ReallyRight

David Chilton on Our Political Failure

I have been reading through David Chilton’s commentary on the book of Revelations, Days of Vengeance. (It is available for download at this address http://www.garynorth.com/freebooks/sidefrm2.htm ) This book was written during Reagan’s second term after the collapse of Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority and the backtracking of C. Everet Koop.

In light of the current state of the Republican Party and continuing decay of social issues in our country, the following really caught my eye. It is from pages 511-512.

It must be stressed, however, that the road to Christian dominion does not lie primarily through political action. While the political sphere, like every other aspect of life, is a valid and necessary area for Christian activity and eventual dominance, we must shun the perennial temptation to grasp for political power. Dominion in civil government cannot be obtained before we have attained maturity in wisdom-the result of generations of Christian self-government. As we learn to apply God’s Word to practical situations in our personal lives, our homes, our schools, and our businesses; as Christian churches exercise Biblical judgment over their own officers and members, respecting and enforcing the discipline of other churches; then Christians will be able to be trusted with greater responsibilities. Those who are faithful in a few things will be put in charge of many things (Matt. 25:21, 23), but “from everyone who has been given much shall much be required” (Luke 12:48; cf. Luke 16:10-12; 19:17). One of the distinguishing marks of heretical movements throughout Church history has been the attempt to grab the robe of political power before it has been bestowed.

This whole issue has been thoughtfully explored in an excellent essay by James Jordan, and the best service I can provide the interested reader at this point is simply to refer him to it. 25 Jordan concludes his study with these words: “When we are ready, God will give the robe to us. That He has not done so proves that we are not ready. Asserting our readiness will not fool Him. Let us pray that He does not crush us by giving us such authority before we are ready for it. Let us plan for our great-grandchildren to be ready for it. Let us go about our business, acquiring wisdom in family, church, state, and business, and avoiding confrontations with the powers that be…. For as sure as Christ is risen from the grave and is ascended to regal glory on high, so sure it is that His saints will inherit the kingdom and rule in His name, when the time is right.”26

Footnote 25:

25. James B. Jordan, “Rebellion, Tyranny, and Dominion in the Book of Genesis,” in Gary North, ed., Tactics of Christian Resistance, Christianity and Civilization No.3 (Tyler, TX: Geneva Ministries, 1983), pp. 38-80.

Footnote 26:

26. Ibid., p. 74. In this connection, Jordan’s remarks on the so-called “patriotic” tax-resistance movement are also worth repeating: “We must keep in mind that the pagan is primarily interested in power. This means that the maintenance of force (the draft) and the seizure of money (excessive taxation) are of absolute primary interest to him. If we think these are the most important things, then we will make them the point of resistance (becoming ‘tax patriots’ or some such thing). To think this way is to think like pagans. For the Christian, the primary things are righteousness (priestly guarding) and diligent work (kingly dominion). Generally speaking, the pagans don’t care how righteous we are, or how hard we work, so long as they get their tax money. This is why the Bible everywhere teaches to go along with oppressive taxation, and nowhere hints at the propriety of tax resistance” (p. 79).

Jordan’s essay is also available at the URL above. Look for Tactics of Christian Resistance by Gary North.

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