“The first step on the road to Reformation is the recovery of the normal relations of Church and State. As soon as one realizes this, there awakens in him the zeal that otherwise slumbers.”
Dr. P. J. Hoedemaker (1839-1910)
Opponent to Abraham Kuyper in Kuyper’s gutting BCF Article 36
The FIRST step on the road to Reformation!
Catch what Hoedemaker is saying. Hoedemaker is saying there will be no Reformation that does not start with getting the relation between Church and State right. Why is this the case? Because a State not pinioned on Christian principles with Magistrates who rule consistent with God’s law is a State that is seeking to undermine every Christian principle in the social-order as a whole. One cannot have a Christian social-order while at the same time having a State that is operating upon the basis of some other religion. (And if the State is not operating upon the foundation of a Christian world and life view then it is operating upon the foundation of a anti-Christ world and life view.)
Another aspect of this to consider is that when the “normal relations of Church and State” are askew what this by necessity means is that the State is going to have a disproportionate negative influence on the behalf of some false god. This is especially true in a social-order like ours where the civil state is in everything from our corn-flakes to our tampons to our schools to our colonoscopy. When the “normal relations of Church and State” are not proper in a social-order as top down as ours the result will be that the Church will eventually go as pagan as the State. This is because it remains true that crown and miter always walk together. My point here is heard in the mouth of A. A. Hodge when he wrote,
If the national life in general is organized upon non-Christian principles, the churches which are embraced within the universal assimilating power of that nation will not long be able to preserve their integrity.”
~ A. A. Hodge / 1823 – 1886
As the State here now is the agency which is most responsible for the organization of national life in general in is inevitable that if the “normal relations of Church and State” are out of whack so that the State is beholden to some other God than the God of the Bible the effect will be the paganization eventually of even the Church. We are seeing this today in spades as the visible Church today is increasingly a pale reflection of the theology that drives the State; to wit, Cultural Marxism.
So, Hoedemaker is exactly right. Until the Church and State relationship is once again founded on the absolute authority of Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords those desiring Reformation in their country are just pissing in the wind.