13 January 2011

National Confession and Explicitly Christian Politics sound great, but are they in accord with Scripture?

 National Confession, national repentance? How could anyone argue against that? It sounds pure and God honouring, but is it? The entire sphere of this discussion stems from a basic misunderstanding of the Bible and its teaching regarding the Kingdom of God.



The text article is below, or you can follow the link.... at Explicitly Christian Politics



My response/interaction follows.









Acknowledging God: A Case for National Confession

Jan 10, 2011 by Daniel Eby



National confession is a very serious and central issue that’s challenging America today. It’s absolutely imperative for Americans to ask ourselves whether or not we, and the leaders of this nation, will humble ourselves before God and acknowledge that Heaven rules. (See Daniel 4:17,25.)

Or, will we continue to cast off all godly restraint and thoroughly expunge from our sight and memory the laws of God and the Christian heritage that was passed to us from our Christian forebears?

During the past decade and longer, the Ten Commandments and every symbol of the Christian faith in the public arena have been systematically selected for removal. Those who defy God and His law seek to replace Christianity with the religion of secular democracy, where the rule of men is supreme. It is an all-out war, an attack at the very foundations of our nation. (See Psalm 2.)

Which God will America Serve?

What is at stake is not just the freedom to place placards on courtroom walls or monuments in civil government buildings. What is at stake is the very devotion of the heart and soul of this nation! The question before us is: Which god will America acknowledge as supreme–the one true, and only, God and His Son Jesus Christ who rules from heaven– OR the idol of democracy, where man’s rights and desires are supreme.

The cause of this warfare and attack of our roots is both neglect and forgetfulness. A national understanding of the connection between Christianity and civil government, so well understood by our founding fathers and the general populace (but which the founding generation neglected to embed in the Constitution), is no longer understood by the majority of Americans today–neither Christian nor non-Christian.

Our people have long since forgotten the words of Samuel Adams, spoken as the Declaration of Independence was signed, “We have this day restored the Sovereign to Whom all men ought to be obedient. He reigns in heaven and from the rising to the setting of the sun, let His kingdom come.”

The greater blame, ironically, lies not with the nonbeliever, but rather the believer who has neglected the centrality of the Word of God, including the Ten Commandments, as the only standard for Christian obedience, and consequently has forgotten its basis for establishing good civil government.

Without Christ, Conservatism is an Empty Shell

Answers cannot be found in a resurgence of conservatism. Conservatism has long since failed us. What is left of conservatism, if Christ is not at the foundation of its ideology? Without Christ to fill it, it is just an empty shell.

Holding on to the Constitution as the last hope for our nation will not work either. The Constitution will fail to protect us, because without the Law of God as its foundation, it will eventually fade away into history as a grand experiment in nation building found wanting for a lack of the secure bond of the Christian religion to protect it.

All other important issues dim in light of this one. Because we no longer confess Christ nor obey His Laws, we will not be able to protect the unborn from slaughter, and we will not stand up for second amendment rights any more than we have kept our children from being educated by the ungodly in the government schools.

Do we need a constitutional amendment that requires a national confession of Christ? Yes, but that won’t happen any time soon–at least not without a “Nineveh type” national repentance.

While I personally believe that our forefathers neglected this most important part of building good civil government, what is left to us in this generation is a solemn return to the type of holy living that only the Gospel –and yes, the Law of God– alone can bring. Until this happens, our nation cannot be restored. The nation as we know it cannot survive, if we refuse to acknowledge the God of heaven.

Our only hope is for Christians to begin the careful rebuilding of an explicitly Christian community:

Churches must once again become beacons of light as they demonstrate the power of the Gospel, teaching the Laws of God as the standard for faith and practice for all men;

Christian men and women must keep the bond of marriage ’till death do them part’;

Christian families must remove every aspect of secularism as the teachers of their children, and once again obey God’s command to give their children a comprehensive Christian education, and

Christians must once again take seriously the Dominion Mandate and the Great Commission, and apply God’s Word and Law to every sphere of life.

Let us Confess Christ!

The Christian political movement must first reach Christian families and help them to faithfully apply God’s Word to civil government and politics.

Our prayer is that dedicated Christians will throw their shoulders to the wheel and, by God’s grace, help lead our nation to a national confession of Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.











Acknowledging God: A Case for National Confession

Jan 10, 2011 by Daniel Eby



National confession is a very serious and central issue that’s challenging America today. It’s absolutely imperative for Americans to ask ourselves whether or not we, and the leaders of this nation, will humble ourselves before God and acknowledge that Heaven rules. (See Daniel 4:17,25.)

Or, will we continue to cast off all godly restraint and thoroughly expunge from our sight and memory the laws of God and the Christian heritage that was passed to us from our Christian forebears?



Proto:



Some of this is already very familiar to frequent readers of this weblog. But as the Dominionist argument takes on different forms with different emphases, we can benefit from another look.



National Confession? Certainly the Redemptive-Nation Israel with a Holy Identity and Holy Covenanted task could turn to God in a corporate sense and repent. Israel was unique in its God granted offices of Prophet, Priest, and King who both represented God and in turn could represent the voice of the people speaking to or crying out to God.



What is the Redemptive Community in the New Covenant, the New Testament? Clearly this is the Church. We are told in places like 1 Corinthians 10 and Ephesians 2 that there is a direct parallel and an aspect of continuity between Israel and the Church. We can argue to what extent, but it's clear in some sense that Israel's New Covenant counterpart and continuation is found in the Church.



So we (notice the pronoun) as the Church can repent and confess and turn to the Lord. Is there a Biblical precedent for a nation like the United States to do so? Nations like Edom and Moab, and even Babylon were not granted Redemptive status, they were not in covenant with God. God's laws were not their laws and they had no right to appeal to them or claim them. To join with God's people, and Edomite had to cease to be an Edomite and become an Israelite....he had to join with the Jewish community, God's people. By faith, even those Gentiles could join the Redemptive Community, but their nations did not share the task.



In the New Covenant, people come from all nations....all the nations go up to Zion, the Lord's Holy Mountain, the distinction between Jew and Gentile is eradicated. The New Testament speaks of our status as that of pilgrims and sojourners. We live in nations, but we understand that none of them are Holy, none are in Covenant.



Since God's arrangement for the New Covenant extends to all lands, we don't have to pick up and move to Israel to worship at a central temple-shrine in Jerusalem. The Church is everywhere, but there is no indication from the New Testament that are we to believe individual nations in the New Covenant age can 'take on' Redemptive status, or enter into Covenant. Who initiated the Covenant in the Old Testament? Who set the terms? Who defined the parties, explained the blessings and sanctions? God Himself did these things. Moab could not initiate a Covenant and build a temple. They had no right to do so. In fact when a couple of Hebrew tribes even hinted at erected a rival shrine, across the Jordan, the rest of Israel threatened war.



When the Ten Tribes separated under Jeroboam and established the shrines at Dan and Bethel this was viewed as apostasy. Judah did not deal with it for some time, but Josiah made clear the northern shrines were unacceptable.



In this age of the New Covenant, no nation can claim to be Israel and it is a fundamental and dangerous error to equate Israel and a modern nation like the United States. When this is done, as it has been done all throughout history, the nation's wars become holy, it's laws Divine, and the line between the Church and the world is blurred. The Church merely becomes a facet of the larger society and aids the nation in its project....something quite different than the Church.



So to appeal to Daniel, demonstrates this author has embraced a theology that does not recognize the proper distinctions between the Old and New Testaments.



This has been a common error throughout much of Church History. At times we've seen something of a backlash and the American Evangelical climate is but one example of this. Dispensational theology arose in the 19th century and today is the dominate system in American Evangelical Christianity. This is the theology of the Left Behind books and the most commonly found on the radio. This is Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, and John Hagee.



This system emphasizes 'discontinuity' between the Old and New Testaments...to the extent that God has two people....the Jews of Israel and the Church of Christ.



Dominionism is but one school or twist of theology that only sees continuity between the Old and New Testaments. The Old Covenant, the system of types and shadows that has been fulfilled in Christ and disanulled 'because of its weakness and unprofitableness.' (Hebrews 7.18) is still looked to. We all agree the Old Testament is Scripture, but Dominionists would look specifically to Israel for patterns and prototypes of modern government, and more often than not these folks will also appeal to the Levitical system in order to justify liturgical practice.



The problem is the New Testament teaches both continuity and discontinuity....to get this wrong leads to dire results.



With Dispensationalism the gospel is distorted, Christ is denigrated in order to maintain the status of the Jews and Israel. Combined with American Nationalism their eschatological system is dangerous and has led to a great deal of bloodshed around the world. The Kingdom of God is ripped away from the Church and placed in a future Jewish Millennium.



Dominionism also distorts the gospel with its tendency to Judaize within the Church and to apply Holy Covenant precepts pertaining to Christ to mere Common nations. The Kingdom of God is distorted and tied in with Civilization and Culture War.



Astonishingly, most modern Evangelicals now embrace a hybrid of these two systems. Retaining the main points of the Dispensational system they also have come to embrace many tenets of Dominionism. America and Israel against the world.



What of the Christian Heritage?



Well if the Christian Heritage the author speaks of is in reference to an unlawful and sinful rebellion, then we have a problem. I can certainly submit to God's Providence but that in no way means that God sanctioned a tax revolt that occurred in 1776. I know that's an unacceptable way of looking at history for most Americans but if you're a Christian then you need to make your judgments according to the Scriptures. If we're first and foremost citizens of God's Kingdom and our minds are to be renewed. If we're Born Again, then we don't see things the way the world does. And would anyone dare to Biblically justify rising up against a government over the issue of taxes? I've seen some very poor attempts by Dominionists to extrapolate such principles from the Bible, but they fall far short. Often these arguments are dependent upon doctrines built upon assumptions built on assumptions. When asked to make an argument from the New Testament they cannot. And when they appeal to the Old Testament, they grossly misunderstand the context which they are arguing from.



Does this mean I have to hate America? Not at all.

Does this mean we should re-join the United Kingdom? No.

But it also does not mean that we should glorify something that probably shouldn't have happened. I'll be the first to admit the American Revolution was complicated and people fought for a variety of reasons and for different motives. There were many colonials against what was happening. But I don't get the impression the Christian Heritage proponents are willing to have that discussion. Their versions of these events read more like a myth or legend.



Did the Founding Fathers establish a Christian Nation? First of all if they did so, they were in error and we need to recognize that. I don't think they did, nor did many of the Christians of that time. Historically speaking the United States was the first Western nation in centuries to establish a nation that explicitly 'was not' tied in with the Church and did not reference Christ.


Either way the Christian Heritage argument is riddled with difficulties. It's out of accord with both honest and sober historical assessment and comparison, and it's completely contrary to the Scriptures.



If people like Eby wish to argue that there have been many Christians living in America over the course of its history...then fine, but that still has nothing to do with the creation of a "Christian Nation."



Eby:



During the past decade and longer, the Ten Commandments and every symbol of the Christian faith in the public arena have been systematically selected for removal. Those who defy God and His law seek to replace Christianity with the religion of secular democracy, where the rule of men is supreme. It is an all-out war, an attack at the very foundations of our nation. (See Psalm 2.)



Proto:



I'm not sure what Bible Mr. Eby is reading, but how does Psalm 2 refer to the United States?



The Decalogue or Ten Commandments were part of the Covenant given to Moses and Israel at Sinai. The New Testament makes it very clear in Hebrews 7 and 9, as well as Galatians 3& 4....and that's just a start....that we are not under the Mosaic Covenant. And when I say 'we' I'm referring to the Church. If the Church is not under the Mosaic Covenant, then how can the Ten Commandments, laws given by God to His people refer to the United States? Should Edom have posted them on public buildings? Babylon? Assyria? The United States has no claim either.



In fact as Christians we should be offended when the magistrate DARES to take the Word of God....His Word for His people, and place it on public buildings....insinuating that somehow these Covenant Words are tied-in with the identity of the United States.



What would Jews have thought if Nebuchadnezzar had started posting Torah on public buildings? What if he wanted to lead them in prayer?



Secular Democracy.....the supremacy of man's rule? What does the author expect unbelievers to come up with? Does he think unregenerate people will understand the spirituality of God's law? Will they understand the polity of the Kingdom of Heaven?



Even Christians within the government must understand that the unbelievers they work with will not be able to grasp these things. And guess what? In terms of Providence, that is until those people are regenerated....it's fine.



Israel sojourned in Babylon, built their houses, raised their families and prayed for the peace of the city. Babylon restrained evil, like every other nation had laws against murder, theft, perjury, things like that, and it was fine. Was it perfect? Of course not. The exiled Jews would have never expected that from Babylon.



So what difference does it make whether we live under secular democracy or any other form of fallen and ultimately failed forms of human government? Very little.



Some are better than others in that some provide more peaceful and open societies that allow the gospel to function without hindrance. Secular Democracy has probably proved better for this than any other form of government, and we can be quite content with it. No matter what you do, what type of government is created, it cannot claim Divine sanction or blessing. We're not looking for Utopia and the New Heavens and Earth will not come until Christ returns. 2 Peter 3.10ff



Psalm 2 refers to fallen man and his Babel projects. All nations seek to repeat the Tower of Babel. They seek power and to make a name for themselves. They deify themselves and turn their nation and its symbols into idols. Even when they pay lip service to God...like the British Empire, the Habsburgs, Charlemagne, the Byzantines, and the United States....they are seeking their own ends and goals. They are seeking the domination of the earth and thus spiritually speaking, they are indeed trying to break free from the authority of Providence. To them, the Rule of God is a form of bondage. It keeps them from proclaiming their own deity and supremacy....the ultimate goal of fallen man.



These nations were eternally broken at the Cross and Resurrection. They and all of us are in the Last Days. All has been accomplished. We're not waiting for another epoch, another golden era of victory. It's here now, for those who have eyes to see it. Here in space and time? Not yet, but it will be when Christ Returns. We who are granted Eternal Eyes can see this, we who dwell in both ages at the same time. Then these nations (the lost people of the world) will be crushed and they will see the King of Zion and bow in cursing terror.



Eby:



Which God will America Serve?

What is at stake is not just the freedom to place placards on courtroom walls or monuments in civil government buildings. What is at stake is the very devotion of the heart and soul of this nation! The question before us is: Which god will America acknowledge as supreme–the one true, and only, God and His Son Jesus Christ who rules from heaven– OR the idol of democracy, where man’s rights and desires are supreme.



Proto:



How does a nation acknowledge or confess Jesus Christ? I hope the author does not think that repentance and belief, the demands of the gospel can somehow be reduced to some kind of cheap veneer, some kind of lowest denominator form? I'm not sure what a society is supposed to do to repent.



The Church can repent....because those within the Church being born again are Spirit-empowered to repent and believe. How can a non-covenantal people engage in such an exercise?



There is but one example of something like this in Scripture....and it's not one these sorts of people usually like to appeal to. I'm talking of course about Nineveh during the time of Jonah the prophet. Eby does reference Nineveh below, but I don't think he's worked out exactly what that means. In fact by comparing Israel with the United States, I know he hasn't.



First of all we could talk about the Prophetic and Symbolic role of what was happening. Nineveh's repentance and belief was an example of God's judgment on who? Holy Israel.



Christ appealed to examples like the widow in Zarephath and Naaman the Syrian as examples of Divine Judgment against the hardness and obstinacy of the Israelites. God establishes his Covenant but as an example of Grace He teaches of a True Remnant within that Covenant. Not all who were Israel were of Israel (Romans 9.6) Sometimes Israel included people like Rahab and Naaman.



So I don't think the example of Nineveh is a good one for a nation like the United States. We have no sent prophet, no special circumstance and though after the Jonah episode there were evidently some True Believers.........did that sanctify Nineveh? Did Nineveh become a Holy Nation, with a Shekinah-filled Holy Temple? Did it take up the Pentateuchal laws?



Not at all. It was, a special circumstance. So, the analogy for a nation like the United States does not fit and even if it did, the United States still like Nineveh, would not be granted some kind of Covenanted status.



As Christians living in Babylon we can live under democracy and even participate in it. We not under obligation, but just by living here and walking out our doors, we are in some sense participants. We have to understand the Holy spiritual nature of the Kingdom of God and not confuse it, its mission, or expectations with a Common nation like the United States. More on Nineveh below....



Eby:



The cause of this warfare and attack of our roots is both neglect and forgetfulness. A national understanding of the connection between Christianity and civil government, so well understood by our founding fathers and the general populace (but which the founding generation neglected to embed in the Constitution), is no longer understood by the majority of Americans today–neither Christian nor non-Christian.



Proto:



Yeah, oops, they neglected to embed it in the Constitution. Perhaps there was a reason for that? And if Mr. Eby and co. were to gain political power (which is what this is really about) today, we would vigorously oppose their attempt to embed such a clause.

Uh, how would non-Christians understand 'the connection between Christianity and civil government?'



The Constitution Party largely echoes the views of Eby in this article. The praise the Constitution and attack those who would change it or corrupt it....but the first thing they would wish to do if they had power...is change the Constitution to make sure it was worded in an explicitly Constantinian way. Does anyone else find this odd?



Assuming his position for a moment, if this is a Biblical teaching, how can unbelievers understand it, and what theological basis does Eby have to think fallen men can submit to it? Romans 8.6-7 are pretty clear.



Eby:



Our people have long since forgotten the words of Samuel Adams, spoken as the Declaration of Independence was signed, “We have this day restored the Sovereign to Whom all men ought to be obedient. He reigns in heaven and from the rising to the setting of the sun, let His kingdom come.”



Proto:



Actually if this quote is accurate it's blasphemous. Read it carefully and think about it. Washington and the rest of the boys by fighting the British have restored the Sovereign? I think Mr. Adams may have had one too many of the beers he's so famous for. How do the actions of 1776 relate to the coming of His kingdom?



This is exactly the type of sacrilege and blasphemy that's actually plastered all over our public buildings. It's everywhere in Washington D.C., not because we are a Christian Nation....the New Testament knowing of no such thing....but because we are a nation of people that do not understand the Bible at all.



Just read through a volume of American Church History if you doubt me. It's not a very happy tale and I'm afraid as the Church evolved into Christo-Americanism, it was Christians who were leading the charge in the heretical fulfillment of Manifest Destiny, the Monroe Doctrine, and eventually the American Empire which began in earnest around the turn of the 20th century. These political doctrines carry a very real theology, but it's Babel theology, not Zion.



Eby:



The greater blame, ironically, lies not with the nonbeliever, but rather the believer who has neglected the centrality of the Word of God, including the Ten Commandments, as the only standard for Christian obedience, and consequently has forgotten its basis for establishing good civil government.



Proto:



I agree with regard to the blame, but it is Eby's theology that I blame... NOT for the demise of the nation...they've been quite successful in building a pretty impressive Babel.



Rather I blame them for the state of the Church.

Not that an impressive Babel is a good thing. But I trust you see the point.



Actually Evangelical President George Bush did much to undo the limited government and Constitutional protections that we once had. Several Amendments were stripped of any real or historic meaning.



Eby:



Without Christ, Conservatism is an Empty Shell

Answers cannot be found in a resurgence of conservatism. Conservatism has long since failed us. What is left of conservatism, if Christ is not at the foundation of its ideology? Without Christ to fill it, it is just an empty shell.



Proto:



Ah, so it is about politics and power. Conservatism? Conserving Christendom? American Exceptionalism? A moral veneer?



You want your country back? That's what Beck says. I'm not sure if that's what Eby means by Conservatism. What country? Slavery? Indian slaughter? Segregation? Child Labour?



I know, I'm just part of the Blame America First crowd. Look, if you're a Christian in Italy, you may love you country. There are few that offer more beauty and wondrous history. But you don't tie that love of country in with your government. Those have come and gone over the centuries. Love of country is not about politics, nor is about tying in some kind of Holy Blessed identity with your country.



Consequently they're not running around telling the rest of the world about Italy's moral supremacy, it's Divine sanction and quest, nor do they try and argue that Italy fell out of heaven and is governed as a new Israel.



It's a country, a pretty nice one, with lots of lost people trying to make their way in a fallen world. A Christian can live there and be happy. They can help spread the gospel and build the Kingdom of God.



So why am I not picking on Italy? Post-WWII Italy is not running around invading countries, assassinating leaders, bombing indiscriminately, all the while telling the world that they've been blessed by God and given this special task. Berlusconi may be a perverse and corrupt criminal fornicator, but at least he's not telling people that God told him to be President.



Conservatism is a political construct. It's about power and the preservation of the ruling Establishment in American society....the post World War II power structure. The Project for the New American Century, supported by many Christians seeks to extend or finish this task. It's about American dominance. I expect this from unbelievers. They're just building Babel. But how can Christians share in this goal and do it in the name of Christ?



We read in Luke 4:

And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.



Christ wasn't exactly interested. Why do his servants take the bait?



Dominionists will often reply he rejected the offer because Satan could not validly offer or grant it. On one level that is of course true, but on another level Satan is granted power to be the 'prince of the power of the air.'



He now is bound, in that he cannot deceive the nations and prevent the spread of gospel, but even in light of his defeat at the cross, he is the roaring lion and Paul in Ephesians 2 still refers to him as the prince of the sons of disobedience.



Satan is the ruler of this world....under the umbrella of Divine Providence. And when he is released as per Revelation 20, he will deceive the nations once more. Does this mean he has some kind of spiritual-judicial authority over nations? No. But all who are not Christ's are whose? To whom do they belong? Who is their father, their king?



The power that Satan offered is the very power desired by those who rule nations like the United States. What is insidious about America is that they do proclaiming themselves righteous, and Christians would build this tower with them....in Christ's name.



Eby:



Holding on to the Constitution as the last hope for our nation will not work either. The Constitution will fail to protect us, because without the Law of God as its foundation, it will eventually fade away into history as a grand experiment in nation building found wanting for a lack of the secure bond of the Christian religion to protect it.



Proto:



No Christian would even place hope in a man-made document. You can attach Scripture to it all you want....it's still a man-made document.



The United States has been a grand experiment indeed. We haven't seen the like before, the closest to it was an Empire and a culture called Rome that died many centuries ago.



They fade, because one head sometimes gets cut off when it's time for another to grow in its place. They fade because God decides in His Providence to change the world scene. He destroys nations...because in their pride they all deserve it. Isaiah 10 provides a great example of Providence using a nation, then destroying it.



Eby:



All other important issues dim in light of this one. Because we no longer confess Christ nor obey His Laws, we will not be able to protect the unborn from slaughter, and we will not stand up for second amendment rights any more than we have kept our children from being educated by the ungodly in the government schools.



Proto:



Because the Church has no concept of the Kingdom's Laws, they think it's okay to send their sons off to other countries to kill innocents. Babel feeds them lies, tickles their ears, and those who are supposed to be renewed in their minds, fall for it. The Church has become pro-death and has been for a long time. It's the same old Constantinian tale. This has all happened before.



And yes, the 2nd Amendment is very key to Paul's understanding of New Testament spirituality. Yes, love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control, and the right to keep and bear arms.



I own guns. I'm not opposed to them. But I don't treat the Constitution like a Sacred Document. I can appreciate the right to bear arms, but I wouldn't dare tie in such a notion with the gospel of the Kingdom.



I guess I should read the Sermon on the Mount one more time to correct my attitude concerning others...my demeanour toward other people.



Regarding school, I agree. It is problematic to send our children to schools that seek not only through educational method, but through the socialization and projected attitudes to overthrow the Christian faith and tear our children away from us. It is a problem. But it was Protestants trying to improve society that came up with the whole idea. The American model was borrowed from Protestant Prussia. Dewey and Mann weren't Christians, but Christians were more than happy to embrace the idea.



I expect unbelievers to try and come up with something like a public school. It helps society to function better. My problem is when it's compulsory and that's something Christians should have seen from the beginning. The Roman Catholics sure did and early on.



But I don't homeschool my children to teach them a flag-wrapped-cross version of American history. It's not about raising Dominion warriors who will go out an conquer the various political and cultural spheres to covert America into Israel.



We homeschool because we don't share the world's values and goals. We believe that our children ought to be educated with a Kingdom mindset and interpretation. They are just lambs. We can't throw them to the wolves (teachers and other kids) for 8-10hrs a day and expect them to be unscathed. They're not ready. As they grow, they are slowly integrated. They, as they're ready, encounter the world and learn to walk in it but not be of it. To throw them into that at 5,8,10, or 12 would overwhelm them. Some survive it in God's mercy, but many do not. And those that do bear wounds which do not heal.



It's not about evolution and the Ten Commandments being on the wall. We don't want our kids having history and current events explained to them by a teacher that also has them write letters to the troops, sit in assemblies listening to military recruiters, and participating in patriotic pep-rallies. We teach them everything and hide nothing....but we do it holding their hand. I let them watch movies that many would cause many to cringe. If I think they have social, historical or moral value, we sit and watch it....pause button in hand. We stop, we talk, they learn. They sometimes come to work with me and learn how to deal with people, how to do certain tasks. As we drive, we talk about life, what people are doing in trucks and buildings that we pass, in their yards etc....



We don't share the models and goals of the world. We want them to be Christians in Babylon. Dominionists are raising Soldiers to conquer Babylon. Look at their homeschool catalogs. They're not teaching their children to think, they're training them to conquer culture. It's a bad theology.


Again, it's about power.



And, I wonder if Eby and all the Dominionists took over America and the hippies, leftists, Communists, etc... we all disenfranchised and wanted to homeschool their children, would they be allowed. Would Eby and the rest allow these people to teach their children Leftist values at home or would they be FORCED to send their children to Christian Schools?



Eby:



Do we need a constitutional amendment that requires a national confession of Christ? Yes, but that won’t happen any time soon–at least not without a “Nineveh type” national repentance.



Proto:



Christians would oppose such an amendment.



If you want to equate the United States with Assyria, then you make my argument for me. Assyria was not a Hebrew nation. It was not in Covenant with God. It was a unique exception.



I have a feeling that's not the kind of Exceptionalism you might mean.



Aside from all that....the text says in Jonah 3, that the people 'believed God.'



You can't decree that through a Constitutional Amendment. The Nineveh revival was repentance in response to the gospel....it was not founded on Culture War victory or legislative fiat.



At least the Old Postmillennialists believed the revival would come about through the work of the Spirit...a revival.



Eby's Theonomic arguments demonstrate a breathtaking level of confusion concerning the Gospel. He's arguing that we legislate belief!



It's the year 1211 and we're in Roman Catholic Europe all over again. God deliver us from these errors!



I'm no American Enthusiast, but Washington, Jefferson and the rest would roll over in their graves at the thought that their names would be tied in with this. This is what they were opposing!



Eby:



While I personally believe that our forefathers neglected this most important part of building good civil government, what is left to us in this generation is a solemn return to the type of holy living that only the Gospel –and yes, the Law of God– alone can bring. Until this happens, our nation cannot be restored. The nation as we know it cannot survive, if we refuse to acknowledge the God of heaven.

Our only hope is for Christians to begin the careful rebuilding of an explicitly Christian community:

Churches must once again become beacons of light as they demonstrate the power of the Gospel, teaching the Laws of God as the standard for faith and practice for all men;



Proto:



What Laws? The Mosaic Law? Sacrifices? Priesthood? You can't divide the Covenant, and keep some of it and set aside the rest. It's all or nothing.



The New Testament law? The commands to follow God in faith, repentance, to live the life of those redeemed by Christ and indwelt by the Holy Spirit. Any Church that doesn't teach that is not a Church.



Eby:



Christian men and women must keep the bond of marriage ’till death do them part’



Proto:



Good marriages are a great testimony to unbelievers, but it's not the gospel. Though they grow angry when it is suggested, Dominionists really are reminiscent of the Social Gospel movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Their version has more teeth to be sure, and though it's not Humanistic, it certainly has a Humanistic expectation for fallen man. Thinking that you can change America's faith-status by Constitutional Amendment is Pull Yourself Up By Your Bootstraps Theology......it's Pelagianism.



Eby:



Christian families must remove every aspect of secularism as the teachers of their children, and once again obey God’s command to give their children a comprehensive Christian education, and

Christians must once again take seriously the Dominion Mandate and the Great Commission, and apply God’s Word and Law to every sphere of life.



Proto:



Notice the Twin Task, the Two Gospels....the Great Commission AND the Dominion Mandate of Genesis 1.



We've written elsewhere that the so-called Mandate of Genesis 1 was radically modified by the fall and even when it is repeated in the typical 2nd Creation of Genesis 9, it is modified and in a different spirit, one of fear and opposition. The Curse of Genesis 3 is still in play. Dominionism errs greatly when they appeal to the Dominion Mandate....they're ignoring the fall and its affect on Creation and the curse which demanded a Redeemer and a New Heavens and Earth.

They're building on a wrong foundation. They made a wrong turn in the early chapters of Genesis.



Dominionism seeks to make all nations and every aspect of culture Holy. It wishes to transform them into Kingdom building tools. It wishes to transform Babylon into Zion. They're trying to build the Eden that was wrecked in Genesis 3.



Dominionism wishes to bring the glory and final victory that comes with the Second Coming, the New Heavens and the New Earth, here and now, before Christ returns. The Church working with a Sanctified State and Culture will bring about the Kingdom of God. We will be sojourners no more.



Many even believe that our cultural attainments will be part of the eternal state. Hence they really do believe that their progress in science and the arts will be part of our experience in heaven. This is a complete eradication of the distinction between the Holy Realm and the Common which 2 Peter 3 tells us will burn.



If they're right, then yes, the present state of things is pretty bad. If you're looking at nations and societies....it's pretty depressing.

But if they're wrong, they've misunderstood the entire nature of Christianity as taught in the New Testament.



Eby:



Let us Confess Christ!

The Christian political movement must first reach Christian families and help them to faithfully apply God’s Word to civil government and politics.

Our prayer is that dedicated Christians will throw their shoulders to the wheel and, by God’s grace, help lead our nation to a national confession of Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.



Proto:



There is no Christian Political Movement. There is no Explicitly Christian Politics, despite the name of Eby's website. The Bible does not provide this, because it's not our task. Politics is about earthly power. This is not what the Church is here to do. It's not what we as Christians are here to do. This is large scale confusion.



Constantinianism markets well. "Let us Confess Christ," sounds great. Who could argue with it? But if by that you mean, redefining the Kingdom of God and watering down the gospel....then you're not Confessing Christ at all. You're promoting another gospel.

6 comments:

Cal said...

Funny he cites, as an example of building the "christian nation", Samuel Adams the great propagandist who was driven to throw the Americans into armed rebellion. To hell with the rest of them, they're all compromisers and collaborators. Sound like any other regimes founded in the fires of revolution? Sort of reminds me of one wily, rousseau reading leader who made a comment about cracking eggs to make omelets.

Thankfully the scary Puritan spirit (in republican form) was voided by the rowdiness of the Appalachian folk and the sophisticated traditions of the deep South, along with a load of other groups across the country. So many of the Dominionists forget that's why the Danbury baptists wrote Jefferson, they didn't want the country becoming a Cromwell nightmare or an Elizabethan stockade.

Every time I read tracts about America getting back in favor with god (I'll refuse to capitalize it because I'm not sure what god they're praying to), getting back its blessings etc etc, I get an eery feeling I live in Rome. I find it so very useful and entertaining that companies are making shows about Ancient Rome, and not the Gladiator shine up, but the real deal. It sort of takes me into that world, shows me what is at the heart of it and, at the same time, it is so alien (maybe because they're upfront) it is also so familiar. Is the moralisms and call to be a family respecting, god(s)-fearing, traditionalists coming from Dobson and Republicans or from the mouth of Augustus? I can hardly tell anymore.

It seems Eby is among the very large group that confuses profession and confession. America (and many Americans in general) may profess Christ, but it reveals a hollowness only rank with the smell of law, which reveals nothing but its own sin and death. Only by His grace are reborn and it is becoming apart of the Church we're called to, not becoming apart of the United States.

Yet, the first thing they'll do is label us traitors and America haters. Well, if America is truly a goddess and since I do not worship her, then I do suppose I hate her.

Eliyahu BenYsrael said...

This is an extensive and fantastic article and illustrates exactly the real concept dominionism is spreading through the churches and how it is doing so. But I think this patriotic Christianity is at the end of a long line of Christian nations/empires which built on the same foundation of sand and have cause the nations to blaspheme God over the past 17 centuries. Dominionism just seems to be another modern resurgence of it.

I appreciate your comment on how lefties would be treated under a Christian dominionist government; suppressed and forced into CHristian public schools; exactly what many Christians claim is being done to them-though it's not. It's relevant to me considering some of my own beliefs might not be accepted as Orthodox, considering I criticize The church state complex of the last 17 centuries, sand is another reason I pray against these people gaining political power of any kind.

This part is particularly shocking to me, in that many unbelievers are actually more open, truthful and even more tolerant of others' beliefs than many Christians are. Most don't realize that for all we dislike about secularism or humanism, it's been worldly philosophies, not Christiandom, which abolished or limits practices like slavery, segregation, domestic abuse, genocide and religious and class warfare. Christians opposing many of these are jumping onto the bandwagon relatively recently; traditional Christiandom was never leading the charge to legally stop wife beating, child brides, sweatshops, or severe pollution in poor areas, as violations of "human rights".

And the commentary on homeschooling is beautiful- we're doing that now.

I would mention though that Satan is not currently bound in the abyss where he cannot stop the gospel, but is clearly still loose, roaming the earth as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8/ Job 1:7, 2:2) and he deceives and turns aside believers (1 Timothy 5:15/1 Chronicles 21:1) and actively afflicts them with physical and mental torments (1 Corinthians 5:5) though we're not ignorant of his devices (2 Corinthians 2:11) and he hinders and prevents the spread of the gospel (1 Thessalonians 2:18) and blinds the minds of them that believe not (2 Corinthians 4:4). There's also no Biblical record of him historically being bound in the pit, especially if he's able to do all that now. Just a quick thought. Maybe you differ on that-

Overall, it's just a refreshing article that I wish was much more widespread in the church today, summarizing many serious issues needed to be addressed. God bless you bro.

Protoprotestant said...

I kind of forgot about this article.

It's funny I picked up that thread on Facebook where you're arguing over this and some of the other posts.

The guy keeps saying that I don't know what the Christian Right says or believes. I was raised in it and it seems to me he doesn't really understand the foundations of his own belief system. Interesting.

Also, I'm struck by the fact that he just can't conceive that if you're not politically Right you could still say you're standing on the Bible. It just blows his mind.

I guarantee and I'm not saying this in a prideful manner, but I have no doubts that theologically I'm far more conservative than he is.

But for me politically it means I completely reject everything he's about.

Ah well, the world is a funny place.

I tried commenting on Eby's site a couple of years ago when I wrote this. Nope. Quickly deleted. Only affirmations are permitted. I visited the site today and saw that they're publishing in serial form one of the great works of Rushdoony. Oh yeah, all those things he believed that everyone knows and acknowledges he believed and the influence he had on the Christian Right.

Yeah, none of that's true. Nobody on the Right believes that stuff.

Teresa said...

Kevin what books would you recommend on American Church History?

Protoprotestant said...

Thanks for asking!

I started to type a response and it quickly grew into a post...too long for the comment box. Hope it helps.

Eliyahu BenYsrael said...

You saw the strand, eh? Brother Bill just keeps coming back for more. I don't know why because he ignores everything I say. I really like this article and therefore I shared it-regardless of the pushback. Carry on bro.