How the Modern Church Squandered Its Rich Inheritance in Exchange for Depravity

Modern Christendom appears to have squandered the rich inheritance established by the American Founders in the early 17th and 18th centuries. The biblically based foundation they laid down has been replaced by a secular, hardboiled concoction of desecration, disruption and depravity, analogous to exchanging one's birthright for a pottage of lentils, the catchpenny crop of ancient Israel.

What's happening in America is spiritual: a summoning of the church to the restorative ekklesia model called for by Jesus in Matthew 16:18. By using a secular term, Christ positioned His ekklesia in the center of the public square. Insertion of the "leaven of heaven" into the nerve center of the community would of necessity affect the culture and disciple nations. The center of the public square is where the competition for ideological supremacy, marriage laws, sex-ed curriculums and so on will be at its fiercest. It is this central place of which Jesus said, "the gates of hades shall not prevail against it."

Jesus' intentional use of the New Testament word ekklesia is of vital importance. "[To] Greek readers, it would bring with it the associations of Greek politics," according to Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers. "The Ecclesia was the assembly of free citizens, to which belonged judicial and legislative power, and from which aliens and slaves were alike excluded. The mere use of the term was accordingly a momentous step in the education of the disciples. They had been looking for a kingdom with the King, as its visible Head, sitting on an earthly throne. They were told that it was to be realised in a society, an assembly, like those which in earthly polities we call popular or democratic. He, the King, claimed that society as His own. He was its real Head and Founder; but, outwardly, it was to be what the word that He now chose described. And this Church He was about to build. It need hardly be said that the word ecclesia did not lend itself so readily as the English equivalent does to the idea of building."

While the systematic effort to remove Christianity from the land went on over the last 100 years, modern Christendom, to America's great misfortune, adopted a different model—a model that instructed believers to keep quiet behind the four walls of the church building.

Having yielded to "the unaided reason of man [whose arrogant mentality has placed him or herself] above the authority of the Scriptures, denied the inspiration and infallibility of the Bible, renounced the reality of Original Sin, rejected the Trinity - the divinity of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit - and waged war upon Biblical orthodoxy," America has accordingly surrendered to "state-controlled education and civil government coercion to 'reform' man and society along man-centered lines." So concluded Archie P. Jones in his foreword to the new edition of Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States [1864] by Benjamin F. Morris.

He continued by saying: "Romans 13 and the Bible as a whole make so clear that civil government is not neutral among religions and philosophies of men but instead a ministry of the sovereign God who created and rules His Universe and world, and works out His eternal plan and holy will in history. Our forefathers in faith did not retreat from involvement in society and politics. They did not turn civil government, the making, enforcement, and adjudication of laws, over to Satan and those who serve him. They did not surrender the ministry of civil government to those who are in rebellion against God. Instead, they sought to base civil government and law upon truth."

For the Founders, virtue and liberty were inseparably linked. They deemed personal and public virtue as requisite to individual liberty and self-government. Sustainable freedom cannot long survive in the absence of a virtuous culture, which makes the current push in public schools for approbation of transgenderism, abortion and similar aberrations so nefarious and health-threatening over time for our children and grandchildren.

The exclusion of defining Christian hallmarks and principles from public education by secularists has resulted in inculcating the last three to four generations with the religious, ethical and political precepts of secularism. With America's values, politics and laws no longer being based upon the biblical benchmark for justice and judgment, secularized civil government and society is today at the mercy and whim of what a Supreme Court majority any given day can agree upon.

Let's attempt to formulate a remedy.

A few years ago my wife Cindy and I arrived on a late flight from California into Washington, D.C. Feeling hungry, we asked the hotel receptionist for the nearest restaurant that opened late. She pointed up the block to Kramerbooks & Afterwords, an independent bookstore and cafe in the Dupont Circle area. The store came to national attention in the Monica Lewinsky/President Bill Clinton scandal that led to a vote of impeachment in 1998.

After ordering dinner, we asked the waiter where the Christian book section was. He pointed to the area. All religions—Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Shinto, Taoism and so on—were here housed under philosophy!

"Unbelievable," I thought, "that here we are in the capital of a nation founded by Christians on a religious mission 'for the glory of God Jehovah and the advancement of the Christian faith' and you can't find a Christian book with a flashlight."

In order to cut back to size the high and mighty rivals of God Jehovah in America, such as political correctness, multiculturalism and secularism, it would seem a good idea for America's 15 largest protestant denominations to make Washington, D.C., the key battlefield for their mission. Breathing spiritual fire into the nation's main strategic point and seat of power, the enemy's fate and imminent decline would then be sealed.

Gratefully, Gideons and Rahabs are beginning to stand.

David Lane is the founder of American Renewal Project.

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