As I dig further into the issues surrounding the corruption of things such as the family, I’ve found an interesting facet of what God has laid out. For lack of a better term, God has instituted a separation of powers in His ordained governance.
We can see these things in both the Old and New Testament. In Israel when they came out of Egypt (for instance), God ordained a civil government (Moses as head), and a priesthood (Aaron as head). Naturally, the family was ordained much earlier. Each of these have separate intended functions and are best left alone by the others.
The Family (Genesis 2:24; Ephesians 5:23)
The family is the most elemental governance. Man as husband and father, wife as helpmeet and mother, children under subjection to their parents. It can be argued that the chief mission of the family is to multiply and raise children up in the Lord:
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. (Genesis 1:27-28)
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6)
Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:1-4)
The Church – The Keys (Matthew 16:19; Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Corinthians 6:1-8)
The argument can be made here of both the Church and the old Hebrew priesthood. Here, this governance concerns itself with moral matters before God. This is the group that is to transmit the Lord’s will and uphold it before others. A part of this involves action, in terms of separation from the flesh and the world (Romans 6:12-13, 7:18-24, 8:13; 1 John 2:15-17; 1 Peter 5:8-9), and move towards Christ (Ephesians 4:13-15) Both groups are identified as priests, which is consistent with the function of the Church:
it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations: And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; And that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the Lord hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses. (Leviticus 10:9b-11)
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:13-16)
The Civil Government – The Sword (Matthew 26:52; Romans 13:1-8; 1 Peter 2:13-16)
This is what most people are familiar with as national, state, and local governments. The appropriate function of the national government is order, as illustrated:
For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. (Romans 13:3-4)
He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God. (2 Samuel 23:3b)
In short, a good government is to encourage what is good and be a terror to the evil. Most notably, this function avails itself in the punishing of wrongdoers. If one murders someone or robs someone by due witness, the civil government steps in to deal with the issue.
Where the Conflict Begins
What is notable throughout history is where the different “governments” clash – great evil results from it. There are a number of examples in Scripture of how to deal with these conflicts. Daniel and his three friends are most notable. They disobey the civil authority because the civil authority has usurped God’s proper place in demanding worship. The divine right of kings began with the Babylonians, was adopted by the Romans (Acts 17:7) and has extended to relatively recent history. This divine right of kings has extended into the Church as well, where the Church effectively becomes an organ of the State, there to represent the State instead of God.
In addition to the State-Church, the Church-State has existed in history through the Roman Catholic Church. The divine right of popes led to the power to anoint kings who were mere vassals to the pope. When a church entity attains the power of civil government, it becomes a terror to all in its effort to support all its dogmas by the sword. (The reaction to this period was so extreme that many State-Church situations came about to respond to it.) Godly love goes by the wayside, as well as legitimate faith (true renewal can not come by another, by force of arms or any other method – Romans 12:2. We are not to be conformed, but be transformed), and holiness. Free conscience and conviction are of God (witness how God Himself deals with Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:6-13, also see Romans 2:15-16), torture and death is not. More martyrs were produced in this period than any other in the history of the church.
Then as chronicled many times on this blog, the State have made assaults on the family of varying natures. The Church has intruded upon the family as well in different ways over history (namely influence via the different feminist movements). A modern Churchian example of this is the children’s church, where families abdicate their responsibilities to bring up their children in the Lord to the Church, and fathers are ultimately are never coached by the Church to be ministers in their homes.
One of the reasons why I wanted to deal with this material is to provide background to some previous material. It is well to note that the doctrine of separation of church and state was born out of the lessons of this history, as well as much of the Bill of Rights. This will be of concern for some planned future material.
There have been many conflicts throughout history between these three entities, which have shaped much of history. When one usurps the authority of the other, only problems result. When one abdicates its responsibility to the other, problems result. It is always best to leave them separate. When morality is allowed to be dictated by a single party to his own whims without checks and balances, wickedness always results.
One of the interesting threads of discussion in Dalrock’s post From celibate boyfriend to celibate husband (true love doesn’t wait). has been the very issue that the post has covered:
The drive to teach abstinence in the church is really a drive for the delay of marriage.
Now wait a minute, how could that be? Isn’t teaching abstinence a good thing? Well it is. But it really is leading to something else, as evidenced by the number of (even Christian) women fornicating and the lack of rebuke from the average Christian pulpit.
As fads in Churchianity go, things get introduced and their memory comes and goes. There was a group called True Love Waits, which was created by the Southern Baptists in 1993 and has spread from there. Naturally, with all things Churchian, it was filled with lots of style and symbolism, but not much substance. Things such as purity rings, and purity balls, which end in pledges to abstinence. As this Huffington Post article describes them:
For those unfamiliar with the ritual, a purity ball is a religious ceremony in which fathers and daughters dress up in ball gown attire, spend a night of dinner and dancing together, and end the evening with a vow to abstain from sex until marriage.
While being a worldly article and standing against the Biblical idea of chastity, a linked article goes on to point out the strangeness of this concept:
It’s hard to know where to start with this: the notion of sex as “impurity,” the fact that it’s all daughters and no sons, the idea of dressing a preteen girl in something that looks awfully like a wedding dress.
Be sure to visit the linked site, as there are several pictures of participants of these purity balls (with limited copyright or I would have put one to this post). Creepy when you look at them, huh? Then as part of the ceremony, we get the pledge the daughters take:
“Believing that true love waits, I make a commitment to God, myself, my family, my friends, my future mate and my future children to be sexually abstinent from this day until the day I enter a biblical marriage relationship.”
So we get a ceremony that looks like marriage, and for the daughters, which ends with a pledge before God
Given the lust for the marriage ceremony that women have, this fits the bill. Then the pledge saves themselves for God alone. . .or rather each daughter’s Personal Jesus, and ends up with their own
marriage purity ring. Such a commitment definitely fits the idea that most Christian women have that they are married to Jesus, and needs to have her perfect Personal Jesus as her husband.
That said, I searched “True Love Waits” and found the reading pretty interesting. It was sparse given that this particular Churchian fad has had such an amount of time to go away. One has to admit that they did a perfect job with the sloganeering. But quite inaccurate given the message that has been sent. After all:
I suppose that, among other things the title: ‘The Godly Young Man or Woman Does Not Have Sexual Relations Outside of Marriage’ was just not catchy enough.
Genesis 29:20 came up consistently in the search: “And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had to her.” In reading the entire story, we can typically see that the application of this Scripture is out of context. They are taking a single isolated Scripture verse and then fashioning a whole doctrine after it, which is inconsistent with the rest of Scripture.
It’s amazing how many different references to Genesis 29:20 I find. Basically put, whoever came up with that doctrine shopped, deciding to conform Scripture to their wishes instead of conforming themselves to Scripture. In other words, they are taking an exceptional case out of Scripture and turning it into the norm.
Granted, the majority of the writers that came up in the search got this verse right. The most interesting writer out in left field is this one. You can recognize the feminist tropes spread all throughout:
* “Jacob turned his head, took one fateful look, and it was without a doubt love at first sight.”
* “We get the idea that he was so fascinated by Rachel’s beauty, and so enchanted by her charm, that he failed to recognize her shortcomings or even to consider the will of God in his relationship with her.”
* [Jacob reminded the shepherds that grazing time was lost], “probably a ploy to get rid of them so he could talk to Rachel alone.”
* “Could he [Jacob] have been showing off just a little?”
* “But from the beginning we are a little dubious about the match. We know that a relationship based primarily on physical attraction rests on a shaky foundation.”
* “But when a man is enamored of a woman, he does not want to hear those things. He is going to have her, and nothing else matters.”
* “One great test of true love, therefore, is the ability to wait. Infatuation is usually in a hurry because it is self-centered. It says, “I feel good when I am with you, so I want to hurry up and get you to the altar before I lose you and lose these good feelings.” Love says, “Your happiness is what I want most of all, and I am willing to wait, if need be, to be sure this is what is best for you.”
* “Jacob could have accepted his marriage to Leah as the will of God for his life and learned to love her alone.”
There is much more that could be gleaned out of the piece, but the author clearly makes Jacob into the villain for not desiring Leah alone in the first place. This is because of the clear Churchian teaching that men are not to consider attraction when considering their wives. So it seems that, given Genesis 29:20 is used so much in connection with this phrase that:
The “True Love Waits” mantra is for men, not for women.
This can be easily seen in how the term is meant. “True love” in the sense it is meant, is really feeling and not action. In other words, instead of marriage being the proper place to experience romance and sex, we have romance becoming the proper place to experience marriage and sex.
So in the decision of marriage, men are supposed to wait until the women are ready for marriage – after all, true love waits, right? It really only comes down to the preferences of the woman’s personal Jesus.
True love waits until the man who meets her 643 point checklist comes along. After all, the perfect man God has just for that woman is out there.
Meanwhile, men are to sacrifice throughout all of this and wait until she is ready. After all, according to the Book of Oprah, her heart is to lead the marriage. So the message to men who are waiting:
True love waits until she’s established in her career.
True love waits until she’s had a ride on The Carousel, and rack up her n-count in a series of long-term relationships.
True love waits until she’s had the chance to travel.
True love waits until she’s had time to serve the Lord long-term.
True love waits until she’s had a “marriage” and a couple of children.
Then the women notice their prospects have dried up and cry to folks like Andrew Walker, Jon Lakin, and Albert Mohler, who then respond with growls and shouts to man up and marry those sluts, instead of seeing the situation for what it is.
These individuals have noticed the long period of waiting, and correctly call for early marriage, but miss the reason behind it, along with the sex doing the delaying. This is common, and to be expected.
If True Love Waits, then the third word indicates that the wait has to end sometime. These people are correctly seeing that the wait is too long. Until they can look in the mirror, and truly hear the message that “You are that man.”, they can talk all they want. But it still won’t make it happen, especially at the hands of these people. This makes such a pronouncement as this hot air, and consequently worthless. The proof in the pudding (so to speak) will be if these three men (and the others of the SBC) can repent of the wickedness they’ve perpetuated.
Mere Churchianity: Finding Your Way Back to Jesus-Shaped Spirituality. Michael Spencer. WaterBrook Press, 2010.
Something is very wrong in the church. People have been noticing, and getting more vocal about it lately the last few years. The Church hasn’t been matching up with what Jesus set it out to be. The Church has supplanted Christ as the ultimate interest of worship and concern. Hence the term Churchianity, which reflects this shift in mind.
It’s under this view that Mere Churchianity is written. Michael Spencer observed that what is on the label often doesn’t match up with what is being presented. He observes the number of “church leavers” that are going away in order to find Jesus – something with more integrity, authenticity, and honesty than the Jesus presented in most churches.
Spencer begins discussing the disconnect that the average church goer has with Jesus, due to the connection to their church organizations. People are conformed to them, and not to Jesus. Besides this, they become very prideful, unable to see their poor actions reflecting against Jesus despite the clear evidence witnessed by others.
The author points out that people often have a picture of God defined by their own ideas, concepts, and preferences. The answer is following Jesus Christ, One who can not be controlled or defined by others. This Jesus the one that we allow to shape us, not organizational policies or other things.
The book then presents a discussion of how a differing Jesus is presented today, resulting from the cultural confusion and church manipulation that has happened over the years. This has clouded the correct view of discipleship via rules, tradition, and culture. Spencer then points out that Jesus is not restricted to these churches or by these churches and is working in the world in His own will. The author’s answer to break out of this discipleship to church organization, reading the Bible for yourself is presented. Additional qualifications and conditions are often placed upon faith, making it works-based. This encouragement causes people to lie to themselves and others about the state of sin in their lives. Discipleship to church organization, dictated by programs and policies, is contrasted to discipleship to Jesus, which involves relationship and observation (learning by doing). In other words, Spencer points out that an association with a church does not a Christian make, no more than association with a garage makes you a car.
Spencer then describes the human element: The conditions of being involved in an organizational church setting involves a fear of individuality and encouragement of conformity. Those looking for authentic faith then admit defeat and leave rather to live life as a hypocrite. Discipleship looks very different in one who follows the organizational church than who follows the real Jesus.
The author covers a lot of ground in the 18 chapters he has written. Using an observational style, he will challenge you in a number of respects about the nature of church, versus the nature of real worship and service to Jesus. You will have a lot to think about in the course of this book, whether you agree or disagree with Spencer’s assessments. His assessments are often spot on.
Given Spencer’s observational style of writing and the amount of content, his book would benefit by organizing the content and making the points clearer. In addition, Spencer encourages a Personal Jesus based on worldly moral relativism at many points (for example p 76-77) in his book. It seems as many times, Spencer, as well as the previous author, fails to appreciate the gravity of sin and the nature of holiness that should exist in the life of the Jesus follower and in the life of the holy Church. As well, Spencer presents a nihilistic faith with respect to the sins of those who follow Christ (p 146).
Overall, this book is very valuable as an entry point to understanding some of the things that are wrong with the church. It echoes many of the points made here at the Society of Phineas and brought up some others for possible reflection. However, the lack of organization in the writing will cause you to have to read certain passages a number of times to understand the concept that Spencer is trying to relay. Spencer will give you much to ponder as well.
Rating: 7 out of 10.
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As It Was in the Days of Noah: Warnings from Bible Prophecy About the Coming Global Storm. Jeff Kinley. Harvest House Publishers, 2014.
When I was looking for something interesting to read at the book store, I came across Mr. Kinley’s book. Given the interest in the end times, it should be a natural that this kind of book would garner interest from a great many people.
Mr. Kinley writes about the story of Noah as it appears in Scripture, and the linkage that Jesus developed that the end of the age would be as the days of Noah. He does this by relaying the story of Noah, the wickedness of the age, the story of how he built the ark, and the flood itself. Then he describes Jesus’ teaching on the matter.
Mr. Kinley then relates the godlessness of the world. Most interesting is his experience of teaching a group of European teenagers who have never heard about Jesus (page 78). He then develops some of the sinful tendencies of men like violence, sexuality (Sodom and Gomorrah is featured heavily), and apostasy using 2 Timothy 3 as an outline. Regarding the topic of apostasy, his rebuke of “Consumer Christianity” (p 119-120) is especially refreshing to read. To round out the book, the author then describes the return of Jesus, and the imminence of that return.
As one may gather, Mr. Kinley has been more responsible than the majority of prophecy writers, as he has stuck to Scripture a vast majority of the time in his book. This, coupled with relevant and interesting stories makes it an interesting read.
As well, the presence of a mostly honest treatment of sin, unlike most modern church literature in this book was especially refreshing.
However, Mr. Kinley’s urge to his readers to bend to “the spirit of the age” and accept homosexuality in others (p 99) was particularly disturbing, as he fails to appreciate or discuss the issue of holiness in those that would follow Christ regarding the acceptance of sin. What Mr. Kinley writes is very consistent with the idea of friendship evangelism, which is the idea that one must be friends with unbelievers, accepting them in every way, in order to get the chance to present the Gospel to them.
As well, Mr. Kinley’s book exhibits the typical myopic Churchian focus towards pornography and homosexuality, bypassing discussion of all the other sins tearing the church apart in the name of sexuality.
While some readers might find the treatment heavy, others who are familiar with the basics of the end-times through Scripture will find it a light treatment with no surprises whatsoever. This light and elementary treatment of Scripture will frustrate those who are looking for more in-depth study. Other than the stated reservations, this book functions as a relatively decent introduction into the topic of biblical prophecy.
Rating: 6 out of 10.
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You have the look of a man who accepts what he sees because he is expecting to wake up.
– Morpheus addressing Neo, The Matrix
There’s one near universal thing that I notice in people. If you go inside the church, you see the power of tradition take hold, even in the new believers. In the world, you see people accept everything they’re presented by their employers, by their government, and other entities without question. What do I notice?
People tend to accept the things they see before them as good without question.
They don’t think about what they’re doing and what is before them. If you tell them the sky is orange, they’ll accept it if it seems reasonable enough. This leads to a little exchange I had with Dalrock on his blog. While there was no significant disagreement, it led to an interesting thought. As Dalrock writes: “Very few people can see this, for reasons I don’t understand.” When you think about these things, they all tend to come together like dominoes in a line.
We begin with the days of the Marxists. It can be logical to surmise that if you want to implant your ideology, especially one that demands total fealty to government as a God, you’ll have to remove the family from consideration. Especially when you consider socialism itself, it becomes verboten for a child to be in a family and have it be considered their child – or their property. Their child to raise, their child to educate. In socialism, the child belongs to society, as administrated by the State. Not too many people will willingly give up their children, let alone to the State. Nor will they give themselves up as subjects of the State themselves.
So as communists, if we want to instate our agenda, we have to get past the family – in other words destroy the family, yet not be so bold as to raise the alarms of the unthinking masses. So how do we do this?
1. Give license and control of marriage to the government, arresting the influence of the Church.
Here, you make marriage “illegal” and then require permits in order for it to occur. The unthinking masses will not think of the implications of such things. The priests will, given that marriage was the exclusive realm of the Church, so we can give them the important role of arbitrator of such things, as well as other benefits in order to look the other way and not present proper Church teachings against the idea. In the process of giving assent to such things as the marriage license and birth certificate, the government can claim the right to raise the child the way it sees fit if the parents don’t comply, and literally define the terms of the marriage. Naturally, we can abolish other “forms” of marriage. This ability to make and define marriage for what it is and isn’t is useful for what must happen later.
Send the child off to the public indoctrination center or else. Give them proper medical care or else. What is the “or else”? Take them out of the home against the will of the parents. The child becomes the State’s to mold in the socialist doctrine. What makes this so? The parents ceded this right in the three-party marriage contract.
2. Foment the sensibilities of women against their husbands and the idea of marriage.
As noted before, we can stir up women against the idea of marriage and family. “That the man was everything and the woman nothing.” And that “the typical family is where the woman has no will of her own, no time of her own and no money of her own.” Briffault’s Law is indeed well-proven, as Alexandra Kollontai addresses the “working woman” repeatedly and exclusively in her work. All that is needed is to whip up anger is to stoke a little consciousness raising. They will remember the previous system of feminism, and hasten to act. The men will remember their proper role of sacrificial lamb to her needs (after all women are good and men are bad), and will not question this happening.
3. Enable no-fault divorce.
Next, we enable the unconditional dissolution of marriage. Given the fomenting of women, and the natural aspect of the feminism already in place, we will have legions of women rushing to take advantage of it. After all, a woman will not have to suffer a husband who beats her and makes her life a misery with his drunkenness and uncouth behaviour – the presence of chivalry will not make people question this. This gives the extra bonus of the division of property, as well as the abolition of parental rights. It will also give the opportunity to condition parents to follow the dictates of the State, as all things the State dictates can be done “in the best interest of the child”.
4. Encourage fornication.
If we can get people to bypass marriage altogether, this will be a bonus. Put out media that encourages it, encourage “sex education” classes which promotes sexual activity, hand out condoms and begin birth control programs, and you’ll get people having sex with one another outside of marriage, devaluing it. In the process, we will need to abolish the idea of legitimate and illegitimate births. As well, you’ll get out of wedlock children which can be more easily controlled by the State.
5. Establish and condition children and caretakers to government provision.
The end goal of the Socialist enterprise is to condition people to seek and find support in the collective and in society, and not from the individual. This can not be done immediately, but can be done through the venue of “child support”. Child support will be accepted over the alternative of family formation, both for cases of broken marriages and out of wedlock births. Again, we can use the traditional form of feminism. Later on, concepts of “social security” and “welfare” can be instituted, again using the reasons of “the best interest of the children.”
The Conclusion Of The Matter
So what do we have in the end? Does all of this sound familiar to you? It is said that you need to learn from history to not repeat it:
According to Marx and Engels, under Communism the “bourgeois” family would have to “disappear,” just as “the capital” would. The practice of parents “exploiting” their children would be abolished, and family education would be replaced by public education.
The year 1917 saw the Soviet government passing decrees “On Civil Marriage, Children, and Registries” and “On Dissolution of Marriages.” The decree “On Dissolution of Marriages” granted spouses unconditional freedom to a divorce, performed by a local court, at the desire of either one or both parties. “On Civil Marriage” decreed that all except civil marriage (including religious marriage) would cease to be recognized by the state, while at the same time abolishing all distinction between legitimate and illegitimate children. (It should be noted that the sole aim of introducing civil marriages was to undermine religion. Writing in 1922, one Soviet lawyer stressed that “[t]he institution of Registrars was necessitated by the fight against the Church.”
Affirming such moves, the 1918 Family Code introduced a whole new morality, contravening the existing practices of marital and family law. In its provisions for divorce, the new legislation granted spouses rights to separate property and thereby abolished shared, family property. The Code also included vague criteria for deprivation of parental rights. Article 153 stated that “[p]arental rights are exercised exclusively in the interests of the child, with courts invested with the right to deprive the parents thereof in case said rights are exercised improperly.” Article 183 prohibited adoption, replacing it with a system of state-appointed foster caretakers. The Soviets were also the first government to proclaim complete freedom of abortion.
All of these steps were in line with the new authorities’ ideology of considering the family the backbone of the oppression of women. Russian Communists thought the liberation of women required destroying family households and family education for public versions of both, while drawing women en masse into public production. Writing in 1919, Lenin argued that “true liberation of women, true Communism comes about only when and where the masses rise up . . . against . . . small-scale households.”
And how many of these things came to light in this country to thunderous applause and approval in order to improve the plight of women? To very little question and opposition whatsoever. When the opponents of homogamous marriage speak of the “sanctity of marriage”, these things never enter their minds. It is because they are in truth on the side of these progressives. It is also a wonderful illustration of how feminism was something only used well by Marxists, nothing that was created by them.
And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. (1 Corinthians 2:1-2)
Churchianity or Churchian are terms that have been thrown around on this site and others for quite a while. As made clear on this blog (and I’m sure some others), Churchianity exists when the main function is worship of the church organizations or denominations and not of Christ.
This word substitution to denote this difference is not something me, Michael Spencer, or anyone else blogging today has invented. In Google books, they have an interesting little toy they call the “Ngram Viewer”, where you can search a word and get a listing of the books they’ve scanned into their system. The interesting part comes where you can track the history of the use of a word. For instance, you can put in the term “patriarchy” and get more ammunition for the contention that using the term actually puts you in the feminist frame. Searching churchianity nets this:
The term has been used a lot longer than there has been blogs. The interesting part in studying, is that these problems discussed on the blog have occurred a lot longer than just the times we know (a good argument can be made that Phariseeism is in truth Churchianity). In fact, one can compare and contrast and see the same thing.
Another immediate effect of a reference to the Bible is, that it entirely alterns the nature and ground of the controversy. There is no longer a question of churchianity, but of Christianity. We are in the presence of the cardinal truth, that “in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision, availeth anything, nor uncircumcision–neither Anglicanism nor Romanism–“but faith, which worketh by love.” Gal v. 6: That is to say, nothing but personal religion, independently of all churches and all church relations. With the Bible alone before us, the parties whom we address are no longer perplexed by antagonistic persuasions — “Belong to this church,” or “Adhere to that;” the pleadings all go in a different, in a common direction–“Be ye reconciled to God.” There is no longer an interested aspect in our appeal, as while one is endeavoring to gain a proselyte, and another afraid of losing one; our entreaty becomes undeniably generous and influential–“We care not whom you follow, so as you will save your own soul.” There is no longer an assumption, or an appearance of assumption, of authority by man over his fellow; the voice of man is hushed, and the teacher professes nothing but to commend to his hearers the word of God — “Judge ye what I say.” [he then quotes Psalm 19:7-9]
– The Substance of a Sermon by Newman Hall, 1850, page 27-28
Let us now examine the religion of the Priest, whose language is, ‘Look to me; to me, in some of my formulas, to me in some of my developments,’ if I may use a favourite expression, ‘and be ye saved.’ In one of these he bids you to look to the Church; she, he alleges, is the directress to heaven, the sure way to eternal joy. ‘Hear the Church,’ he cries, and be happy.
Such religion is Churchianity; it is not Christianity. Christianity means the religion where Christ is all; Churchianity, the religion where the Church is all. But what is this Church? let me ask. It is the company of believers, if it be the true Church; the company of the baptized, if it be the visible Church, made up of good and bad, of tares and wheat. But the whole Bible tells us that a church without Christ is a body without a head; a robe, whithout the Divine wearer; the richly-chased cup, but without the wine.
I cannot see that there is any more chance of being saved by a Church, than there is of being saved by a College, or by a Royal Exchange. There is no more connexion in the way of merit between the one and salvation, than there is between the other and salvation.
– The Three Forms of Religion by Dr. Cummings, 1850
And a third:
Thus religion is transformed from a principle into an institution. What should be inward feeling and motive runs outward and freezes into mere profession. Christianity is a business. The divine element evaporates. God is Deus ex machina. The ministry ceases to be a calling and becomes a profession. Men are preferred to this and that sacred office. The clergy are in form servants of heaven, in fact officials of the State. Handling money, controlling patronage, dealing in sacred things for secular purposes, Christianity is hocus-pocused into Churchianity.
In this country we have no State Church. Nevertheless Churchianity is a naturalized resident. Because Churchianity is more than a system–it is a state of mind. Wherever form is put for substance, whenever the medium is regarded as the essence, Christianity crystalizes into Churchianity. We have the religious establishment, but no longer religion. We look for Christ and find–a church. We ask for bread and are given–a stone.
- Churchianity vs. Christianity by Carlos Martyn, The Arena 1890 page 149.
There is truly nothing new under the sun.
I just had a question about the section of the post that sonofdeathswriter commented on… when you said “….or even Jesus…”, you’re not saying a woman should consider a man, even her own man, as being more important than Jesus, are you? Because we should have Jesus as our #1, and our man as our #2. To do otherwise would be idolatry, not to mention unfair for the man (talk about added pressure on him!). I know I wouldn’t want to be a man’s #1. I would expect to be his #2, but could never be his #1.
She writes the typical Churchian advice that’s given, which is good up to a point. The problem with lies is that a lie can represent full truth, but an incomplete truth.
To begin with the truth in this: In terms of gods, she is correct. You can not put anyone or anything before God and be pleasing to Him. A woman’s husband is not her god. FBNF is right that to put a husband in place of God is idolatry and unfair to the man to make him be her god.
This goes for both wives and husbands. One of the unfortunately common problems in churches today is the encouragement of men to submit to women as gods, supplicating to them both in society and in marriages.
Now to the incomplete part of this that makes it a falsehood: Jesus is not a woman’s husband. Jesus isn’t a man’s husband, either. The common Churchian advice that FBNF relays falls flat in negotiating this difference.
This is compounded by the confusion sowed by the pure heresy taught by the Churchians in Marriage 2.0. While marriage is a physical representation of a spiritual reality of Christ and His Church, the Churchians drive this into physical reality in their attempt to enforce the feminist paradigm.
In their view, the husband is to literally represent Christ in her view and he is to provide her the perfect marriage as her Personal Jesus judges it.
Coupled with the false gospel of the Romantic Personal Jesus and relationship, Jesus or God becomes a woman’s husband, boyfriend, or “first husband” (in other words her “personal lover”), using a false interpretation of Isaiah 54:5. When a woman who does this then uses the Churchian advice FBNF relays, and you get a situation where a woman literally replaces her husband with Jesus (or she has two husbands), or puts Jesus in competition with her husband or would-be suitors. This is unfair for men in the same way. Not to mention, she literally commits adultery against her husband…with Jesus.
God has His own place. So does a husband. And each should be #1 in those places.
Related: “Jesus Is My Husband”