Time

FORGET NONE OF HIS BENEFITS
volume 18, number 41, October 10, 2019

“You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” 
-James 4:14

As one surveys American history of the Twentieth century, one common thread weaves its way through those one hundred years. Every war we fought was begun by presidents of the Democratic Party. Progressive Democrat Woodrow Wilson led us into World War I. Statist Franklin Roosevelt brought us into World War II.[1] Centrist Harry Truman got us into the Korean War. And traditionalist John F. Kennedy moved us into the Vietnam War. Why? Because each of these men worked from a common world view. They believed, to a greater or lesser degree, in the inevitable progress of history, and that due to scientific, industrial, educational, social, and governmental engineering some form of utopia is certain. And in order to believe this there was, consciously or unconsciously, a jettisoning of the Christian world view in favor of the secular world view. The Christian world view believes in the one true and living Triune God who is creator, sustainer, deliverer, and judge of all created things. It believes in the linear view of time, that there was a beginning to the world, and that there will be an end to the world, that a day of judgment is coming for all the peoples of the world, that we are responsible to this God for all our actions on earth. The Christian world view believes in the utter depravity of man, that he is not intrinsically good, that he is corrupt in mind, body, and soul, that education, morality, nor government can ever usher in utopia. The Christian world view believes there must be a savior and that that savior is the Lord Jesus Christ who lived, died, and rose again from the dead to purchase our salvation. 

The secular world view disavows, or considers irrelevant, the belief in a sovereign, all powerful God. It has utter confidence in the goodness of man, that he is the master of his fate, the captain of his salvation, that he is the measure of all things; and that by his sheer intellect and innate goodness, he can eradicate poverty, injustice, and inequality. The one thing needed, says the secularist, is that we must lay aside our cultural, ethnic, and religious differences and become a one world nation. The secularist believes in equal outcome. He is egalitarian to the core. He denies the sovereignty of God in the distribution of gifts and wealth, demanding that all receive the same resources through the redistribution of wealth. Of course those in power live large while the rest live in poverty.  

Which begs the question, who will lead such a monumental movement? Plato gave us his vision in the The Republic. We will be led by “philosopher kings”, men who will have received fifty years of thorough, in depth education. These philosopher kings shall lead us because we are stupid, know nothing, and must be guided into all truth as they see it.  

As a side note, I may also add that though President George H. Bush and his son George W. Bush who led us into the Gulf War and the War in Iraq and Afghanistan were  both Republicans, they were globalists who also held the same world view. Surely you remember George W. Bush selling his war in Iraq on the idea that we would export freedom to the Iraqi people, which is not very different from Woodrow Wilson who said that our job is to “Christianize the world”. By this Wilson did not mean the work of evangelizing the lost but more a reformation of manners and Christian morality. 

Sir Thomas More in 1516 in his book Utopia first gave us the idea that progress toward societal perfection is inevitable, but many socialists/communists like Karl Marx[2] and Friedrich Engels[3] and progressives like Robert Owen[4], and John Lennon[5] also believed in the goodness of man and the inevitable march toward utopia. 

I reference utopia because this inevitable march toward a better world is the foundation of the progressive political and religious movement of our day. Again, it is founded on the goodness of man. True Christianity says, “No. Man is corrupt and man must be saved and then, and only then, can we hope to have even the slightest movement toward a better world.” 
We think we have conquered time, but have we? The currencies with which we navigate this brave new world are connectivity[6] (an almost godlike knowability by search engines like Google) through our iPhones; and mobility (we can work almost anywhere) since we can be anywhere in the world within twenty-four hours because of jet travel. But surely you can see that we have not conquered time. It has enslaved us. Business deals only thirty years ago took weeks to execute (mailing a contract took a few days, mailing it back took another few days) but now everything moves with the speed of light; and if a businessman does not immediately respond to a text or email then he hears it from the one wanting his immediate attention. We work longer and harder than ever, with more pressure on us to get the job done “now.” I mentioned two weeks ago that three enemies will prove the ultimate demise of our nation—the external, the internal, and time. I have written about the first two, but the most certain enemy, the one which undoubtably will bring us down, is time. This is self-evident. Our nation, sooner or later, will die. We all are going to die. The moment you are born is the moment you begin to die. We never remain the same. We are improving or declining in our health, knowledge, performance, or any other measurement we wish to use. 

A person who chooses to eat well, exercise regularly, and avoid unnecessary stress in his life, is generally prolonging his life. He knows that death is inevitable, but by taking care of himself he is postponing the certainty of his physical demise. Likewise, if we do all that God is requiring of us we may be able to postpone the inevitable death of our nation.    

This, of course, begs the question—what then must we do? The answer, my friends, is found in 2 Chronicles 7:14, a well known but often misunderstood text of Scripture. 

“. . . and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

Next week, and in succeeding weeks, I hope to take up each phrase of this amazing promise to Solomon and apply it to our situation at this present time. 
________________________

1   I have often said that the only war we fought in the Twentieth century which was warranted was World War II and, believe it or not, one can argue that if we had played our cards right, we could have avoided that one too. For a challenging look at this, I suggest you read Churchill, Hitler, and the Unnecessary War by Patrick Buchanan.  
2  “No burdens can bow us down, because they are sacrifices for the benefit of all.” From Reflections of a Young Man, Karl Marx, 1835. 
3  “The immediate aim of the Communist is . . . formation of the proletariat into a class, overthrow of the bourgeois supremacy, conquest of political power by the proletariat,” from The Communist Manifesto, Engels.
4  “Is it not the interest of the human race . . . that he would find his highest enjoyment . . . from doing all in his power to promote the well-being and happiness of every man. . . without regard to their class, sect, party, or country?” Owen founded the New Harmony Society, a utopian community of 1000 people.
5  A cursory reading of Lennon’s lyrics to Imagine removes any doubt of his utopian world view, “Imagine no possessions, I wonder if you can, No need for greed or hunger, a brotherhood of man.” 6  I owe this insight on connectivity and mobility to Os Guinness, A Free People’s Suicide, page 82.

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