Apologetics A Christian Nation

Published on March 9th, 2011 | by Bojidar Marinov

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If There Can’t Be a Christian Nation, Can There Be Anything Christian at All?

“There can never be such a thing as a Christian nation.”

This has been the refrain of many a seminary professors in the last generation or so. The retreat of Christianity from the public square, the passivity and uninvolvement of millions of Christians in the public debate, the open refusal of pastors and church leaders to apply the Christian faith to matters above family and church have all been based on the presupposition that whatever we do as Christians, we are essentially powerless to change a nation to obey Christ. Why? Because “there can never be such a thing as a Christian nation.”

Robert F. Hull Jr. may not be a significant name in the Christian circles. But his article in Christian Standard, “Is There a Christian Nation?” beautifully summarizes the arguments of the opponents of a Christian nation. The problem is, all these arguments are fallacious. They are logically and theologically inconsistent. They are historically inaccurate. And they deserve good Christian refutation.

Hull’s article faithfully follows the “holy trinity” of the modern escapist arguments: 1) Only Israel had a “divinely prescribed” covenant with God, therefore there can be no Christian nation today; 2) All attempts at establishing a Christian nation so far in history have failed, therefore there can be no Christian nation today; and 3) Christian faith can never be enacted by law, therefore there can be no Christian nation today.

Let’s look at each one of them.

Hull says the following about the uniqueness of the Old Testament Israel:

As a people chosen to carry the light of the knowledge of their Creator to other nations, biblical Israel alone had a divinely prescribed covenant with God.

Correct. But Hull’s conclusions are incorrect. The unique position of Israel can only lead us to the conclusion that there can be no other Israelite nation in history, specifically chosen to be given the Scriptures and to take them to other nations; the fact says nothing about the forming of Christian nations in the future, based – as nations – on the “light of the knowledge of the Creator,” as Hull so aptly puts it. Israel indeed was a covenant nation with a very special covenant. For that very special covenant God had a very special ceremony: He personally spoke from the top of a mountain, and personally directed the building of the Tabernacle which established Israel’s position as a special nation. Hull looks at that very special ceremony – God speaking in person from a mountain – and makes the conclusion that this is the only way God establishes a covenant with a nation. But such conclusion is preposterous: Nowhere is it said that this is the only way God makes a covenant with a nation, neither is it said that a covenanted Christian nation must have exactly the same special place in God’s plan.

One is tempted to ask Hull: “If Biblical Israel were chosen to carry the light of knowledge to other nations, what were the other nations to do with that light of knowledge?” They apparently couldn’t make a covenant with God as nations, if we follow Hull’s logic – they didn’t have the same experience of God speaking from a mountain. But why stop there? They couldn’t have a covenant with God as families too; let’s not forget that as a family, only Abraham had a divinely prescribed covenant with God. Really, if Hull wants to be consistent, he should apply the same logic to families. And what about individuals? Isn’t it true that no individual today can show any conclusive proof of having a “divinely prescribed covenant with God”?

Thus, using Hull’s reasoning, we should say that not only there is no such thing as a Christian nation, there can neither be such a thing as a Christian family, nor a Christian individual, let alone Christian churches, Christian ministries, nor Christian seminaries, nor anything else. Robert F. Hull can not be a Christian because we know for sure that he doesn’t have a “divinely prescribed covenant with God” mentioned in the Bible. When he asks, “By what right does anyone transfer to the United States—which has no special covenant with God—the concept that this nation has been divinely chosen to carry the light of Christian faith . . . to other nations?,” the answer is, “By what what right does Hull transfer to himself – who has no special covenant with God – the right to call himself Christian?”

But we know there is such a thing as Christian families and Christian churches and Christian individuals. How so? Representatively, through Abraham (Gen. 12:3), and ultimately, through Christ (Rom. 5:18-19). Churches, families and individuals do not have to have a direct experience like the one Israel had on Mount Sinai to be in covenant with God: it is enough for God once to establish a covenant with a representative, and then other families and individuals can look in faith to that covenant and claim it as their own. And the same applies to nations: It is enough for God once to establish a covenant with a representative nation, and then all other nations can look in faith to that covenant and claim it as their national covenant. What applies to individuals, families, and churches, certainly applies to nations as well.

And indeed, we see that in the Old Testament the covenant with Israel was supposed to make the nations acknowledge the glory of God in His Law (Deut. 4:5-8); and we see that the prophets admonished and rebuked the nations for their violation of the Law of God, and they called the nations to repentance. Such a call would be ludicrous if the nations were not expected to enter in any kind of covenant with God. And in the New Testament we know that the Great Commission continues the same theme, commanding us to “disciple the nations” (in the original Greek text). Again, how do we teach the nations about Christ if we don’t expect them to enter in a covenant with Him? Hull’s logic fails here.

The bulk of his article is devoted to the historical argument against a Christian nation. Much of it is simply historically inaccurate, perhaps because Hull has been careless to verify the facts, or perhaps he has been reading anti-Christian apologists a little too much. He claims that the Roman Empire after Constantine saw “many coerced conversions” to Christianity. This claim contradicts the position of the church in the centuries after Constantine; in fact, the position taken by the orthodox party in the debates with the Donatists was exactly that forced conversions are not true conversions at all, and therefore those who broke under persecution could return to the Church after repentance and penance. Hull apparently is ignorant of that part of the Church’s history to claim that there were “many” coerced conversions in that period specifically. While it is true that in certain isolated cases governments tried to act in the old pagan ways of forcing conversions, they promptly met opposition by influential church leaders (Ambrose, Augustine, Isidore, etc.). His claim that during the Reformation “dissenters often faced death by horrible means” is another anti-Christian fairy tale unconfirmed by historical data. Geneva in the 1500s, for example, was full with dissenters and libertines, and none of them “faced death by horrible means,” except those that threatened the very foundations of the social order based on Jesus Christ (like Servetus).

His private interpretations of historical facts aside, Hull’s very argument is false. Yes, there have been attempts at building a Christian nation in the past; and yes, they were not perfect. But does that prove that a Christian nation is impossible?

Let’s see. There have been many Christian churches and many Christian families and many Christian individuals in history. None of them has been perfect, and quite a few churches actually have been abject failures. In fact, if we need to be honest, the attempts at building Christian churches have been much less successful than the attempts at building Christian nations. So what does that mean for Hull, if he is consistent with his own logic? It must mean that there can be no such thing as a Christian church. Or a Christian family. Or a Christian individual. Once again, we see that Hull’s arguments against a Christian nation destroy the possibility for anything Christian at all.

But history is a process of growth, just like our own life is a process of growth. Individuals and families grow in maturity, knowledge, and practice, and so do churches and nations. Our imperfections in our past work are no indicator for the power of God in what we can achieve in the future for His Kingdom in history. Just as we are commanded to learn and grow, we are also commanded in the Great Commission to disciple the nations, i.e. to bring them, as nations, to that knowledge and maturity which God requires.

The most important argument comes at the end:

Nations are constituted through political action and their causes are always and necessarily advanced by force of law, but Christian faith can never be enacted by law.

The first problem with this statement is that Hull assumes that the purpose of a Christian nation is to “enact faith by law.” But who says that this is the purpose of a Christian nation? Hull himself said above in his comparison with Israel, that Israel’s purpose was to “carry the light of knowledge.” When God made a national covenant with Israel, didn’t He know that “faith can never be enacted by law”? And was this the purpose of the covenant in the first place, to “enact faith by law”?

Can’t we say the same about a church? “Christian faith can never be enacted by church discipline,” therefore a Christian church is impossible. What about the family? “Christian faith can never be enacted by the authority of the father,” therefore let’s not have Christian families. It even applies to the individual: “Christian faith can never be enacted by personal efforts and discipline,” therefore a Christian individual can not exist. Doesn’t this kind of reasoning sound ridiculous?

But we know that Christian churches exist not to “enact faith,” but as a result of our Christian faith. Our families are Christian, and we are Christians, based on our Christian faith, not with the purpose to “enact faith.” Our faith is not enacted, it is given to us by God, but it produces fruit, and that fruit is Christian individuals, Christian families, Christian churches . . . and Christian nations.

Therefore, a Christian nation is not – as Hull falsely believes – a nation that “enacts faith by law,” it is a nation that self-consciously has allowed its Christian faith to enact its political and legal codes. Hull has it backwards: From political and legal establishment to faith. The Biblical reality is from faith to political and legal establishment.

And here we can see an even more serious problem in Hull’s statement above: The statement is a product of Gnostic dualism. Hull treats “political action” as something separate from a people’s faith in gods or God. As if there are two separate worlds – political action and faith – and Hull is eager to emphasize and widen the gap between them, in order to prove his thesis. But the question is: What is the foundation for any political action whatsoever? Do nations just automatically adopt certain modes of political action no matter what their beliefs are? Is political action a subconscious reaction or instinct; or is it the deliberate application of higher principles to the realm of government and law? Does political action require some moral and ideological foundation and justification, or is it a given, a starting point as ultimate as our Christian faith is?

Hull apparently believes that political action is a world of knowledge, thought and action independent of the world of the faith. He is a dualist, for all practical purposes. That’s why he can say things like the following:

The separation of church and state does not mean the silencing of moral and religious convictions in the public square, even in politics. We Christians—in high places or low—should earnestly do all within our power to commend the gospel and the Christian way in hopes that those who see and hear us will also become believers, but not so that America will become (or “again” become) a Christian nation.

So, we shouldn’t be silenced “in politics” but that can not be done with the purpose of redeeming politics. We want everyone to become a believer but that can not translate into a believing nation. We talk in the public square but never to make people act publicly as Christians, only privately. Dualism, when applied in practice, produces the same result as a collision of equal quantities of matter and anti-matter – self-annihilation.

To summarize, the arguments against a Christian nation, when applied consistently, will destroy any possibility for anything Christian at all. A Christian nation – a nation in a covenant with God – is a Biblical notion, and we are commanded to disciple the nations, i.e. to bring them to submission to Christ as nations. Just as we are commanded to produce Christian individuals, Christian families, and Christian churches, we are also commanded to produce Christian nations. The New Jerusalem is not going to be built by political action, as Hull correctly states. But here again, he has it upside down. It is the New Jerusalem on earth, the Church (Rev. 21:9-10) that will produce the godly political action which will exhibit the glory of God to the nations. Anything else is dualism, escapism, and sometimes simply bad logic.

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About the Author

A Reformed missionary to his native Bulgaria for over 10 years, Bojidar preaches and teaches doctrines of the Reformation and a comprehensive Biblical worldview. Having founded Bulgarian Reformation Ministries in 2001, he and his team have translated over 30,000 pages of Christian literature about the application of the Law of God in every area of man’s life and society, and published those translations online for free. He has been active in the formation of the Libertarian movement in Bulgaria, a co-founder of the Bulgarian Society for Individual Liberty and its first chairman. If you would like Bojidar to speak to your church, homeschool group or other organization, contact him through his website: http://www.bulgarianreformation.org/



30 Responses to If There Can’t Be a Christian Nation, Can There Be Anything Christian at All?

  1. lwr says:

    Very good article.

    For those who disagree with the article… how pretell is a Christian to persuade a pagan that we should recind Rowe v. Wade?

    Outside of the revelation of God, I don’t see how that happens. We can speak about not murdering children in the womb, by golly…. but.. don’t you go trying to pass a law! Are we to try and pass a law against it or not? Wouldn’t that be considered a “Christian” law? Yes, it would. Or, are we to not call it a law of God… or…. a Christian law?

    Same with homosexual marriage, war, or any other moral issue. All issues are moral issues and all issues have only two outcomes. One is of God, one is not of God.

  2. Ninetailedfox says:

    Africa is a christian nation. If that is the kind of future YOU want, you can have it, but when blood is spilled, and it will be, it is you that people will accuse, and rightly so. While you talk of justice and judgement, you judge like youre god, then act as though Justice is meant for Christians only. While im at it, many sects dont agree on what it means to be a christian. Of course you assume they will go along with it, because theyre christians too. Not everyone in America is christian, and neither was it supposed to be that way.

  3. John McGrew says:

    Dear Mr. Marinov,
    Whoa up a minute! A christian does have a specific covenant with God, it’s called baptism, the circumcision made without hands, and that gives him the right to be called christian.
    Sincerely,
    John McGrew

  4. The Netmonkey says:

    I for one do not want to live in any form of theocracy. If the US was changed into a Christian nation, then what happens to non-believers? People of differing faiths? Whose flavor of Christianity would make the rules…Baptist, Catholic, etc? Would all of the laws of the bible be enforced, capital punishment for incest, murder, working on the Sabbath? Speaking of the Sabbath, do you enforce a Saturday or Sunday ban on work? It would turn our country into a living nightmare.

    • This is a classical example of intellectual dishonesty. The man asks questions about how a Christian nation should look like but he doesn’t care about the answers: He has made up his mind he doesn’t want it, whatever the answers are. May be non-believers will be better off under a Christian nation. May be some of the questions are just irrelevant. May be those that are relevant have satisfactory answers, better than those a secular society can give. The man doesn’t care. He is not asking to find out, he is only using those questions as a rhetorical device to slander what he doesn’t understand and doesn’t want to understand at all.

      It perfectly illustrates the fact that the idea of a Christian nation has no intellectually honest opponents, whether among church-goers or among outright pagans.

      • Harmon Gottlieb says:

        On the contrary, your article illustrates “intellectual dishonesty” by fulminating in favor of an ideological concept of Christian nationhood which has no basis in the New Testament, nor any presence in the founding documents of the nation. The idea, moreover, is fatally incompatible with a ‘national Christianity’ riven by political, racial, eschatological and militarist corruptions of faith in Christ Jesus. The scripture warns:
        “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ (Colossians 2:8).”

  5. E Harris says:

    Short answer:

    I would rather give up the label “Christian”… than have Christ’s Name (or the name of my fellow believers) be tarnished.

    I would rather call myself a “Follower of Christ” or a “Follower of The Way”, and let there be a distinction between my imperfection and the perfection of the One I strive to serve… than have an entire Brand be tarnished by my imperfections.

    I have no huge desire to be CALLED a Christian. I have a desire to be saved, know truth, and know Jesus, who I believe is One with God. Wherever that journey should take me, I want to be ready.

    • E Harris says:

      If you want to call something Christian that is impure… you may as well call everything ‘Christian’. There is not one atom on the surface of the earth at this point (probably) that has not intersected with the life of some christian, somewhere. And there are probably no people left, who have not been touched or affected in some minor cultural way… by Christians and their works.

      To the extent that the early Christians accepted the label, I would have to say that they had no problem being identified as One with each other and God. And they liked the idea of being little examples of the One they followed. They knew that deep down, somewhere in their spirit, God resided. He is the perfect one who has given the name of “Jesus” to us (God saves).

      To be a christian, is basically to say (by inference) that one is a follower of Christ, or a little Christ. A follower of Jesus. And Jesus means “God Saves” (doesn’t it?). So I am a follower of God Saves… and not any other form of collective thought. My desire is to seek and follow truth. Or at least, it needs to be.

      This allows me to be sifted and purified, leaving out the bad. This allows my thoughts, and even the actions of history, to be sifted – leaving out the evil. Let the evil vanish away, under its proper name: Evil. Let God retain His Proper Name and Reputation (that He has given). Let me… become Less that Jesus may become greater.

    • Ninetailedfox says:

      I call em as I see em, youre a christian who is too much of a coward to fess up to it.

    • James Jordan says:

      E. I agree with your comments. I would rather be called a Believer or Follower. The word Christian originally had a negative connotation. It was not a term of endearment.

      To the point of the US being called a “Christian Nation,” I don’t think we can use a blanket statement like that to describe any nation. If you look at John 8:31-32, it states that Jesus spoke to the Jews that believed in Him and said “that if you continue in My Word, you are My believers, and you shall know the truth and the truth (that you know) shall make you free.
      In this passage the writer makes a distinction between all the Jews and the ones who believed in Jesus. The same distinction can be made in America (or any other country) because not every person in America is a believer (even though they can be if they abide in His Word). So to conclude that America is a “Christian Nation” based on the fact that there are “Christians” is not biblically accurate.

      And why does a country 236 years old have a corner on the market on being called a “Christian Nation” anyway? Was there a “Christianity” gap between the Book of Revelation and the birth of America? It is prideful to insinuate that we in America, with it’s 150+ million “Christians,” are more important than the 1 billion+ other “Christians” living in other countries. I’ve lived in Germany where they celebrate Christmas and Easter like we do in America, but they also observe and celebrate Christ’s accession (Accession Day) and Pentecost. Are they more “Christian?” I say no, because not everyone in Germany is a believer, just like everyone in America is not a believer. Becoming a believer is an individual act based on a relationship with the Creator of the Universe (John 1:12; John 3:16; John 5:24; Romans 10:9,10; Eph 2:8,9), not where we were born.

      I’ll get off my soapbox, but being a believer (one who is a follower of Jesus) is what makes a disciple, not just being born in a particular country.

      Blessed.

      James

      • This didn’t make much sense, for the following reasons:

        1. No one calls a nation “Christian” simply because there are Christians in it. The article explains very well what is meant by “Christian nation,” and the simple presence of Christians is not part of the definition.

        2. Neither is “celebrating Christmas and Easter” part of the definition of a “Christian nation.” Again, read the article before you comment.

        3. No one said that one country “have a corner on the market on being called a ‘Christian Nation.’” The article specifically talks about “nations” in PLURAL. Neither is someone saying that “we” in America are more important than “they” outside. Again, just read the article.

        4. No one said anything about “Christianity gap” before America was born. Just the opposite, names of Christians are mentioned in the article who lived way before the birth of America.

        And last but not least:

        5. Simply having an access to a keyboard and cheap Internet doesn’t make you qualified to write comments. One needs to first read before he gets on a soapbox. One who gets himself a soapbox before he gets understanding is not a “follower of Jesus” but a follower of himself and a worshiper of his own pridefulness.

  6. Harmon Gottlieb says:

    As a blood-bought Christian, I try to defend what I consider to be sound scriptural positions, but that desire should never descend into personal slanging matches with someone who disagrees with me. Therefore, I want to apologize to Bojidar Marinov, and readers of American Vision, for the intemperate language I used in concluding my exchange with him. The animus in the exchange had me playing a game of ‘gotcha’ which meant that the issues raised by his article were never stated. Here are some points for consideration:

    1. To the claim, “There can never be such a thing as a Christian nation,” the Bible answers, a) there will always be such a thing as territorial nations inhabited by Christians, “And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation (Revelation 5:9)” and, b) the global, household of faith in Christ Jesus is itself the most consolidated of nations, “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light (1 Peter 2:9).” Christian ‘nationhood’, in light of the New Covenant, is purely Christ-centered and entirely transnational for “…there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him (Romans 10:12).

    2. The ‘Christian-nation’ experience of America often produces a freakish joinder of politics and religiosity. It has been, in fact, the very opposite of “the retreat of Christianity from the public square,” bemoaned by Bojidar. Many robust denizens of faith have advanced loudly into the public square wearing the ‘Christian’ regalia of politicized snake-handlers: ‘Christian’ Barack Obama campaigns with these words, “Let us keep that promise – that American promise – and in the words of Scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess”; ‘Christian’ Mike Huckabee strokes his NRA supporters, “I’m pretty sure there will be duck-hunting in heaven and I can’t wait”; ‘Christian’ Sarah Palin preaches for North Slope natural gas to be brought to North American markets, “God’s will has to be done in unifying people and companies to get that gas line built, so pray for that”; a neo-Confederate, race-supremacist ‘Christian’writes, ”The borders of a Kinist nation would be secure, and sensible anti-miscegenation laws would be enacted, while suffrage would be restricted to landed white males 21 and older, as we work toward a godly, free republic”; ‘Christian’ John Hagee speaks for millions of Zionist sectarians, “I came here tonight to speak about Christians United for Israel, and the millions of evangelicals in America who have a deep, faith-based belief, to love Israel, to speak up for Israel, to stand up for Israel“; and ‘Christian’ Jim Owens sings out on behalf of the invasion of Iraq, “I Saw Jesus Waving the Stars and Stripes.” These aren’t America-loathing, liberal, seminary professors. This is the mind of America putting to mouth the assumption (embedded in the mantra, “God bless America”) that it lives in “a nation in a covenant with God.“ It’s the sound of reality roaring in the ears of those who would conventionalize Christian nationhood. Civil ‘Christianity’ in America is incredibly variegated, discordant and has no connection with God’s fulfillment of His covenant to national Israel in Christ Jesus.

    3. Jehovah’s covenant with Israel was not some free-standing contract dedicated to preserving national civic health in perpetuity, but a precursor to the completion of national destiny in the New Covenant. The Bible’s interest in good government is inseparable from a sovereign fact spoken from Daniel 4:17, “…that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.” The final purpose of God’s covenant promise to Israel, then, was the New Covenant embodied in the coming of Christ Jesus into the world to save sinners. In Ephesians 2:12,13, when the “strangers from the covenants of promise… are made nigh by the blood of Christ,” the national covenant has become a personal covenant for individuals occupying all the nations of the earth:

    Hebrews 10:
    16 This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;
    17 And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. 18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. 19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh…

    Romans 16: 25 Now to him that is of power to establish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, 26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: 27 To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen.

    • E Harris says:

      Wow. Kudos. Good quotes and attention to detail.

      I am still very close to the “Christian right”… but I now see that there is a distinction between the brand (Name) Christ(ian), and the TOOLS that we employ.

      We, as a PEOPLE, can be a godly people and a christian nation (IN CHRIST).
      And our actions and our governance can be godly.

      I could be slightly mistaken. But it seems that the DEPTH to which we confuse the personal with what issues FROM the personal (the product, the tool, the word). Is it accurate to say that something is “christian” if it is mistaken or an outright lie? A person can be a christian and make a mistake or lie (but he must repent, as well). But can the mistake itself, or the lie itself, ever be called “Christian”??? This is the error that we consistently fall into, when we desire to BRAND something with the name of Christ, that is not itself PERFECT. Do not take the name of the Lord in vain. This is how serious it is that WE LIVE HOLY LIVES.

      I would not call “America” (the corporate nation) a christian nation, until it is made of 100% true Christians. Period.

      And that is a long way off.

      The reason we consider ourselves a “christian nation” (America, the corporation) is because a corporation has to stand under SOMETHING. We are a nation of laws, and where do those laws come from?? We put it in our documents AS A REMINDER TO PEOPLE that our laws are supposed to come from God, the Creator. It is PEOPLE that must remember this. Otherwise, the documents hold no meaning. I cannot call those documents “Christian” however, because they are not 100% pure. They have errors, and are open to still more errors. There is heavy Christian INFLUENCE however (as a majority of christian PEOPLE formed the documents, run for office, have prayers, talk about God, etc).

      It’s like calling the Papacy “christian”. (Not the Pope, but the office of the Pope.) To do that, would be to incorporate the error that is associated with that office, and all of the fruits of that office, under the banner of CHRIST, or at least under the banner of all of Christ’s followers.

      This is an additional roadblock to heathen people who desire to look into Christ.

  7. E Harris says:

    Hi, Bojidar! Your posts always seem to have, and generate, a lot of energy! Maybe this is because you are bold enough to expose your axiomatic assumptions, and debate them! I think it’s great.

    You said (paraphrasing “my side”): “So, we shouldn’t be silenced “in politics” but that can not be done with the purpose of redeeming politics.”

    It all comes down to individual word meanings. The debate between the Christian Reconstruction (or at least those such as yourself) and others, usually comes down to what we mean when we’re discussing INDIVIDUAL word meanings. That’s what it boils down to.

    No. We should not be silenced in politics. Yes, we can “redeem” politics, but not in a way that makes those politics “Christian politics”. Politics is war. We redeem politics, the same way we redeem our time. You wouldn’t say that there is such a thing as “Christian” time, would you, Bojidar?

    No. Politics and time are TOOLS that we use, and that God uses, and that the Devil even uses. The tool can be “redeemed” by OUR using it properly…but it can never be “Christian” because IT (in and of itself, by itself) has no LIFE. IT is not a choosing being, so IT cannot be called “Christian” in that sense.

    We ARE a christian nation, a royal priesthood. That is, the church (the true church, of individual people collectively brought together IN CHRIST). But to say that ANY OTHER collective of human beings is “Christian” … is incorrect, technically. We are people of the truth. We teach truth. We proclaim truth. Is the truth “Christian”?? No. The truth is Christ.

    We can label ourselves “Christian” because we are followers of Jesus. But can an institution-of-men follow Jesus? MEN can… and THEY can run institutions. So is it safe to say that the institutions that they run are christian? No. They are tools, being used. And they can be co-opted, and cease to be used properly. This is very important to remember, because this is precisely what happened to America (as a government institution). Americans (as a people, and a collective identity) still consider themselves overwhelmingly “christian.”

    It’s all about what you mean by the term.

    A Christian nation is a nation that believes. A nation that believes, is a PEOPLE that believe. “A people” is a collection of individuals. What banner are they flying, to unite under? By what name are they to be called?

    There is ONE NAME that we are to wear, in this life. Every other name (or label) is earthly.

    I am a citizen of Heaven above. I am a citizen of America, because the civil authority in America (the geographic collective entity known as America) has deemed it proper to call me a citizen. I don’t demand citizenship. I don’t even demand citizenship “rights” from the American government, unless it sees fit to treat me like I have them (in its virtual reality of a “system”). I WILL proclaim RIGHTEOUSNESS, and hold people accountable (including politicians) to RIGHTEOUSNESS UNDER GOD for what they do, and how their policies affect people. I will vote, because that is my voice. If I am not given the privilege of voting, I will not protest. I will simply SHOUT the good news, and the truth about the TRUE kingdom and its ways. I don’t demand to be included in the virtual reality known as the kingdoms of this world. Our government is higher than theirs. We are not beneath their government, we are above it. Ungodly people are beneath collective rule (that is why they always march with raised fists! They hate that they are beneath it!) Godly people are not beneath the civil state (and in our hearts, we know that… that’s why we are far more peaceful and do not panic as much over every little perceived infringement). Yes: this attitude leaves us open for attack. But this attitude also points to where our TRUE UNITY is found, and makes it easier for individuals from many different nations to come to Christ, which facilitates our growth in the “all important arena” of numbers.

    The authority structure over Godly people is spiritually discerned. It is a Headship pattern that proceeds from the Father, to the Son, then to the Church (husbands, wives, children). Through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, we can obey the law (as Christ lives in us). If you want to locate your world order: it’s right there. Self-control, and proclaimation.

    We should recognize that all earthly headship (even fatherhood)… is limited. It cannot convert.

    Only heavenly Headship (and only a voluntary choice to serve it) can CONVERT someone and make them CHRISTIAN. Because they wear the name of Christ, because they have become part of the Bride.

    The kingdoms of this world are BENEATH the level of the Body’s governance, not above. We ALREADY walk above their level, when we are obedient to the Spirit of the (real) law. When we manifest self-control, and our unity with the brethren, our proclamation of the Gospel grows stronger.

    The only way a REAL and unified collective can be reached: is through Jesus. All other collectives are artificial and UNREAL. All other laws are UNREAL. All other government positions (ultimately) are UNREAL. They are only real, to those who perceive them to be real: their own conscience condemns them! If someone tells you to do righteousness, and you are already doing it… then… what’s the problem? If someone tells you to know God, and you already do… then what’s the point? If someone commands you to do UNRIGHTEOUSLY, and points a gun at you… he is not your true government (at least not in that area).

    If Russia can be Russia without Jesus… then the “unity” that is Russia is superficial or unreal. THE KINGDOM (of GOD) is more real than Russia (or America). These are collective arrangements that men have made FOR THEMSELVES, and so God treats them as such, and places limits upon them. What about before America had mutually agreed-upon borders, or even a human population? Can a geographical area be christian, without people to populate it?

    I’ll stop, because I’m just repeating myself here.

    • E Harris says:

      I must clarify: I don’t take a passive stance toward injustice directed toward me or my neighbor. We should care for people, show them love, and speak to them clearly (and sometimes loudly). I just don’t think that our usual avenue should be through secular civil government (the level of government Caesar was operating in). That should be very rare. Most of our activity should be aimed toward people’s hearts. Our political campaigns would come more naturally over time, if we were to spend more time and money campaigning for people’s hearts issue-by-issue (especially about Jesus Christ, and then emphasizing our unity in Jesus by gathering with them).

      When the secular civil government turns against Christ, we should rebuke it. If it doesn’t turn against Christ (or his ways), then we cooperate with JUSTICE.

  8. Harmon Gottlieb says:

    You’ve written: “A Christian nation – a nation in a covenant with God – is a Biblical notion…”

    Where is anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus) reproduced in America’s founding documents or subsequent legislative history?

    • Joel Petersen says:

      It’s not. There are a few sites that document on how far short our constitution falls short of alignment with ways of the Lord.

    • Where is anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus). . .

      I think I already answered this argument in the article. Reading before writing always helps.

      • Harmon Gottlieb says:

        You didn’t read before writing, apparently. A request for documentation (which your article has not provided) is not an “argument.”

        • Documentation for what? Why should my article provide documentation for what you want, and not for what the article is about? And should there be “anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus)” reproduced in America’s history? Has anyone made the claim that America is another Israelite nation?

          Apparently, I read my article, thank you very much.

        • Harmon Gottlieb says:

          This is the claim “anyone” _has_ made: “Nowhere is it said that this [“God speaking in person from a mountain”] is the only way God makes a covenant with a nation, neither is it said that a covenanted Christian nation must have exactly the same special place in God’s plan.”

          Since America is “a nation in a covenant with God” with no ‘mountain revelation’ and a different, ‘non-special’ place in God’s plan, where, in America’s foundational documents, is this covenant declared.

        • Oh, I thought you needed “anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus).” Are you changing your question now? You don’t need “anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus)” anymore?

          See how useful it would have been to have first read the article before you wrote.

          Since America is “a nation in a covenant with God”…

          Did my article say such a thing so that it needs to “provide documentation” on that specific issue? Go back, read it again.

        • Harmon Gottlieb says:

          Were you not including America when you wrote: “A Christian nation – a nation in a covenant with God – is a Biblical notion…” ?

          And your claim, “Nowhere is it said that this [“God speaking in person from a mountain”] is the only way God makes a covenant with a nation, neither is it said that a covenanted Christian nation must have exactly the same special place in God’s plan,” does it not assume that America has a covenant relationship with God?

          So I asked: “Where is anything like the Lord Jehovah’s unique, covenant relationship with Israel (completely fulfilled in Christ Jesus) reproduced in America’s founding documents or subsequent legislative history?”

          The notion of linking “covenant” to the founding documents has you befuddled and wriggling through a rhetorical escape hatch. Will you answer the question directly or are we going to see you continue to wriggle?

        • I don’t “wriggle.” My goal with the above posts was neither to answer your question nor to avoid answering it – I don’t care either way, I don’t lose anything by not answering nor do I win anything by answering it. (And your question has been answered multiple times, if you cared to read at all.) My goal was to show that you are not a serious reader, and therefore you are not a serious debater deserving attention.

          So, bye-bye for now. Come back when you have learned to read and debate.

        • Harmon Gottlieb says:

          Your parting wriggle, with its adolescent coda, refers to a question “answered multiple times.” Yet the ‘answers’ fail to establish where biblical covenant appears in America’s founding documents. So, once “you have learned to read and debate,” the article’s argument will still be ideological dejecta.

  9. Jennifer B says:

    An excellent response for those of us trying to take our nation back by battling the secular humanist liberals with one hand and the secular humanist libertarians with the other.

  10. aSeattleConservative says:

    Robert F. Hull is obviously a “Christian Libertarian” who denies Romans 13:4 as probably THE MOST valuable tools to guide a nation towards God (not to be confused with personal salvation).

    The Founding Fathers knew it, and Archie P. Jones acknowledged it in his foreward to “The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States”:

    “They [the Founding Fathers] knew that our nation’s civil
    government and law must be based upon God’s laws and principles
    of justice if we are to enjoy His blessings upon our land and people.
    They comprehended that all men are sinners, and that man’s sinful
    nature has particularly destructive consequences when it is allowed
    to vent itself through the power of civil government.
    They understood that true religion (Christianity), virtue, and liberty are
    inseparately united, and that liberty cannot long be perserved in the absence
    of virtue among the people and their representative.

    Are you reading this Ron Paul?

    • Joel Petersen says:

      Seattle,
      It’s a sad day for free speach on America Vision when the DeMars suppress free speech. We miss you and your insites on the Worldview Forum. I was wondering what happened to you. I have come to the conclusion that they have no problems criticizing , but when the heat is on them, they cut and run. Therefor they have bailed out of their own forum. Fascinating !
      Best Regards, Lumberjack

      • aSeattleConservative says:

        Not to worry my friend, I still have the utmost respect for Gary DeMar and enjoy reading his articles daily.
        As you probably remember, I’m a very outspoken critic of Libertarianism; in fact, I’ve recently been banned from one ultra conservative blog and another supposed right wing Christian blog for my “antics” (I don’t have patience with liberal Christians, that term being an oxymoron in itself).

        Keep up the fight Lumberjack, as the truth will prevail whether we’re allowed to speak it openly or not.

        aSC

  11. Joel Petersen says:

    Bojidar,
    Excellent foundational argument on the truths of Kingdom in the arena of discipling the nations. Since the Ekklesia is the training center for people to ” go out into the world ” , I was wondering how you see Dennis Peacocke’s view in his book Winning the Battle for the Minds of Men, pgs 18 – 21 where he lays out the 5 natural governing units, or spheres, to the kosmos that comprise the kingdom of God’s government.

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