05 August 2010

Why appeal to Providence when you refuse to submit to it?

Here's a link to a Covenant News article by Buddy Hanson.

For some this will be redundant, but I keep reading articles like this and I have to say something. They sound so good. They sound so logical and reasonable and God glorifying. It's simply not the case.

I hope my readers are seeing through all these interactions, how to pick apart their arguments and though packaged nicely, discover their fundamental fallacies.

If you go to his website at the end, have a look at his Worldview Survey. Notice how the questions are framed. It's dishonest. It reminds me of surveys I've received from the Heritage Foundation and other organizations. They surveys are not truthful interrogations. Even the questions have a propaganda-like nature.

It's not about seeking out facts, putting them together and trying to form a picture of truth. It's about indoctrination, rather cultic I'm sorry to say.

May you benefit from this.....

The King's Heart is in the Hand of the Lord
By Buddy Hanson

The Covenant News ~ July 31, 2010

While more than a few in today's churches discourage and disparage any mention of a citizen's responsibilities to the civil government, the Protestant Reformers, Puritans, Pilgrims, and America's founders saw no biblical warrant in omitting any of God's Word in their sermons and teaching. To the contrary, they agreed with the apostle Paul that they were compelled to teach "the whole counsel of God." (Acts 20.27)


Certainly we preach and teach the whole counsel. But where do you find Paul, Peter, or Jesus engaging in Roman politics? Where can we find even one of example of Paul having such a concern?


Jonathan Mayhew, who was an 18th century Pastor in Boston, and the originator of the rallying cry, "No taxation without representation," addresses this critical issue head-on:


Mayhew was in sin and should have been rebuked. Where does Jesus say, don't render unto Caesar unless you have representation?

American Christians seem to have a problem reckoning with their own past. It happened, America is legitimate despite its sinful origins. Just because we say the Rebellion of 1776 was sinful doesn't mean that we don't submit to the present government. But we don't have to glory in it.


It is hoped that but a few will think the subject of [civil government] an improper one to be discussed in the pulpit, under a notion that this is preaching politics, instead of Christ. However, to remove all prejudices of this sort, I beg it may be remembered that "all Scripture is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness [2 Tim. 3.16]. Why, then, should not those parts of Scripture which relate to civil government be examined and explained from the desk, as well as others? Obedience to the civil magistrate is a Christian duty; and if so, why should not the nature, grounds, and extent of it be considered in a Christian assembly? Besides, if it be said that it is out of character for a Christian minister to meddle with such a subject, this censure will at last fall upon the holy apostles. They write upon it in their epistles to Christian churches; and surely it cannot be deemed either criminal or impertinent to attempt an explanation of their doctrine.


Instruction in righteousness. The Bible is a covenant document for the Church, not the nation of America. It informs us of how we are to live in America, China, Congo, or wherever. The purpose of the Scriptures is to reveal Jesus Christ, not establish a political order.

We should be considering the nature of our obedience, but the argument here is for politicizing the Kingdom of God.

The apostles write of it? They tell us how to live, but where do I find Paul addressing Roman policy regarding infanticide? Where does Peter address gladiatorial shows? Where does Luke address taxes being used for public works and feeding the poor? Where is there mention of Rome's foreign policy?

We should all be aware of what the government is doing, so that we are not deceived. We should speak the truth to others...That's our weaponry, truth. What is being suggested here, is politics.


When it comes to civil governments, we must never forget that "the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses." (Daniel 4.25) As the psalmist Asaph proclaims, "God is the Judge: He puts down one, and exalts another." (Psalm 75.7) Daniel declares:

And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding. Daniel 2.21


Exactly. Providence is in control. We understand the nations are a drop in the bucket. We don't need to try and overthrow governments. Proclaiming the truth will accomplish the work of the Kingdom. If that's not sufficient, then I wonder do these people believe in the power of the Holy Spirit? His work for the past two thousand years isn't good enough?

We need to understand Christ is the Lord of the Universe. He Reigns over all, but all of creation does not share in His Holy Realm. The Common Grace order will be burned up, not transformed.


History proves that the only civilizations that have been able to sustain themselves are those who have governed according to God's Word.(Deut. 28.1-4; Psalm 2.12; 33.12; 144.11-15) Every civilization that has attempted to govern itself according to man's word has failed, and continues to fail. (2 Sam.23.3-4; Psalm 2.1-5,9; 9.17; 110.1-6; Isa. 60.12; Rev. 2.27; 19.11-15) The only good news for a non-Christian country is that it can expect to be pardoned if it repents (Lev. 26.40-42; Jer. 18.7-8; Jonah 3.5-10) before it completely fills God's cup of wrath against them, and begins governing itself according to His rules.


Really? That's amazing. How does he define sustain? Some civilizations have lasted for centuries, some for longer. So what if they fail? That's Providence at work keeping the Tower of Babel from getting too tall.

What civilizations have been governed according to God's Word? OT Israel? It failed because of sin, because it was meant to in God's Redemptive History and typology.

What other civilizations would he refer to? Christendom? When has Christendom ever been governed according to God's Word? It's very self-consciousness is a departure from God's Word.

Non-Christian country? All countries are non-Christian. What is a Christian country? Where can I read about that in the New Testament? The only one I find is the Church.


I gave you a king in My anger, and took him away in My wrath. Hosea 13.11

Paul explains that all civil rulers are "appointed by God." (Romans 13.1) If we are living according to biblical ethics, He will bless us with Christian civil rulers and if we are living according to non-Christian ethics, He will curse us with non-Christian civil rulers. Daniel provides this alarming description:


Appointed by God, yes. That seems to be what Hanson has a problem with. Christian civil rulers? Is that what the text says?


And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors have reached their fullness, a king shall arise, having fierce features, who understands sinister schemes. His power shall be mighty, but not by his own power; he shall destroy fearfully, and shall prosper and thrive; he shall destroy the mighty, and also the holy people. Daniel 8.23-24


Obama no doubt. Is that the purpose in writing this article?


On the other hand, Christian civil rulers will have their administrations blessed and preserved.


Begging the question.


Mercy and truth preserve the king, and by loving kindness he upholds his throne. Proverbs 20.28

ust as the "king's heart" is in the "hand of the lord," so is America. May we repent and insist that our pastors renounce the heretical 501 c3 incorporation to the state that since 1954 has prevented them from preaching the whole counsel of God. By the way, which America do you like best: pre-, or post-1954?


I'm all for renouncing 501c tax status, but not so I can engage in politics. Rather, so that the Church is not a government entity, under its legal authority and governance.

Pre or post 1954?

Definitely post 1954. Why don't you ask that same question to a black Christian or a Latino one?

For a Sacralist, the post 1950's is depressing. For those who view Sacralism as destructive, it's dismantling is a cause to rejoice. Revelation 17 & 18 convey the idea.


Grace & Law Worldview Resource Center
Buddy Hanson
2 Windsor Drive
Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
E-mail: bhanson@graceandlaw.com
Website: http://www.graceandlaw.com


Anonymous said...

Hanson's conclusions do not follow from the points he establishes in the early part of his essay. Of course we all agree with him and Mayhew that the Word should be preached from the pulpit, all of it. However, those scriptures teach us to live as citizens of heaven while sojourning in this world. Mayhew's famous slogan, echoed now by Tea Partyers, is entirely unbiblical. No where do the apostolic writings, nor the example of Jesus Himself, suggest we should focus our attention on changing, conquering, or becoming emboiled in controversy concerning civil government. Nowhere is there Scripture to support politicizing the faith or the Kingdom. Nowhere in early church history do we see the apostles or the churches becoming politically active, as if they picketed the coliseums or flooded Nero's palace with petitions.

Hanson says that only christian civilizations have been able to sustain themselves. This is flat out wrong. Many kingdoms and civilizations have endured for centuries, some large and powerful, some small and obscure. It is the Lord whose earth this is Who sets up and Who tears down!

This unsupported statement about only christian civilizations sustaining themselves has at least two big problems. First, it is outright ethnocentricity on display while unsupported by historical fact. Secondly, this assertion is contrary to the New Testament doctrines of grace and providence. This is seeking blessing through works-based merit, no? That if we enact good law and impose an outward works righteousness on people, then God will be forced to bless America and we can continue to enjoy our wealth and ease, which I suspect is the root motive. Hey, that is what this argument sounds like to me!

The truth is that sin carries within itself its own judgment to a certain extent, so that in the practicing of sin also comes a judgment. Addiction is the fruit of indulgence, dysfunctional relationships the fruit of fornication and adultery, poverty the fruit of sloth, etc. Eventually sin weakens a society. So yes there is good law and there is bad law, there will be good or bad consequences to various policies and techniques. But that is all in this world that is destined to burn up, where our minds are not to be set.
A third problem about this "only christian civilizations sustain themselves" is that it denies that God is sovereign and provident in the affairs of men. God raises up and He brings down men and kingdoms in this world according to His eternal purposes. Pharoah's daughter, King Darius, King Ahasuerus were all pagans in government who God used to bring blessing. Even Caiphas and Pilate, for that matter, infamous now for their evil and cowardly hearts, were God's instruments to help bring to pass in history the greatest Blessing ever! So even pagans and their governments bring blessing in God's providence.

Another problem is that "Christian civilizations and governments" sustained themselves by terror and murder. Holy Roman Empire, Geneva, Zurich, Cromwell, even the US westward expansion is covered with blood. Why can't these men acknowledge the bloody murderous history of church/state harlotry?

The US was not created by its founders to be a christian nation, but to be a pluralistic tolerant one. Yes, its people have been largely christian in moral consensus, and that has contributed to our greatness. But our great freedom touted by today's christian theonomists and patriots is NOT the fruit of sacralist tradition, quite the contrary! It is pre-constantinian church doctrine and anabaptist reformation.

Is this current American movement a resurgence of Cromwell's movement?

Brothers and Sisters, please ask for an open mind and heart, and then look at these issues with your Bible open, especially to the words in red.


Protoprotestant said...

I couldn't have said it better......

Protoprotestant said...

Funny how the Presbyterians hate Cromwell, but wasn't he just an application of Sacralism as well? Sadly for the Presbyterians it wasn't their version. That's what happens.

So in America what would happen if the Theonomists took control? They wish for the magistrate to enforce the 1st Commandment. What would happen to Pentecostals? Jehovah's Witnesses? Two Kingdom teachers?

We won't speak of what he did to the Irish.

I remember Lloyd-Jones talking about these issues in his volume on The Puritans. As much as he admired them, he viewed the events in 17th century Britain as unfortunate and misguided.