Wednesday, August 17, 2011


"Okay, so these guys are seriously lunatics, but there's no way they could gain enough influence or power to actually carry this out."

So, the left is freaking out about "Dominionism" again. This comes up every 4 years as major national elections take place, and any time a remotely religious Republican candidate is in the news, the Dominionism claims show up again.

In brief, the "dominionist" theory is that Christians are trying to take over the US Federal government to tyrannically implement a Christian religious takeover of the nation and force you to pray. The people who promote this theory believe that Christians want to replace US law with the Bible and impose Old Testament law on everyone.

There is a very small and little-known portion of Christians who believe in what theologians call "Theonomy." Technically theonomy in its proper sense is the belief that God, not ourselves rule the world - it is placed in opposition to autonomy. However, there is a Theonomist (or "Reconstructionist") movement of a small number of people that beleive we should be using Old Testament law as our template for modern legal structure and remove many laws in place now as a result.

From this, some sociologists and pundits think that any Christian who has the audacity to take the Bible seriously and their belief as having more meaning than vague spirituality wants to take over the nation and force all women to go barefoot chained to the stove, stone gays to death, and kill witches. For example, this online piece at "Revolution":
Dominionism is a doctrine which demands the total remaking of society to conform with the laws of the Old Testament of the Bible, and it states that the second coming of Jesus Christ will never occur until "God’s kingdom" is established on earth and reigns for either a thousand years or an unknown time period. They contend that all of the laws of the Old Testament, unless specifically revoked later in the Bible, are still valid and they want to literally replace the U.S. Constitution and legal system with the Ten Commandments and the Mosaic laws of the Bible. If you have read Bob Avakian’s writings on religion, or the Revolution series "God the Original Fascist," you know what this would mean:

If you don't follow
the Christian faith, or if you ever leave it (we're talking millions of people in the U.S. alone) you'd be punished by death. Same thing for anyone who commits theft, who blasphemes (says "goddamn it"), or who commits heresy (says god does not exist).
Or this one at Theocracy Watch:
Its followers ... are attempting to peacefully convert the laws of the United States so that they match those of the Hebrew Scriptures. They intend to achieve this by using the freedom of religion in the US to train a generation of children in private Christian religious schools. Later, their graduates will be charged with the responsibility of creating a new Bible-based political, religious and social order. One of the first tasks of this order will be to eliminate religious choice and freedom. Their eventual goal is to achieve the "Kingdom of God" in which much of the world is converted to Christianity.
Ignorance of Christian beliefs leads some to think that teachers such as Abraham Kuyper or Francis Schaeffer hold to this sort of belief system. Refusal to learn better leads them to write about it in magazines and online essays.

As a life-long Christian, I can only look at this and shake my head in sadness. Fear and distrust of the unknown and hatred of religion (and Christianity in specific) leads people to some very strange, bigoted places.

Even the most radical reconstructionist does not want to kill people for not being or leaving Christianity. Period. There is absolutely no movement whatsoever in Christianity by any leader or Reconstructionist to even remotely suggest such a thing. Period. This is absolute, idiotic fiction. Even the Old Testament laws did not tell the Hebrews to kill people who lost their faith.

The truth is, Reconstructionists want some more radical ideas implemented, but even at their most extreme, they would not turn the US into a carbon copy of Israel because they argue that the laws for civil government were heavily influenced by the temple/sacrificial system which was done away with by the incarnation of Jesus Christ.

And since the Reconstructionist movement numbers about the same as the amount of people who go to Furry conventions, this is an insignificant and meaningless movement in any case. Their ideas do not in any way influence or control Christianity in America. Most Christians have not even heard of the movement or its proponents.

All Christians do believe that law comes from God - all truth, justice, and goodness comes from God, according to Christian theology. In fact, the founding fathers and nearly every legal structure that the common law system we use now believed the same thing. Justice Blackstone lays this out in incontrovertible detail in his book on the subject. Modern jurisprudence has drifted away from that concept and embraced a more "law is what we say it is as judges" perspective but more people than Christians have a serious problem with that approach.

All Christians want everyone to be Christians. However, I don't know a single Christian - including Reconstructionists - anywhere, who thinks that means we force it on anyone. There was a movement in the medieval period where for political and monetary reasons some tried, but Christian theology totally and unmistakably rejects this in every possible way. The Bible makes it absolutely clear that you cannot make someone become a Christian.

Christians want all people to become Christians in the same way that homeless advocates want everyone to have a home, or in the same way that Alcoholics Anonymous wants everyone to become sober. This is just a better way, a proper life, the way you should be and would be far better off as. We want people to be saved because literally we all need saving from a horrible future. Salvation is literal, not a catch phrase, for Christians: it is being redeemed from eternal punishment in hell. We want everyone to avoid that awful fate.

People who cry about Dominionism demand two things from Christians: that we never apply our faith to the world in any way, and that we keep our faith to ourselves. Their tolerance extends only to personal, internal thought, not outside that. They don't care if you're Christian, if you never let it affect your life.

Schaeffer and Kuyper both taught that if you have a certain worldview, it will affect everything you do and why you do it. As a Christian, then, your faith and belief in God works its self out in your actions as good, trustworthy workers, strong, ethical leaders, loving, humble workers, and united, productive families.

And there's no way that could be in any way considered detrimental to the world. Unless you're a hardcore leftist that thinks personal responsibility, family strength, and small government is an evil.

The sad part isn't that the claims are raised over and over, the sad part is that people believe this crap. Every time an election comes up, someone writes an article about those scary, dangerous Christians, and leftists go "oh no! I could never vote for someone like that! How awful!" instead of saying "wait a minute, what?" Its like the fools that read about how President Obama is a secret ninja Muslim and said "really? We must stop him!" Instead of saying "are you nuts?"

I have a lot of facebook friends from all over the place, mostly artists, writers, etc I don't know but wanted contact with. Some of them are really really leftist, and its just bizarre watching them post on this kind of thing without the slightest hint of question. Christians are all around us, chances are everyone knows one or works with one. I have a really crazy idea: if you read something about Christianity that seems crazy how about talking to one about it?

In any case, if you hear or read about this, don't trust what they say, most of the time its just crazy. Other times they're worried about this kind of thing: "Dominionists would nearly dismantle government, and establish the family as the basic governing unit of society."

The horror.


Philip said...

I don't think many of them have read Justice Blackstone's work either.

Anonymous said...

My idiot liberal brother thinks like this. He used to have a blog in which he compared the "religious right" to the Taliban.

Anonymous said...

Finally someone also knows the secret! If we can only get more people to know the truth about the Secret-Ninja Muslims!

Kold$hadow said...

Sure, the perception of the extreme religious right by the extreme (possibly atheist) left is inaccurate. However, the influence of the Council for National Policy on the Republican Party is not something to underestimate . . . OR overestimate. Both Obama and Romney are centrists that deviate from their moderate globalist ideology to appeal to their neolib/neocon fanboys and girls, respectively.
Honestly, the radicalization of the middle is of much greater imminent significance than Christian Dominionism/Re-Constructionism . . . that won't be relevant until (if) Political Zionism and Arab Nationalism mutually destroy each other and the global intelligentsia spearheaded by the Vatican pose as saviors, insisting we all work together and rebuild the world their way.