Chit Chat With The Two Kingdom Guys

Actually Rom 2 argues for a common value system amongst all peoples(reflection of the imago dei).

And Romans 1 argues that the common value system is suppressed in unrighteousness among the peoples who changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made by man. You cannot appeal to Romans 2 in such a way that it contradicts Romans 1.

The error occurs not in that a culture reflects what people think about God, The problem occurs when a group/tribe becomes too particular(read cultic) in it’s civil application of their beliefs about their God.(i.e. christendom, emperor’s cult, islamists, theocrats of any particular stripe) or when it deifies it’s political beliefs or leaders.

Including when it deifies the belief that no god should be the god of the public square. All tribes are equally particular in their civil application of their beliefs about God. (i.e. — Humanismdom, Islamdom, Christendom, Pluralismdom etc.). All cultures have a sense of the ‘taboo’ thus revealing that their culture is an expression of the cultic religious system. All culture are organized cultically. The attempt to have a non-cultic culture would result in a cultic culture that is an expression of the non-cultic cult.

We can’t build a common realm that is sanitized of the gods. but God did ,build a common realm that is sanitized of the gods. we just struggle with confusing what God did with what we want(see Babel).

That is just an assertion. I see nowhere in Scripture where God commands a common realm that is sanitized of all the gods including himself. If such a realm existed who would make sure that the realm stayed sanitized? Wouldn’t that entity that was in charge of making sure the non god realm remained sanitized of the gods then become the God of the realm policing the other gods from going to far? Certainly it would, and further it would become a cultic expression which in turn would create a culture.

Of course this would be called pluralism which is a culture in defiance of the the One King Jesus who is over all.

“We must oppose the adherents of other systems pressing for the advance of their gods in the putatively common realm and push for secularism in culture.


And behold, Secularism becomes the cult which creates the culture.

And of course since Secularism is a no thing it will be defined by as Secularism by those religious adherents who are smart enough to realize that they can’t get their cult in by its proper name and so they will push it under the name of ‘secularism.’ This is what Humanism, with such genius, has done incrementally in this country for generations.

Hmm, actually the God of scripture takes credit for and exhorts obedience toward that state. In fact the only time that gets real thorny for the christian is when the state gets cultic in a particular manner (emperor’s cult)

Actually the God of Scripture often commends those who rise up against tyranny. We must read all the Scriptures and not simply wrench Romans 13 out of context of the whole of Scripture. If you want to some good reads on this I would advise Rutherford’s ‘Lex Rex,’ or Vindcae Contra Tyrannos, or George Buchanan’s De Jure Regni Apud Scotos’ for starters.

I am confident that disobedience to the State when it positions itself as God in significant non-cultic realms (like deciding some people group are sub-human and are to be liquidated) is biblical reason for obedience to God rather then men.

Well, it seems i’m not the only one susceptible to assertions, or ideology that trumps, in this case, Rom 13.

Not only are you the only one susceptible to assertions, and ideology that trumps reality, but in this case you are the only one who is significantly mishandling Romans 13.

And I thought God handled Babel quite well.

Absolutely! Just like in using Ehud he overthrew the Tyrant quite well as well. See these other links for posts on Christians resistance.

More On Samuel Huntington and Fouad Ajami

Can You Imagine Charles Martel Doing This?

1865 & 2009

God can work directly in overthrowing tyrants as He did at Babel or He can work indirectly in overthrowing tyrants as he did with Ehud and others. Why even, John The Baptist got involved in the non-cultic realm when he chastened Herod for his adultery. Apparently John the Baptist wasn’t infected with R2Kt virus.

But don’t you see, you certainly assert it, the spirit of the age is cultic, it seeks to take the common and make it holy, the secular and make it sacred, in service of which cult is of no import. What is worldly activity if not the absentmindedness of another city? a heavenly city where there is one who renders ultimate judgement. The spirit of this age imbibes of this age as if there were no other. It’s not that their isn’t or wont be a theocratic city, it’s just that it isn’t rightly exercised in this age outside of the word preached and the sacraments rightly administered.

Christ is Lord over all and as such when all is handled as unto Him all is Holy. Now, I still quite insist that there remains a ‘Holy of the Holy’ as it were, located in the cult proper (Word and Sacrament) but as God’s people bring to bear the authority of Christ over all that Christ has dominion over all is Holy unto Him. You would divorce sacred from putatively secular by compartmentalizing between the two and yet even those who are at the height of secularity, must kiss the Son lest He be angry and they perish in the way.

The Spirit of this age tries to pretend that the age to come isn’t impinging upon the Spirit of this age and that the Spirit of this age is doomed for the full realization of the defeat it has already suffered in principle. The Spirit of the age does all it can to deny the real impact that the age to come has upon what it once called its domain, and it raises up people even within the Church to defend its existence.

There is a Theocratic city to come but we must not under-realize our eschatology and forget that there is a Theocratic city that is now. Christ has come. Christ brought His Kingdom. Christ bound the Strong man. The Theocratic city now rules. Our living and advocacy in every area of life should reflect hegemony of our Theocratic King.

By believing in Him who He sent, and living their lives quietly, working with their hands, and being obedient to those in authority over them.

By being obedient to Him in every area. By not only praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ but also by realizing that with the ongoing coming of His already present Kingdom opposing Kingdoms must crumble. By resolving that when appropriate they must obey God rather then man. By being willing to endure a theology of the Cross as a result of the opposition to pursuing the glory of God in every area of life — even when those inflicting the persecution are fellow Christians.

More assertion, although I’ll agree that their is no legitimate cultic city this side of glory except as it exists spiritually and in tension within the redeemed community.

Not an assertion. Show me one organized culture in history that has been neutral.

Can Non-cultic Cultures Exist?

Sean offered,

Well, if there is a religious agenda attached/implied in the educational system it does not therefore establish an argument for a christian theistic system but rather an argument against any kind of cultic religious system.

Culture is ALWAYS a reflection of the cultic religious system of any society. You cannot have culture without cultic religious systems. Culture always descends from what a people think about God. Hence, cultic religious systems are inescapable categories that cannot be avoided. You cannot build a common realm that is sanitized of the gods. Christians may disobediently decide to hold Christ’s Lordship in abeyance in the common realm but that does not mean that the adherents of other systems will not press for the advance of their gods in the putatively common realm. The idea that there exists a realm that is not beholden to and derivative of some god or god concept wherein his or its adherents do not incarnate their worship as a substance called culture is the very pinnacle of foolishness. Indeed the pluralistic culture that those who hold to such a ‘idea’ want to see built would be a self-defeating testimony to their own attempt to build a non-cultic culture, as the State would have to play God among the gods to make sure that all of the gods kept their place.

The argument that humanistic secularism qualifies as an religious worldview doesn’t work. The existence of Hindu, Islamic, et al cultic transformative religious theocracies is simply another argument against any cultic theocratic society this side of glory.

Asserting that humanism doesn’t qualify as a religious worldview is just an assertion. With the God as the State implementing positivistic notions of law while hiring priests (teachers) to catechize the youth in Government Churches (schools) and providing the sacrament of social security # as a counterpart to Baptism where a child is united with ‘God’ and voting as a counterpart to communion where the participant is united to God by way of a ritual act, Humanism certainly qualifies as a worldview. Any contention that it doesn’t is just a case where ideology trumps reality.

The bigger question is this; if God created/recreated the “city” outside of Eden (the judicial mandate against Cain but limiting retributive justice) or the recreation of the world post noahic deluge. Is not the non-cultic city good?

The non-cultic city didn’t look so non-cultic at Babel.

Scripture teaches that Satan is the God of this world which I understand to mean that Satan is God of the present wicked age that is in opposition to the age to come which Christ has brought. If Satan is God of this present wicked age then clearly this present wicked age, having a god (which is no god) is a cultic city that stands in opposition to the age to come that Christ has brought with its own cultic character. Christ has in principle destroyed this present wicked age and His people live out that victory in obedience to His Kingship.

To say that there is a non-cultic city is to say that there is a realm where neutrality obtains. Not true.

It may not be holy, but it is established and bound(beginning and end) by God Himself(or was God just providing the “church” an antogonist?). And if it(the city) is God’s and therefore good, who are the transformationalists and theonomists really at odds with?

If this present wicked age is to be overcome by the age to come which has already, in principle overcome it, then who are the R2Kt virus people really at odds with?

Kibitzing With The R2Kt Guys

And the Apostles get martyred…hmmm. Does a transformed society really string up those to whom they owe all this wonder?

One doesn’t get to transformed without going through transforming Zrim my friend. So, yes, on the way to transformed people may very possibly get ‘strung up.’ It’s the postmillennialists, because of their advocacy of Christ’s Lordship who are persecuted for the Kingdom. I’m never quite sure why anybody would want to persecute an a-mill person unless they somehow were mistaken for being post-mill — I mean, why would anybody find an a-mill believer to be threatening enough to want to persecute?

Does your prebytery know you are really a Methodist?

Does your Session know you are really a cultural relativist?

Seriously, theonomy (hard and soft) is the propserity gospel of statecraft. “Transformation” is the power-word of the spirit of this age: transform your inner-being, your society, your relationships, your health, etc. There are just so many versions of “health and wealth.”

Seriously, Radical two Kingdom theology is the cultural anti-nomianism of the Church. R2Kt is the means by which a-millennialism thinks it can achieve self-fulfilled prophecy. “If we don’t engage the culture, then it will get worse and worse and that will force Jesus to come back.”

Oh, and by the way, it was the Holy Spirit who used your, so called, ‘power word of this age.’ “Be not conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

Guess the Holy Spirit should have checked with you R2Kt guys before inspiring that word.

You should get your own show on Christian TV.

Will you be my Vanna and turn the pretty letters?

R. Scott Clark asks,

Why should Christians engage the culture? Because it’s a creational law. We were commanded to name things. We are commanded to steward creation.

And what does Redemption accomplish except to Redeem ALL of Creation? Now if Redemption has that effect on Creation by what standard will creation, upon redemption, live if not from God’s revealed word?

This is why Theonomy is just like Barthianism. Neither one of you folks believe in nature. You’re both quasi-gnostic. It’s no surprise that both groups have trouble with the covenant of works and you end up confusing law and gospel. Barth did. You guys do it regularly. You’re both making fundamental theological mistakes.

This is nothing but a series of unsubstantiated assertions. You’d think a Ph.D. at one of the flagship Reformed Seminary’s in America could do better then making unsubstantiated assertions.

First, Barthianism holds that God is so other — so Transcendent — that his Word doesn’t really have meaning unless one has some kind of mystical encounter with the Word. How Bob can associate that with an expression of basic Christianity that holds that all should be governed by God’s revealed Word just reveals how desperate Bob is to do guilt by association.

The fact of the matter is that it is R2Kt that is quasi gnostic. God is concerned about the Spiritual realm of the Church but He is, at best, only indirectly concerned with the ‘yucky material realm.’

Bob is making the fundamental hermeneutical mistake of gnostically divorcing Redemption from Creation. God likes matter Bob — he made it and he has determined to Redeem it. According to Bob’s hermeneutic the Old and Worst covenant found God more engaged with the Creation realm then he is in the new and better covenant. In the Old Covenant God was concerned with gross ceational things like laws, and parameters for magistrates, and just weights and measures. However in the new and improved covenant God is glad to be done with the yucky material creational realm.

Great hermeneutic Bob.

The pattern for our life in this world is not Israel. They were the pattern for the CHURCH not for civil life. The USA isn’t Israel. No civil entity is Israel. That’s the point of WCF 19. That’s why we confess “general equity” and not “the abiding validity….etc”

And you know as well as I do that there is a raging debate over just what ‘general equity’ means. Clearly Israel was a pattern for the Kingdom, which has the Church at its center but the Kingdom includes every area over which Jesus reigns.

R. Scott Clark — The Typhoid Mary carrier of R2Kt virus

I will continue to engage on the R2Kt (radical two Kingdom Theology) virus which with Westminster West is seeking to infect the Church. Beyond my basic problems with R2Kt I get annoyed at guys like Dr. R. Scott Clark and Westminster West toadies because they are forever insisting that they alone are the pure expression of Confessional Reformed Theology, and they do so with faces firmly set against hurricane force winds of contrary evidence blowing against them. I understand that Westminster West is considering changing their motto to ‘Never let the facts get in the way of your ideology.’ It’s almost as if they are practicing the ‘Big Lie’ philosophy, which teaches that if you tell a big enough lie long enough people will eventually begin to believe your lie.

Dr. R. Scott Clark offers,

Why must “the church” engage the culture?

Why can’t Christians engage the culture?

Why must we form this kind of dichotomy between personal individual responsibility and corporate responsibility?

Naturally, no Reformed Christian teaches that individual Christians can’t engage the culture. But that’s not really Bob’s beef. Bob’s beef is that the Church should have any role speaking to anything except personal and individual salvation. Bob refuses to believe that Christ brings salvation not only to individuals but also to the institutional and cultural infra-structures that people, in societal relationships build. So the first reason why the Church must engage the culture is because the salvation that Jesus brought extends beyond individuals to the whole Cosmos. Jesus intends to save the WHOLE WORLD — which includes culture. The second reason that the Church must engage the culture is because culture is people group theology made manifest. Now since the Church is THE PLACE where Theology is supposed to be most ardently pursued, one would think that it would have a word or two to speak to the incarnated concrete theology that we call ‘culture.’ I just find it all inexplicable that I should have to explain this. The third reason that the Church must engage culture is because it can’t help but engage culture. Look, if the Church refuses to engage culture that refusal is itself an engaging of culture. An engagement which says to the culture, ‘do as you please, we have no authoritative Word for you.’ Such a Word is an engagement The consequence of such a engagement by way of disengaging is that the larger culture begins to incarnate a Theology that is not biblical, which in turn leads to the Church being impressed and shaped in its theology by those individuals who have been impressed and shaped by the theology they are absorbing from the culture that is not being spoken to by the Church.

Let’s also keep in mind that the last time the Theology of R. Scott Clark prevailed on a geographically wide scene was the Lutheran Church in Germany between 1933-1945. Hardly a ringing endorsement for the Church not engaging the culture.

Nothing about two-kingdoms theology says that Christians can’t engage the culture. Why can’t the institutional church be left to its proper business: preaching Christ, administering the sacraments, and administering discipline. As far as I can see the visible, institutional church can hardly manage that let alone taking back whatever for Jesus.

But Bob, what is the reason that it ‘can hardly manage that’? I would contend the reason that the Church can hardly manage that is because the pagan culture that we have not been speaking to appropriately has come into the Church. Bob, you can’t realistically think you can make the Church an island that is unaffected by the tides of the culture in which it exists. If we will not engage the incarnated pagan theology (culture) then the incarnated pagan theology (culture) will engage us (the Church) — and not beneficently so.

And just to be clear, I don’t know of any bellwether Theocrats or Theonomists throughout Reformed History that didn’t believe and wouldn’t agree that the Church needs to be preaching Christ, administering the sacraments, and administering discipline. It’s not as if Theocrats and Theonomists throughout Reformed Church history haven’t week in and week out been about the proper business of the Church in Worship.

Yes, CHRISTIANS SHOULD ENGAGE THE CULTURE — pay attention! Yes, I’m shouting. Yes, there is a kulturkampf, but there probably has always been one of sorts. The question is not “whether” but rather the questions are by whom and how and to what end? Christians should engage the culture on the basis of natural REVELATION and they should preach the law to the culture which is what culture is about. Art, language, music, law, and whatever else composes a culture is about law. All these things must be done in obedience to certain laws. It is about understanding these laws.

Bob would have us draw laws by appeal to natural revelation and not from God’s Holy Word. And yet, natural revelation or natural law has as many variants as there are types of beetles in the world. What standard will adjudicate between the varying natural laws that men espouse?

Now, to be sure there is only one true natural law. But we can’t expect non-Christians, because of how they suppress the truth in unrighteousness, to find any reason to tip their hats to the one true natural law. Does Bob need a refresher course on total depravity?

Second, Bob doesn’t realize that it is also entirely possible and even likely that Christians won’t even agree on how to ‘understand these laws.’ Since, Bob would have individual Christians appeal to natural law as their authority then it is conceivable that there will be as many Natural laws as there are individual Christians.

The gospel (which is the basis for any Christian notion of “transformation”) has been committed to the church and is found there, not in the culture. Transformation, properly defined, belongs to Christians and to the visible church in anticipation of the eschaton.

I agree that the Gospel is found uniquely in the Church. It is the institution where Redemption is proclaimed. However, all because we admit that Gospel is found uniquely in the Church doesn’t mean that the Church can’t speak about what that Gospel looks like as it effects the Culture. The Church is where Redemption is proclaimed. The culture is where the proclaimed redemption incarnates itself. The Church must speak both to the essence of what the Gospel is and the consequent of what the Gospel looks like. We cannot divorce the message of the Gospel from the implications or outworkings of the Gospel.

The attempt to apply the category of “transformation” to the culture is the result of an over-realized eschatology and goes hand-in-hand with the confusion of the church with the culture.

And Bob’s amillennialism and his R2Kt theology is the result of an under-realized eschatology and goes hand in hand with the expectation that in this world the Gospel is defeated.

In Defiance Of The R2Kt virus

A Conquered Kingdom: Biblical Civil Government
Daniel Ritchie

Foreword 1 Rev. Paul Michael Raymond (Dutch Reformed)

Foreword 2 Rev. Douglas Comin (RPCNA)

Foreword 3 Rev. John Otis (RPCUS)


Explanation of why I wrote the book, and a definition of terms such as Theonomy and Christian Reconstruction (this also explains the relevance of Presuppositional Apologetics, VanTillan Epistemology and Postmillennial Eschatology).


Regeneration and Christian Reconstruction

The Dominion Mandate

Chapter 1: The Kingship of Christ over the Nations

Exegetical study of various texts relating to Christ’s kingship over the nations and civil government.

Chapter 2: Political Polytheism and Toleration

The Myth of Neutrality

Political Polytheism and the First Commandment

God’s Judgment Upon Pluralism
Pluralism is Logically Impossible
The Issue of Toleration

Chapter 3: National Confessionalism and the Establishment Principle
Religious Establishment: An Inescapable Concept

The Necessity of a National Recognition of Christ (Social Covenanting)
Erastianism, Ecclesiocracy and the Separation of Powers

Alliance Between Church and State

The Precise Nature of a Christian Establishment (Divergent views of the Establishment Principle considered)

Chapter 4: The Limited Role of Civil Government

Sola Scriptura and Sphere Sovereignty
Crime and Punishment
Just Warfare
Taxation and Private Property

Chapter 5: Christianity versus Statism

What is Statism?

Biblical Examples of Statism (Tower of Babel, Egypt, Babylon, Medo-Persian, Roman, Jewish Compromise with Statism)

Christianity Confronts Statism (how the early church confronted Statism both practically and theologically)

Christianity versus Statist Welfare
Christianity versus Statist Education
Statist Law and the Attack Upon Biblical Freedom
Statism and Private Property

Chapter 6: The Biblical Form of Civil Government

Theocratic Republicanism: The Divinely Established Form of Civil Government

The Principle of Decentralization
The Qualifications and Duties of Civil Officers
Voting Rights

Unbiblical Forms of Civil Government (Anarchy, Monarchy, Oligarchy, Bureaucracy, Parliamentary Sovereignty and Democracy)

Appendix One: Civil Disobedience and Just Revolution

Appendix Two: For Whom was God’s Law Intended by Greg Bahnsen

Appendix Three: The Perpetual Obligation of the Scottish Covenants

Appendix Four: The Westminster Standards and Older Testament Penology (this is 26 pages long)

Appendix Five: Federal Vision Disclaimer

Appendix Six: Appointed for the Defense of the Gospel: The Life and Ministry of Greg L. Bahnsen by Kenneth Gentry

Appendix Seven: Rousas John Rushdoony: A Survey of His Life and Work by Gary North

Appendix Eight: A Summary of the Theonomic Position by Greg Bahnsen

Appendix Nine: George Gillespie and Biblical Civil Law: Did He Change His Mind?

Some Statistics

Over 780 pages long.

Over 250,000 words

Over 1400 footnotes.

Bibliography of more than 300 books and articles.

Includes Theocractic and Theonomic quotes from:

Reformers – John Wycliffe, Walter Brute, Martin Luther, John Calvin, Martin Bucer, John Knox, Heinrich Bullinger, John Hooper, Hugh Latimer, Peter Martyr, Ulrich Zwingli, Johannes Piscator and Theodore Beza.

Puritans – Thomas Cartwright, James Ussher, Jeremiah Burroughs, John Flavel, Thomas Shepherd, John Cotton, Cotton Mather, John Eliot, Thomas Edwards, William Ames, David Clarkson, John Owen, Samuel Bolton, William Perkins, Edward Deering, Thomas Brooks, John Foxcroft, Herbert Palmer, Thomas Vincent, William Jenkyn, Thomas Gilbert, Matthew Poole, Matthew Henry, William Gouge, Thomas Manton, Henry Barrow, Peter Chamberlain, Richard Sibbes, Stephen Charnock, Increase Mather, Thomas Ridgeley, Isaac Ambrose, Thomas Pickering, Richard Vines, Phillip Stubbs, Edward Reynolds, William Reyner, Thomas Goodwin, Richard Greenham, Prelates opposed to Puritan Theonomy and the Geneva Bible.

Early Covenanters – Samuel Rutherford, George Gillespie, Alexander Henderson, Donald Cargill, John Brown of Wamphry, Alexander Shields, James Guthrie, Richard Cameron, James Durham, George Hutcheson, Robert Baillie, Patrick Walker, James Welwood, David Dickson, James Ferguson, 2nd Reformation General Assembly and Parliament.

Later Reformed Writers – John Gill, Thomas Scott, R.L. Dabney, J.H. Thornwell, John Brown of Haddington, Thomas Boston, Ebenezer Erskine, James Fisher, Johannes Wollebius, Junius Brutus, Gardiner Spring, William Symington, C.H. Spurgeon, J.G. Machen, Alexander McLeod, R.P. Joseph, J.G. Vos, Thomas Houston and James Willson. [Most of these are only Theocractic, except for Gill, Scott, Boston, Brown, Erskine, Fisher, Wollebius and Wilson].

Westminster West… are you listening?