Galatians 3:26f & The Indiscriminate Nature of the Gospel AND the Foolishness of Social Egalitarianism

Galatians 3:26-29

26You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, 27for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

BACKGROUND

To pick up the stream of thought of that which is going before in Galatians we find the emphasis here on Sonship explained by the earlier teaching that before the advent of Christ the people of God were as children under the tutelage of the ceremonial law (3:24-25). The problem in Galatians is that the Judaizers desired to foist upon Gentile Christians the ceremonial law. The Judaizers were in effect saying that in order to become Christians one had to become cultural Jews observing circumcision and Jewish food laws. St. Paul in Galatians argues a resounding “NO” to the Judaizing idea that the Gentiles had to become cultural Jews in order to be Christian.

Christ has come and so the ceremonial law had served its purpose. The ceremonial law were to the people of God before Christ what braces were to a child with weak legs. Once those legs gain their strength the necessity for the braces end. The ceremonial law had the intent of placarding Christ before Christ came but once Christ had arrived in order to be an aid to faith. However with the arrival of Christ those ceremonial law braces are fulfilled and are no longer needed. The case with the Judaizers in Galatia however is that they were telling these non-Jewish converts they had to put the legal braces back on.

The Holy Spirit argues that with the advent of Christ there is no longer a need for braces. The old age that required the law as a tutor for children has passed and the new age wherein we are no longer children but sons of God has dawned.

This is where St. Paul starts in vs 26. There are all Sons of God through faith in Jesus Christ.

Of course the Sonship that Paul speaks is a son-ship by Adoption. Jew or Gentile those brought into the family of God are brought in by Adoption. We have passed through the courtroom and have been declared righteous because of the finished work of Jesus Christ wherein as our substitute our sins are owned by Christ as His own and His righteousness is reckoned to our account. Now having peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ we now have access to the family room. The court room has an exit that leads to the family room and there we find adoption. We are not treated as the former criminals and sinner that we were but now we have concourse and fellowship with God and all the Saints who are now and who have gone before.

We are adopted. We have all the privileges of family. There is the sense of intimacy, the ability to cry out Abba Father, the confidence that God as our Father will provide, protect, comfort, and discipline, each as in turn we need. We are adopted and because of that we can have confidence of the love of God in Christ Jesus.

And the inspired Apostle says that this adoption is through faith in Jesus Christ just as our Justification was through faith in Jesus Christ. Like Justification, this adoption is a forensic / legal category. Our Adoption is not a matter of our emotions or feelings at any given time but it is a matter of being legally true. Because of the finished work of Jesus Christ it is a legal fact that can’t be altered that I / we belong to the family of God. As a legal fact nothing can change that.

Our faith in Jesus Christ holds on to that Adoption just as it holds on to our Justification. Faith in Christ is the key that upon regeneration unlocks all these blessings.

It is interesting that the moment Paul talks about faith in Jesus Christ he immediately turns to Baptism thus joining at the hip again faith and baptism. Faith and Baptism have the closest possible relation. This faith that Paul talks about has as its badge of identity in baptism. Baptism is God’s sign and seal – His token that bespeaks the presence of faith.

So, intimately bound up is Baptism with faith that Paul can say that all of you that have been Baptized into Christ have clothed yourself with Christ. This is yet another objective category statement. Being baptized we have legally identified with Christ. Having been identified with Christ there is no need to go back to those ceremonial laws that the Judaizers wanted to press on the Gentiles. There is no need to run back to the ceremonial law for help with salvation. Instead we have but to look to Christ … look to our Baptism which proclaims Christ … remind ourselves of the faith that was given us as a gift of God.

We should mention here… and I mention this as a self-described theonomist that this is one of the dangers of some versions of theonomy. There is such a high regard for God’s law that it becomes a low regard for Christ. Theonomy if not built with guard rails can become a Judaizing error.

Next, with the mentioning of Sons of God we should briefly remind ourselves of the antithesis this implies along with the concept of adoption and baptism.

Either you are Sons of God or you are not. If you are not you are sons of your father the devil and so are Christ haters. It does not matter how civil, how nice, or how polite you are. If you are not Sons of God through faith in Christ God is opposed to you. Opposed to you every single day and with every single breath. This is what the Scriptures teach and this is what our Heidleberg catechism teaches,

God is terribly displeased with our inborn as well as our actual sins, and will punish them in just judgment in time and eternity, as he has declared: Cursed is everyone that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them (Deut. 27:26).

This is God’s attitude towards all those who do not have faith in Jesus Christ … towards all Christ haters. He is not a neutral God. He is a God who is either all in for His people as His Sons or He is all in as opposed to those who oppose Him. God is angular and will never be made smooth.

But the Gospel commands all men everywhere to repent and have faith and be Baptized and so clothe yourself with Christ. God commands…. will you not give up on your life of weariness characterized by a heavy laden-ness that no man should bear and look to Christ and so become a Son of God? God commands you to give up on gnawing on the vile and unseemly ends of your pathetic selfish life and come to Him to have life and life abundantly. Why would you ever rebel against such a life-giving command?

St. Paul then moves on in vs. 28 he demonstrates that regardless of very real distinctions that exist in their lives when it comes to this matter of Sonship – which is the subject at hand – there are no exceptions. Jews, Greeks, Slaves, Freeman, Men and Women are all alike Sons of God through faith in Jesus Christ … all who have clothed themselves with Christ in Baptism are Sons of God. When it comes to the issues of justification and adoption the ground at the Cross is level. Nobody has more status when it comes to being Sons of God through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

This needed to be said because these Judaizers that the Apostle is contending with had a natural tendency to think of themselves as having a leg up on the Gentiles when it came to this business of being sons of God.

Something we need to realize though is that this text is very specific in the subject matter of which it treats. It is dealing with the issue of how the ground at the Cross is level when it comes to becoming Sons of God. It is not teaching a vapid egalitarianism. We know this if only by the fact that God gave Elders and Pastors to the Church as leaders for the Church. This teaches that there is such a thing as godly hierarchy and that even in the Church. Galatians 3:28 or its parallel passage Colossians 3:11 in no way teaches social egalitarianism.

We pause this morning to give more consideration to Gal. 3:28, if only because this text has become the center of a firestorm in the life of the contemporary Western Church.

In the last few decades, vs. 28 has been appealed to in order to legitimize the understanding that traditional, and heretofore thought to be Biblical role distinctions between men and women, both in the home and in the Church, are invalid, improper, and wrong.

It has been appealed to in such a fashion as to suggest that once people are converted all their creaturely distinctions are destroyed so that in becoming a son of God grace destroys nature. According to this Anabaptist type reasoning, the Church is the one place where enlightenment egalitarianism should be pursued.

Vs. 28 is appealed to as being the text that informs us that as Christians a new social order has dawned that sloughs off the consequences of the fall, which includes the consequence of Male headship in the home and in the Church. Those who make this appeal reason backwards from Galatians 3:28 to suggest that in the creation order and before the fall there was no notion of male headship and it is only with the fall and sin coming into the created order — they reason — that we find male headship. Put concisely, this ‘evangelical’ feminism argues that male headship is a consequence of sin that is reversed in Church and home (and culture where Christ’s rule sways) with the coming of Christ’s Kingdom. Galatians 3:28 is seen as a hermeneutical North star for many in the ‘Evangelical’ feminist camp. This text becomes the healing astringent that all other texts that deal with male and female relationships must be read through since it provides the constant that corrects all the other cultural relative situations with which all other New Testament texts are putatively infected.

We want to note that while this is an interesting and even innovative argument it hopelessly shipwrecks and splinters upon several significant boulders of reality.

First, there is the boulder that up until recently in Church history, no known major Church Theologian outside the Anabaptist camp read Galatians 3:28 in such a way as to suggest that because of the advent of Christ and the arrival of His Kingdom what arrives is this idea of an egalitarian social order that flattens out of all authority (Male and Female), class (Slave and Free), and ethnic (Jew and Gentile) distinctions. What we see then is that the recent hailing of Galatians 3:28 as the text of social egalitarianism is unique and has no historical legs upon which to stand.

Now, we must admit that it is possible that 2000 years of Church history got this text all wrong and further missed the egalitarian New Testament theology that it teaches. Further, we must concede that there may yet be found some Church Theologians in history who read Galatians 3:28 the way that it is being read today. Still, one would think that this lack of clear precedent would cause people to go slow on embracing Galatians 3:28 in a way that no Church Theologian in history, except for the Anabaptists, that we know of has ever embraced it.

Instead, we read from the Fathers quotes like this,

Difference of race or condition or sex is indeed taken away by the unity of faith, but it remains embedded in our mortal interactions, and in the journey of this life the apostles themselves teach that it is to be respected, and they even proposed living in accord with the racial differences between Jews and Greeks as a wholesome rule.

St. Augustine on Galatians 3:28

Regarding our eternal salvation, it is true that one must not distinguish between man and woman, or between king and a shepherd, or between a German and a Frenchman. Regarding policy, however, we have what St. Paul declares here; for our, Lord Jesus Christ did not come to mix up nature, or to abolish what belongs to the preservation of decency and peace among us….Regarding the kingdom of God (which is spiritual) there is no distinction or difference between man and woman, servant and master, poor and rich, great and small. Nevertheless, there does have to be some order among us, and Jesus Christ did not mean to eliminate it, as some flighty and scatterbrained dreamers [believe].”

John Calvin (Sermon on 1 Corinthians 11:2-3)

Second, there is the boulder of the rest of the New Testament Scripture. If it were the case that the Kingdom of Christ eliminates the idea of gender roles, class roles, and ethnic roles we would expect to find a consistent testimony to that end in the NT record, and yet quite to the contrary we find the opposite testimony. The New Testament retains distinction between male and female in Godly homes in passages like I Cor. 11:1-16, 14:34, I Tim. 2:11-14, Ephesians 5:22f, and I Pt. 3:1f. The New Testament retains distinctions between Jew and Gentile in passages like Romans 9-11 where the discussion centers on how Israel will be saved vis-à-vis the Gentiles and retains distinctions between nations that are inferior in some way from other nations (Titus 1:12). The New Testament retains distinctions between Slave and Free in passages like Philemon, Ephesians 6:5-9, Colossians 3:22-4:1, and I Timothy 6:1-2. There is simply no way that a fair-minded person can read the New Testament and conclude that it teaches some kind of social egalitarianism. Everywhere on the New Testament pages is the reality of gender, ethnic, and class distinctions and not in the sense that these distinctions are automatically evil.

Third, there is the boulder of the whole context of Galatians 3. From what we have seen as we have together worked through Galatians 3 the labor of the Apostle in this book is in no way connected to the issue of gender, labor or ethnic roles. Rather the issue in Galatians is how it is that Gentiles do not need to become Jews in order to become Christians. The issue is the freedom that the Gentiles have in Christ quite apart from the desire of the Judaizers to foist upon the Galatians Jewish old Testament covenantal boundary markers that are obsolete because of the finished work of Christ. Galatians speaks up the completely gracious character of God’s salvation. To suddenly come upon vs. 28 and insist that it is the interpretive key that unlocks the revolutionary egalitarian nature of the Kingdom of God is to do egregious violence to the whole text of Galatians. Interpretively, such action is hermeneutical manslaughter.

Context is central in this matter. If I walk into a closed room and see and a 55 year old man hugging and kissing an 18 year old I need context in order to understand what is happening. It may be the case that this is a pervert that is forcing himself upon some young lady in which case I have need to come to her rescue. It may be the case that this is a May — December Marriage in which case I may need to tell them to get a room. And it may be the case that he is her grandfather and he is trying to console her over some kind of loss in which case I should shut the door and mind my own business. Context means everything.

What egalitarians do with Galatians 3:28 in order to support the idea that with the advent of the Gospel role distinctions are eliminated is the same as happening upon a May December Marriage and concluding that the gentlemen needs to be hauled off to jail. ‘Evangelical’ feminists in appealing to Galatians 3:28 in order to support their agenda are contextually challenged. Context means everything and the context of Galatians 3:28 has nothing to do with the elimination of gender, class, or ethnic distinctions that continue to exist in the Kingdom.

John Piper offers here that ,

The context of Galatians 3:28 makes abundantly clear the sense in which men and women are equal in Christ: they are equally justified by faith (v. 24), equally free from the bondage of legalism (v. 25), equally children of God (v. 26), equally clothed with Christ (v. 27), equally possessed by Christ (v. 29), and equally heirs of the promises to Abraham (v. 29).

I would only add that the same is true of Masters and Slaves and Jews and Gentiles.

Galatians 3:28 does nothing to overturn the Historical and Biblical categories that maintain social differences between different people. Now, to be sure Galatians 3:28 does eliminate things like hatred of the brethren that are different from us, precisely because we are all in Christ and are all children of God. The historical hatred of Jew for Gentile, the historical maltreatment of Master over slave, the historical abuse of men upon women was never God’s design but with the advent of Christ and with the bringing in of all these different relationships into the Church the former animosity between these groups is vanquished. BUT saying that former animosity is vanquished and saying that all are now equal in role is to say very different things.

With the advent of Christ and the presence of His Kingdom what the leaven of the Gospel works through home, church, and culture is not the elimination and flattening out of the richness of the varied social tapestry that constitutes life but rather the putting right of the social tapestry that was rent by the fall. With the extension of the Kingdom of Christ what we should expect to find is neither a gender blender society, nor a society where labor and capital distinctions are gathered up into some kind of socialistic nirvana, nor a society where ethnic or racial distinctions are effaced. With the extension of the Kingdom of Christ we should anticipate the restoration of true masculinity and femininity is on display in marriages where incredibly intelligent wives eagerly submit to incredibly humble husbands, who are in a haste to love their wives sacrificially. With the extension of the Kingdom of Christ we should anticipate a renewed harmony of interests between Master and Slave where each realizes that their own interests are best served by looking out for the interest of the other. With the extension of the Kingdom of Christ we should anticipate the different nations (ethnos) being brought into the Kingdom so that on that last day they will enter into the new Jerusalem nation by nation so that what is heard is the beautiful harmony of a multi-part Choir where every still distinct tribe, tongue and nation render praise unto the King of Kings. The extension of the Kingdom of Christ does not result in a situation where all the ‘colors bleed into one.’ That is a socialistic humanistic vision. The extension of the Kingdom of Christ results in the old Puritan notion of the ‘harmony of interests.’

Returning to our boulders we must mention one last boulder that the ship of hermeneutical feminism crashes against as it seeks to twist Galatians 3:28 to its end. The last boulder is that the reading that ‘Evangelical’ Feminism is trying to use for Galatians 3:28 proves too much. If it really is the case that social order distinctions are eliminated in Christ, including that of maleness and femaleness then the Church has little room left to oppose homosexuality in the Church. If Galatians 3:28 teaches that there is no longer male or female in Christ, and if that means that traditional distinctions between men and women no longer exist because of Christ’s Kingdom, then how can we maintain that sexual distinctions are an exception? More then that if the presence of Christ’s Kingdom provides the kind of egalitarianism that these hermeneutical wizards insist upon then where is the room for parental authority over children? If children are equal to parents because they are all in Christ then on what basis can parents require obedience? If that reductio sounds stupid it is supposed to. The only reason that otherwise normal people no longer find the reasoning of ‘Evangelical’ feminists to be equally stupid when it comes to their egalitarian appeals is because we have slowly been conditioned to accept it. In this culture and in the Western Church I may have to live with it but I don’t accept it.

There remain functional differences between gender, labor and ethnic categories. We all are ontologically human but functionally speaking there remains God honoring differences. We all have the same value before God, all being made in God’s image, but just as in a choir both the mezzo Soprano and the Alto are ontologically human, they remain functionally separated. Both of their functions are needed for a good choir and are to be esteemed in their place. A good choir doesn’t get better by making every one sing the same bland part. The same kind of thing is true when it comes to the insipid blandness that is being reached for in terms of male and female, slave and free, Jew and Gentile by the egalitarians among us.

Now returning to Galatians 3:28 we may ask ourselves why the Apostle chooses the three couplets of ‘male – female, slave and free, Jew and Gentile?

Of course we can’t say authoritatively because the text doesn’t authoritatively say but we perhaps can make a pretty good guess. The answer may be very much in keeping with the context that is going on here.

In vs. 29 the Church is reminded that they are ‘heirs according to the promise.’ Now in order to be an heir their must be an inheritance and quite obviously that inheritance is all the blessings that we have in Christ Jesus. In choosing the couplets that he chooses the Holy Spirit may be intimating the superior character of the new and better covenant as opposed to the old and worse covenant. Under the Old Testament law, Greeks, slaves, and females could not inherit land and property directly. These were restricted in the life of the old covenant. However in the New and better covenant the anti-type inheritance has come to which the inheritance of land and property in the OT was only a type, and it comes in such a way that people from every tribe, tongue, nation, class, gender, and economic strata can directly inherit. The inheritance cocoon that was the Old covenant produces a butterfly inheritance that is beyond and above what anybody in the Old covenant could have anticipated. No boundaries are erected to the inheritance of salvation. All may inherit. All may become sons of God.

And the effect of the fullness of that inheritance coming to more and more people including the renewal that is part of it is not an ugly egalitarianism where all distinction and diversity is crushed. That can only be some kind of Unitarian vision where the singleness and unitary character of God produces a bland and unitary character of culture. No, the Trinitarian Christian vision is that the effect of the inheritance coming to more and more people makes for a renewal where people in their different God honoring roles and places work increasingly together to advance the Glory of God by honoring God in the places and roles to which they have been placed and called.

Christianity Champions Nationalism… Reformed Giant Dr. Francis Nigel Lee Speaks

“Sixthly, in looking at the Christian view of nationality, it was seen: that the Triune God ordained all the various (mineral, plant, and animal) kingdoms of His universe and that He alone rules the nations of men; that man’s obedience to the “dominion charter” would ultimately have led to the development of the various nations to the glory of God, even irrespective of the fall; that nationality is a historically grounded and plastically qualified societal relationship proceeding sphere sovereignty and directly from God; that sin has marred national development and international relationships; that the supranational tower of Babel (cI. the aim of communist eschatology!) was destroyed by God because contrary to His purposes as set out in the “dominion charter”; that the existence of the various nationalities and languages was thus caused by God and is pleasing to Him; that national isolation and supranational miscegenation are both equally wrong, for God would have all nations worship Him and love one another as nations; that Christ enjoined both love of one’s own nation and of other nations but particularly the Christianization of all the nations (in His Great Commission); that the events of the first New Testament day of Pentecost, while promoting good international relationships, also reinforced and sanctified nationality as such and in no way sought to transcend it; and that New Testament Christians maintained their nationality and taught that others should do the same,142 while yet working for improved national and international relationships as part of and as a result of their obedience to Christ’s mandate to evangelize all the nations, until all nations have become Christianized and, even after the final judgment, maintain their nationality and live in perfect harmony with the other nations in the new Jerusalem forever with all nations under the Triune God!

So the Christian doctrine of nationality is diametrically opposed to that of Marxism. Nations are a necessary product of man’s creation, not his alienation; Christ’s atonement principally heals the nations;143 and eschatologically the nations will preserve their nationality unto all eternity, and not lose it in a colorless communist utopia.

“God that made the world and all things therein, . . hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; that they should seek the Lord, if haply they feel after Him, and find Him, though He is not far from every one of us . . but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17.24-30).

“The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved. . – He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth. . . Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen [- the nations], I will be exalted in the earth” (Ps. 46:6-10).

Dr. Francis Nigel Lee
Communist Eschatology — pg. 773 – 774

Golden Oldie … Nationalism & Christianity

“When evangelicals embrace an America-first nationalism, the gospel is co-opted and betrayed.”

“… Nationalism gives pride of place to ourselves, to regional or national assertions of primacy and the quest for power and success, control and dominance, legitimizing violence and pressing for victory.  Nationalism reveals that we have mis-ordered worship. Religiously motivated nationalism simply turns God into our “godling,” a deity subject to our bidding.”

Mark Labberton
President of Fuller Seminary

Naturally enough, there can be no “Nationalism” without the idea of “Nation.” So, just to make sure we are all working with the same definitions I offer some textbook definitions of “Nation” to begin.

Strong’s Concordance
ethnos: a race, a nation, pl. the nations (as distinct from Isr.)

Original Word: ἔθνος, ους, τό
Part of Speech: Noun, Neuter
Transliteration: ethnos
Phonetic Spelling: (eth’-nos)
Short Definition: a race, people, the Gentiles
Definition: a race, people, nation; the nations, heathen world, Gentiles.

KJV Dictionary Definition: nation

NATION, n. to be born

1. A body of people inhabiting the same country, or united under the same sovereign or government; as the English nation; the French nation. It often happens that many nations are subject to one government; in which case, the word nation usually denotes a body of people speaking the same language or a body that has formerly been under a distinct government but has been conquered, or incorporated with a larger nation. Thus the empire of Russia comprehends many nations, as did formerly the Roman and Persian empires. Nation, as its etymology imports, originally denoted a family or race of men descended from a common progenitor, like tribe…

Having established what “nation” means, I offer here a definition of “Nationalism.” Nationalism is a proper love for one’s own people and for one’s own place.

 In this article, I intend to take issue with President Labberton’s conclusions regarding Nationalism. I am convinced this needs to be done so because the love of people and place (i.e. — Nationalism) has taken it on the chin lately as seen in the recent MLK-50 conference as well as sermons and postings by various putative leading light evangelicals.  “Nationalism,” like “racism” is become a pejorative to sling at people in order to shame them, fill them with guilt, and ultimately shut them up.

To my knowledge, no Evangelical has ever used the word “Nationalism” to describe their beliefs as President Labbereton has used the word “Nationalism” here to describe the beliefs of Evangelicals who self-identify as “Nationalists,” and who thus embrace “Nationalism.” As such, Labberton’s description above of “Nationalism” to define Evangelical Nationalists has no objective meaning apart from its intended work as a polemical sobriquet. If no Evangelical Nationalists embraces for himself the definition of Nationalism given by President Labberton and if further President Labberton’s definition is only attached to a construct (Nationalism) that is inherently wicked per Labberton, then the word and definition is only intended to be a kind of verbal biological weapon that is intended to poison the well before a conversation on Nationalism can begin.

Having noted the above it can be conceded that there have been many rancid and un-Christian examples of Nationalism, particularly in the 20th century. One only needs to consider the Nationalisms which combined with Marxist social theory to give us Mussolini’s Italy,  Hitler’s Germany, and Allende’s Chile. However, all, because Nationalism has been abused in practice, doesn’t mean that a proper Nationalism is inherently wicked everywhere and at all times. There are numerous examples of bad marriages but that does not prove that we need to denounce marriage as an institution. Similarly, all because Nationalism has been perverted that doesn’t mean we need to rid ourselves of a proper Nationalism where there is a proper love of our people and a love of our place.

 

Vis-a-vis President Labberton and his assault on Nationalism we agree with an older Christianity as expressed by Rev. Hugh M’Neile, in his 1839 sermon “Nationalism in Religion,’

“We cannot agree in that cosmopolitan view of Christianity which undermines the particularities of our National Establishment, any more than we could agree in such a cosmopolitan view of philanthropy as would extinguish domestic affections, in all their vivid and constraining peculiarity of influence.”

Christianity without Nationalism cannot be Christianity if only because the only other option left is Christianity as Internationalism or Cosmopolitanism. Such a creature is nowhere envisioned in the Scriptures, though to listen to many prominent clerical voices of “Christian” modernity the only option possible for Christianity in terms of social ordering is an Internationalism that finds all nations, and all colors, in the words of that famous theologian, Bono, “bleeding into one.”

Christian Nationalism is everywhere seen in the NT. Indeed, there is no evidence anywhere of any such thing as Christian Cosmopolitanism or Christian Internationalism. Christ teaches Nationalism when He teaches, “other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring.” Christ teaches Nationalism when He said that he originally was going only to the lost tribes of Israel. Christ teaches Nationalism when He calls a foreigner a “dog” and says that “it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” Jesus teaches Nationalism when He says “before Him shall be gathered all nations.” In a less than flattering fashion, the New Testament teaches Nationalism when the inspired Apostle says, “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons,” and then more positively when he laments, “I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, the people of Israel.” Paul supports Nationalism in the Galatians controversy when he resists Peter’s Christian Internationalism which required the Gentiles to become cultural Jews before they could be considered Christian. Nationalism is given Christ’s imprimatur when, in the great commission, He commands His men to go forth and disciple the nations. And the success of that work of the Church is testified to in the book of Revelation when we read that the nations in the new Jerusalem will walk by the light of the glory of God and when John the Revelator writes, “and the leaves of the trees will be for the healing of the nations.” So central are Nations to the Biblical mindset that the inspired St. Paul could write, “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth.” The importance of Nationalism is testified to by the genealogical lines in Matthew 1 and Luke 3. Jesus had to be a blood son of David from the tribe of Judah.

At Pentecost, those who were in Jerusalem heard the Apostles speaking in their own National tongue, not in a Gnostic Esperanto. The Church always took shape in particular cities (Colosse, Ephesus, Phillip) particular nations, and among particular peoples. So nation-minded is the New Testament that Paul in Acts 16 receives a call not from an Internationalist man but from a Macedonian man. From this plea of the Macedonian man, the most momentous event in the history of the nations of Europe and the West came to pass, to wit, the coming of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the sons of the West and the eventual creation of Christendom. Nationalism is God’s gift to mankind and apart from Biblical Nationalism, there can be no Christianity.

Indeed, historically, the enemies of Christ have understood this very point even if modern putative Evangelicals do not. The enemies of Christ have written that their intent is to destroy the whole concept of nations. I offer just a few, mindful that the careless attacks by President Labberton and many other putative Evangelicals are really doing the devil’s work,

1.) ”What will be the attitude of communism to existing nationalities?

The nationalities of the peoples associating themselves in accordance with the principle of community will be compelled to mingle with each other as a result of this association and hereby to dissolve themselves, just as the various estate and class distinctions must disappear through the abolition of their basis, private property.”

~ Frederick Engels in “The Principles of Communism”, 1847

2.) “The equality of races and nations is one of the most important elements of the moral strength and might of the Soviet state. Soviet anthropology develops the one correct concept, that all the races of mankind are biologically equal. The genuinely materialist conception of the origin of man and of races serves the struggle against racism, against all idealist, mystic conceptions of man, his past, present and future.”

—Mikhail Nesturkh, Soviet anthropologist, 1959
“The Origin of Man” (Moscow)Mikhail Nesturkh, Soviet anthropologist, 1959:

3.) “The aim of socialism is not only to abolish the present division of mankind into small states and end all national isolation; not only to bring the nations closer together but to merge them….”

Vladimir Lenin
The Rights of Nations to Self Determination — pg. 76

4.) “… Just as mankind can achieve the abolition of classes only by passing through the dictatorship of the proletariat, so mankind can achieve the inevitable merging of nations only by passing through the transition period of complete liberation of all oppressed nations, i.e., their right to secede. “

Vladimir Lenin 
The Rights of Nations to Self Determination 

5.) “Even the natural differences within species, like racial differences…, can and must be done away with historically.” 

K. Marx’s Collected Works V:103,
As cited in S.F. Bloom’s The World of Nations: A
Study of the National Implications in the Work of Karl Marx, Columbia University Press, New York, 1941, pp. 11 & 15-19:

6.) “Full-scale Communist construction constitutes a new stage in the development of national relations in the U.S.S.R., in which the nations will draw still closer together until complete unity is achieved…. However, the obliteration of national distinctions and especially of language distinctions is a considerably longer process than the obliteration of class distinctions.”

Nikita Khrushchev

It has gotten to the point in the Evangelical and Reformed world that when one listens to lectures and sermons on social ordering one finds themselves wondering if they are listening to the mouthpieces of God or the mouthpieces of Gramsci.

Usually, at this point, the great Galatians 3:26 objection arises in order to authoritatively end any talk of the glories of a Christ-centered Nationalism,

28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

Briefly, let it be said that there is no fluid nationality suggested in this text any more than there is fluid gender; no more is a trans-nationality or uni-nationality implied by “neither Jew nor Greek” than feminism or sodomy, or transgenderism is implied by “neither male nor female”, nor is a universal declaration of human rights implied by “neither slave nor free.”

Nationalism is the biblical a-priori — the great presupposition of all the New Testament. This is so true that any and every attack on Christian Nationalism is an attack on the very foundations of Biblical Christianity. On this point, we agree with the 2oth century Reformed Christian Theologian, Dr. Francis Nigel Lee,

“One of the very reasons that Paul desired that the Gentiles become Christians was not only so that the Gentiles themselves may be blessed but also so that the Gentiles, then as Christians, may proceed to provoke his own Israelitic nation to jealousy and thereafter to faith in Christ. Accordingly, I think we must judge that every Christian who does not love his own nation is either an ungrateful cosmopolitan rascal and a rebuilder of the tower of Babel or otherwise is woefully ignorant of Scripture. And, I am sorry to say that the world is full of these kinds of people today.”

Eliminate the nations and you will eliminate Christianity because

1.) Nationalism is but the next concentric circle of familialism. One can not destroy nations without also destroying the family. Does anyone really want to argue that God intends families to integrate into oblivion?

2.) Christianity cannot take root in a petri-dish of Internationalism and Cosmopolitanism due to its covenantal nature. Even the promise of the Gospel is predicated upon nationalism as Peter says on the Day of Pentecost, “The promise is for you and for your children, and for as many who are afar off as the Lord our God may call.” But even those afar off who were called were called in their families as seen by the household Baptisms.

3.) You make void one of the earliest Gospel promises,

Genesis 22:18 “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because thou hast obeyed My voice.”

How can it be the case that all the nations of the earth will be blessed if one insists that we “imagine there are no countries?”

All of this is why Dr. Pierre Courthial can say in his book, “A New Day of Small Beginnings,”

“In giving the Church a mission to the nations, Jesus does not diminish the importance of the individual… At stake is the salvation, well-being, and peace of the nations, that is, societies as God would have them. The Son of God must ‘rule all nations’ (Rev. 12:5). The nations must bow down before the Lord and come to walk in His light (Rev. 15:4; 21:24). These nations, with their cultures, traditions, and religions turned away from the God of Holy Scripture, are called to be converted to a sure salvation. This conversion of a nation does not happen apart from the individual lives of faithful Christians, but precisely through the influence of such lives. Moreover, each nation’s conversion is to reflect the uniqueness of that nation.”

Nations, and by extension, Nationalisms are foundational to Christianity. God’s well-known intent to save the whole cosmos (world) happens via the saving of the Nations, which per Courthial, are converted consistent with their uniqueness as nations.

This warfare against nationalism in favor of cosmopolitanism/ Internationalism that we are currently living as witnesses through, such as is being waged by those bearing the ironic names of “The Gospel Coalition” and “American Vision” is giving us nothing but pure Cultural Marxist paganism claptrap wrapped up in Jesus talk. All of it goes quite against what the Dutch-American Reformed Theologian Dr. Geerhardus Vos wrote,

“Nationalism, within proper limits, has the divine sanction; an imperialism that would, in the interest of one people, obliterate all lines of distinction is everywhere condemned as contrary to the divine will. Later prophecy raises its voice against the attempt at world-power, and that not only, as is sometimes assumed, because it threatens Israel, but for the far more principal reason, that the whole idea is pagan and immoral.

Now it is through maintaining the national diversities, as these express themselves in the difference of language, and are in turn upheld by this difference, that God prevents realization of the attempted scheme… [In this] was a positive intent that concerned the natural life of humanity. Under the providence of God, each race or nation has a positive purpose to serve, fulfillment of which depends on relative seclusion from others.”

God still deals with people as being members of nations, peoples, and races. This is a very unsavory truth for the modern Evangelical with their love affair for the erasure of all the creation distinctions God created us with. God has not given up on Nations anymore than He has given up on Families from where nations arise. When St. Paul wrote, “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel,” the Spirit of the living God was teaching Nationalism. When Jesus, from the Cross, cared for His own Mother entrusting her to His kinsmen, John, Christ was teaching Nationalism. In Romans 9 where we hear St. Paul weep over his special love for his kinsmen, the Holy Spirit is teaching Nationalism.

Nationalism is really a very simple idea. We have been redeemed by Christ with the intent that we should take on the image of Christ just as Adam was made in the image and likeness of God. And, like Adam in the garden, we are now restored to being Priests, and as Adam was a Priest of God tasked with the responsibility to guard and cultivate his family and land, so we now, as restored Priests under sovereign God take up the task of guarding and cultivating our God-given people and our God-given land. This is Nationalism.

If we will not have Nationalism, neither will we have Christianity.