Doug Wilson knows how to put things in perspective: “Scripture is a mountain range with granite boulders, and some places that are tough to climb. You can get hurt there, as the apostle once observed. But if you get high enough, above the tree line, you can see everything. By contrast, humanistic sentimentalism is a gigantic muck swamp, artificially augmented by about thirty percent through our legal system’s massive production of green Jell-O, and a diseased pop culture that is positively malarial.” However, in his post he claims the “high moral ground.” Compared to whom? No human being occupies the high moral ground on anything.
Nevertheless, I liked his comments about the “old guard” Christian Reconstruction writers like Gary North and Rushdoony, and I think the following is what he meant by his unfortunate claim. “For example, if confronted with the “angular” truth that God’s people in the Old Testament were allowed to buy slaves from pagan nations roundabout (Lev. 25:44-46), the likes of Rushdoony or North would say that paganism is slavery, and so a pagan is a slave by definition. Being brought as a slave into the covenant people offered a (long term) prospect for liberty, but in the meantime, it did not increase the amount of servitude in the world, but rather placed boundaries on it. And over generations, it created an off-ramp from that condition of pagan slavery.”
I bemoaned the lack of a unifying and effective worldview for our foreign policy/war making, in my last post. The firmly resolute nation I was born into in 1946 has become a quishy mess of “humanist sentimentalism”. Feelings reign, ugh. My daughter took me out to dinner Christmas Eve, and while I was outside, leaning on my cane, waiting for her to bring the car around, a couple approached me. The wife asked me if I was okay, and if someone was coming to get me. I assured her I was fine, just waiting for my ride. I related the incident to my good friend and former business partner, and said to him, “I realized she saw me as a decrepit old person, probably suffering from Alzheimer’s, who wandered away from the nursing home.” Before I could make my point, he hastened to reassure me that it’s not important what others think of me, that I am still okay despite her opinion.
He knows me well enough to know that I don’t care what others think of me, yet he immediately assumed that her questions and the underlying opinion were hurtful to me. No, that’s not at all the point I was trying to make. I realized that I still think of myself as strong and able, not at all as I appear to others since the stroke I suffered in 2016. If someone wants to hold the door for me, or return my shopping cart, that doesn’t wound my self esteem. What the heck, it makes my life a little easier and allows the other person to feel a little jolt of attaboy! What I feel about myself is entirely related to who I am in Christ, NOT a bit of how others treat me. That’s the opposite of modern humanist squishiness.
It’s natural, I suppose, for someone who cares about me and knows how much that stroke took out of me, to worry about how a random, kind stranger’s questions could hit my self esteem. Excessive concern for self esteem is the zeitgeist of modernity. But for people who profess faith in Jesus Christ, like me and my friend, self esteem based on anything other people say is a non starter. I am perfect in the Father’s eyes. The real gospel is that blessing is freely available, by grace. Why then, does that message have to compete with all these “social justice” and “self esteem” gospels emanating from church pulpits and home groups? I suggest you reread the second paragraph, then read Leviticus 25:44-46, then reread the paragraph again. You may say, “ah ha”. Or you may be part of the problem.
Speaking of which Brown University “is investing in creating safe spaces for men to unpack all of the things they have learned about masculinity and what it means to be a man. The goal is to help those socialized as men to unlearn some of the notions that have led to such profound harm being enacted toward others and toward themselves.” The College was founded by the Reverent James Manning, a Baptist minister. Probably a toxic male. Brown University costs $73,000 per year to attend. Gee, where’s the line form?
FOR THE REAL GOSPEL, CHECK THIS OUT EMPOWERED