Education As A Human Modification Project

The most controversial issues of the 21st century will pertain to the ends and means of modifying human behavior and who shall determine them. The first educational question will not be “what knowledge is of the most worth?” but “what kinds of human beings do we wish to produce?” The possibilities virtually defy our imagination.

Dr. John Goodlad –1969
Nation’s Premier Change Agent
Receiving Federal and Tax Exempt foundation grants for 30 years

From C. Iserbyt’s “the Deliberate Dumbing Down of America”

Of course what Goodlad is speaking of here is social engineering. Goodlad is embracing the belief that a ruling elite can, via psychological methodology as applied by psychological applicators (teachers), create a certain kind of citizen. Goodlad spoke these words in 1969 but this mindset in the government schools had existed for decades prior to this. (See the book “Leipzeg Connection.”)

Government education is not about learning to think critically. It is about programming. It is about propaganda. It is about control. It is about destroying our capacity to think. And too many sources exist now in order to even suggest that those observations are controversial.

John Taylor Gatto — Underground History Of American Education
Harold Bloom — The Closing of the American Mind
B. K. Eakman — The Cloning of the American Mind
Neil Postman — Conscientious Objections: Stirring Up Trouble About Language, Technology and Education
Paolo Lioni — The Leipzeg Connection
Thomas Sowell — Inside Public Education
Samuel Blumenfeld — Is Public Education Necessary
Peter Brimelow — The Worm In The Apple
Charlotte Iserbyt — the deliberate dumbing down of America
John Taylor Gatto — Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling
R. J. Rushdoony — The Messianic Character Of American Education
Neil Postman — The End of Education: Redefining the Value of School
Neil Postman — Teaching as a Conserving Activity by Neil Postman
John Stormer — None Dare Call It Education
Colin Gunn — IndoctriNation: Public Schools & the Decline of Christianity in America (Documentary Video)

I’ve read these books and many many more like them. I’ve read them because I believe that the educational institutions in this country are the chief blockade against Reformation we have in this country. I’ve read them because if I want to defeat the ascendent religion in this culture, to the Glory of God and for the extension of the Kingdom of Christ, I have to know what it believes and why it believes it. And having read and studied this long and hard I am here to tell you to not believe a word about budding Reformation anywhere in this country until you see the beginnings of Reformation as evidenced by the beginning of the end of Government education. While stating at the outset that exceptions exist, the teachers, many of whom are not epistemologically self conscious about their roles, are much equivalent to the Priests of Baal and Molech in the work they do to catechize our children (actually the State’s children) into a faith that is catholic (Universal) but not Christian.

The elites have long ago given up trying to hide what they are doing and their agenda. They have succeeded so greatly that very little threatens them and so they have little need to be coy any longer. Their words and intent have been known for decades but having drank from the poisonous well for generations we have concluded that we like the taste of the water.

God have mercy on us.

Caleb’s Baptism — True Faith Defined — (Heidelberg Catechism Q. 21)

Question 21. What is true faith?

Answer: True faith is not only a certain knowledge, whereby I hold for truth all that God has revealed to us in his word, (a) but also an assured confidence, (b) which the Holy Ghost (c) works by the gospel in my heart; (d) that not only to others, but to me also, remission of sin, everlasting righteousness and salvation, (e) are freely given by God, merely of grace, only for the sake of Christ’s merits. (f)


Question 20 ended by giving us the distinction between those who are saved by Christ and those who are not saved. As you remember the distinction was given that “only those who are ingrafted into him, and, receive all his benefits, by a true faith,” are those who are saved. Those who are not ingrafted into him and so do not receive all his benefits by a true faith are without God and without hope.

As such, question 21 thus delves into the issue of how true saving faith is defined and what it looks like. We should say at the outset that by asking about “True faith,” and then by starting off their answer with “True Faith is,” the clear implication is that there exists such things as false faith or spurious faith and so they want to distinguish false faith from true faith. They give us a detailed answer on what true faith is but before we go into that we want to take a second to look at the whole idea of false faith.

We find false faith throughout Scripture. The most startling example is in Matthew 7

22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

Here we see recorded people claiming faith, and knowing Christ but Christ claims he does not know them. Elsewhere in Jude and in 1st John we also see people claiming to have faith and so be part of the body of Christ and yet the Apostles in both of those letters warns the genuinely faithful against them. In Galatians we have a group of people (they were called Judaizers) who would have considered themselves Christians and yet had a false faith as seen in St. Paul’s treatment of them. In James we learn that there is a kind of faith that does not save,

“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”

The faith of the devils here is a faith with knowledge but no assent. The devils know the facts but they wage war against God. So we see that the kind of knowledge in faith that we are looking for is knowledge with assent. Some varieties of false faith may affirm certain matters as true but they do not assent to them. Indeed this idea of “assent” is so important that many scholars list “assent” along with “knowledge” as a element of faith.

In the last book of the Bible we find Christ warning against faithlessness among those who are supposed to be Faithful. False faith most often co-exists side by side with faith in a False Christ. People make Christ in their own image and then place faith in that self-created Christ. As such both their Christ and their faith is false.

Because false faith exists in such abundance the Catechism is precise in giving us the definition of true faith. However, we should say in setting out, that there is a danger in this issue of false vs. true faith. Some people, being so concerned with the nature, quality, and legitimacy of their faith have taken to spending so much time examining their faith that they have forgotten that their gaze needs to be on Christ more than their faith. Like every other virtue any of us might have been given it is simply the case that none of our faiths are perfect. The faith of the greatest saint who has ever lived was not saved by his perfect faith but by a perfect Christ.

We should see the relationship of faith to Christ as a bride to be sees the relationship of the prongs to a diamond as set in an engagement ring. Yes, the prongs holding the jewel in place must be sturdy and tight but she is not impressed with the prongs holding the diamond but rather boasts in the diamond and even more so in what that diamond represents (that she belongs to her beloved and her beloved is hers). So it is with faith in Christ. Faith must clasp and cling to Christ and we must make our boast in him and remember that though our faith might not be all that it should be, it is enough if it holds on to Christ. Weak faith saves just as completely as strong faith Caleb.

With that in mind we turn to the Catechism’s answer concerning what true faith is.

The Catechism gives us three essential elements of faith.

1.) Faith includes knowledge

23 This is what the Lord says:

“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom
or the strong boast of their strength
or the rich boast of their riches,
24 but let the one who boasts boast about this:
that they have the understanding to know me,
that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness,
justice and righteousness on earth,
for in these I delight,”
declares the Lord.

Now faith can not be reduced to just knowledge — some of the greatest heretics in Church History have been incredibly knowledgeable men — but faith includes knowledge. Another way to say this is that faith is never less than a certain knowledge but it is always much more than that. There is a tendency to go to two extremes on this matter. On the one hand there are those who seem to suggest that unless someone has the entire catechism memorized they don’t have enough knowledge to have faith. So, with these folks those who have little knowledge regarding Christianity are looked on with suspicion regarding their profession of faith. The other extreme is to suggest that Faith has no knowledge content so that anybody who mouths some kind of confession of faith, even if it is uninformed by Scripture or the confessions is seen as having Biblical faith. Neither of these extremes will do. Biblical faith must have knowledge of Christ and the Scriptures and yet one does not have to have a theology degree in order to have faith. This reminds us that even the youngest of the young can have faith.

The knowledge that the Catechizers say we must have is a knowledge that “has us holding for truth all that God has revealed to us in his word.” Now I won’t spend much time here because the next few questions in the Catechism go on to elaborate just exactly what knowledge we must have. Four brief comments though.

a.) Clearly this teaches us that Christianity is the life of the mind. There is a set content in the Christian faith that must be known, affirmed, and defended. Christianity is not primarily about emotions, experiences, relationships, (those are beautiful byproducts of the Christian faith) or opinions not anchored in the word. Christianity begins with knowing what we believe and why we believe it and what we don’t believe and why we don’t believe it.

b.) The Catechizers believe in objective truth. This is important to bring out in an age of postmodern philosophy and deconstructionst literary theory which denies objective True Truth and affirms that all truth is subjective (i.e. — person or people group variable).

c.) That objective truth of which they speak is tied to the Word (Scriptures). Because Biblical Christians through the centuries have believed this they have always taken people back to the Scriptures in order to give the explicit or implicit underpinning for what they believe.

d.) Do not miss that they assert that we know what we know by God’s revealed word. Christians believe that God’s Revelation is the means by which we know what we know. God’s Revelation is the beginning and ending point for our knowing. We do not know what we know by reason operating independently of Scripture. We do not know what we know by some kind of mystical intuitive experience. The beginning and ending of our knowing is God’s Revelation.

2.) Faith includes Assured Confidence As Worked by the Holy Ghost in Concord with the Gospel

One matter that is being emphasized here is that faith is a gift of God.

Eph.2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. Eph.2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Eph.2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. Eph.3:12 In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.

And not only Faith is a gift of God, worked in me by the Holy Ghost, in concert with the Gospel, but also the confidence that is a byproduct of being united to Christ and so having faith (one of those benefits mentioned in the previous question) is considered an element of faith.

And what does that confidence entail that faith brings?

That confidence entails Christ. That confidence entails the conviction that Christ has taken away my offense (sin) before God. That confidence entails the conviction that Christ has won for me a righteousness and salvation that can not be negated, overturned or reneged upon. That confidence entails that all the good that comes to me, come to me quite beyond my performance or just deserts but comes to me completely by God’s Grace (undeserved favor) as secured for me by the work of Christ for me in my place.

Note, that we are taught that all this is the work of the Holy Spirit.

John 6:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

Gal.5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

But the work of the Holy Spirit in concert with the Gospel. Word and Spirit are inseparably tied together.

Rom.10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

I can not savingly know the word without the Spirit and the Spirit will not work upon me apart from the Word. Long ago I learned that the Spirit always runs along the track of the word. The reason this is important to insist upon is that it keeps us from both the extremes of a spiritual enthusiasm on one hand that if it uses the word it uses it only as a talisman (a magic device that gives power) and on the other hand a dry arid rationalism that has no life because the Spirit is not in the rationalism. If we are to have faith that clings to Christ then we must be enlivened by the Holy Spirit in the context of the Gospel being proclaimed in some form.

Another fascinating aspect of this Question is that our faith is Trinitarian. If we re-read the question we see faith is in the Father’s revealing work, the Spirit’s enlivening work and the Son’s removal of penalty work. Our faith looks to God in both His Unity and His Diversity.

Finally, for this entry we close looking at how closely to home the Catechism brings this. The catechism, following Scripture, want us to understand that all of this good news is not just true in the abstract but that it is good news for me personally. The Gospel promises that we cling to by faith are not just true in a general sense but should be clung to as being true for each and every individual believer that God calls from every tribe, tongue, and nation. The Gospel promises are not only true but they are true for me, whichever me they come to.

Pin The Tail On The Sect

“_____________ (This group) considered politics to lie outside the New Testament. The Gospel contained principles for ruling citizens of the Kingdom of heaven, but not for legislation of a secular state in the … world …. _________ (This group) acknowledged that ‘the temporal sword is an ordinance of God, besides the perfection of Christ; lo princes and superiors of the world are ordained to punish wicked, and to put them to death. But in the perfection of Christ, excommunication is the utmost pain, and not corporal death.'”

I pulled the above quote out of a book I am finishing up. I want the readers to guess the group of which the author is referring to in the quote. Was the author referring to

A.) The Medieval Cathari
B.) The Reformation Ana-Baptists
C.) The 3rd Century Church Novatians
D.) The Current Radical Two Kingdom phenomenon

9th Word … Types of Lies

This is our third Sunday on the 9th commandment. We have spent so much time on it because the lie … the false witness is the tell tale sign of bad character. If you show me a bad person I will, more often than not, show you a liar.

That the West embraced the warning of the 9th commandment is seen in its Literature.

Pinocchio, is one of the most famous liars in children’s literature. And though Pinocchio is redeemed at the end of the book, his redemption means the end of his lying.

When we consider one of the most popular Novels of the 20th century we find the chief villains being liars. In Tolkien’s story Tolkien presents to us Gollum, Grima Worm-tongue, Sauraman, and even Boromir as false witnesses. In contrast the Heroes of Tolkien’s works are those who are true to their promises … true to their word regardless the cost.

In the Three Musketeers the Leading Lady is a Liar and a Seductress who comes to a bad end.

In Jane Austen’s North Anger Abbey she gives us John Thorpe as the liar par excellent

Charles Dickens in Oliver Twist gives us Fagin and a gang of liar and thieves.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle gives us the liar Moriarty and the one love of his life the dissembling Irene Adler

In History it is the great Liars that we despise

Benedict Arnold
Judas Iscariot
Joesph Stalin
Charles Ponzi
Bernie Madoff
Richard Nixon
Lyndon Baines Johnson
Bill Clinton
Walter Duranty
Alger Hiss

All this to say that the West has been deeply influenced by the prohibition against false witness.

Of course it was a lie told that led to the 2nd greatest historical event in the fall of mankind and it was Jesus Christ as the Truth who undid the 2nd greatest historical event by giving us the greatest historical event in His death and resurrection.

The Scripture explodes with the prohibition against lying / false witness

Leviticus 6:1-4, “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour…or hath deceived his neighbour…and lieth concerning it, and sweareth falsely; in any of all these that a man doeth, sinning therein: Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty,”
Leviticus 19:11, “Ye shall not steal, neither deal falsely, neither lie one to another.”

Job 11:3,5, “Should thy lies make men hold their peace? and when thou mockest, shall no man make thee ashamed? But oh that God would speak, and open his lips against thee;”

Job 13:4, “But ye are forgers of lies, ye are all physicians of no value.”

Job 24:25, “…who will make me a liar, and make my speech nothing worth?”

Psalms 24:4-5, “He…who hath not…sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the LORD,”

Psalms 31:6, “I have hated them that regard lying vanities: but I trust in the LORD.”

Psalms 31:18, “Let the lying lips be put to silence;”

Psalms 40:4, “Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.”

Psalms 52:2-4, “Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully. Thou lovest evil more than good; and lying rather than to speak righteousness. Selah. Thou lovest all devouring words, O thou deceitful tongue.”

Psalms 58:3, “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.”

Psalms 59:12, “For the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride: and for cursing and lying which they speak.”

Psalms 62:3-4, “… ye shall be slain all of you…they delight in lies: they bless with their mouth, but they curse inwardly.”

Psalms 63:11, “…the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped.”

Psalms 101:7, “He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight.”

Psalms 109:2, “For the mouth of the wicked and the mouth of the deceitful are opened against me: they have spoken against me with a lying tongue.”

Psalms 119:29, “Remove from me the way of lying: and grant me thy law graciously.”

Psalms 119:69, “The proud have forged a lie against me: but I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart.”

Psalms 119:163, “I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love.”

Psalms 120:2, “Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue.”

Proverbs 6:16-19, “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”

Proverbs 8:7, “For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.”

Proverbs 10:18, “He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool.”

Proverbs 12:19, “The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.”

Proverbs 12:22, “Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.”

Proverbs 13:5, “A righteous man hateth lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and cometh to shame.”

Proverbs 14:5, “A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will utter lies.”

Proverbs 14:25, “A true witness delivereth souls: but a deceitful witness speaketh lies.”

Proverbs 17:4, “A wicked doer giveth heed to false lips; and a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue.”

Proverbs 17:7, “Excellent speech becometh not a fool: much less do lying lips a prince.”

Proverbs 19:5, “A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.”

Proverbs 19:9, “A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish.”

Proverbs 19:22, “The desire of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar.”

Proverbs 21:6, “The getting of treasures by a lying tongue is a vanity tossed to and fro of them that seek death.”

Proverbs 26:28, “A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.”

Proverbs 29:12, “If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked.”

Proverbs 30:6, “Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.”

Proverbs 30:8, “Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me:”

Isaiah 28:15,17, “Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement;…for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves:…the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place.”

Isaiah 30:9, “That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD:”

Isaiah 32:7, “The instruments also of the churl are evil: he deviseth wicked devices to destroy the poor with lying words, even when the needy speaketh right.”

Isaiah 44:24-25, “…I am the LORD…That frustrateth the tokens of the liars, and maketh diviners mad;”

Isaiah 59:2-4, “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. For…your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness…they trust in vanity, and speak lies; ”

Isaiah 59:12-13, “For our transgressions are multiplied before thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them; In transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood.”

Isaiah 63:8, “For he said, Surely they are my people, children that will not lie: so he was their Saviour.”

Jeremiah 7:4, “Trust ye not in lying words,”

Jeremiah 7:8-9, “Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. Will ye…swear falsely…and walk after other gods…?”

Jeremiah 9:3, “And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the LORD.”

Jeremiah 9:5, “And they will deceive every one his neighbour, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity.”

Jeremiah 14:14, “Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.”

Jeremiah 15:18, “Why is my pain perpetual, and my wound incurable, which refuseth to be healed? wilt thou be altogether unto me as a liar, and as waters that fail?”

Jeremiah 16:19, “…Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.”

Jeremiah 23:14, “I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies:”

Jeremiah 23:26, “How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart;”

Jeremiah 23:32, “Behold, I am against them that prophesy false dreams, saith the LORD, and do tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies, and by their lightness; yet I sent them not, nor commanded them: therefore they shall not profit this people at all, saith the LORD.”

Jeremiah 27:10, “For they prophesy a lie unto you, to remove you far from your land; and that I should drive you out, and ye should perish.”

Jeremiah 29:23, “Because they have committed villany in Israel, and have committed adultery with their neighbours’ wives, and have spoken lying words in my name, which I have not commanded them; even I know, and am a witness, saith the LORD.”

Ezekiel 13:8, “Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye have spoken vanity, and seen lies, therefore, behold, I am against you, saith the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel 13:19, “And will ye pollute me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies?”

Ezekiel 13:22-23, “Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad, whom I have not made sad; and strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life: Therefore ye shall see no more vanity, nor divine divinations: for I will deliver my people out of your hand: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.”

Ezekiel 22:28, “And her prophets have daubed them with untempered morter, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken.”

Ezekiel 24:12, “She hath wearied herself with lies, and her great scum went not forth out of her: her scum shall be in the fire.”

Daniel 11:27, “…and they shall speak lies at one table; but it shall not prosper:”

Hosea 4:2, “By swearing, and lying…they break out and blood toucheth blood.”

Hosea 7:3, “They make the king glad with their wickedness, and the princes with their lies.”

Hosea 10:13, “Ye have plowed wickedness, ye have reaped iniquity; ye have eaten the fruit of lies: because thou didst trust in thy way, in the multitude of thy mighty men.”

Jonah 2:8, “They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.”

Micah 6:12-13, “…the inhabitants thereof have spoken lies, and their tongue is deceitful in their mouth. Therefore also will I make thee sick in smiting thee, in making thee desolate because of thy sins.”

Nahum 3:1, “Woe to the bloody city! it is all full of lies”

Zephaniah 3:13, “The remnant of Israel shall not do iniquity, nor speak lies; neither shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth:”

Zechariah 8:16, “These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour;”

Zechariah 13:3, “…Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: ”

Malachi 2:6, “The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips:”

Matthew 15:19, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts…false witness…These are the things which defile a man: ”

John 8:44, “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”

Acts 5:3, “…why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, ”

Acts 26:25, “But he [Paul] said, I am not mad, most noble Festus; but speak forth the words of truth and soberness.”

Romans 1:24-25, “…through the lusts of their own hearts…Who changed the truth of God into a lie,”

Romans 9:1, “I say the truth in Christ, I lie not,”

2 Corinthians 11:31, “The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not.”

Galatians 1:20, “Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not.”

Ephesians 4:25, “Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.”

Colossians 3:9, “Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;”

1 Timothy 1:9-10, “…the law is not made for a righteous man, but…for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;”

1 Timothy 2:7, “Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not)”

1 Timothy 4:2, “Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;”

James 3:14, “But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.”

Titus 1:2, “…God…cannot lie, ”

Hebrews 6:18, “…in which it was impossible for God to lie, ”

1 John 1:6, “If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:”

1 John 2:4, “He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”

1 John 2:21, “I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.”

1 John 2:22, “Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.”

1 John 2:27, “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.”

1 John 4:20, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?”

Revelation 2:2, “…thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:”

Revelation 3:9, “Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which…do lie;”

Revelation 21:8, “…and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone:”

Revelation 21:27, “And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”

Revelation 22:14-15, “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are .. and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.”

Speaking personally, and I think my children would bear this out, the greatest offense in her household was a lie told.

In Seminary I had a professor tell the members of a Class on counseling that, “I can help anybody but a liar.”

And so the Catechism says,

“but that I avoid all sorts of lies and deceit”

Here of course there is a hint that there are different types of false witnessing.

Different types of Lies and deceit

The Proper Etiquette Lie

Every culture has rules of politeness. You’re a guest in a home and you’re asked if the bed was comfortable. You know that one of the children slept on the floor so you could have their bed. And so even though you found the bed uncomfortable you saying something like, “I slept like a log.” Or when someone asks, “Do you like my new hat?” Now we may have not realized that the thing on their head was a hat but we don’t answer by blurting out, “No, its ugly.” Someone may put your baby in their face and say, “Isn’t she a beautiful baby?” You may not think so but you don’t say that. Proper etiquette is not deception none with the intent to harm the good character and honor of our neighbor.

There is the exaggeration false witness

We often see this as parents. Two of our children are arguing and one of them comes to present their case to us and, while not outright lying about their case, they tell the story in such a way that the offense of their sibling becomes a bit larger than it really was.

There is the Jester false witness

These are the untruths we tell with no intent to deceive. This is not lying because there is no intention to deceive.

Yesterday we were playing Frisbee Golf and Jake Woods found a Frisbee in the brush. Knowing he had found a unclaimed Frisbee I claimed that was the Frisbee I had just thrown and was looking for and thanked him for finding it for me. Everyone knew I was yanking his chain.

There is the incomplete truth false witness

This is the false witness that finds a husband telling his inquiring wife when she wonders why he was so late in coming home from work that he went out for a drink with the guys after work without telling her that the drinks with the guys were at a men’s club.

There is the “add zest to the story” lie

There are people who can not live without drama in their life and so when life becomes tedious and boring they begin to add zest to their life by lying. The lie is not huge but it is definitely colored to make the story and life more interesting. I have tried to teach my children, precisely because life is anything but drama free, to try and be masters of the famous English understatement. The English could speak to one another in reference to the London bombings as being “a bit of a row last night wasn’t there?”

For the Drama Queens among us life becomes a game or a stage performance and the “added zest” keeps the stage performance interesting.

Abraham Kuyper said that the world of fantasy is bigger and more interesting than the real world. Everyday life bores us and so the drama queens fall to using “zest” to make it a glorious performance.

We all are tempted to give accounts of matters that zest things up. And in some situations there is no harm in that. However, in other situations there is harm done by the drama queens among us.

Then there is, what might be called, the “lie of necessity.”

And we want to spend just a little time with this one because it is an open question as to whether or not this is a false witness.

This is commonly thought of as not lying against my neighbor but for my neighbor or for self preservation.

The common example would be Lying to the Communists in the former Soviet Union in order to protect a Christian that they are trying to seize and harm. Is it lying in order to protect someone else?

The Scriptures have several examples of this kind of lie.

A.) The midwives Shiphrah and Puah let the baby boys of Israel live after birth, contrary to Pharoah’s command. And yet they are spoken of as fearing God and as being blessed by God because of their attitude (see Exod.1:15-21).

B.) Rahab spoke falsehood in saying to the king of Jericho that she did not know where the spies were (Josh.2:4-6) and she is praised for her faith (Heb.11:31). Her faith was made complete by these works (Jas.2:25).

These women performed a service to their neighbors by means of the lie of necessity.

C.) Elisha in I Kings 6:19 in order to escape the Kings wrath.

In Church History Athanasius did something like Elisha in I Kings

Athanasius was asked by his pursuers, “Where is Athanasius?” He answered, “Athanasius is not far away; with a little effort you can find him.”

D.) Likewise Abraham and Isaac, perhaps in order to protect their lives, pretended their wives were their sisters in Egypt — (Gen.12:11-20; 20:2-18; 26:7-11).

We find nothing in these accounts that faults these actions. Indeed in one instance God blesses Abraham as a result of these actions.

E.) Then there is the deception of Military deception

The Lord recommended such tactics in Joshua’s battle against Ai and in David’s fight against the Philistines (Josh.8:1-26; 2 Sam.5:22-25).

The Catechism teaches on this commandment

“that I defend and promote, as much as I am able, the honor and good character of my neighbour.”

Now we cannot defend and promote the honor and good character of my neighbor if by telling the truth to someone who is seeking to attack not only their honor, character but their very life, my telling the truth leads to their unjust death.

So, we might form a principle that lying is acceptable when it is engaged in, in order to protect the life of the judicially innocent.

Having said this I want to let you know that the majority report of the church throughout her history rejected the lie of necessity.

Augustine argued, against the lie of self-preservation by noting that while you may die bodily, at least you won’t die in the soul.

He went on to argue that loving our neighbor as ourselves is not achieved when we sacrifice our own eternal salvation to save the temporal life of our neighbor.

And so, I am disagreeing with the majority report of the Church on this issue. I do think Scripture gives us a principle where lying is commended when it is done in pursuit of the protection of the 6th commandment.

This idea is in keeping with other Commandments that themselves allow for exceptions. The 6th commandment does not allow us to murder but we know from elsewhere that some killing is allowed (self-defense). Children are to honor their parents but we know that if parents are seeking to compel them to be disobedient to God that they must obey God rather than man. A lie of necessity, like these, is permitted, but only in dire circumstances — when life is at stake, either our neighbor’s or ours.

However, we must give a word of warning here. Once we open this door, given the reality of our sinful nature, there will be the temptation to invoke this “escape clause” as justification for lying. It seems unlikely that many of us will ever be in a situation where we must lie in order to protect someone’s life or our own life.

Lying and taking the fifth

Silence requirements of some professions

R2K … “Rubber meets Road”

Recently Dr. Mike Horton, in May wrote a piece that can be found here

Elsewhere Horton has written here,

In that piece you can find these quotes,

“Although a contractual relationship denies God’s will for human dignity, I could affirm domestic partnerships as a way of protecting people’s legal and economic security.”

“The challenge there is that two Christians who hold the same beliefs about marriage as Christians may appeal to neighbor-love to support or to oppose legalization of same-sex marriage.”

Dr. Mike Horton

Dr. Horton, having been queried about this statement he made in May, has recently spoken. I intend to respond here to his recent statements.

Recently Horton wrote,

(1) “I wrote several posts on same-sex marriage, arguing that because monogamous-heterosexual marriage is rooted in creation (not redemption), Christians should not treat it as merely imposing our distinctively Christian beliefs and values on society. (2) We may lose, but the church can’t surrender its witness to God’s unchanging law. (3)Thus, neighbor-love entails support for traditional marriages and family structures. (4) At the same time, I argued that there are complicated legal and policy questions over which Christians (who hold this same view) may legitimately differ. (5) One example is domestic partnerships, which I neither affirmed nor rejected. (6) My only goal there was to say that there is nothing that the gay movement can win by same-sex marriage that it doesn’t already have with domestic partnerships. (7) If they can have the latter, why do they need the former? (8) It seems to me that the only real purpose in pressing for marriage is moral: namely, to place homosexual relationships on a par with heterosexual marriage: this we cannot allow, even if it involves the coercive power of the state (via our participation in the democratic process).

(9) Also, Christianity Today asked me to provide a response to an interview in The Atlantic with the head of Exodus International, who seemed to suggest that one could be an active homosexual and a member in good standing of a church. (10) Of course, I disagreed. (11) In response to this and those other posts, I’ve received criticism from evangelicals (and others) who thought I was too hard-line on the issue. (12) So this one is a first. (13) Until this one, I haven’t seen any responses that see any of the dangers that Mr. Maurina raised here.”

In Christ,


Before getting into the entrails of these comments by Dr. Horton we should note here that as Dr. Horton does not believe that such a thing as Christian culture even exists or can exist, Dr. Horton does not believe that we can do anything to make a culture more Christian. Dr. Horton believes Christians do exist but he does not believe Christian culture exists. That observation is key in unraveling what Dr. Horton is saying here.

(1) — A.) If “monogamous-heterosexual marriage is rooted in creation (not redemption)” then why should marriages be conducted by Clergy? The R2K crowd, of whom Dr. Horton is a member, have said in the past that the Clergy has no business giving a invocation at a City Council meeting, or in being an official participant as a Clergy member at political events precisely because these kinds of events are rooted in creation and not redemption. So, if Clergy are not to be involved in events that are rooted in creation then for centuries Clergy have been violating Scripture because they have been officiating at and praying at Wedding ceremonies which are rooted in creation.

(1) — B.) If marriage is rooted in creation and not redemption and if culture can not be Christian then how is it possible to impose our distinctively Christian beliefs and values on society? Society is a reality that is rooted in Creation and so all it can ever be, regardless of what religion’s beliefs and values are imposed upon it is common. According to R2K it is possible to have Christians living in society, however it is not possible for Christians to impose their Christianity on something (society) that by definition can not be Christian no matter what.

(2) — But Dr. Horton does not believe that God’s unchanging law applies to the public square. It applies to individuals but it most certainly does not apply to the public square.

Now, it is possible when Dr. Horton talks about God’s unchanging law he is not talking about God revealed law in Scripture but rather he is speaking of God’s natural law. However, as he invokes the “Church” in (2) one is tempted to think he is referring to the Scriptures. With R2K it is hard to know what law is being referred to when statements are made about “God’s unchanging law.”

(3) — “Thus, neighbor-love entails support for traditional marriages and family structures.”

Except when we don’t. Read on.

(4) – (5) “Neither affirmed or rejected.”

Mike has said he neither affirms nor rejects domestic partnerships but he does affirm that Christians could affirm domestic partnerships and be within the orbit of Christian orthodoxy. Mike does not affirm them but he does affirm the affirmers. This is the real sticky wicket in Mike’s pronouncements. Mike, is suggesting that Christians could very well support domestic partnerships of one variety or another. If Christians were to do this, and as Mike is saying, they well could do this and remain orthodox, then that calls Mike’s (3) statement into serious question.

(6) – (8) — We agree with Mike except I do not think that the goal of the sodomite lobby is not to put sodomite marriage on part with Heterosexual marriage but the LGBT goal is to normalize sodomite marriage while abnormalizing heterosexual marriage.

(9) – (13) — We pass on.

Another missive from Dr. Horton was later forthcoming,

(1) “Being open to affirming a civil arrangement that allows partners inheritance, insurance, and other economic benefits, is NOT being open to same-sex relationships!!! (2) My point was to say that the gay lobby is not really interested in equal rights, but in equal affirmation of gay and heterosexual marriage. (3) So Christians should NOT treat the marriage debate as if it were equivalent to civil rights. (4) Some Christians do argue that we should allow a pagan state to honor “life commitments” regardless of marriage, but to argue that this should be called MARRIAGE is ultimately not a question of civil rights but of the meaning of marriage itself.

(5) I cannot help the fact that some have apparently overlooked the distinction I’ve made—and the fact that it’s part of an argument AGAINST gay marriage. (6) I can only hope that people would not spread false impressions based on where they think it will lead rather than what I actually argued.

In Christ,

Mike Horton

(1) — This sentence is a study in contradiction.

I think the famous R2K dualism is playing in here.

Mike has no problem with the legal infrastructure being set up by the Government. Mike has no problem with the objective legislation being put into place. However, Mike does have a problem if two people actually start engaging in the sodomite behavior that the legal infrastructure supports and honors.

So, his dualism allows the public structures but not the private behaviors. This is classic R2K speak. Having divided the world into the common and grace realm and having said that the Church may not make pronouncements on what the State does in the common realm, though retaining the right to speak with God’s voice regarding individual personal sin, the R2K thinker can posit a position where the public infrastructure for Sodomite behavior is legalized while insisting at the same time that they are not being open to same-sex relationships. Such a position only makes sense in a R2K Alice in Wonderland World. It’s like saying that while one is open to setting up the infrastructure for abortion in terms of abortion doctors, fetus removal systems, abortuaries, legal protection, etc. one is not, by doing so, communicating an openness to the act of abortion.

In fairness to the Doctor from Westminster Seminary Ca. it is possible that he is saying that while the act of sodomy is sinful the Church has no business to suggest that it is criminal and therefore Christians could very well support domestic unions as sanctioned by the Civil Magistrate. So, in such a scenario Christians could be Christian and support the non-Criminality of domestic partnership in theory while opposing the sin of sodomy itself. The problem here is that God has criminalized sodomy but Dr. Horton doesn’t believe that God’s unchanging law is unchanging on this point and so we are where we are.

(4) — We must keep in mind the distinction between Defacto realities and Dejure realities. Legalized domestic partnerships are defacto Marriage even if not Dejure marriage. Which is to say that they are marriage in all but title. Christians who support domestic unions are supporting defacto sodomite marriage even if opposing dejure sodomite marriage. At this point, it is all about semantics.

(5) – (6) — Dr. Horton has no one but himself to blame for people misunderstanding him. If other Christians do not think in a dualistic R2K worldview you can not fault them for interpreting R2K words through a non dualistic grid.