Pluralism / Postmodernism are Myths

plu·ral·ism/ˈplo͝orəˌlizəm/
noun

  1. a political theory or system of power-sharing among a number of political parties.

2. a theory or system that recognizes more than one ultimate principle.

Pluralism says … “There are many ways to acceptably arrive at truth.” However what is really being said here is, “the one way In order to arrive at truth is to allow many ways to arrive at truth.”

So … the pluralist is not really being pluralistic because he has one way to truth that requires that many ways be allowed as ways to truth. The false pluralist will viciously disagree with the honest non pluralist who says contrary to the false pluralist, “there is only one way to truth and that one way is this one way.”

You see the argument is not really over whether there is more than one way to truth. The argument is over the pluralists one way to truth which is many ways and the non pluralists one way to truth which is one way.

Pluralism is a myth.

The same kind of reasoning is true for postmodernism as well. Postmodernism claims there is no such thing as capital “T” truth allowing for a plurality of truths that are unique to both small identifiable groups and even as unique to individuals. Everyone has their own truth, or so the theory goes.

But of course, like pluralism, this is all myth. Postmodernism does indeed have capital “T” truth and that capital “T” truth is that there is no such thing as capital “T” truth. As such, per postmodernism, any system that says there is such a thing as capital “T” truth is denying the capital “T” truth of postmodernism and so is ruled out a-priori as truth. So, postmodernism is not really about people having each their own truths but rather is a totalistic system that demands that everyone bow to their capital “T” truth.

Postmodernism is a myth.

America As Place or Idea? Carville and Campaign 2020

“You have to defeat Trumpism. You have to defeat the idea that America is a place and not an idea.”

James Carville

Even as an old man now, Carville continues ragin’ like the Cajun he is. However, this rage is refreshing if only because it lays bare the Democratic agenda.

Carville, in this interview, was going off on how the Democrats have to landslide Trump’s “fat ass” in the 2024 election in order to forever put to rest the idea of Trumpism, which Carville interprets, as meaning the vision that America is a place and not an idea. This is the old debate of “America as a propositional nation (Carville’s “America as idea”) and “America as place” characterized by people group identity, love of physical home, and love of forebears and descendants who together make America a identifiable place that can not be inhabited by third world denizens without destroying it as a recognizable place. It is the difference between America as an abstraction (Carville) and America as a concrete transgenerational entity (Trump in his better moments). It is the difference between the vision of the Globalists who intend to turn the whole world into their singular idea (call it what you will) and the vision of the Nationalists who desire to keep America for Americans.

In Carville’s and the Democratic vision America is welded together by people who affirm the same propositions. It doesn’t matter if you’re a feminist, an Asian, a sodomite, a trucker, a Black man, a transsexual, a business owner, an abortion doctor, a Homemaker, or an illegal Muslim immigrant from Somalia, because you can all affirm the same ideas and therefore can all be Americans. A shared history, a shared language, a shared kinship, a shared culture in the Democratic vision is verboten and is un-American. For the Carvillian Democratic vision America is an idea that can redefined according to the needs of the moment.

Actually, these two visions (America as a place vs. America as an idea) is really part of the larger philosophical debate between America as being and America as becoming. For those who see America as a place, America is definable, whereas for those who see America as an idea American is in process of being defined. Between those two beliefs stands the devil and the deep blue sea.

Of course it is my conviction, contra Carville, that America is and always has been a place before it is an idea. Alternately, it is my idea that America is a place and not an abstracted idea. I put it this way because I am fully confident that Carville sees America as a place as well as an idea, but Carville’s vision of America as a place is characterized by the idea that America is where people come if they want to live in a place that has no roots, no historical identity, no sense of kinship. Carville’s definition of America is Scripture’s definition of Hell.

If I were the Trump campaign I would run this Carville quote in a negative add spot and I may well make it the cornerstone of my campaign.

Commercial opens with Carville quote and the segues to the camera panning majestic American countryside. Shows farmers combining Wheat…. dockworkers unloading ships … ranchers feeding cattle … lobster-man working their boats. Scenes like this continue with the following voice over.

“Democrats desire America to be an idea… an abstraction. They desire to deny that Americans have reflected America. We are people of rugged individualism precisely because the place we call home is characterized by its rugged beauty.

America is not an idea. America is the place where our parents, Grandparents and Great-grandparents lived and died. It is the place where our children are growing up. America is no more an idea than the homes we live in are ideas or the family reunions we have are ideas. America is a place and if America ever becomes merely an idea — a set of propositions — America is finished as America.

Our Founders understood that. Listen to just one of them,

“Providence has been pleased to give this one connected country to one united people, a people descended from the same ancestors, speaking the same language, professing the same religion, attached to the same principles of government, very similar in their manners and customs, without which a common and free government would be impossible.” ~~John Jay, Federalist #2

America a place? Always if I am your President.”

I’m Donald Trump and I support this message.

Kingdom of God Diminished by Twisting Scripture

Dear Pastor,

Can I ask you to speak to the idea that the Kingdom of God is “not a political movement?” How are we to understand Paul who said “the kingdom of God is not meat and drink but righteousness, joy, and peace in the Holy Spirit”? This seems to be the most common scripture I hear in response to the idea that Christians should work to see the Kingdom of God impact all of society. This in addition to quoting Christ who said “My kingdom is not of this world.” I should clarify that I was suggesting that when people try to discourage me from reading so called social reform in the New testament they are implying that I am looking to the state or to man made laws to cure society…. They just cannot fathom how changing law’s is supposed to change people. You “cannot legislate morality” after all!

Noa in Hawaii

Dear Noa,

Thanks for asking your question. My “smoking crack” comment was an attempt at a little levity that fell flat. It’s just that it is hard for me to understand how people can’t understand the simple concept that we are talking about.

First, I honestly have no idea how anybody could appeal to Romans 14:17 as a passage to prove that the Kingdom of God does not or should not have impact on our varying cultural institutions (including but not exclusively our political institutions).

1Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 

Keep in mind Noa, that the passage here is in the context of the issue of disputable matters which includes differing convictions of believers on what foods should and should not be consumed. St. Paul, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is making the case that the kinds of matters brought up in Romans 14 are what are called adiaphora (actions that morality neither mandates nor forbids). St. Paul is communicating that the Kingdom of God is not concerned with the adiaphora. He is not commenting on the impact of the Kingdom of God upon the cultural institutions of those who are occupants of the Kingdom of God.

St. Paul is warning against trivializing the Kingdom of God by majoring on the minors. In Romans 14 both contesting parties are making a big to do about comparatively nothing. It is hard to see how Romans 14 can be twisted to prove that the Kingdom of God is inert in effecting any number of movements.

Secondly, in terms of the next text (John 18:36) people use to dismiss you I would note that John 18:36 does not teach that the Lord Christ abdicated His authority in the public square. What is being taught in this phrase was captured by the Scholar B. F. Wescott, speaking of John 18:36 could comment,

“Yet He did claim a sovereignty, a sovereignty of which the spring and the source was not of earth but of heaven. My Kingdom is not of this world (means it) does not derive its origin or its support from earthly sources.”

The Gospel According To John — pg. 260

Dr. Greg Bahnsen echoing Wescott’s work wrote,

“‘My kingdom is not of [ek: out from] this world,’” is a statement about the source — not the nature — of His reign, as the epexegetical ending of the verse makes obvious: ‘My kingdom is not from here [enteuthen].’ The teaching is not that Christ’s kingdom is wholly otherworldly, but rather that it originates with God Himself (not any power or authority found in creation.)”

Dr. Greg Bahnsen
God & Politics — pg. 27

John 18:36  is often put forth as a defeater passage for the comprehensive Kingship of the Lord Jesus over this world. Bahnsen clearly shows here, quite in agreement with the Greek scholar B. F. Westcott, that God’s Kingdom, as it manifests itself in this world, is energized by a source outside this world. This is important to emphasize because many people read John 18:36 as proof that the Kingdom of Jesus does not and should not express itself in this world. Often this verse is appealed to in order to prove that God’s Kingdom is only “spiritual” and as such Christians shouldn’t be concerned about what are perceived as “non-spiritual” realms. Support for such thinking, if there is any, must come from passages other than John 18:36.

What we get from some contemporary Calvinists, is the quote of Christ telling Pilate that ‘His Kingdom is not of this World,’ as if that is to end all conversation on the Lordship of Christ over all cultural endeavors. What is forgotten is the way that John often uses the word ‘World.’ John often uses the word ‘World’ with a sinister significance to communicate a disordered reality in grip of the Devil set in opposition to God. If that is the way that the word ‘world’ is being used in John 18:36 then we can understand why Jesus would say that His Kingdom ‘was not of this world.’ The Kingdom of Jesus will topple the Kingdoms of this disordered world changing them to be the Kingdoms of His ordered world, but it won’t be done by the disordered methodology of this World and so Jesus can say, “My Kingdom is not of this World.” Hopefully, we can see that such a statement doesn’t mean that Christ’s Kingdom has no effect in this world or that Christ’s Kingdom can’t overcome the world.

John 18:36 is often appealed to in order to prove that the Kingdom of God is a private individual spiritual personal reality that does not impinge on public square practice(s) of peoples or nations corporately considered. Those who appeal to John 18:36 in this way are prone thus to insist that God’s Word doesn’t speak to the public square practice(s) of peoples or nations since such an appeal (according to this thinking) would be an attempt to wrongly make God’s Kingdom of this world.

The problem with this though is it that it is a misreading of the passage. When Jesus say’s “My Kingdom is not of this world,” his use of the word “world” here is not spatial. Jesus is not saying that His Kingdom does not impact planet earth. What Jesus is saying is that His Kingdom does not find its source of authority from the world as it lies in Adam.

Jesus brings a Kingdom to this world that is in antithetical opposition to the Kingdom of Satan that presently characterizes this world in this present wicked age. The Kingdom that Jesus brings has its source of authority in His Father’s Word. As a result of Christ bringing His Kingdom with His advent there are two Kingdoms that are vying for supremacy on planet earth. Scripture teaches that the Kingdom of the “age to come” that characterizes Christ’s present Kingdom will be victorious in this present spatial world that is characterized by “this present wicked age,” precisely because, in principle, Christ’s Kingdom is already victorious in this present spatial world.

What this means of course for many many Christians is the necessity to jettison the Humanist thinking that insists that we must have separation of Christianity and State. If we separate and divorce Christianity and State … if we separate the State, from the Kingship of Christ, the result will be that the State itself will take up the mantle of Christ’s Kingship and we will then be ruled as by a Tyrant.

Thirdly, if we are looking to the State to effect cultural change it will be a looking to a state as it is manned and directed by Biblical Christians. Your “friends” who seem to be dismissing your thoughts don’t seem to realize that we do not view the state as an abstraction. The state runs by the men who occupy it. If those men are pagan the state is going to give us pagan laws. If those men are Christians the state is going to walk in terms of God’s law. The state will not bring in the Kingdom of God but the Kingdom of God will bring in a state as leveraged by Christian men and the way that God will do that is to raise up Christian men who call on those men who comprise the pagan state to repent, much like John the Baptist called on Herod to repent for having his brother’s wife.

Finally, as to the quip, “you cannot legislate morality,” I have to ask, “what else can one legislate except morality?” All legislation is an expression of someone’s morality, which in turn is an expression of the God of those doing the legislating. I would say, to the contrary, that all one can do is legislate morality. Now, the question is; “whose morality do we desire to legislate?” It is quite true that legislation will not change men’s hearts. However that has never been the intent of the politicus usus of the law. The intent of the political use of the law is govern sinners according to God’s standards. The political use of the law does not convert sinners but it does restrain sinners from being as totally depraved as they might otherwise be. So, whoever is trying to use the argument that “you can’t legislate morality” as some kind of proof that the Kingdom of God is not supposed to impact men’s institutions just does not have a grasp on the different uses of God’s law.

Should God be pleased to grant Reformation and so the reappearance of Biblical Christianity you just wait and see how much morality can be legislated. Christian legislators will legislate morality at every turn. However, that legislation still will not and can not convert men’s hearts.


From the Mailbag; “Secular Government”

Dear Pastor,

I’m constantly being told that the idea that Christ expects civil (governments), to obey his law is to return to types and shadows (the Old Testament), which is no longer applicable or humane or relevant. (1) To them there is always a dichotomy (false) between Christ and the state which they view as mutually exclusive realms (2a) since they insist Christians are not under the law.(2b) The magistrate of Romans 13 is simply Caesar to whom we pay our taxes for certain benefits.(3) This would be Road repair national defense and so on.(3) To them once anyone try’s to assign any kind of theological basis for the state they see this as sacrilege and worshiping the state.(4) Somehow they expect the state to be under mans dominion and the church under Christ’s dominion.(5) Lot of hand washing going on that doesn’t seem right. Could you speak to that?

Noa in Hawaii

Hello Noa,

Thanks for the observation. We have covered this type of things many times before on Iron Ink but we will give it a spin again since this is such a common error in most Churches.

1.a) The whole premise behind the idea that we have nothing to do with God’s law is based on the unproven and un-provable idea of radical discontinuity between earlier revelation and later revelation. Most solid hermeneutical principles insist, to the contrary, that earlier revelation is retained unless it is specifically negated in later revelation. So, for example, the blood sacrificial system of the Old Testament is specifically repudiated in the New Testament because all it anticipated was fulfilled with the arrival of Christ as seen especially in the book of Hebrews and elsewhere as well. As such we do not sacrifice animals for atonement. As Christians we no longer engage with what are characterized as the “ceremonial laws.”

1.b) However, that discontinuity does not apply principally to God’s civil law as expressed in the Old Testament. Jesus Himself said that,

17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. 18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

That the Lord Christ intended what we now call the civil law (judicial law) to be considered is seen in Matthew 23,

23 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.

Notice here that while Jesus does say that there are weightier matters of the law, those less weighty should still be practiced.

Theologian B. B. Warfield said of this passage in Matthew,

He (Jesus) means to say not merely that they (jots and tittles) should be accomplished, but that they shall be accomplished. The words are very emphatic. The “all,” standing in correlation with the “one” of the “one jot” and “one tittle,” declares that all the jots and all the tittles of the law shall be accomplished. Not one shall fail. The expression itself is equivalent to a declaration that a time shall come when in this detailed perfection, the law shall be observed.

This amounts to a promise that the day shall surely come for which we pray when, in accordance with Jesus’ instruction we ask, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done as in heaven so on earth.”


Notice that Warfield expects a time to come in space and time history when God’s law, with all its jots and tittles, will be practiced on earth as it is in heaven. This is a proclamation that the Christian remains responsible to God’s case laws.

A good book, if you can get your hands on a copy, on how the Reformed Divines have handled the ongoing validity of God’s civil law is Martin Foulner’s little book, “Theonomy and the Westminster Confession.” Foulner piles quote upon quote demonstrating that the view, now found in even in putatively Reformed quarters, that the case laws of the Old Testament are no longer valid, was not a view shared by the Westminster Divines.

Next one needs to consider the Westminster Confession itself when it teaches,

IV. To them also, as a body politic, he gave sundry judicial laws,
which expired together with the state of that people, not obligating
any other now, further than the general equity thereof may require.


Keep your eye on that last clause; “further than the general equity thereof my require.” The Westminsterian idea, as seen in Foulner’s book, was that while the husk of the civil law had passed, the principial kernel of the law remained. So, while we no longer are required to build fences around our roofs (Dt. 22:8-12) since that is a sundry judicial law that has expired with the state of Israel as evidenced in the fact that we no longer entertain on our rooftops as Ancient Israel did, we still are required to embrace the general equity of Dt. 22:8-12 by building fences around our pools. So, the jots and tittles live on through the idea of general equity. Anyone doubting that that is the historical Reformed position need only read Foulner’s book of quotes.

So, all those who insist that the idea “that Christ expects civil (governments), to obey his law is to return to types and shadows (the Old Testament), which is no longer applicable or humane or relevant,” are just in error and have need to repent of their anti-nomianism.

2a.) The problem is that since Christ is a sovereign who rules over all it is not possible to have mutually exclusive realms. Now, we might well agree that there are distinct realms but we abhor the idea that there are mutually exclusive realms. Further, all of our distinct realms with their distinct roles are interdependent since they are each and all under the Kingship of Christ. Thus while we would properly assert distinct realms as existing between Church and State we would say it is heresy to say that that those realms are mutually exclusive so that God’s special revelation can’t shape and command the state realm. When God’s law-Word says that the death penalty should be brought for the capital crimes it delineates the Magistrates of all countries are responsible to bring the death penalty for those capital crimes. The Magistrate belongs to God and in belonging to God he is responsible to do God’s revealed bidding. If he refuses he will one day be held accountable.

2b.) Being under law is an inescapable category. All Christians, in terms of their existence in the civil-social realm (since that is what we are talking about) are under one kind of law or another of one kind of God or another. If they are not under the politicus usus of God’s gracious law in the civil-social realm then they will be under the hobnailed harsh law of some other god in the civil-social realm. It is passing strange that Christians would desire to escape God’s law (which is a reflection of His glorious character) in the civil-social realm in order to embrace the law of some tin horned “man said loudly” deity. How far do we have to integrate downward into the void of humanist law that finds (as examples) Trannies reading to our kiddies in public libraries, or in using our ladies Restrooms before we decide swirling down the void drain is a drag?

3.) The “benefits” we get from Caesar are theologically decided upon. Their is no neutrality in even the benefits we receive from Caesar. As such Caesar and the benefits he gives are always theologically driven. Why does Caesar give the benefit of roads and abortions? Because of some theological commitments he owns.

4.) All states run upon a theological basis. There is no neutrality. So, if your friends will not have an expressly Christian theological basis for the state they will have an expressly non-Christian theological basis for the state. Theological basis’ for everything is an inescapable concept.

I’m not sure how a distinctly Christian theological basis for the state is sacrilege unless one presupposes that the state ought to be unholy in what it was set apart, by God, to do. I mean that is the meaning of “sacrilege.” Sacrilege is to make that which is profane, holy, or to make that which is holy, profane. So, in order for sacrilege to come into play your friends have to believe that the state is profane and should not be holy (since they clearly do not believe it is holy and is being made profane). Where in the scripture do they find the idea that the state is inherently profane? I’d like to see that case made.

4.) In terms of worshiping the state if it were to have a distinctly Christian theological basis, well, that’s just stupid. When one attends Church to worship is one worshiping the Church? Why would it have to be the case that if a state were to be based on distinctly Christian principals that therefore would by necessity mean that Christians were worshiping the state?

5.) If the state is under man’s dominion then their theological basis for the state is humanism. The state becomes “man said loudly” and so a god.

Further, your friends are trying to serve two gods, God and not God. Jesus said, “You cannot serve two masters. Either you will hate the one or you will cling to the other.”

Tell your friends to quit smoking crack.





Limited Atonement & Social Justice Warriorism

Two fundamentally incompatible doctrines that people don’t often consider are limited atonement and modern versions of social justice. Limited atonement is particular and so provides for only a select few while modern versions of social justice insists that generosity must be distributed equally and universally as much as possible.

God builds his kingdom by blessing His elect as they walk in terms of His Law-Word while He curses the unrighteous. In brief, covenantally speaking, disobedience to God’s law results in curses, while obedience results in blessings. This reveals that God’s particular care for the elect extends on, into their everyday living, while God’s ongoing judgment extends on, into their everyday living.

This reality is confirmed in the Heidelberg catechism when it teaches of those outside Christ,

“He is terribly displeased
with our original sin
as well as our actual sins.
Therefore he will punish them
by a just judgment
both now and eternally …”


Notice God’s disposition towards those who are outside Christ is that He intends to punish them by just judgment both now and eternally. This is contrary to Social Justice Warrior-ism which insists that it is more of a priority to to be a blessing to those who hate God and who are under His judgment than it is to build up the Kingdom of God.

Combine this with being commanded to show preference to brothers and sisters in the faith,

Galatians 6:10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to the family of faith.

and you have a biblical personal and individual justice system which effectuates God’s blessing and advancement of the righteous over and even at the cost of the wicked. This is fundamentally anti-egalitarian and differs radically from social justice warrior-ism which effectively sees this selective blessing and cursing as problematic and unjust. Contemporary notions of social justice offers no room for the just suffering of the wicked.

We are certainly not to take a maniacal pleasure in the suffering of the non-elect,

Proverbs 24:17 Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth: 18 Lest the Lord see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him.

but we are to prioritize the donation of our God-given time, money, and resources to where God’s kingdom can be most advanced, as opposed to simply where there is the greatest immediate shortage as existing among those who hate Christ.

In practice, using your money to build up the Deacon’s fund to relieve the needy members in your Church in your home town may take precedence over feeding the poor 1000 miles away. Social justice warrior-ism does not allow for this kind of thinking that reflects God’s priority of the righteous over the wicked because such a SJW mindset fundamentally prioritizes the relieving of human suffering of the wicked who are not of the household of faith over building up the Kingdom of God among the saints.

In short: modern Christian views of social justice views the advancement of Christian culture and the destruction of non-Christian culture as problematic, because it violates its ultimate principle of human equality. It seeks to erase the curses that come upon the disobedient unrighteous at the expense of building up the Kingdom of God by being a blessing to those whom God blesses.

In doing so it testifies, perhaps not consciously, that they chafe at a God who is not egalitarian in His atonement but instead is particularistic in distributing it to the elect leaving the non-elect to fell the full brunt of their decisions.