The Church’s Cultural Failure Is an Eschatological Failure

If you believe Christianity is destined to pre-Second Advent cultural defeat, and anti-Christianity to predestined cultural success, that's precisely what you'll get.

Dear friends and supporters:

This week’s CultureChange will be shorter than usual. I’ve conducted two funerals over the last two weeks, and have been preparing my messages and lectures for our Texas trip starting this weekend. In fact, in this e-letter, I’m summarizing what I’m addressing at the Make Christianity Great Again Conference advertised below.

Make Christianity Great Again

Make Christianity great again? Someone might ask, “But Andrew, aren’t Christians called to be humble?” Yes, indeed, we are. The Bible demands humility. God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble (Jas. 4:6). Humility is a mark of true Christianity, and where there’s no humility, there is no true Christianity.

But note well. We’re called to be humble before God. We’re not called to be humble about God. We’re required to be humble before the Bible, not about the Bible. God commands us to humble ourselves before Jesus Christ as Lord, but we may not be humble about the claims of Jesus Christ as Lord.

Many Christians today have inverted this humility. They’re proud before God, floating his law, but they’re humble and timid and apologetic about God’s law. They refuse to stand on the authority of the word of God under the guise of being humble. 

This isn’t humility. This is arrogance, and God will judge it.

They might believe in Jesus Christ, but they don’t believe in Christianity. They don’t know the great force the Christian faith has been in the world. They aren’t aware that all of the great benefits that they enjoy in the United States are the result, directly or indirectly, of Christianity.

They’ve reduced the faith to what Stephen Perks once called a “private devotional hobby.” The Christian faith isn’t great, but their vertical experience with the Lord is, and that’s all that matters to them. 

This has the biblical priority just backwards. The Bible is preeminently a testimony to God’s great kingdom expansion in human history beginning in a garden and ending with a resurrected heavens and earth in the eternal state.

Our vertical relationship with the Lord is one a vital aspect of that kingdom, but only one part of it. Most Christians don’t understand this fact, however, and therefore they don’t see Christianity as great.



The Biblical Gospel versus the Marxist Gospel

In the Western world since the 19th century there’s perhaps been no more pernicious and successful false gospel than the gospel of Marxism.

And make no mistake, Marxism is a gospel. It’s good news. Of course, it’s actually bad news for humanity, but it’s good news to the ears of rebels. To sinners lusting for their own autonomy, there’s no better news than Marxism. 

Marxism is good news to lazy, irresponsible people. All of us are born into sin, which includes laziness and irresponsibility, and Marxism reinforces that sinful propensity. 

Marxism despises what it calls “the profit motive.” It abhors private property. It abominates individual economic incentive. 

Karl Marx was an atheist and a materialist. There is no God, no spirit, no heaven or hell, just the physical world. Everything real is physical. Man is nothing more than blood and bone and nerves and electrical impulses. This means that man’s only needs are material: food, shelter, clothing, sex. 

According to Marxism, the good society, the just society, is the society in which all people live in basically the same material situation. So Marxists create societies that claim to secure economic equality.

Never mind that no Marxist society in the history of the world ever did this. Never mind that every communist country has plenty of haves and have-nots, the haves being the politicians and bureaucrats, and the have-nots being almost everybody else. 

Never mind that citizens aren’t content with their little material pittance but spend hours in line for basic necessities and for five years waiting for a used automobile. If there’s any equality, almost everyone is equally poor. 

Marxism is an unmitigated lie, holding out deceptive expectations, but it’s a lie for which rebels lust, one that they want to believe: this is a big part of the good news of Marxism – that you could have every material thing that you need (not want) in life without working hard to get it and keep it. 

Marxism is the gospel of laziness and irresponsibility. Therefore, Marxism is good news to sinners.

(continued below)


Seven hard-hitting, easy-to-understand chapters pinpointing several of the striking failures of modern Christianity that have left the church ineffectual in our rapacious culture. Only by recovering Christianity as a robust, full-throated and -practiced religion can we hope to restore its cultural power and dominance that alone creates the virtuous, free society presently under withering assault.

Get the new e-book here


(continued)

The Church’s Cultural Failure Is an Eschatological Failure

The failure of today’s church is largely a failure of its eschatological expectations. The church is confused in its eschatology, and it’s weighed down with unbelief toward the massive promises of the word of God.

Eschatology means the study of last things. But as R. J. Rushdoony once said, eschatology involves not just last things, but also first things. In theological vocabulary, eschatology presupposes protology. Protology means “first things.” One’s protological and eschatological views shape his entire life.

Many years ago in Ohio I was delivering a lunch speech to a group of pastors. I was urging them to take a stand against and turn back the evils of abortion and homosexuality and pornography and socialism.

Afterwards an evangelical pastor engaged me and said: “You know, I agree. We pastors all need to do more because there’s so much evil in the world: aborted children and increasing homosexuality and pornography, and I know that’s all bad. But if you think about it, it’s is all good, because it means Jesus is coming soon.”

If that idea sounds perverted to you, that’s because it is. 

If you long to see the Lord (and that’s a holy desire), but if you also believe that the world is destined to get worse just before his second coming (that is an erroneous belief), you might be led to such depraved thinking. Your eschatology is shaping how you live and act.

Conclusion

I’m addressing these topics in McAllen, and Gary DeMar of American Vision will be joining me. I’m not sure yet if the event will be live-streamed, but I’ll try to let you know via FaceBook and Twitter. Please attend or watch, if possible.


Will you consider a tax-deductible donation to CCL via PayPal or Venmo? Or mail a check to CCL, Box 100, Coulterville, CA 95311. God uses you to keep us going — and expanding.


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This Friday Sharon and I fly to Corpus Christi where I’ll be preaching during morning worship at City Church.

Next weekend, we’ll be in the Rio Grande Valley, where I’ll be speaking five times, including adult Sunday school and worship:

On Sunday, February 20 at Church of the King-McAllen, I’ll be speaking on “The Greatness of Answered Prayer” and “The Greatness of Jesus Christ.”

There won’t be a newsletter next Friday since we’ll be on the road, but the following week I hope to address “Restoring a Theology of Glory.” Luther’s Theology of the Cross is imperative. There’s no biblical faith without it. The cross destroys all human pride, achievement, and self-promotion.

There’s also no biblical faith without a Theology of Glory. The cross and resurrection exalt the glory of the reigning Lord and his relentless kingdom advance in the earth.

For centuries the church has wanted a Theology of the Cross while ignoring a Theology of Glory — and we wonder why we presently are cultural detritus.

CCL just keeps growing in influence. This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes. Please keep praying and donating so we can do even more. I am indebted to you.

Yours for the King,

Founder & President

Center for Cultural Leadership


More great stuff:

The Center for Cultural Leadership site is here.

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Center for Cultural Leadership

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