‘Render Unto Caesar’: A Trap Avoided

In Luke 20:23-25 Jesus requested a coin and then asked the crowd whose  image was on it. They replied that it was “Caesar's.” Severa… | Ancient  coins, Coins, Coinage

It was a trap set by the Pharisees and their customary rivals, the Herodians. But on this one thing they agreed: the man called Jesus must be stopped.

So they asked Him, “Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not?”

https://chalcedon.edu/magazine/render-unto-caesar

If He says no, the Romans will come gunning for Him. If He says yes, Jewish patriots will despise Him as a collaborator. This was a deadly trap set by Christ’s enemies to destroy Him. We need to appreciate that. The question was designed to have no right answer, and the wrong answer was intended to destroy Him.

Greg Uttinger wrote this article for Chalcedon’s print magazine back in 2004. We still live in times when Caesar lays claim to everything.

But Jesus says give Caesar back what properly is owed to him and belonged to him in the first place: but everything is God’s.

‘For His Mercy Endureth Forever’ (Rushdoony)

Psalms 136:1 Inspirational Image

Do we need God’s mercy?

We wouldn’t last five minutes without it!

Psalm 136, “For His mercy endureth forever,” inspired this essay by R.J. Rushdoony, published in the Chalcedon Magazine 20 years ago. God’s mercy lasts forever, he asked; how long does our mercy last?

https://chalcedon.edu/magazine/for-his-mercy-endureth-forever

Too many Christians think of God as if He were a spare tire kept in the trunk of their car, Rushdoony wrote: great to have in an emergency, but otherwise something that they never think about.

Well, I find that psalm inspiring, too. If you read my Bell Mountain books, you know I use it as the anthem for King Ryons’ army.

Let us try to widen the embrace of our own mercy.

‘Doing Nothing’ (Rushdoony Classic)

Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn | Russian author | Britannica

Alexander Solzhenitsyn

I take it R.J. Rushdoony wrote this essay while Alexander Solzhenitsyn was touring the West and warning anyone who’d listen that communism could happen here; and Rushdoony himself was touring U.S. courtrooms, testifying in trial after trial as an expert witness in the defense of Christian schooling and homeschooling.

https://chalcedon.edu/resources/articles/doing-nothing

Westerners didn’t understand Solzhenitsyn, Rushdoony wrote, because they don’t understand that “anti-communism” is shallow and powerless if the anti-communists are going to buy into the same humanist twaddle that supports communism. That would be belief in “the sovereignty, not of God, but the state.”

While Americans were shocked by the Soviets’ separating children from their families because their parents had given them Christian religious instruction, at the very same time, here in America, courts were separating children from Christian parents to stop Christian schooling.

No one fought harder for Christian schooling in America than Rushdoony; and by and large, our side has won that battle. But that doesn’t mean the humanists won’t try again to roll back Christian education. They’re always trying.

Western liberals were scandalized when Solzhenitsyn compared American public policies to those of the Soviets. Rushdoony shocked them, too.

Few understood that it was a religious issue. Few wanted to see it that way.

But that’s how it was, and that’s how it is.

‘Social Justice’ Degrades Us

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R.J. Rushdoony was writing about “social justice” decades ago, before most of us had ever heard of it. Here’s one of his essays on the subject, recently re-published. You’ll find it hasn’t aged a bit.

https://chalcedon.edu/resources/articles/social-justice

Simply speaking, Rushdoony explained that “social justice” differs from God’s justice because it’s made up by self-anointed intellectuals. It is whatever they say it is, from day to day. It could hardly have helped falling into the arms of postmodernism, which spurns day-to-day reality and goes so far as to say everything is just made up.

But because it’s the product of humanist fat-heads, “social justice” can never be true justice. Only God’s justice can be that. Only God’s law is immutable. Intellectuals’ laws are subject to sudden change. That’s what makes them so hard to live with.

Humanism has a lot to answer for.

‘Why Humanism Leads to Statism’

An Urgent Message from Mark Rushdoony

(Good stuff at the Chalcedon website this week; I’m happy to share it with you.)

Mark Rushdoony has hit the bullseye with this one. Humanism always leads to statism.

https://chalcedon.edu/blog/why-humanism-leads-to-statism

Humanists get rid of God, leaving the state–that is, themselves–as the highest possible authority. I know it’s hard to account for what happens next without a concept of Original Sin–but as Christians we have that concept, so we can understand humanism’s inevitable drift into tyranny. The alternative, with every fat-head parading around as his own god, can only be anarchy; but they can’t keep that going for any length of time.

Mark puts it in a nutshell: “The problem is too much power.”

Build the state down, not up!

Our liberties depend on it.

 

‘The Myth of Social Justice’ (1988!)

US riots may cause new COVID-19 cases: expert - Global Times

They wouldn’t know what “justice” is if it came up and bit ’em in the glutes.

Wow! “Social Justice” goes all the way back to 1988! But of course it’s always been with us as an aspect of a fallen and deluded world, albeit under many different names.

James Sauer, writing for Chalcedon in 1988, hit the nail right on the head.

https://chalcedon.edu/magazine/the-myth-of-social-justice

“The aim of social justice,” he declared, “is the establishment of the millenium–without God.” This has been true from the beginning, when the serpent said to Eve, “Ye shall be as gods.”

Now, 32 years later, America is convulsed with riots in her streets, all in the name of Social Justice. But as Mr. Sauer points out, the only relevant consideration, to Social Justice Warriors, is the utopian end: any means to get there are permissible.

It comes from Hell and it smells like brimstone.

‘Science’ Sez… You’re a Fascist!

Fascist Italy: 44 Harrowing Photos Of Life Under Mussolini

If you’re not a liberal, you must be a fascist!

In 1993, when Otto Scott wrote this article for Chalcedon, liberals were still looking for “scientific” reasons to brand as a Nazi anyone who disagreed with them. And “Science” was only too willing to provide them.

https://chalcedon.edu/magazine/the-adorno-scale

“The Adorno Scale,” invented in the early 1950s, was supposed to be a “scientific” means of measuring just how far gone in fascism are whatever people you don’t like. Nowadays, of course, they don’t bother: “Systemic Racism,” “White Privilege” and all that simply state you’re automatically guilty if you’re white. They don’t need any “science” to condemn you. Even leftism has been dumbed down.

Dr. Adorno toyed with the idea of including “hostility to modern art” among his list of “fascist” traits, but dropped it when he convinced himself that the typical American slob had never seen any modern art. You don’t dig Jackson Pollock? Heil, Hitler!

Twenty-seven years later, “Settled Science” is still making mischief, still trying to rule the world, still trying to turn ordinary people into livestock. We don’t hear much of the Adorno Scale anymore, but you can be sure its legacy lives on at every looniversity in the Western world.

 

‘Humanist Doomsday Myth Scares Children’ (2009)

Sully and Mike are back in Monsters Inc prequel trailer Monsters University  | Daily Mail Online

Some years ago, a survey came out reporting that “one in three children fear the demise of the planet” due to Man-Made Climate Change.

https://chalcedon.edu/resources/articles/humanist-doomsday-myth-scares-children

By 2020 this vision of doom had pretty much passed its shelf life, at least in America. But for a while there it was giving children nightmares.

Humanism always needs a boogieman to scare people into compliance with its diktats. And along came COVID-19 to fill that role. Thanks to the panic raised up by the virus, the world has frittered away six out of this year’s nine months so far–shutting down nations’ economies, quarantining all the healthy people along with the sick, destroying small businesses, freaking people out with fear, and generating a malaise that has deadened everything.

There’s always going to be a doomsday myth. In the 1970s it was The Coming Ice Age. We get Doomsday du Jour. All marine life wiped out! White supremacists take over!

The humanists’ god is the State–that is to say, themselves–and denying the real God, they promise to do everything they say God should have done but didn’t, because there is no God. So the State will create paradise on earth–blah-blah-blah, you know the drill. And if they have to break a few eggs to make the omelet… We’ve seen that one, too.

“Yea, let God be true, but every man a liar,” wrote St. Paul (Romans 3:4).

We’ve come uncomfortably close to that.

‘President Trump and Our Post-Secular Future’ by Stephen Turley

President Trump and Our Post-Secular Future: How the 2016 Election Signals  the Dawning of a Conservative Nationalist Age: Turley, Dr. Steve:  9781981807154: Amazon.com: Books

Do we really have a post-secular future? From Dr. Turley’s pen to God’s ear!

https://chalcedon.edu/blog/president-trump-and-our-post-secular-future-a-book-review

He makes quite a few strong arguments, which I’ve touched on in this book review. For him President Donald Trump epitomizes a world-wide conservative, nationalist, religious, and traditionalist blowback against the bashaws and mandarins of secular globalism.

There must be, has to be, millions and millions of people who’ve had it up to here with political correctness, open borders, lousy trade deals, and ruling class arrogance–who are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.

But first we have to overcome the existential threat posed by mail-in voter fraud…

‘Defenders of the Faith’ (2014)

Mark Rushdoony on Charity & Welfare - YouTube

Why do we need anyone to defend the Christian faith?

And what must they defend it from?

Mark Rushdoony answered those questions in this 2014 essay.

https://chalcedon.edu/magazine/defenders-of-the-faith

Mark refutes the contention that the early church was “pure.” Good lord, no! As people throughout the Roman Empire joined the church, they brought all sorts of pagan ideas in with them. The church needed to call authoritative councils to weed out the paganism and state orthodox Christian belief as plainly as possible–which is why we have formal creeds.

We hardly need say that they’re still trying to import pagan notions, and humanist delusions, into the church (can you say “feminist theology”?). Because the church today is split into so many denominations, it’s no longer possible to hold a council that would speak with real authority. So we rely on the ancient creeds to protect us–and to keep us clear about what we believe.

Mark also provides a list of the major heresies the church had to deal with in the first centuries of its history. Most of them are still around, repackaged under new names. Well, that’s Original Sin for you. In a fallen world, we are always obliged to defend the Christian faith.