Home » Culture, Intelligent Design » History prof provides context for nutty attack on ID-friendly US pols

History prof provides context for nutty attack on ID-friendly US pols

In “Cal State Prof: Michele Bachmann a Scary “Dominionist”?”( Pearcey Report, August 16, 2011), history prof Richard Weikart tries to wade through reams of nonsense to make sense of charges that traditional Christians – known worldwide for tolerance – want to start a theocracy: The big word that no one actually recognized is Dominionist - until various hysterics started shouting it. Weikart tries to sort it out:

As an undergraduate in the late 1970s I read just about everything that Schaeffer wrote. I read Schaeffer’s Christian Manifesto (1981), his most political book, as soon as it was published.

Even though I do not agree with Schaeffer’s position on political activism therein, it is hard to see how he could have stated his opposition to theocracy more plainly. He stated, “First, we must make definite that we are in no way talking about any kind of theocracy. Let me say that with great emphasis.”

So the Christian philosopher Schaeffer was sane*. Most of the people carrying on about “dominionism” are not sane. He goes on:

In the next paragraph he argued, “There is no New Testament basis for a linking of church and state until Christ, the King returns.” He then criticized the Roman emperors Constantine and Theodosius for merging church and state, calling it a mistake causing “great confusion.” Schaeffer was a strong opponent of theocracy (and thus dominionism), Lizza’s revisionist history notwithstanding.

Yes, Prof Weikart, but revisionist history is all these people have, plus Darwinism and the multiverse.

* You can’t have a theocracy unless you can elect God, and he never runs for office.

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3 Responses to History prof provides context for nutty attack on ID-friendly US pols

  1. The “dominionists” make a distinction between a theocracy and an ecclesiocracy. The accept the former but reject the latter. In it’s most abstract sense, a theocracy is simply the rule of God. When we pledge allegiance to the flag (in America), we say “under God” — which is just that dreaded theocracy stuff. Rushdoony had a more concrete view of theocracy — involving much of the Mosaic penal code — but he ironically enough believed it could only be reached through democratic methods. In a sense, Rushdoony was a utopian, for he saw his theocratic golden age far off in the future, and did not see it coming to pass until the world had been converted to the Faith by and large. As I say, a utopian vision.

  2. Vern:

    I think you confuse theonomy — a state that by legitimate means has its law shaped by the scriptural tradition [hence -NOMY, fr Gk NOMOS, law] as was the English Common law — for theocracy, in their terms.

    Near as I can figure, the idea is that — as post millennialists [which immediately isolates such to a fringe of contemporary Christianity] — they see waves of revival and socio-cultural reformation sweeping the earth and leading to distinctly Christian polities, establishing in effect a Christian era. A sort of idealised Protestant Reformation of the future. (Cf North here.)

    I think the discussion of the valid points they have, has been willfully poisoned by the dominant secularists’s censoring out the massively evident and heavily documented — this is sitting right there in state papers — contribution of the Christian faith to the rise of modern liberty and democracy [cf 101 level survey here], especially once the Bible was placed in the hands of the ordinary man in his own language and as he was equipped to read it for himself.

    Did you know that for instance, when Locke set out to ground the premises of liberty and what would become modern democracy, in his 2nd Essay on Civil Govt, Ch 2, Sect 5, he cites Anglican Canon Richard Hooker in his Ecclesiastical Polity of 1594+ thusly:

    . . . if I cannot but wish to receive good, even as much at every man’s hands, as any man can wish unto his own soul, how should I look to have any part of my desire herein satisfied, unless myself be careful to satisfy the like desire which is undoubtedly in other men . . . my desire, therefore, to be loved of my equals in Nature, as much as possible may be, imposeth upon me a natural duty of bearing to themward fully the like affection. From which relation of equality between ourselves and them that are as ourselves, what several rules and canons natural reason hath drawn for direction of life no man is ignorant.

    And the linked has much more, including the forgotten aspects of the US revolution, declaration of independence and Constitution in light of the proclamation by the US Congress some 2 months before the DOI that sets the framework for understanding that the US’s emergence as a state was as a Christian polity that explicitly understood itself to be under the dual covenants of nationhood under God and government under God.

    These things have been willfully distorted and suppressed (people at the level we are talking about have serious duties of care regarding accuracy and fairness), leading to a systematic misunderstanding, polarisation and distortion.

    It is high time that the truth was faced, in light of the evidence. Just to ask one question, what were the themes in the Dutch DOI of 1581 under William the Silent of Orange that thematically foreshadowed the US DOI of 1776, and what is the background context from 1579 for that?

    If you cannot answer this offhand, you have been miseducated.

    And if you immediately reduce a discussion of these things to an inference to fringe extremists, some of whom may well be or have been insane, then that is a plain case of red herrings led away to strawmen soaked in ad hominems and ignited through incendiary rhetoric to cloud, confuse, poison and polarise the atmosphere.

    A good diagnostic on this is to check if you have an accurate understanding of Francis Schaeffer, who is the key influence on Christians who approach our civilisation worldviewishly today. If you imagine he was a “dominionist” and dismiss him, you have never read Schaeffer with any objective balance, fairness or accuracy.

    And, if that is the case, I doubt that such a person can even hear what Mrs Bachmann is saying with any reasonable degree of fair-mindedness or objectivity. (And I have seen cases where what she said has been willfully distorted to the point where the distortion is an obvious lie, based on twisting what she did say into exactly what she took pains to highlight she was not saying, and ironically this manifests the devilish nature of exactly the sort of propagandistic word-twisting in distortion of ugly and painful reality she complained of; where as a Christian Mrs Bachmann obviously knows that from our Lord Jesus, Satan has been aptly called the father of lies. This lie has now been trumpeted to the world by agenda driven activists. I actually had to correct a case of this a few days ago here at UD.)

    Our civilisation is sick unto death, and by and large the professors and pundits have failed in their duty. Betrayal, willful betrayal by refusal to do plain duties of care, is not too strong a word for what has been done.

    And, the vultures are already circling, anticipating a feast on the remains, maybe after they have given a little help to speed the process.

    Those who willfully forget the lessons of history are doomed to repeat its worst chapters.

    So, the historians have warned us, over and over again.

    They also warn us that one of these lessons we are so prone to forget is the lesson just cited.

    Our ancestors paid a terrible price to give us a goodly heritage.

    Let us not squander it.

    GEM of TKI

  3. BTW, if God were to run for office, given what he would stand for, he would most likely lose. Down that road lies the march of folly, where masses can be manipulated to act against their patent best interests through the principle that madness is contagious: one fool makes many.

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