Westminster Larger Catechism & R2K’s Hatred of Theocracy

Many R2K fanboy “theologians” are Presbyterians. These fanboy theologians insist that God hates theocracy. They insist with their doctrine of “intrusion ethic” that God’s law does not apply to the common realm. Do these fanboy “theologians” realize that they are in contradiction to their own confession? Have they taken an exception?

LC#191 Q- What do we pray for in the “second petition” of the Lord’s prayer which is Thy Kingdom Come?

A – the Kingdom of God is to “be countenanced and maintained by the civil magistrate.”

Or Q-108 which asks what are the duties required in the second commandment.

A – “the disapproving , detesting, opposing all false worship; and, according to each one’s place and calling, removing it, and all monuments of idolatry.”

Or Q-118 “What is the charge of keeping the sabbath more specially directed to governors of families, and other superiors?”

The answer says that it is directed to other superiors, because “they are bound not only to keep it themselves, but to see that it be observed by all those that are under their charge.”

Other superiors include the civil magistrate.

Lazarus Chronicles IV

I think this shall be my last entry on this subject. In this last entry I merely want to offer a flurry of verbal Knick knack  accounts.

1.) One of my nurses was a Muslim. I found that hard to get my head around given the inflammation of the Muslim world against the what little remains of the Christian West right now. This nurse was exceptional in their care, and I was glad to be under their supervision. However, I couldn’t help but wonder what the mindset might be if it was known that I am an ardent Christian Nationalist?

This is something that constantly went through my mind. If these people knew my Christian convictions would they still care for me? If they knew that the love of Christ requires me to command all men everywhere to give up their self-centered lives and turn to Christ would they still provide the same care? Maybe they would.

I went into this surgery nervous because of all the hostility I received from the Michigan media in 2020. Would anybody have heard about that? Would they remember and connect the dots? Would that matter to anybody?

2.) For some unknown reason we had a hospital social worker show up and desire to have a conversation with us (Jane and I) about some of the matters I’ve brought up earlier in this account. I can only imagine how she ended up in my room. I am fairly certain this visit was not protocol. To her credit she immediately introduced herself as the hospital social worker. As such there was no need for Jane or I to guess. She implored us to converse her concerning some of the matters we had conversed with the hospital staff about concerning the strangeness of some of the events that had happened. She assured us that there was a wall of separation between her and the surgical/ICU staff so that she could be an advocate for us.

Sorry … as long as the same person is signing her paycheck as is signing the paycheck of everybody in the hospital I’m not getting all conversationally intimate with a stranger.

PLUS… Did I mention she was a “Social Worker?” In my world telling me that you are a social worker is like waving a red flag in front of an angry bull. It’s like someone insulting my wife and mother in one breath. It’s like pouring salt into an open wound. It’s like making a meal out of the Holy wafers used for communion. It’s not a good thing in my world to be a social worker. I have, over the course of almost my whole life, had to deal with these people and I have yet to have one not negative experience. Their training is steeped in humanism and their logic is made of overcooked spaghetti.

Now, social workers, as far as training goes, are not any worse than most of today’s white collar professionals filling the posts in modernity, but they do seem to be the cream of the crop. All our white collar professional core has been steeped and saturated in humanist categories but very few more so than social workers.

The conversation didn’t last 30 seconds. She told us she was there to help us. We told her that we found that odd since there was nothing we needed help on. She said, “I sense that you don’t want to talk to me.” (“Jeepers, your spidey senses are awesome,” he thought sarcastically without saying.) I said, “you are correct. We are not interested in talking to you but thank you for making the effort to come up and speak with us.” She wanted to know what the reason was for our indifference. “Maam,” I said, “for my whole life you people have been nothing but a headache to me, but again I thank you for reaching out.” She wrote her name on the blackboard and told us to contact her if we changed our minds. I had Jane erase that name and number the minute she left so that I would not have to see it. The conversation didn’t last 30 second. I don’t like social workers and I don’t mind that throughout my life they have not liked me.

3.) I went home right from the Intensive Care Unit. Something they said which was very very uncommon. There were a good many things about this stretch of time that were very very uncommon. Indeed, the uncommon-ness of much of what happened and my stay could be a theme for those six days.

4.) A personal word of thanks to the surgeons and doctors. One particular Doctor would show up every day at appx. 0630 and the first thing words that would fall out of her mouth was “you look amazing.” It became a standing joke because the morning after the flatlining event, when she swept into the room I deadpanned… “wait … don’t tell me … I look amazing.” She protested that on paper I did look amazing. Sigh … it has been my life’s lot to look better on paper than I do in real life. ūüėČ The surgeon who did the surgery and who suggested he might try it with his eyes closed showed up in the room once for a few minutes. He seems to be the quite type. A man of few words. But, hey, I wouldn’t care if he is a deaf-mute as long as he can cut and sew the way he can cut and sew. From my understanding and research, he is one of the best in the world on this particular surgery. I am thankful to God that he was in Michigan and that God in His sovereignty linked up surgeon with patient. His #2 was also quite able and the ICU Doc who ran the floor was also exemplary.

Doctors are like ministers. We all have a ego the size of Texas. We each are in a calling where a good deal depends on us being right and anybody who is being depended upon to be right is someone who must develop a confidence level that strikes most other mortals as “arrogant.” I worked with airline pilots for 15 years and you can throw their egos into the same category.¬† This explains why the good Doctors, the good Ministers, the good pilots exhaust themselves in seeking to hone their craft. The burden of needing to be right for the good and sake of other people and for the glory of God is not a light burden. Happy is the man in these or other like careers who can finally push on through to the other side and be able to, at one and the same time, retain their confidence while also donning a genuine humility.

Someday I may get to that point.

5.) I should end by noting two more folks. The first is the Nurse Practitioner on the day shift. I found her at one and the same time extremely concerned for my well being while at the same time maintaining the professional distance necessary. I always believed that she was in my corner and was genuinely concerned for my well being.

The second chap is someone who without I am not sure I would have gone through with this surgery. As you can well imagine all of this, from the patient’s perspective, is a high trust venture. As the patient you are putting your life in the hands of strangers. That is even more challenging when the culture is no longer homogenous in its worldview orientation. This chap is a cardiologist in another part of the country and I came to know him via my writing ministry. With 20 years of practice under his belt and a familiarity with everything I was facing I could turn to him over and over for his expert opinion knowing that he was a man who both confessed Christ and who shared by world and life view. He was someone I could much more easily trust. So, at each juncture I turned to him about the medical counsel I was getting and at each turn he patiently held my hand and gave me assurance. I am pretty sure that I would not have gone through with this surgery if it was not for his voice in my life at this time.

You can understand my being overwhelmed by God’s providence and goodness. At each step of the way He provided what was needed.

The Lazarus Chronicles #3

We left off promising more about the matter of “WOKEness” in the hospital. That it was glaringly present was indisputable. There was the evidence of the “quiet posters” I mentioned in the previous post. There was the bulletin board pushing the “Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity” (DIE) agenda. There was the constant reminder as stated in the hospital’s “Core Values” that they would be characterized by;

  • Integrity: I will adhere to the highest ethical standards,¬†demonstrating courage,¬†truth and transparency in my words and actions.
  • Teamwork: We will work together with a shared purpose rooted in equity and fairness where diversity is celebrated, respected and valued.On the issue of integrity what has to ask the question, “By what standard?” Ethical standards, courage, truth and transparency in words and actions but as living in this WOKE world one has to ask what standard … what barometer is going to used in order to measure ethical standards, courage, and truth and transparency? This is an especially important question to ask if it is the case that diversity is going to be highly prized. After all, diversity inevitably means that there are going to be diverse standards and so diverse definitions of ethical standards, courage, and truth and transparency. Of all these diverse peoples with their respective diverse worldview how will these matters be determined? Again … by what standard. This is but one problem with WOKEism. It is inherently irrational. A prioritization on diversity means any unity on standards for ethics, courage, and truth and transparency goes right out the window. A prioritization of diversity means unity on standards are literally impossible.On the issue of “Teamwork” we have the same kind of problem. There is a plea for “fairness.” Whose fairness? Fairness according to what standard? What if I am a employee and I don’t think WOKE is fair? Is anybody going to listen to me? Second, it is literally not possible to have equity and diversity at the same time. Equity in WOKE world is defined as recognizing that each person has different circumstances and allocates the exact resources and opportunities needed to reach an equal outcome.¬† However, diversity means that people will be different and that difference is not to be tampered with. Yet, that is exactly what equity does. Equity tampers with differences in order to achieve equality of outcomes so that the natural diversity is eclipsed.

    And is it really true that all “diversity is celebrated, respected, and valued?” Will the Biblical Christian’s diversity be celebrate, respected and valued, when the Biblical Christian objects to, say, the usage of blinkered pronouns?

    I ask this because I noticed rainbow nametags among at least some of the hospital staff that instructed me on what pronouns the staff member wants to go by. Now, I didn’t meet anybody whose pronouns did not match their biology but I have to think that such people exist. What if such a person was to come across a patient who refuses to honor their preferred pronouns? What happens then in the hospital? Do they tell the patient to find healthcare someplace else? Do they just switch staff around?

    The funny thing is that, for now, this system seems to be working for them. However, I do not believe such a system can work for very long. Eventually the contradictions will come to the fore and create numberless untold problems between this cherished diversity.  The hospital is working on borrowed capital from Christianity. The hospital is taking the notion of right and wrong for behavior and then introducing a code that is sure to undermine the integrity that they are calling for.

    Having said all that I want to emphasize that the system is working for them right now speaking in relation to the care I received as a patient. The care at the hospital was top shelf and I could not have asked for a nursing staff that was more longsuffering, gentle, and tender. I had several nurses come and go but I had two specifically (a night nurse and a day nurse) who I saw for several days consecutively and I thank the God of the Bible and His Christ constantly for their work.

    Unless one has been there one can not understand how vulnerable a patient is. Completely stripped of his independence the patient is completely shut up to the care both of his nurse and his advocate. But advocates are not typically medical people so as excellent as they might be they can only do so much. The patient will prosper in his recovery in direction relation to a combination of his determination, and his care. If he gets substandard care it will make it more difficult to excel in recovery.

    Not only did my nurses excel at the medical side of the equation but they were personable and quite good at encouraging their patient. They had both the medical side and the psychological side down.

    My wife spent her career in nursing. She was just the kind of nurse that I had while in the hospital. Nursing is a thankless job that is not paid nearly commensurate with the value that a good nurse brings to the table. Right now nurses, consistent with the rapacious morals of most of Corporate America, are being asked to do more and more for less and less. It takes a special person to rise above the abuse inflicted by Corporate to still come to work day by day and give top shelf care.

    I am not a big believer in common grace the way that term gets slopped around but I found myself thinking more about common grace as a very sick patient in the hospital. These nurses were not Christian and yet the care they gave was the kind of care one would expect from Christians. All of this goes to what Cornelius Van Til spoke of in terms of “borrowed capital.” My nurses had a worldview where they borrowed capital heavily from a Christian World and life view even if their worldview was not expressly Christian. I pray that they might come to know the joy of serving Jesus Christ.

    I round off this entry by noting that hospitals scare me. Not for the obvious reasons, but even more so because of the hothouses they have become for political correctness and WOKEness. I prayed going in that I might be able to get out of the hospital without tripping the wires of WOKEness whereby I would be come instantly persona non grata.

    I came close a couple times to tripping those wires but praise God I did not trip those wires and came out of the hospital unmarked by the vengeance of WOKEness.

    More on that in part IV.

The Lazarus Chronicles #2

“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”

Mark Twain
Text of a cable sent from London to the US press after his obituary had been mistakenly published.

What’s a noteworthy main event without a quality curtain call? Why, it’s like a gourmet meal without something to cleanse the palate.

With that in mind 36 hours or so after dying I decided to “do it again jack.”

Thursday had been a gangbusters day following surgery. I was hitting all the markers. I was already walking up and down the hallways tethered to God only knows how many tubes and lines. It was a good day and the hospital staff seemed pleased.

And then the bear jumped on my back. The heart pace-makery gadgetry that had failed initially due to a circuit coming undone, failed again. This time it was because the internal piece had worked its way out of my heart and so once again my heartbeats per minute began to dive. This reality was combined with the fact that I was being given heart drugs to support the heart but had a side-effect of slowing the BPM down a wee bit and my body over-reacted to those drugs and instead of slowing down a wee bit it decided to go on holiday.

The wizards of the heart tried to set the pacemaker at a higher rate but the only effect, given that the gadgetry was no longer where it belonged internally, was to give me a decidedly noticeable mini shock. And as the wizards of the heart were bound and determined to get their machine to work, the consequence is that I endured these repeating delightful mini-shocks. Each different wizard of the heart who showed up to try and get their gadgetry running thought that if they just shocked me once again like the previous wizard of the heart had done the machine would start working.

Now, that more than a few wizards of the heart have taken their turns learning that their gadgetry no longer worked it became obvious that there was a real problem. My heart beat had been steady but had steadily dropped. When Jane left Thursday night on 18th May the BPM was in the 50’s. When she returned in the morning it was in the 40’s. Before the morning was to far spent it would be in the 30’s. Now, I’d like to have the heartbeat of a world class marathon runner but my body was beginning to protest. I began retching. (Fortunately for all parties concerned my stomach was empty.) The heartbeat monitor slipped to 27 and I distinctly remember lifting my head and looking around at the now numerous staff and saying, “hey, am I dying here?” They all resounded with a definite “no.” I hardly shared their confidence.

At one point I flatlined. Now I had always thought that flatlining meant you were dead. (Great classic film with Julia Roberts — Flatliners.) However, later I learned that flatlining does not mean one is dead it only means that one is kind of dead.

Shades of “The Princess Bride” came instantly to mind;

Billy Crystal as Miracle Max — Whoo-hoo-hoo, look who knows so much. It just so happens that your friend here is only MOSTLY¬†dead. There’s a big difference between¬†mostly¬†dead¬†and all¬†dead.¬†Mostly¬†dead¬†is slightly alive. With all¬†dead, well, with all¬†dead there’s usually only one thing you can do.

Now, that is a distinction you need to keep stored away in your mind for future reference. So, I was not dead a second time. I had only flatlined. I found a great deal of comfort in later learning that distinction existed.

At this point the wizards of the heart accepted the defeat of their gadgetry and decided to go with another technology. So, up in my hospital bed I go, and some chap sweeps in and announces that it has been decided that a “floating pacemaker” is going to be dropped through my jugular vein. What they did is they made an incision in the jugular and dropped a pacemaker via the jugular vein into my (marginally) beating heart.

During this surgical procedure one of the staff determined that Jane could not be present at my bedside while Jane had determined that her determination to stay would be greater than the determination of one staff member to remove her. My last memory of those contretemps¬† was the surgeon saying … “It’s ok. The wife can stay.” It was kind of irrelevant because Jane wasn’t leaving. Keep in mind folks, my wife is a retired nurse who throughout her career worked in just about every aspect of nursing imaginable. I was glad she was there. I held on to her hand for the whole time.

I was given the anesthetic — the kind that doesn’t necessarily put one to sleep but does necessarily make you not care or feel about matters touching being cut. The floating pacemaker was dropped down the vein. Sometime later I regained cognizance from not being dead a second time and that portable pacemaker was working like a charm. My heartbeat was back up to 89 beats per minute. And I went from feeling like Chuck Wepner in the 15th round to feeling like Muhammad Ali in that same round against Wepner. The change was dramatic.

A few hours later there was some debate about how the portable pacemaker worked. I don’t understand the details of the debate. I do understand that the “Queen of the pacemakers” arrived to resolve the dispute. However, not all the nursing staff were as confident as the Queen of the pacemakers was confident about what she was doing. The Queen came in and started doing this and that and one of the Nurse Practitioners, much to my consternation, suddenly said with emphasis and alarm, “Queeney, don’t do that.” The Queen replied that there was no worry. Maybe not but given that response of the Nurse practitioner (who was a woman who knew her trade) I was beginning to worry. Fortunately, they did not call here the “Queen of the Pacemakers” without reason. Whatever she did was the right call.

The downside of this temporary pacemaker was the requirement that I would be on complete bedrest until Monday. That was over 48 hours away. I was not sure I could go 48 hours with only squirming in a hospital bed allowed. Fortunately, that did not come to pass. Saturday the surgical Doc showed up and proclaimed that I should be walking.

Sigh….

And here we come across perhaps one of the chief frustrations with my hospital tenure. It was not untypical for one Doc to say one thing, only to be told a short time later by a different Doc that what the previous Doc said was irrelevant. I learned to quit listening until I heard what I wanted to hear and then I would camp on that and tell everyone else .. “Nope, we are going with this version of events.”

So, on Saturday I got to walk the halls again. While walking the halls we passed the Queen of the Pacemakers who began to expostulate that I was not to be up walking. The only thing I could respond to her was to quote the Doc, when she was told that I was told that I couldn’t walk the halls;

“The Doctors make the decisions about these kind of matters.”

And so Saturday, I began to motor through the hallways.

And I noticed a funny thing. There were all kinds of signs everywhere about the necessity to be quiet. Each poster had a face on it and said something like “Be quiet, my daughter is trying to rest,” or, “Be quiet my husband is healing,” or something like that. The odd thing is that of all these various posters urging me to be quiet not one face was a white face. I saw an Indian face beckoning me to be quiet for his daughter. I saw some kind of Arabian face beckoning me to be quiet for her husband but I didn’t see any WASP face imploring me to be quiet. It’s just one of those things I couldn’t help but notice and you can bet the bank that the absence of white faces on those “Be quiet” posters was not an accident.

This brings me to the Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity (DIE) poster board. It is clear that WOKEism is part of medicine. I will delve into that more in a subsequent post.

The Lazarus Chronicles I

When studying Journalism one maxim that floats to the surface quite quickly is the injunction to, “Never Bury the Lead.” As such the lead in this series is;

“For three to four minutes I was dead.”

Even now a week later typing out those words strike me as spooky and surreal at the same time.

The surgery to repair my genetically deformed heart valve problems was a success. However, upon the return from surgery to post-op the still completely unexplained happened. The methodology in this procedure is to create a electrical circuit to help the heart beat after it has been un-naturally handled. In the creation of this electrical circuit three small posts are placed in the body to close the circuit and drive the beating of the heart. Somewhere between the operating room and the post-op room one of those electrical posts was no longer doing its job and for some reason that post could not be found in order to be re-established. The missing post meant that my heart would not beat. A code was called. Th code itself lasted approximately 10 minutes. During part of that time the missing electrical post was being furiously sought for so as to re-establish the closed circuit that would drive the beating of my heart. Bandages were ripped off rather unceremoniously (I have the burn scars on my skin where those bandages were ripped off). Finally, in what I can only imagine might have been a scene out of an old silent film where the keystone cops finally shout “Eureka” a very attentive someone finally solved “The Case of the Missing electrical circuit” and my heart went back “online.”

There is some question why it took so long to find the electrical lead since the first instinct should have been to look for the second lead and check it. When pressed as to what precisely happened the answer we were met with was “sometimes these things happen.” Well, sure, all kinds of things sometime happen but that is hardly an answer to a legitimate question. Why did that which sometimes happen, happen in this instance? Or, to cut to the chase, “What went wrong.”

While all that was going on however standard heart compressions were pursued on my now non-living corpse. Keep in mind that heart compressions were being done on a chest that had only very recently been stitched and wired back together after being opened in order operate on the aortic heart valve. During this time, I, of course am completely unconscious (dead people don’t write memoirs) and also my family were not being updated as to the occurrence of any of this. Jane was not (and still is not) pleased at the lack of being updated.¬† Humorously enough, later, one of the Nurse Practitioners, obviously not knowing that my wife was a retired nurse or that my sister is also a Nurse Practitioner of some 40 years, told them that when my heart beat was gone that, “We patted his chest. Pat, pat pat.” Now, my friends, the blood does not perfuse the body’s organs by doing a chest compression that is characterized as “Pat, pat pat,” as if a patty-cake game is being played. Indeed, it is not uncommon to break ribs while doing heart compressions. But, I get that the impulse likely is to give the family as little startling information as possible, even if that means soft-selling the truth.

There was concern that the lack of perfusion of the organs with oxygen may have affected the brain and so when coming to, after my few hours on the ventilator I was getting peppered with questions,

1.) What is the date today?
2.) What day is it?
3.) Can you tell me the name of your surgeon?
4.) What is a woman?

I thought it was just a part of protocol but later I learned that they were probing as to whether or not I had become half a cucumber (vegetable). That question has not yet been completely resolved and I suspect I will someday die with people unsure whether or not I am some kind of vegetable.

Now as to what I saw while dead, well, its hard to explain. I did find myself being drawn towards a light, ever beckoning me forth to find out what the source of the light was. As I neared the source I heard Words coming out of the center of the light. At first those words were unintelligible. They were coming to me as if they were some kind of hieroglyphic, but eventually I was given ability to interpret those words.

And this was some of what I heard. I don’t remember it all. I heard,

1.) Kinism is my social order designate
2.) I am pleased with postmillennialism
3.) It is either my law (Theonomy) or some other god’s law
4.) I intend to treat Escondido as I once treated Sodom
5.) R2K, FV, Dispensationalism, NPP, are the doctrines of devils
6.) The Synagogue of Satan is alive and well. Oppose them.
7.) Do not concern yourself with those who are forever saying, “Christo-fascism”, “Racism” and “Sexism.” I will take care of them soon enough

There was much more like this. Some of it is still coming back to me. But the words out of the light were distinct and the above is some of what I heard.

While experiencing this, I saw Tim Keller to my right. In one of God’s ironies Keller and McAtee both died on the same day. I heard some muted conversation from the light and finally in a boisterous communication I heard, “We have some things to say to Keller but McAtee goes back. Somebody has to clean up the mess that Keller left behind.” That is the last thing I remember, though, as I said, some of those words from the light are still trickling back to my consciousness and there may be yet more to report in the future. Extra-Biblical revelation is a grand thing and only entrusted to a very few of us.

Keep in mind that for all believer we are told in Colossians 3:3 that for all believers it is the case;

3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

Now, this death that St. Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit speaks of here is the death that all believers in Christ experience who are united to Christ by the work of the Holy Spirit. This death is the death of who we were as we were as objectively counted by God as related to our first father Adam. With our looking to Christ as our salvation, that old man dies and who we are now in our living and someday our physical dying is a living and dying that is done as unto Jesus Christ. In dying to the old self we died to living with ourselves at the center of all reality. We died to living only for our selfish glory. We died to self-will, self-aggrandizement, and self-pleading. We died to all these matters of the old self and now God owns us and names us as His own because our lives are now hidden with Christ. When the Father considers, He only sees Christ, because having died to self, our lives are now hidden with Christ in God. All the guilt that is so definitional of who man is, as outside of Christ, is done way, because we are hidden in Christ and His righteousness … His acceptability is now our righteousness and our acceptability. Because of having died with Christ in this sense and because my life is now hidden in Christ, the sting of my future permanent physical death has lost much of its bite. The matter of my living or dying is a matter for me no longer to obsess over because my life continues after this life because I died and my life is now hidden with Christ in God.

Dear reader. Do not let this day pass without knowing that your life is hidden with Christ in God so that when the day comes of your departure you will be able to say with me and all the saints through all the ages;

“O Death where is thy sting.
O grave where is thy victory.”

Note — This article may be slightly updated in the future to get some of the matters regarding cardio-technology more accurate.