THE GRAND CONSPIRACY — PART 3

Roberts Chapel, is a non-denominational church that was originally built in 1847 at Roberts Settlement, one of Indiana’s early black pioneer communities. (from here)

Here we have Part 3 in “The Grand Conspiracy”. These are the two previous posts:

So what is this post about?

Divide And Conquer: What Do We Call Home?

What do we call home?

Think about that for minute? Is home a house? Is home your family? Is home a place? Is your country your home? Are your neighbors what makes a place home? Is your “home” your job, your place of work? What makes you feel comfortable, that you belong, that you are at home?

Many of us move frequently. Those in our military, for example, must move often. Because my father was in the military, I learned early in my life that home was not just a house. Home was the house where my family lived. I also learned to associate the American flag with “home”. When in another land, I learned that our flag says here are people I can speak to and trust. When I was old enough to work, I eventually understood that where I worked had to become “home” too. If I did not like or trust the people I worked with, no matter how much I earned the ache in my heart for “home” would not be worth the pay.

What is odd about all this? I grew up never thinking of the churches I attended as home. That was not good. My parents took my brothers and sisters and I to church for church services and some religious training, but we grew up and most of us wandered from Christianity. I never established a relationship with Jesus, never made my home with Him. Because I did not acquire a heart for Jesus, I did not grow up thinking of any of the churches I attended as home. Churches were just places where people adopted these odd, bothersome, and superstitious notions.

Should our church become our home? Consider the ending of Psalm 23.

Psalm 23:6 New King James Version (NKJV)

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will [a]dwell in the house of the Lord
[b]Forever.

What does that mean? Here is what one commentator observed.

This text simply means, “I will have a home in the house of the Lord forever.” Whatever temple or church or chapel stands to us for a centre or rallying place of our religions belief and life, we should cherish it as a sort of other home. Churches stand for the common brotherhood of all, and for kindness and helpfulness to all. What should be our relation to these Churches? A home that all value. We know what that means. We don’t sit there all our time, but from thence we go forth to toil and struggle in the world. Then we return for life’s innermost peace and friendliness, reposefulness, and renewal. (from here (biblehub.com))

We think of home as the place of our family. Even though family is an overused, cheapened word these days, it is difficult to find a better word to express our desire to love and be loved. So consider how Don Merritt describes how we should live when he comments on Ephesians 3:14-21 in The Power of Prayer.

Think of how God intended for us to live, go all the way back to Genesis, to the garden: We were created to live in harmony and fellowship together with God the Father. In a sense, we were to be bound with Him through genetics, for did He not breathe of Himself, His life, into the man when the man was first created, and then from the man, God created the woman? This illustration of familial unity is continued as couples produce offspring and build family units to this day, units bound up in love, and in the nature of their very beings. (from here (lifereference.wordpress.com))

What happens when Christians come together to form a church? Before church members can become an extended family, they must join together in a community. What makes a community? Members of a community share:

  • Unity of purpose. When Jesus created the His church, He unified His church with the Great Commission (see Matthew 28:16-20 and Mark 16:14-18).
  • Fellowship. Those who love Jesus Christ want to talk about Him and learn about Him from each other. Each Christian wants to share with others the love God has given us.
  • Doctrine: For Christians, our doctrine is the teachings — the beliefs — of the Christian church, the teachings of the Bible. The Bible contains the Gospel, and the Christian church exists to help its members share the Gospel.
  • Values and customs. What we share in common helps us to resolve our differences. A common point of view helps us to achieve a common understanding. How church members perform the simple acts of baptism and communion, for example, is a reflection of a church’s shared values and customs.
  • Agape love. A Christian church is a special type of community. Here is where we learn about a special kind of love. This is the kind of love God has for us. This love is what keeps a church together in spite of whatever differences its members may have.

If we want to accomplish the Great Commission, as Christians we must make the same effort families make to keep together. We must both love and care for each other. We cannot give over our responsibilities to someone else. We must protect our community.

  • Agape love. What holds a church together is an act of will. Agape love is a deliberate choice, not an instinctive form of love. Christians don’t just feel love for others; they choose and plan to love others, especially each other.
  • Values and customs. As odd as it may seem we must build fences around our churches. Before we can allow someone to join our church, we must be certain they understand and will abide by the ways of our family. New church members must be willing to become one of us. Christians who share similar interpretations of scripture can come together. Those who don’t often break apart.
  • Doctrine: If someone does not accept the Bible as the Word of God, then they will not fully accept the Great Commission.
  • Fellowship. Fellowship is not just an emotional experience. It is more than just a worship service. We engage in fellowship when we instruct our children and each other. We engage fellowship when we work together in obedience to the commands of Jesus Christ. A common language and heritage facilitates fellowship.
  • Unity of purpose. If a church does not understand and execute the Great Commission, it is a community without a purpose, with no reason to exist.

The Political Implications

The Christian church exists within a world context. Either a church struggles to change the world, or the world changes the church. Sometimes a Christian church serves its purpose and fades away. Consider the history of Roberts Chapel (Atlanta, Indiana), pictured above.

Roberts Chapel originated as a Methodist congregation named Mount Pleasant, which was established in 1838 at Roberts Settlement in rural northwestern Jackson Township, Hamilton County, Indiana.[2][3] The rural farming community was named in reference to the large contingent of residents who had the surname of Roberts. (continued here)

Since few now live where Roberts Chapel is located, it no longer serves a church community. People moved away, and there is nothing that can be done about that. What happened to Roberts Chapel, however, does not explain the increasing disintegration of many Christian churches in today’s America. These churches are surrounded by people, but fewer participate in the life of a Christian community. Why?

Nations are composed of communities. Communities are composed of families. Families do not have to join together and form Christian churches. We can join together in a large variety of different types of communities (see Category:Types of communities). That is, we can be diverted from joining a Christian community and spend our lives in other types of communities. When Christian churches offer the path to salvation, why would we choose to do that?

We live in an increasingly secularized society. Many people spurn Christianity and actually advocate Secularism to the point of forcibly secularizing society. Why? Well, the issue involves a struggle over power. True freedom of religion allows us to voluntarily form small communities that educate children and administer charity. Therefore, those who want centralized government control over such matters insist upon secularized health, education, and welfare programs. Thus, many politicians, especially Liberal Democrats, actively undermine freedom of religion.

Consider again what is required to make a Christian Community. Then consider that Liberal Democrats:

  • Have a unity of purpose. Liberal Democrats promote Socialism with fervor. Because  Socialism is in conflict with freedom of religion, many Liberal Democrats actively seek to bury any evidence of the positive involvement of Christianity in our nation’s heritage.
  • Condemn fellowship based upon religious belief. Under the guise of Multiculturalism, Liberal Democrats ridicule Christian fellowship, especial in public, as intolerant. In order to make the public expression of Christian fellowship even more difficult, Liberal Democrats have open our nation’s borders. They would bury our Christian heritage under a multitude of foreign cultures.
  • Preach their own mishmash of doctrines. In addition to Socialism, Secularism, and Multiculturalism, Liberal Democrats preach ideological beliefs such as Environmentalism and radical Individualism. Secularism, however, is the central problem. Why? The Law is a moral construct. Our government is just an organizing force. Government can only embody and enforce whatever ideals hold a nation, state, or local community together. If our schools fail to instruct our people in the foundational document of Western Civilization, the Bible, Liberal Democrats must find something replace it. Otherwise, Liberal Democrats have no way of defining the difference between good and evil. They can only borrow from the Bible. Since the Bible is obviously not secular, that poses a problem for them.
  • Don’t respect our nation’s shared values and customs. In addition to the law, we use our shared values and customs to enforce behavioral standards, and many of our shared values and customs stem from our Christian heritage. Secularists abhor the display of Christian values and customs. Multiculturalists will not defend the English language. Radical Individualists promote deviance from traditional moral norms, what we now refer to as LGBTQ “rights”. “Tolerance” is the great value of Secularists.
  • Would replace agape love with something more Paganistic.

So what can Christians do? We can stop selling politicians our votes. We can vote for limited government. Then we can organize privately to support the education of children and to provide charity for the needy.

 

4 thoughts on “THE GRAND CONSPIRACY — PART 3

  1. @tsalmon

    We each see things from our own point-of-view, even brothers.

    Consider that your comments almost never address the actual subject. You don’t debate. Since you are a lawyer, can we assume you know what debate involves?

    What do you do? You say I am wrong and a bigot. Then you portray yourself as understanding and reasonable. Am I supposed to be shamed into agreement by this display of “virtue”?

    If you were understanding and reasonable, would you be voting for politicians who refuse to obey the Constitution? Is there something wrong with school choice and private charity? A better alternative is giving half our money to politicians and letting them decide how to spend it for us? What has that got to do with bigotry?

    Do you really understand the point of making a crime a hate crime? That is bigotry, and Liberal Democrats come up with crap like that like nobody else.

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    1. “Consider that your comments almost never address the actual subject. You don’t debate. Since you are a lawyer, can we assume you know what debate involves?”

      Tom,

      I can make an intellectual argument against an argument. But your post is in the form of a polemic, almost a manifesto. It lays out a world view, arbitrarily classifies friend or foe (us and them) and draws up battle lines. If I submitted that in court and called it an argument, the judge would report me to the bar. I answered it in the only way that one can answer that sort of thing – by questioning its underlying premises.

      “Do you really understand the point of making a crime a hate crime? That is bigotry, and Liberal Democrats come up with crap like that like nobody else.”

      Gosh, that’s arbitrary. I didn’t see that coming. I’m not sure without more study, but I can see why you might think that the hate crime classification undermines freedom of speech and thought. On the other hand, malice of intent (mens rea) is historically an essential element of many crimes, especially murder, and can upgrade Murder 2 to Murder 1, with the subsequent increase in penalties. One could argue that hate crimes are a peculiarly malicious crime.

      I’m pretty sure this was upheld in the SCOTUS years ago. It’s kind of hard for me to imagine that Democrats and Republicans would have strong differences on this issue, but maybe you know something that I don’t.

      Like

      1. @tsalmon

        Can’t debate or won’t. I can debate the Communist Manifesto, and that was more complex.

        We punish a crime because the crime is wrong, not because of who commits the crime or because of who the crime is committed against. But Liberal Democrats obsess on identity politics, and for some inexplicable reason that is not bigotry.

        Affirmative action is the same sort of bigotry. Rejection of voter ID is based upon bigotry. If I see the difference between right and wrong before I appraise the identity group, I must be a bigot. If I read the Constitution before I assess what is politically correct, I must be an extremist. If I reject flooding our country with poor, diseased, uneducated people who cannot speak English, I am a bigot and uncaring to boot. I could go on, but what is the use. You don’t have a logical argument, but you are not about to admit it, not even to yourself.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Tom,

    Even though we are brothers, I don’t recognize our family as you portray it. Even those we are Christians, I don’t recognize all this condemnation and hatefulness in my own faith. Even though we are both Americans, I don’t recognize your xenophobia and ethnocentrism in the American values of diversity, pluralism and religious neutrality that I swore defend in our Constitution. Even though I have voted for both political parties, I don’t recognize either party in the extreme way that you portray them.

    You want to claim to embrace tradition, custom, doctrine, etc., but everything you have done is a continuous, almost adolescent, rejection of all those things, as well as the institutions that enshrine them. Seriously, you despise authority, and have always despised authority, haven’t you? Even your religious doctrinal choices seem to be your way to thumb your nose at all the mainstream Christian denominations, including the traditions that we indeed were quite well indoctrinated in, but that you chose to reject quite early on.

    I know you’re going to criticize me as unfairly judging you (even though you are constantly judging me guilty of being some socialist, liberal, libertine Democrat), but I’m not judging you. I’m just taking what you are saying here and drawing the obvious conclusions based upon what I believe to be true and untrue, but I’m not omniscient. I may be wrong.

    And don’t misunderstand Tom. I love you and I love your rebellious spirit. I think a good bit of it runs in the family. And it’s not that there are not age old battles between enlightenment rationalism and Catholic mysticism with reformist Protestantism caught in the middle and trying to moderate between head and heart. But at some point, all this rejection of authority so that you can claim to be an authority on everything just becomes destructive.

    Like

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