In a blog post at Heidleblog Dr. R. Scott Clark basically tells us that if we were smart like him and had the smart books he has read we would see how foolish we are for daring to disagree with him on Radical Two Kingdom theology. Clark, the anti-nomian, accuses R. J. Rushdoony of writing a talmudic three volume set on God’s law. Well, I suppose to RJR does look talmudic when viewed through the lens of those who hate God’s law.
Anyway, here is the take-away quote from Scott’s first blog post;
“There has been a certain degree of controversy in some quarters of the confessional Reformed world over the recovery of the “two kingdoms” as a way of thinking about Christ and culture and ethics. The qualifier some is important here because anyone who knows the history of Reformed theology knows that faithful, confessional theologians have been speaking of God’s “twofold government” (duplex regimen and duplex regnum) or “two kingdoms” since the 16th century. It is not a novelty but so divorced are enough contemporary Reformed Christians from their own tradition and heritage that when this way of speaking re-surfaced in 2010 it was taken, in some quarters as a radical departure from Reformed theology.”
It is true that Reformed Two Kingdom theology has been around for centuries. It’s also true the R2K theology is a completely different beast from historic Reformed Two Kingdom theology. This has been admitted to by no less a person then Scott’s colleague and R2K guru David Van Drunen. In an office hours interview Van Drunen admits;
“I have tried my best to make a kind of NEW Biblical-theological argument for why there needs to be a generous measure of tolerance and religious liberty and I am happy to hear back from other people who want to engage that argument seriously.”
Notice the bold print. This is another key admission. Forever, R2K has flip-flopped on the issue of whether their version of “Christianity” is the faith once and forever delivered unto the saints or something completely innovative that no Christian has ever seen before. Here, in the bold print, we have admission from one of the key architects of R2K that what he has done is completely innovative. No Christian who has ever lived as ever seen what DVD has done with R2K. I find this beyond significant.
The historic Reformed Two Kingdom was not interested in tolerance and so called religious liberty as sundry quotes on Iron Ink have demonstrated repeatedly. Here are just a couple;
“Then let us not think that this Law is a special Law for the Jews; but let us understand that God intended to deliver us a general rule, to which we must yield ourselves … Since, it is so, it is to be concluded, not only that it is lawful for all kings and magistrates, to punish heretics and such as have perverted the pure truth; but also that they be bound to do it, and that they misbehave themselves towards God, if they suffer errors to rest without redress, and employ not their whole power to shew greater zeal in their behalf than in all other things.”
Sermon on Deuteronomy
In a treatise against pacifistic Anabaptists who maintained a doctrine of the spirituality of the Church (just like R2K) which abrogated the binding authority of the case law (just like R2K) Calvin wrote,
“They (the Anabaptists) will reply, possibly, that the civil government of the people of Israel was a figure of the spiritual kingdom of Jesus Christ and lasted only until his coming, I will admit to them that in part, it was a figure, but I deny that it was nothing more than this, and not without reason. For in itself it was a political government, which is a requirement among all people. That such is the case, it is written of the Levitical priesthood that it had to come to an end and be abolished at the coming of our Lord Jesus (Heb. 7:12ff) Where is it written that the same is true of the external order? It is true that the scepter and government were to come from the tribe of Judah and the house of David, but that the government was to cease is manifestly contrary to Scripture.”
Treatise against the Anabaptists and against the Libertines, pp. 78-79
“But it is questioned whether the law pertains to the kingdom of Christ, which is spiritual and distinct from all earthly dominion; and there are some men, not otherwise ill-disposed, to whom it appears that our condition under the Gospel is different from that of the ancient people under the law; not only because the kingdom of Christ is not of this world, but because Christ was unwilling that the beginnings of His kingdom should be aided by the sword. But, when human judges consecrate their work to the promotion of Christ’s kingdom, I deny that on that account its nature is changed. For, although it was Christ’s will that His Gospel should be proclaimed by His disciples in opposition to the power of the whole world, and He exposed them armed with the Word alone like sheep amongst the wolves, He did not impose on Himself an eternal law that He should never bring kings under His subjection, nor tame their violence, nor change them from being cruel persecutors into the patrons and guardians of His Church.”
Commentaries on the Four Last Books of Moses – p. 77.
What Clark and Van Drunen have done, in a act of linguistic deception, is emptied the previous meaning of historic Reformed Two Kingdom and have filled the words “Historic Reformed Two Kingdom” with a completely different content. There is no way in Hades that a Knox, or a Calvin would recognize Escondido’s R2K as having anything in common with their R2K project.