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Posts Tagged ‘Scripturalism’

Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons.

  • Acts 10:34

“My favorite book is the Bible, because it provides the blackprint for man’s salvation.” 

The year was either 1989 or 1990, I don’t recall for certain which.  After a year away from college, I had returned to the University of Cincinnati (UC) to finish my undergraduate degree in Liberal Arts in the fall of 1989 and would go on to finish the next year. 

One day during the school year, my eye happened to catch a display in the lobby of Langsam Library, the university’s main library, with the title “My Favorite Book.”  The display was in a glass enclosed case built into the wall.  Every quarter – UC was on a quarter system in those days rather than the more common semester system – the display was changed.  As it turned out, the “My Favorite Book” display for that quarter was collection of submissions by UC faculty members stating the title of their favorite book and the reason why. 

Having a few minutes to spare, I walked over to the display to look it over.  Somewhat surprised to see the Bible listed as a favorite, I read the card with the faculty member’s write up, which began with the quote at the top of this page.  But it didn’t end there.  After so many years, I do not recall the name or position of the faculty member or the exact wording of the rest of his write up on why the Bible was his favorite book.  What I do recall, though, was the militant and angry tone he used.  There was nothing in his paragraph on the Bible that sounded remotely Christian.  Rather, the author ranted on as if he were some left over radical still stuck in the 1960’s.  The author, who was apparently black, made it very clear that he did not like white people and used the Bible to justify his position. 

Even though I wasn’t a Christian the time, I had grown up in church and knew something about the Bible, enough that I found the author’s use of the Scriptures to promote his clearly hard-core racial agenda deeply disturbing. 

At about the same time, there was controversy on the UC campus concerning a few paragraphs in, if I recall correctly, the student handbook.  It had been reported that there was language in the new version of the handbook that addressed race issues.  The controversy, as I heard it, was over an alleged claim made in the handbook that blacks cannot be racist because they have no power.  This claim bothered me as it conflicted with what I had learned growing up.  I had always been taught that a “racist” was someone who hated another person based solely on his skin color.  Under that definition, anyone, regardless of his background, could be racist.  But here was a claim stating that blacks cannot be racist.  Somewhat skeptical that any official publication of the University would make such a claim – given how rampant “woke” ideology is on today’s college campuses, I know my skepticism sounds naïve to readers in 2021 – I went and asked for a copy of said offending handbook to see what it said for myself.  Sure enough, the report I’d heard was true.  It was right there is black and white:  blacks cannot be racist, because they have no power.

As had the “My Favorite Book” write up, the language in the handbook disturbed and perplexed me.  Not only did the claim fly in the face of everything I had been taught and believed, but it seemed to imply that black people were special class of individuals who were eternally victims incapable of doing wrong, whereas white people, as it were, bore the mark of Cain, eternal victimizers who could do no right.

As I said earlier, at that time I was not a Christian, neither had I ever studied philosophy.  Although I was bothered by the assertions I had come across in the two publications,  the “My Favorite Book” write up on the Bible and the student handbook, I lacked the needed intellectual tools to analyze and refute them. 

Although I didn’t know it at the time and wouldn’t come to realize it until twenty-five years or so later, the radical claims I had stumbled across were part of a new intellectual movement, so new that it had not even received a name until 1989, called Critical Race Theory.

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Detail from The Tower of Babel by Peter Brugel, 1563.

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

  • Genesis 1:1

In the famous opening sentence of his Treatise on the Social Company, Jean-Jacques Rousseau wrote, “Man is born free, but he is everywhere in change.”   

While Rousseau’s social compact theory of government is not Christian, his observation that man is everywhere in chains certainly rings true.  We can see this in the history recorded for us in the Bible as well as from secular sources.  For that matter, we can see it simply reading the news of the day. 

Jesus himself noted the authoritarian nature of civil government in his response to the disciples’ arguing about who among them was the greatest.  Jesus responded to them,

The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’  But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves (Luke 22:25-26).

Note that the kings of the Gentiles do two things.  First, they exercise lordship.  The Greek verb translated “exercise lordship” can also mean “be the lord or master of.”  Perhaps another way of expressing the meaning of the Greek is to use the English expression “lord it over.”  We talk that way.  We say so and so is lording it over someone.  Certainly, that was true of the kings and emperors who governed during Jesus ministry.  They lorded it over their people.  What the kings of the earth wanted, they took, and there was little to stop them. 

The second thing these kings did was be called “benefactor.”  On one hand they oppressed their people, but on the other, they wanted to be known as men of generosity.  A modern example of this is Joseph Stalin, who, while being one of the most ruthless of the 20th century dictators used the title “Dear Father” among others. 

From Jesus response to his disciples, we clearly see that there is a large gap between the Biblical teaching about how government should operate – the idea that government is a servant to the people – and how it actually does operate.

But even more basic than the questions what should government do and how should it go about doing it is the question, why should one man obey another man? 

To answer these questions, we must turn to the Scriptures where we find the origin of civil government. 

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Rioters wearing Trump paraphernalia breached the Capitol Wednesday as lawmakers met to ratify President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College win
PHOTO: MANUEL BALCE CENETA/ASSOCIATED PRESS

“I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” 

  • President Donald J. Trump, Washington D.C., January 6, 2021

As was the case with most kids who grew up in the late ‘70’s and early 80’s, I was a huge Star Wars fan.  The original film, released in 1977, was such a huge hit that everyone knew it would be followed by a sequel. 

The eagerly anticipated follow up, The Empire Strikes Back, debuted in 1980.  Unlike so many movie sequels, this one was worthy of the original.  In fact, many critics consider The Empire Strikes Back to be the best of the original Star Wars trilogy.

A lot of the things that forty years later we think of a quintessentially Star Wars were not in the first film.  The Imperial Walkers, the Darth Vader theme music, Boba Fett, and Yoda all mode their debut in The Empire Strikes Back, not in the first 1977 movie. 

Now you may be wondering why I’m talking about The Empire Strikes Back, a movie that came out over forty years ago, in the context of a piece about last week’s Capitol Hill riot.  

My reason is this, just as The Empire Strikes Back was a movie, as the title tells us, of the Empire going on the offensive to once and for all crush the resistance of the Rebel Alliance that had blown up the Death Star, the Empire’s super weapon, so too the events of the past year, including the events of January 6, 2021, seem to be aimed at brining to a quick end the populist uprising that began in Great Britain and in America back in 2016.

After years of discussion, in June of 2016 Great Britain held a vote on Brexit, which was the popular name given to the movement to take the UK out of the European Union.  The vote turned out, to the shock and horror of globalists everywhere, in favor of Brexit. 

Across the pond, we here in America were faced with a similar choice in that year’s presidential election.  We could support Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate, who, we were told by all the experts, was and unstoppable electoral juggernaut, more than capable of crushing all resistance in her path, or we could support a very bad orange man named Donald John Trump. 

Hillary supporters were the blessed, the righteous, the very elect of the Lord.  The Donald’s backers?  Well, we all know they were just a bunch of racist, sexist, homophobic basket of toothless, uneducated, irredeemably deplorable rednecks, who, just like their leader Donald Trump, were very bad people who deserved very bad things to happen to them.      

But, as was the case with Brexit, much to the shock and horror of the Masters of the Universe crowd, Queen Hillary lost and the Donald and his merry band of deplorables won. 

It was at this point that the Empire – by “Empire” I mean the whole rotten basket of Deep Staters, establishment types, Clintonistas, RINO’s, Obamites, Bushies, crony capitalist billionaires, banksters, Vaticanites, Wall Streeters, globalists, etc. – began to plot how they were going to strike back, oust Donald Trump, and permanently return themselves to power.

In a nutshell, I believe this explains the last four years of nonstop shrieking from, and relentless attacks by, the establishment on Donald Trump, his supporters and about every single thing they have said and done. 

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RLL Ep.43: Conservatism: An Autopsy

What’s Really Behind the Capitol Hill Chaos?,” The Ron Paul Liberty Report, 1/7/2021.

Evidence Mounts of a Capitol Hill False Flag,” by Stephen Lendman, 1/8/2021.

Media & Democrats are launching second ‘war on terror’ – against Americans – Glenn Greenwald warns,” RT, 1/8/2021.

Conservatism: An Autopsy,” by John W. Robbins, The Trinity Review, March/April 1992.

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Credit: AP
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, center, smiles with his mask pulled down as he watches an opening day baseball game between the Washington Nationals and the New York Yankees at Nationals Park, Thursday, July 23, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

“New year, same old virus.  Masks on, Ohio.”  That was the cheery New Year’s greeting on the electronic message boards on the interstates around Cincinnati yesterday.

How is it that the government has managed to turn “fifteen days to flatten the curve” into over nine months of lockdowns, mask requirements, and social distancing with no end in sight?

From the very first time I heard about Covid and all the attendant liberty and economy destroying measures the experts insisted we follow lest we die the death, this entire so-called pandemic has struck this author as a psyop designed to allow wanna be tyrants the opportunity to enact measures they otherwise could never get away with.

From the standpoint of the authoritarians and globalists, Covid certainly has been a far better tool for restricting freedom and bolstering their own power than climate change. 

Compared to the threat of a supposedly killer virus which could strike you dead without warning while driving to work, climate change seemed downright boring.

Two years ago, socialist con-artist and Congress critter Alexandria Ocasio Cortez tried to scare people with her Green New Deal, eloquently warning people that, “like, the world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.”    

Queue the collective public yawn.    

But a killer virus, one that’s not merely an epidemic, but a pandemic?  Now that’s just the sort of thing to make people sit up and pay attention!  And pay attention they did.

Nearly the entire developed world went into lockdown mode in February and March of 2020.  When I first heard about lockdowns, I thought the whole idea was so absurd, so clearly a violation of people’s liberties, and so obviously destructive of the economy, that I really didn’t think governors would actually go through with them.

Obviously, I was wrong. 

Not only have public officials – including Ohio Governor Mike DeWine – embraced lockdowns, mask requirements, business closures, etc., but they have done so with great gusto and with relatively little effective pushback from citizens who are daily having their lives destroyed by their policies.

And it’s the pretty much the same wherever you go in the formerly free West.  Some places are a better, some are worse. But with very few exceptions, not only has Covid been used as an excuse to destroy liberty, but the level of destruction is continually ratcheted up.

Just today, CNBC ran the headline “Tougher lockdown restrictions likely on the way, says UK PM Boris Johnson.” 

The beatings will continue until moral improves!

It was only in November that headlines were declaring that the UK economy had suffered the worst recession in more than 300 years. 

Now, Boris Johnson wants to do more of the same thing that’s already substantially destroyed the economy of his country and the liberties of his people.

This is madness.

It’s also sinful.

But, sadly, it’s also typical of the sort of thinking that has gripped the minds of civil magistrates throughout the West.

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If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. 

  • John 8:36

Perhaps it’s trite to say this, but 2020 has been a very dark year in the formerly Christian West.  Here in the United States, we’ve experienced months of violent rioting. 

Marxist and racist rhetoric targeting white Americans pours forth from government, academia, churches, the mainstream media and businesses.  Indeed, such rhetoric has become a commonplace in 2020 America. And those who advance such ideas, far from being condemned in the public square, are lauded as courageous truth tellers.

Aggressive homosexuals have managed to push their agenda to the point that simply denying there’s such a thing as same-sex marriage, or that a man can become a woman, can get a person in a world of trouble both politicly and professionally.  A recent story in New York Magazine reveals how normalized homosexual practice has become in the United States. The story claims that, “roughly 30 percent of American women under 25 identify as LGBT.” If true, then a large minority of American young women have “chang[ed] the natural use into that which is against nature.” Can such a civilization long survive?

In their response to Covid, federal, state and local governments have routinely trodden underfoot what were, until very recently, thought inviolable personal liberties.  No let up to the lockdowns is in sight either.  In fact, governments throughout the West seem prepared to crank up their violations of personal freedom and property rights with ever more stringent lockdowns.  These lockdowns, supposedly designed to fight the spread of Covid, represent, in the view of this author, the imposition of arbitrary government on the formerly free nations of the West.  If those who have imposed these lawless restrictions get their way, arbitrary lockdowns, mask requirements, travel restrictions, immunity passports and forced vaccinations will become a permanent way of life.

Then there’s the matter of the presidential election, just nine days away as of this writing.  Americans are faced with choosing between two leading candidates. One, the corrupt, semi-senile, Roman Catholic Joe Biden – Biden most likely is a Trojan Horse for the Democrats to smuggle in the Monstrous Regiment in the person of the radical progressive and highly immoral Kamala Harris – and two, Donald Trump, who, for all his imperfections, manages to get some things right, holding to something like a traditional American understanding of personal liberty and economic freedom. Naturally, the corrupt national media blindly supports Biden and shows open disdain for Trump and his supporters. The winner for most exceptionally egregious example of media bias is NPR, which has, so far, refused to cover the explosive Hunter Biden email story linking Joe and his son Hunter to shady foreign dealings in Ukraine and China.  NPR’s Managing Editor for News  dismissed the Hunter Biden story, writing, “We don’t want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories.”             

Indeed, America, and the West more broadly, seem to be at a major inflection point.  If present trends continue, it’s hard to see how Western Civilization survives much longer, if it isn’t already dead, except in remnant form. 

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George Floyd, back row holding a Bible.

This represents the third post in this series, a series which I no plans to write in the first place, and one which, at least in part, I would rather not continue today. 

I could say that events compel me to write on this subject again, but that would be inaccurate.  Events compel not such thing from me. I am entirely free to write on whatever subject I choose, the events of the day notwithstanding.   

But given that the entirety of American society, including the professed Evangelical/Protestant church, seems bound and determined to draw all the wrong lessons from the recent racial tension in the United States,  I would be remiss as a blogger and as a Christian were I to pass over these extraordinary errors in silence. 

With that said, let’s get down to business.

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The_Phillip_Medhurst_Picture_Torah_122._Abraham_purchasing_Ephron._Genesis_cap_22_v_16._Hoet (2)
Abraham purchasing the cave of Machpelah from Ephron by Phillip Medhurst. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Abraham weighed out the silver for Ephron which he had named in the hearing of the sons of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, currency of the merchants.

  • Genesis 23:16

In his lecture “Money, Freedom and the Bible,” John Robbins argued that the manufacturing of money was not a proper function of government, because there is no warrant for this in Scripture.  The Bible charges the civil magistrate with the duty to punish evildoers and reward the good.  There is no mention of anywhere in Scripture of God granting civil governments the right to manufacture money.

The first time I heard this many years ago, I was shocked by this idea.  “But all governments manufacture money,” I thought to myself.  “If the government didn’t supply money, who would?” I continued.

Of course, my initial objection can be answered by pointing out that simply because a thing is done does not logically imply that it ought to be done.  In the 18th century, David Hume famously made this point.

Secondly, concerning who would supply money in the absence of governments, the answer to this is the market would take care of this.  As Robbins noted in his lecture, there is such an example of this in Genesis 23, where Abraham pays for the field to bury Sarah by weighing 400 shekels of silver, “currency of the merchant.”  Note that it was not the currency of Pharaoh, nor the currency of the King of the Hittites that Abraham weighed out.  It was the currency of the merchants.  That is to say, it was a unit of money that arose from the common practice of the free market.  Importantly, it was not a government issued currency, neither was it the product of a government licensed central bank.

For that reason, that it arose in the marketplace and was privately managed by the merchants who used it, the shekel weighed out by Abraham was an honest unit of money.  The same cannot be said for sovereign currencies of our day.  Not only do they fail to maintain purchasing power, but they are deliberately designed to lose value over time.  To this author’s knowledge, there is not one honest currency in use today, including, and perhaps especially, the U.S. Dollar.

Last week’s post titled “This is Going to Hurt, Part 1: Honestly Facing our National Bankruptcy,” discussed the disastrous economic numbers coming out as a result of the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.  Please note, I did not write, “the disastrous economic numbers coming out as a result of the coronavirus pandemic,” but, “the disastrous economic numbers coming out as a result of the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.” It is not the Chinese coronavirus that caused over 30 million Americans to lose their jobs in the past six weeks, it is decision, more accurately decisions, of various government officials that have led to this disaster.

But oddly, as I also noted, the stock market has rebounded even as economic activity has made record declines.  How can this be?  The short answer to this question is money printing on a mind-blowing scale by the U.S. Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States.

My purpose in this post is to lay out in non-technical language what a central bank is and what it does.  In subsequent posts, I shall illustrate the unbiblical, immoral nature of central banking by looking in detail at the origin, the workings and the disastrous effects Federal Reserve (the Fed) policy has had on our nation.

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New York_Times Square_2020_03_23

An almost empty street is seen at Times Square in Manhattan on Monday in New York City. On Tuesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo dismissed rumors that a quarantine would be in place for the state after days of rumors of New York City being put on lockdown. JJOHANNES EISELE/AFP/GETTY

All the days wherein the plague shall be in him he shall be defiled; he is unclean:  he shall dwell alone; without the camp shall his habitation be.

  • Leviticus 13:46

“We haven’t faced an enemy like we are facing today in 102 years – we are at war. In the time of war, we must make sacrifices, and I thank all of our Ohio citizens for what they are doing and what they aren’t doing. You are making a huge difference, and this difference will save lives,” said Governor DeWine. “Right now, we are in a crucial time in this battle. What we do now will slow this invader so that our healthcare system will have time to treat those who have contracted COVID-19 and also have time to treat those who have other medical problems. Time is of the essence.” Thus reads the announcement on the Ohio.gov website where the state’s Stay At Home Order is also listed.

Clearly, Governor DeWine takes the coronavirus [the Ohio.gov website calls it COVID-19] outbreak very seriously.  Note the repeated use of military terminology in the quote above.  We are told that “We haven’t faced an enemy like we are facing today in 102 years” [apparently, this is a reference to the 1918 outbreak of the Spanish Flu]…“we are at war”…“In time of war”…”we are in a crucial time in this battle”…”What we do now will slow this invader.”

With all this military terminology, one wonders when the Governor plans to institute a draft.  Then on second thought, in a way, he already has.  As the website notes, beginning March 23, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Ohioans are under a Stay At Home Order.  This order is effective until 11:59 p.m. on April 6, 2020 “unless the order is rescinded or modified.”  This order applies to everyone, and as of this writing on March 29, no recension or modification of this order has been announced.  So in a way, all Ohioans already have been drafted into the Governor’s war.

One question that seems not to have been asked in the wake of Governor DeWine’s announcement is, on what authority does he give this order?  Reading through the order, one finds that it contains provisions that shutter a not insignificant portion of the businesses within the state.  What is the legal basis for the Governor’s order?

One possible answer is that Ohio has adopted some form of “Medical Martial Law” legislation that was propagated in the wake of the Swine Flu pandemic in 2009.  Researcher James Corbett produced a video back in 2009 related to the Swine Flu pandemic which he titled Medical Martial Law and which dealt with the legislative response that followed the outbreak of that pandemic.  In his video, Corbett states that something called “The Model State Emergency Health Powers Act” was drafted by the Center for Law and the Public’s Health at Georgetown University (Jesuits) and Johns Hopkins University.  According to the website of The Centers for Law & the Public’s Health, the Model State Emergency Health Powers Act (MSEHPA) “grants public health powers to state and local public health authorities to ensure a strong, effective, and timely planning, prevention, and response mechanisms to public health emergencies (including bioterrorism) while also respecting individual rights.”

The website boasts that forty-four states have adopted MSEHPA in whole or in part, but, curiously, Ohio is not listed among them.  Neither was I able to find anything on other websites linking MSEHPA to Ohio.  That being the case, this model legislation, as dangerous as it is, apparently is not the basis for the Governor’s actions.

According to the language in the Order itself, the basis for the Order is R.C. [Revised Code] 3701.13 which allows the Director of the Ohio Department of Health to “make special orders…for preventing the spread of contagious or infectious diseases.”

That said, although he doesn’t come out and say it directly, Governor DeWine and Dr. Amy Acton (Ohio’s Director of Health) seem eager for the public to see the Stay At Home Order as some form of Medical Martial Law.  This can be seen from the Governor’s own words, laden as they are with military terminology.

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Costco

Signs hanging inside a Costco store notified customers that they were out of supplies on Monday, March 2. (Photo by Jeff Gritchen, Orange County Register/SCNG)

“Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.  But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

  • Luke 10:24

What’s my topic?  That’s the first question every writer must answer before starting. Sometimes topics suggest themselves easily.  Other times, coming up with an appropriate subject can be a bit daunting.

With all the events of last week – coronavirus, and the stock market crash to name two – you’d think that finding a topic would be easy.  But it’s been more of a challenge than may seem at first.

I had a number of ideas coming into today and had even written an outline for a possible series addressing ways in which entrenched vested interested manipulate events and the reporting on those events, giving people a false sense of reality and allowing them to surreptitiously advance their own hidden agendas.

Lord willing, I hope to be able to write that series.  But today, it just didn’t seem right.

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