Am I missing something here? Because I was under the impression that to the increase of Christ’s Kingdom there would be no end and that this wasn’t a big secret. For some time now there has been a growing consternation among Christians about the fact that, not only do we with Christ win in the end, He will be ruling all of creation, up to and including the nations and peoples of the earth. Abraham Kuyper declared:
“There is not a square inch in the whole of creation over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: “Mine!” There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: “Mine!”
And while many Christians seem happy to acknowledge this in private, there does appear to be a concerted effort to downplay or lie about this truth to the world. And that is a problem, because the sovereignty of God is crucial to the Gospel no matter what theological gymnastics are preformed to make him seem more in line with the zeitgeist. God did not send his son to the Cross so that he could get the warm fuzzies over wonderful people like us. He sent his son to conquer Satan, sin, and death. Christ came to take what was and is rightfully his, namely, everything. He ransomed it, and will return to put everything to His order. He will tread the wine presses of the damned, he will rule the nations of the world from his throne, and we will rule with Him. This should not be me saying the quiet part out loud. This is simply what Christians have, and do believe.
So if you were paying attention to the Progressives Vs. Reformed corner of the interwebs you know that the dull roar of Christian Nationalism has ratcheted up a couple of decibel levels. If you don’t know then you are honored and highly favored of God, go read something more edifying. But for those of us who made the mistake of looking in the wrong direction at the wrong time there is a kerfuffle a kicking on. John “Grace to You” MacArthur had the gaul to preach a sermon. And that sermon was then edited down to a couple of twitter worthy clips which upset the delicate sensibilities of progressive christians and Russel Moore, but I repeat myself. Now J Mac is being accused of being a Christian Nationalist, and if you want any proof all you have to look at is his shift on the former Orange occupant of the White House and that he ignored then sued Cool Hair Newsome on the premise that it was better to obey God than men. Podcasts were recorded with grave concern, blogs were hammered out with sections IN ALL CAPS, and pearls were clutched. And all because John MacArthur simply said, other religions are a lie that damn people to hell and we should not fight for them to lie to more people. Which would make sense in any context outside of America where a christian is just as likely to have a half baked, internet informed understanding of the constitution on par with their half hearted, internet informed understanding of Scripture. I have said it before media preaches with more zeal, and conviction than the average pastor.
J Mac had the poor timing to preach is sermon close enough to January 6th. And that was really all it took. And here is where I think Christians need to stop falling for straw men and straw ghosts of the past. January 6th was exactly the event that a secular nation needed to make Christians scary again. For some time now they had been eating out on the Moral Majority. But with the passing of Fallwell and subsequent, cringe comedy, fall of Jerry Jr. the potency of that specter was waning. Brett Kavanaugh was a bit of a young disappointment for them. And while The Donald seemed perfect, his obvious paganism was an insurmountable obstacle. And then there it was: The Jericho March, a horde of useful idiot Pentecostals, with their banners, shofars, and other sundry weirdness. Now if only they could be made scary, which while a stretch was not a bridge too far. So a few months later Buffalo Man sat in Nancy’s chair, Handmaids Tale cosplayers wept on camera, and Russell Moore led the retreat to CNN to recant anything Christians formerly believed that might upset the Lemon Loaf.
I am using a lot of hyperbole, but I think you take my point. Christians have grown quiet on the good news that Christ is all, and will rule all because the lost and dying world does not like the idea of repentance or damnation. Worse still, we have failed to see this as good news ourselves. We are more concerned with what that world thinks of us than what the God of the Universe is doing! It is almost as if his plans have become inconvenient to our comfort. We shudder to think that anyone would ever dream that we serve an all powerful monarch, that he will set up his government above the hallowed halls of Congress, and over rule their laws. Should someone breathe the word Theocracy? God forbid! We rush to assure people that we would never support such a form of Government. And there in lies the problem, a true Christian longs for that day when:
“Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”
Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.” – Revelation 22:12-15
So if a person claims the name of Christ and does not find joy in these words then there is a problem.
Here are a few things, simply put, that would be a starting point.
Stop accepting every assertion that the crazies are with us.
Like I said earlier, the “christian nationalists” on January 6 were not Reformed theologically sound people. Most, if not all, worshiped Trump more than Christ, the iconography present was a bastardization of images found in churches. If we have no problem condemning their theology of prosperity, spiritual gifts, the trinity, inspirational talks over doctrine, why do we suddenly claim them when they do something so plainly stupid? Really it is time to stop lionizing idiots just because they agree with us on some political issues.
Stop nodding along with liars.
I’m gonna be honest, guys like Russell Moore are lying whey they say Christians would never try and take over Government. It is what he is trying to do! He is just doing it in a more sophisticated way than some moron in a costume that includes the helmet of Hagar the Horrible. Ultimately, we know Christ will rule, the wack a doodle wandering around the capitol were immanentizeing the eschaton absolutely; but someone who is trying in influence policy in a “christian direction” and then say that he is not for a theocracy is either lying or stupid. This is not that is called a solecism fallacy, don’t fall for it.
Show charity to those who are in our circle.
There are liars on the internet. It is wildly unhealthy and unchristian to immediately jump to thinking the worst of someone based on an edited clip that is then applauded by non Christians. It baffles me that professing Christians would immediately side with Kristin Kobes Du Mez, who is painfully obviously not a christian, over John MacArthur. Are there times that MacArthur says things I disagree with, yes. Have I received infinite goodness from his years of faithful teaching, absolutely. Why then would I throw all of that out because a clear heretic clambered up on their high horse?
Refuse to lie.
A loving yet wrathful God is not popular. The pressure is on to sand down his rough edges and make him more palatable, Andy Stanley has made a career out of it. What the world wants is a God made in their image, ever shifting, ever changing, certainly not eternal and truly just. Lewis but it thus:
“We want, in fact, not so much a father in heaven as a grandfather in heaven: a senile benevolence who, as they say, “liked to see young people enjoying themselves” and whose plan for the universe was simply that it might be truly said at the end of each day, “a good time was had by all.”” – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
Refuse all such lies. A father that does not discipline their children hates their children. The Gospel is a refining fire, to burn away the impurities hurts but no king would accept a crown filled with dross. For souls to be saved they must know their peril and look to Christ. Shrouding him is lies is to whisper a soul gently to hell.
Remember where we are from and where we are going.
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place[a] of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son.” – Revelation 21:1-7