The Garden Motif

It was garden dirt we were made from and in that garden, man learned his purpose and reason for being. In that same garden, Adam and all his posterity fell. However, before being cast out and blocked from the garden fallen man heard the promise of Redemption in that garden.

That promise was called a seed.

Ever since then fallen man has sought to return to the garden in his own power — his timeless quest for Utopia. But only God can provide our desire for the garden.

Israel never forgot its garden origins. It carried a garden Tabernacle through its desert journey. Israel finally arrived in a garden land flowing with milk and honey and later when they built a Temple to replace the Tabernacle the garden motif was everywhere in the Temple. The Priests of Israel were adorned in garden garments, complete with the precious stones of Eden’s garden woven into the garments.

When the Lord Christ arrived He met his greatest temptation in a garden. In that Gethsemane garden, Jesus refused what Adam embraced when Adam was in his garden.

The Lord Christ as the promised seed died by a garden that He was eventually planted in, only to spring up from that garden and mistaken for a gardener.

Christ rose from that garden and provides the abundant life that only a garden can give. He is the garden vine that reproduces itself in the Father’s garden vineyard. His people are the fruit of that vine and that vine will cover the world.

From a garden, we came and unto a garden, we return in that New Jerusalem garden. There we find that the leaves of the trees in that garden are for the healing of the nations.

But Doug Wilson and Ken Hamm Say Race Doesn’t Exist … Go Figure

Recently it has been all the rage among the Clergy corps who are drinking from the well of Cultural Marxism to insist either that “race doesn’t exist,” or in much the same vein, “race is a social construct.”

Men like Doug Wilson, Ken Hamm, Voddie Baucham, David Van Drunnen, James White, and others advertise themselves as against the cultural Marxist push and in some respects they are. However, their insistence that race is a social construct or that race doesn’t exist is testimony that they have not yet cleansed themselves of cultural Marxist (Franz Boas) influences.

Now, certainly, we might say there are some aspects of race in terms of how it manifests itself in cultural expression that may well be attributed to social constructs but to say that race doesn’t exist or is a social construct is to testify as to one’s “Mad Hatter” status.

Below are a few quotes culled from Thomas Achord’s and Darrel Dow’s pleasing book, “Who is My Neighbor; An Anthology in Natural Relations.”

——

Study finds disparity in mental health of biracial Asian-Americans
Lauren Berger — 2008

“Bi-racial Americans of Asian and white descent are twice as likely to be diagnosed with a psychological disorder compared to monoracial Asians Americans, according to a new study from the Asian American  Center on Disparities Research at UC Davis.”

Thomas Achord & Darryl Dow
Who is My Neighbor; An Anthology in Natural Relations — pg. 572

Asian White Couples face distinct pregnancy risks
Yasser El-Sayed 2008

Racial distinctions in the genes controlling bone marrow production have made it difficult for MIXED RACE INDIVIDUALS to find matching donors for bone marrow transplants, according to the National Marrow Donor program.

Thomas Achord & Darryl Dow
Who is My Neighbor; An Anthology in Natural Relations — pg. 572

Asian White Couples face distinct pregnancy risks
Yasser El-Sayed 2008

The Stanford University School of Medicine recently found that pregnant women of mixed White/Asian couples were more likely to develop gestational diabetes, a complication of pregnancy with severe consequences if untreated.

Thomas Achord & Darryl Dow
Who is My Neighbor; An Anthology in Natural Relations — pg. 572

Health and Behavior Risks of Adolescents with Mixed Race Identity
J. Richard Udry

“A University of North Carolina study found that children of mixed race were more likely to manifest higher risk behaviors including a 50% greater risk of depression, 24% increased risk of smoking, 20% increased risk of drinking, 34% greater likelihood to have serious thoughts of suicide, 50% more likely to be sexually active in high school, and 94% more likely to be suspended from school compared to children of White ancestry alone. In fact, mixed-race children had higher risk factors across nearly all categories compared to single-race children … This suggests that racial mixing could lead to social problems greater in severity to those currently present in our predominantly African-American inner cities.”|

Thomas Achord & Darryl Dow

Who is My Neighbor; An Anthology in Natural Relations — pg. 577-578

McAtee Contra Dr. Andy Walker & The Godless Coalition II

Continuing with my fisking of this Godless Coalition article,

American Culture Is Broken. Is Theonomy the Answer? (thegospelcoalition.org)

Dr. Andy Walker (AW) writes,

What does Theonomy have to say right now to the church in China or Iran?

BLMc responds,

Theonomy has the same thing to say to the church in China or Iran as to the Church in America. Theonomy says to each and all;

“Christ is Lord and as Lord His Law-Word is to be owned, cherished, and championed at every point whenever possible. Be encouraged dear Church that God’s Law-Word is an anvil that has wore out many a tyrant’s hammers. Be faithful. When possible be like the Hebrew mid-wives in disobedience to tyrants. When possible rise up and crush tyrants who rebel against the Crown-Rights of Jesus Christ. Do not lose your first love just so you can go along to get along with tyrants.”

Now, one wonders what AW would say right now to the Church in China and Iran? Probably something like… “Make sure you kiss the arse of the wicked sovereign even if it means disobeying God’s Law-Word because God realizes at times that blaspheming Him by bowing to the Tyrant state is necessary.”

AW wrote,

It is an over-realized eschatology with a static view of culture that will disappoint its supporters and make them grow ever strident in their resentment toward culture. A more accurate assessment of history understands culture as buffeted by times of both victory and defeat. To pick either victory or defeat as the litmus test for the church’s mission in society is to subject oneself to either utopia or despair.

BLMc responds

1.) First of all, it is hard to believe that a Ph.D. could be so torpid that he does not realize that Theonomy is not an eschatology. Dr. Greg Bahnsen conceded, for example, that it was possible for one to be a Theonomist and be Amillennial.

This is really quite embarrassing that someone could pick up a pen to write a hit piece on “Theonomy” and not realize that Theonomy is not an eschatology. Having said that I am more than willing to admit that most Theonomists I know are postmill but that still doesn’t mean that Theonomy is an eschatology.

2.) The statement that theonomy has a static view of culture is almost as embarrassing as saying that theonomy is an eschatology. It is precisely because theonomy believes that culture can change from non-Christian to Christian that theonomy remains so hopeful.

3.) If culture is defined as the outward expression of a people’s religious beliefs then it is the case that Christians should be increasingly strident and resentful towards Christ-hating culture since Christ-hating cultures are being shepherded by some false God and some false religion. As a Christian am I supposed to be giddy over cultures that defy Christ’s Lordship? Is AW suggesting here that Christians are supposed to make themselves at home in cultures that are anti-Christ? If so, people better quit writing tomes about those evil German Christians who did nothing during the Nazi regime.

4.) Theonomy isn’t asking for instant victory in the Kulturkampf. Theonomy is only asking that people like DW be faithful to Christ in their culture. Theonomists perfectly understand that in God’s inscrutable providence varying cultures wax and wane. No theonomist I know believes in Utopia in the sense that man apart from the Spirit of Christ is going to usher in social order Nirvana. These stupid accusations have been raised many times and likewise answered many times. Walker is just creating a straw man and then tearing down his straw man.

AW wrote,

A Christian’s posture toward the world must simultaneously embrace both glory and the cross. Inhabiting this paradox is understandably complex, but it gives us a proper perspective to see that the church’s mission throughout various societies can look very different depending on the societal context.

BLMc responds,

1.) Earlier in this same article AW faulted theologies of glory. He now admits here that there are times when we must embrace a theology of glory. Now I agree with him here but I can’t help wonder which end of his contradiction he is embracing – Theology of glory always bad or theology of glory sometimes needs to be embraced? Make up your mind man.

2.) The Church’s mission can look very different through various societies depending on societal context. I know of no theonomist who would disagree with that statement. However, the theonomist would add that in any societal context, regardless of the Church’s mission in that societal context the Church – both Institution and Organic – must tell the society to “Kiss the Son lest they perish in the way.” “I love the smell of Theonomy in the morning.”

AW wrote,

It’s debatable whether Theonomy desires a formal unity of church and state. Doubtless, though, church and state work in unison to promote each other’s interests. With intention, they mutually reinforce and consolidate one another’s authority. This can be both good and bad. It is bad when religion becomes the government’s handmaiden or vice versa; good when the government enables the gospel to be proclaimed freely (1 Tim. 2:1–2).

BLMc responds,

1.) It is not debatable in the least that Theonomy desires a formal unity of Church and State. The fact that Walker implies that it is debatable points us towards the idea that Walker doesn’t know the difference between a theocracy (which is an inescapable category and as inescapable all theonomist embrace) and an Ecclesiocracy which no theonomist embraces.

2.) All Governments at all times use religion as a handmaiden. Right now in these united States the Government is using the religion of Cultural Marxist humanism as a handmaiden. So, as all governments at all times use religion as a handmaiden then all Christians at all times should champion all Governments to submit to Christianity so that the Government can be the handmaiden to Christ. This is all theonomy, following Scripture, asks for.

AW wrote,

Though medieval Europe was not strictly Theonomic, the first thing to learn about strong unity between church and state is how undesirable it is. A nostalgia that looks with longing on “Christendom” erases the bloodiness that resulted from church and state working in tandem. Absent from history is a tradition of church-state unity that was good for the church’s purity or religious dissent.

1.) Andy can talk all he likes about a strong unity between church and state being undesirable but since all States are a reflection of and descend from some God or god concept it is simply the case that Church and State always walk together. For example, we right now are experiencing a strong union between our current State and the Church (i.e. – Public Schools teaching the religion of Cultural Marxism). Now I quite agree this is undesirable but only because cultural Marxism is a false religion. If Biblical Christianity was the religion of the land I would find it quite desirable. So, once again Andy is wrong about Church and State working together in their proper jurisdictional spheres being undesirable. The Christian Church working with the Christian State is always desirable. Anti-Christ Churches working with Anti-Christ states though is always undesirable.

2.) Now AW raises the old saw about how bloody Christian reigns were and we concede that there were times in history that Christian reigns did unchristian things. However, shall we compare the bloodiness of Charlemagne with the bloodiness of Stalin? Shall we compare the burning of witches at Salem with the Christians killed in Rome’s persecutions? Shall we compare the Inquisition to the numbers that Pol Pot rang up?

The point here is that self-hating Christians like AW are forever ringing their hands over “the bloodiness of Christendom,” without realizing that perhaps Christendom is the least bad of all options. As Church and State always work together maybe Christendom was the least bad combination of Church and State possible? That is the way I read history.

I get weary with Christians lamenting Christendom as if they’d prefer Liberaldom, or Islamadom, or Talmud-dom. Kingdoms crafted by the combination of Church and State are inescapable as we have shown, and since that is true I’ll take Christendom for 1000 Alex.

3.) I’d say the Church-State harmony of early Puritan New England was pretty good. I’d say the Church-state harmony of the Antebellum South was pretty good.

4.) I am opposed to allowing for religious dissent as arising from those who hate Christ. I do not think it should be allowed in a Christian social order.

The Impact Of The Resurrection — 2021

Lord’s Resurrection Day I

2.) Q — Since then the resurrection is true what certainties do we who rightly believe receive from this doctrine of Christ?

A. — First, that God by the resurrection has again confirmed that He does not speak without keeping His Word. (1) 

Secondly, the resurrection proves that the Lord Christ is indeed God, (2) which in turn confirms that the work of Christ on the cross was a payment for sin that truly saves all who rightly believe. (3)

Thirdly, the resurrection makes certain that we have closed with Christ do wear the righteousness of Christ, (4) and thus no longer remain in our sin, (5) since we too have been raised with Christ. (6)

Fourthly, now being clothed in the righteousness of Christ the resurrection power of God working within us (7) promises (8) and enables (9) us to live lives increasingly consistent with the righteousness given to us in Christ.

Fifthly, the resurrection of our Lord Christ is a certain promise that we who have embraced Christ will also resurrect in a like manner and so not remain captive to the grave. (10)

Finally, the resurrection proves that grace restores nature as in the resurrection we remain joined to our gender (11), our nation (12), our bodies with all their earthly scars (13) and capacities (14).

(1) = John 2:19, Hebrews 6:18
(2) = Romans 1:4
(3) = I Corinthians 15:17
(4) = Romans 4:25
(5) = I Corinthians 15:17
(6) = Colossian 3:1
(7) = Ephesians 1:19-20
(8) = Romans 6:4
(9) = Romans 6;10-11
(10) = I Corinthians 15:20-21
(11) = John 20:26-27
(12) = Revelation 21:24, 26, 22:2
(13) = John 20:26-27
(14) = Luke 24:43


Breaking the above down,

2.) Q — Since then the resurrection is true what certainties do we who rightly believe receive from this doctrine of Christ?

A. — First, that God by the resurrection has again confirmed that He does not speak without keeping His Word. (1)

John 2:19 Jesus answered them, Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

Matthew 12:40 because just as Jonah was in the stomach of the sea creature for three days and three nights,[b] so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.

We are living in a time of an epistemological crisis. People insist that the only authoritative word is their own authoritative Word. This is seen in the way that everything is being reduced to being a “social construct.” The Resurrection of Jesus Christ proves again that there is an objective Word as found in Scripture and that God’s Word is reliable. The Lord Christ spoke of His coming Resurrection and His spoken Word was and remains true.

Because the Resurrection confirms that God keeps His Word we who believe God’s Word have a sure and certain foundation. We do not live by a word of flux but by a stable always true Word. The Resurrection of Christ confirms this.

Secondly, the resurrection proves that the Lord Christ is indeed God, (2)

Romans 1:and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.

Now Jesus’ own enemies understood that Jesus’ claims to be God’s Son was a claim to deity and desired to stone Jesus for what they considered blasphemy.

John 10: 31 Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, ‘I am God’s Son’?

There are those today who want to insist that Jesus was a good man. The Muslims for example will concede that Jesus was a Prophet but they deny His Deity.  The resurrection of Jesus Christ gives people today no choice. Either they hold Him as very God of very God and so honor Him or else they deny His Resurrection and Deity and so show their contempt of Him whatever they may say.

The resurrection confirms the Deity of Jesus Christ. He was and is very God of very God. The resurrection was God’s declaration of the deity of His Son who was eternally begotten.

This means fallen man is obligated to own Christ and worship Him as God. Where fallen man fails to worship Christ as God fallen man calls upon Himself God’s wrath.

And this proof of Christ’s deity in turn confirms that the work of Christ on the cross was a payment for sin that truly saves all who rightly believe. (3)

I Cor. 15:17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.

The Resurrection confirms for us that the Cross was really about what the Scripture teaches it was about. If there had been no Resurrection there would have been no reason to believe that the Cross was really a payment for sin. There would be no reason to believe that the Cross was a divine transaction where the Son pays for the sin of the Church while at the same time the Church is reckoned with His righteousness.  Without the Resurrection, Jesus is just at best a Jewish man unjustly dying on a tree-like so many others crucified. Without the Resurrection, we remain in our sin and are of all men to be pitied.

The resurrection then is the ability of all believers everywhere to say “I know that my sins are forgiven and I no longer have to fear the judgment of God because my judgment fell on Jesus Christ as my substitute.” The Resurrection proves that.

Thirdly, the resurrection makes certain that we who have closed with Christ do wear the righteousness of Christ, (4) and thus no longer remain in our sin, (5) since we too have been raised with Christ. (6)

Romans 4:25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.

Again, Christ was raised to life for our Justification.

Here we see the tightest possible connection between our righteousness and Christ’s resurrection. Christ’s resurrection was and is our Justification … our acceptability before the Father. Christ’s resurrection guarantees that when the Father considers us He considers us as being clothed with Christ’s obedience. Because of the death and resurrection of Christ, I no longer have to fear God’s wrath against sin. Without the resurrection, there is no peace to be had in life.

Further, we have to see that in Christ’s Resurrection we were objectively justified. Christ in His death and Resurrection justified His people. Now, to be sure the Holy Spirit would have to subjectively apply that justification in space and time but the Son in His Redemptive work of the Cross and His Resurrection set apart His people as the Justified ones. Our objective Justification is found in the Resurrection.

Scripture even goes so far as to say that the Church has risen with Christ (Col. 3:1). This is St. Paul’s way of saying that because of the work of Christ in bringing in the new creation (Kingdom) it can be said that right now we are living the resurrection life. The Resurrection of Christ was and is our Resurrection. We are Resurrected people of the age to come living in this present wicked age. This could be true apart from the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Fourthly, now being clothed in the righteousness of Christ the resurrection power of God working within us (7) promises (8) and enables (9) us to live lives increasingly consistent with the righteousness given to us in Christ.

Scripture teaches that the same power that raised Christ is now working in the people of God speaking of,

Ephesians 1:19 his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,

That resurrection power is unto the end of conforming us ever increasingly to Christ.

Romans 6:We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

This new life that Paul is talking about here is the resurrected life. We are new men in the Resurrected Christ and so we live ever increasingly the resurrected life.

Romans 6:10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

As life goes on we continue to die to who we were in Adam and we increasingly live to who we are in the Resurrected Christ. Being Christ’s Resurrection people we are ever zealous for good works and make it our goal to please our great Liege Lord Jesus Christ.

Fifthly, the resurrection of our Lord Christ is a certain promise that we who have embraced Christ will also resurrect in a like manner and so not remain captive to the grave. (10)

I Cor. 15:20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man.

The undertaker doesn’t get the final word.

We are in a culture that is obsessed with the fear of death. That is part of what the ChiCom Virus panic is all about. People are freaking out about the prospects of dying.

The Christian however, because of Christ’s resurrection knows that the end is not the end.

Christ was the firstfruits. In the OT economy, the first fruits were promissory of the fruits that were to follow. Christ’s physical and corporeal resurrection is promissory of our future bodily physical resurrection. There is life after life.

Only the Christian has this hope. All other men can only look forward to eternal death. All other men who do not have Christ attend funerals as those who are just waiting their turn.

The Christian doesn’t want to die but when he stares at death he knows His redeemer liveth and that in the end, his Redeemer will stand on the earth. The believer in Christ knows that after his skin has been destroyed, yet in his flesh, he will see God. Because of Christ the believer

Goes not to death, like the quarry-slave at night,   
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed   
By an unfaltering trust, We approach thy grave,   
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch   
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.

The unbeliever knows that the opposite is true for him.

Because of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ the believer knows that he knows that he will be “gathered to his fathers,” where the circle will finally be unbroken — and all this because of the Redemptive work of His great High King and Priest, Jesus Christ.

Finally, the resurrection proves that grace restores nature as in the resurrection we remain joined to our gender (11), our nation (12), our bodies with all their earthly scars (13) and capacities (14).

After the Resurrection Jesus remained male, He remained as one who was from the tribe of Judah, He remained scarred, and He ate breakfast with His disciples. The Resurrection did not destroy nature but rather restored and enhanced nature. There is continuity between who we were in this life and who we shall be in the life to come in our glorified and resurrected bodies. Of course, there will also be a discontinuity between who we are now and who we shall be in the Resurrection.

Like Jesus, the firstfruits of our Resurrection, we shall remain joined to our Gender. Heaven will not negate us of our maleness or femaleness. We shall remain joined to our Nationality and ethnicity. Those passages cited in Revelation distinctly insist that it is the nations as nations who occupy the New Jerusalem. There will be people present from every tribe, tongue, and Nation but as members of their tribes, tongues, and Nations. The Resurrection does not strip God’s people of whom God made them by way of creation.

This idea that finds such currency in the contemporary Church in the West that somehow conversion strips us of who we are creationally is a lie from the pit. Not only does conversion does not gnosticize us but neither does Resurrection turn us into Gnostic beings.

Finally, as Jesus said “For I tell you that I will not drink of the fruit of the vine from now on until the kingdom of God comes,” we understand that even our glorified bodies will have the capacity to eat, and drink, and be merry. Our natural capacities will not be destroyed.

So, we see that the truth of the Resurrection is entwined with many other stout Christian truths both confirming and sustaining those truths.

Christ is Risen.

(1) = John 2:19, Hebrews 6:18
(2) = Romans 1:4
(3) = I Corinthians 15:17
(4) = Romans 4:25
(5) = I Corinthians 15:17
(6) = Colossian 3:1
(7) = Ephesians 1:19-20
(8) = Romans 6:4
(9) = Romans 6;10-11
(10) = I Corinthians 15:20-21
(11) = John 20:26-27
(12) = Revelation 21:24, 26, 22:2
(13) = John 20:26-27
(14)= Luke 24:43

A Conversation on the Resurrection with my Friends on the Radio — “Political Cesspool”

James Edwards, the host of the Political Cesspool is fast becoming a new friend. James has hosted me several times on the Political Cesspool program. Tonight @ 9pm EST (2100) the program has me on to discuss the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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