Son of God. But 40 years later judgment arrived in AD70 at the hands of the Romans, just as Jesus had predicted in Matthew 23. He said then that

…upon you may fall all the guilt of all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the porch and the altar. Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation (Mat.23:35-36).

All around the world, nations are in decline because the Church has been in decline. We have been failing to provide the leaven of the kingdom of God, because we have ignored the law of the Lord. The Bible tells us that

the law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple…the judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether…moreover by them Your servant is warned; in keeping them there is  great reward (Ps.19:7,9,11).

No doubt there will be some reading this who will be thinking, “but we’re under grace, not under law.” But what must be understood is that law and grace always go together. Since the Garden, God has only ever dealt with sinful people on the basis of His grace, but His law gives us the only legitimate framework of legitimate social and ethical behaviour.

The indifference and contempt for God’s law in the church has to go. As the Church has progressively ignored God’s law for 350 years, humanistic legislators have been stepping in to steadily replace it with their own forms of “justice.” And so we abort about 90,000 babies annually in Australia (with State and Federal government sanction), and society thinks nothing of it.

Well, God thinks about it, and calls it murder: the shedding of innocent blood (Prov.6:16, 17). I expect Him to hold us to account for our negligence in this, and many other areas.

But all this can change-quickly. When Jerusalem was being rebuilt in the days of Nehemiah, Ezra was sent there by Artaxerxes king of Persia. Ezra was

…a scribe skilled in the law of Moses, which the Lord God of Israel had given: and the king granted him all he requested because the hand of the Lord his God was upon him (Ezra 7:6).

This was a significant opportunity. Artaxerxes commanded Ezra that

…according to the wisdom of your God which is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges that they may judge all the people who are in the province beyond the River, even all those who know the laws of your God; and you may teach anyone who is ignorant of them (Ezra 7:25).

Artaxerxes knew something most of the church today doesn’t: the observance of God’s law is of vital importance to the stability of any nation. God had said through Isaiah,

if only you had paid attention to My commandments! Then your well-being would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea (Isa.48:18).

We must be more than merely conservatives. We must say with David, “Oh how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Ps.119:97). When the church loves and embraces God’s law, and successfully presses for its adoption throughout the nations of the world, we can really expect to see powerful changes take place, along with the fulfillment of this promise:

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance (Ps.33:12).

Tearing Down What’s Left of Christian Civilization

Jun 23, 2020 by Gary DeMar

First it was the removal of Confederate statues and monuments. Next, it was Christopher Columbus. Then it was George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, and even Abraham Lincoln. More are to come, and they will never be finished. The next target? John Nolte says Mount Rushmore may not survive.

All pictures of white Jesus because Shaun King says Jesus was not white, thus, a white-looking Jesus is a symbol of racial injustice:

They are a form of white supremacy.
Always have been.
In the Bible, when the family of Jesus wanted to hide, and blend in, guess where they went?
EGYPT!
Not Denmark.
Tear them down.

Denmark? Now, that would have been a trip for the ages. Israel had many of what we know today as Europeans living there. Israel was occupied by the Romans. You can’t get more European than that. As Jews, Joseph and Mary could more easily “blend in” among their own people who spoke the same language than they could in Egypt. They escaped to Egypt because of the age of their child and the threat of Herod and because of a very specific prophecy (Hosea 11:1Matt. 2:15).

Jesus being Jewish, likely had very light brown skin. Jesus wasn’t white, but he wasn’t black. This may surprise a lot of people, but Jews are Caucasian. Today, “white” is a cultural construct that’s used as a weapon.

Do you think they will stop with pictures of white Jesus? The Bible will be next because it was used to support slavery and teaches that homosexuality is a sin. The desecration of churches will follow the cancel culture revolution. Remember the church in Washington, DC, that was set ablaze. Well, they are back trying to finish what they started by defacing the columns of the church with “B-H-A-Z,” for “Black House Autonomous Zone.”

View image on Twitter
St. John Church in Washington, DC.

The French Revolution, the Russian Revolution, and China’s Cultural Revolution come to mind. The tactics are similar and the ultimate goal is to rid the world of any authority where there is a God with laws, or should I say, to get rid of one God and His laws so a new god and its laws can be erected and worshipped.

Once it’s determined that every man, woman, and child can do what is right in their own eyes (Judges 17:6), there is no end to what’s left of the old order to be destroyed. Once they sow the wind, they will reap the whirlwind (Hosea 8:7).

On a side note, the Bible does not cancel its history. The books are open for everyone to see. Nothing is hidden. There is David’s adultery and his duplicity in the death of Urriah the Hittite to hide his sin, and yet his psalms grace a large part of the Bible. There are few Bible personalities who come away unscathed.

If cancel culture were applied to the Bible, there would be little to read. Look at the list of people from the Old Testament as examples of faith in Hebrews 11. Most of the them would be cancelled given today’s standards, many of whom grace stained glass windows in churches.

By This Standard

By This Standard: The Authority of God’s Law Today

Millions of Christians, sadly, have not recognized the continuing authority of God’s law or its many applications to modern society. They have thereby reaped the whirlwind of cultural and intellectual impotence. They implicitly denied the power of the death and resurrection of Christ. They have served as footstools for the enemies of God. But humanism’s free ride is coming to an end. This book serves as an introduction to this woefully neglected topic.

Buy Now

There is no space here to outline the failure of the Church to work toward a Christian Civilization and a Christ-like culture. In fact, there a millions of Christians who have been led astray into believing that such a goal should even be attempted. Consider:

You can never Christianise society. It is folly to attempt to do so. I would even suggest that it is heresy to do so. Man must be born again. How can they live the Christian life if they have not become Christians? Good fruit can only come from a good tree, a good root; and the idea that you can impose a Christian life or culture upon non-Christian people is a contradiction of Christian teaching.

Not every person has to be a Christian to have a Christian civilization in the same way that not every person has to be a secularist to have a secularist civilization. The slave trade was stopped in England at the direction of Christians even though many people engaged in the slave trade were not Christians.

When a fixed moral standard is eradicated, all is permissible for a larger goal, even an undefined one. Statues, churches, and Jesus aren’t the only things to go. It must all go for the promised greater good that never comes. For example, a Wells Fargo Bank was looted by rioters with sledgehammers:

To what end? It doesn’t matter. The world is adrift in relativism, placed on the vast ocean without a sail or rudder, going where the wind goes hoping for a soft landing on some paradise island. Think Mutiny on the Bounty.

What we are seeing today was spawned centuries ago. Christianity was shoved to the sidelines when the Enlightenment claimed “that no authority could sit in judgment on human reason, that man’s reason and experience were the measure of all things.” [1] This sterile worldview was not satisfying, so like all failing worldviews, a new paradigm was reared to offer meaning for those seeing purpose. Andrew Sandlin offers a brief summary of Romanticism, the then new ideological savior from the sterility of the Enlightenment:

This rationalism [of the Enlightenment] produced a cold, sterile world, and in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, Romanticism emerged as a reaction. Romanticism didn’t like the idea of universal or shared reason and experience. It wanted to champion what was unique about every individual, not what humanity had in common. Romanticism is the first wholesale movement of individualism in world history. The really important thing was individual thinking, feelings, emotions, desires, and interpretations, not what all humans shared. Historians call this “the inward turn”; it’s a turning point in Western history. Objective truth outside us is no longer important, whether that truth is God or the Bible or the church or creeds or shared human reason or experience.

The struggle for meaning would come to an end in 1859 with the publication of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Now there’s something to topple since it is the engine of so much misery in the 20th century, the same misery that we will see again if the cancel culture crowd gets its way.

This is a great opportunity for the Church of Jesus Christ. But one wonders if enough Christians have the wisdom to offer a comprehensive alternative. There’s a great deal of work to be done.

 

  1. P. Andrew Sandlin, Christian Culture: An Introduction (Mount Hermon, CA: Center for Cultural Leadership, 2013), 23.[]