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THE PERSPICUOUS CLARITY
OF THE WORD OF GOD
CONCERNING GOD AND STATE
Folly at the University, Truth as little regarded as
Butterflies in a Cavalry Charge
The issue was simple. Christ had said, "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's" (Luke 20:25).
A University Lecturer in Sydney, later to be full Professor at one of the Universities in another capital, in the former site made one of those horrendously inane claims, in which that disfaith (q.v. SMR index) which seems to make of the minds of some, an enchanted area, where facts are distorted as if by magic, had free rein.
He declared that this very statement of Christ concerning Caesar and God was a nothing statement, a meaningless utterance, a vacuous verbiage (not in those words, but this was the thought). The whole question, he enunciated with the terrible wisdom of one who marks examination papers, is WHICH is WHICH in the division. This left undone, he indicated, meant that this was virtually a meaningless dictum.
He dismissed the point with arrogant thoughtlessness, failing to give it the most superficially discriminating thought. It is necessary to return to this outrageous foozle and unattractive indoctrination.
Strident indeed at Universities is the voice of unbelief, caricaturing fact in hope, as in organic evolution (cf. The gods of naturalism have no go!), and here in political philosophy. Many are the full-time conformists who seek professional status more than truth, and swallow these pills of spiritual profanity as if de rigueur, often with academic posts in mind or professional advancement. The cost can be high for non-conformity! It is not hard in such cases, to be failed by an absolutist believer in relativism, a specialist in antilogy, whose word becomes a kind of law, with this difference to those genuine laws of science which rest on scientific method, that there is neither evidence nor reason for them.
Let us then look at this amazingly deluded pronunciamento of pseudo-papal philosophy, emanating from Sydney.
Is there, then, no room for clarity in Christ's pronouncement ? Is perhaps the matter unclear that human governments have certain indisputable and indispensable duties ? Is it unheard of, rarified in some Kantian noumenal realm, which you cannot know but know anyway ? Is it not realised that bridges and railways and aerodromes and armies to defend the populace, and resource management to prevent what currently faces much of Australia in the muddy realm of water, and diplomacy to prevent needless wars and peaceable streets to aid productivity and prevent lunacy becoming a dragon to eat wisdom and so forth ... is it unknown that such is a realm of State ? that this is a duty of 'Caesar' ? Is this vacuous!
Again, if the State has chosen certain moral emblems, laws, codes, cultural exhibits or plain preferences, this becomes one fact*1. Yet if another fact, from the lips of Christ, is then made relevant, and we see that THE MORAL DUTY of man is first towards God (Christ left no doubt on the topic, as the slightest reference to John 5 8,9,10 shows instantly), so that only then can governmental power rightly proceed, is this obfuscatory or does it not rather have the simplicity of a child! You do this, I do that!
The QUESTION of how far and in what one may obey the moral duties, explicit or implicit, of man is the obvious challenge; and it means in context that there is a limit, that it occurs PRECISELY when the word of God prescribes to the contrary, as it is applied to whatever situation is in view. God both is and speaks: that is the unquestionable background to what Christ is saying. What He demands of mankind is the barrier act that government must meet. You do not HAVE to believe, but there are moral and spiritual ingredients that are for the chaste mind and thoughtful government absolute limits, leaving their own jobs circumscribed.
Thus the dictum of Jesus Christ is eminently clear, exceedingly directive and wonderfully neat.
Thus, if as happened to one of this author's relatives, an exceedingly wealthy and large business is about to have him do a large piece of work by contract, and it renegs on what are found to be religious grounds, even after the contract is written, recalling that same contract, this is that level of violation which Christ's dictum exposes.
Thus BECAUSE this contractor WILL NOT give unrestricted power to the company during his work for it, absolutely to determine the nature of ethics and procedures as he works, it is grabbing the things of God and seeking to sequester them. What then ? This: then obviously he cannot work for them. You have to TRUST us, they declared. In what ? in the unrestricted realms required ?
That is the same thing as in government: you either trust man or God, and when in business or politics, anyone REQUIRES you to give advance obedience to unknown procedures, or those to be determined and imposed, then you are giving to them the place of God. The godless may not care, but the firm does dare, when it does this, to arrogate divine right to its site.
Ethics of a kind can require you to be quiet about anything; and if dishonesty, dishonourableness or deviousness, if immoral self-interest seeking to sequester things for mere grandeur should become apparent, you HAVE to follow ? Resign ? yes, you might in such a case: but in the interim which grace, patience and good conduct requires in the midst of a mission, how would you suddenly do that, ethically ? To be sure, you might have to continue in order to be responsible as a worker, but how much more extreme is the stringency of the case if you CANNOT! If the requirement were such as to impugn the principles of God, then you must leave intemperately, rather than become involved!
Thus no such commitment could possibly be made in the first place; and the company was seeking the place of God, even if they did not believe in His existence. This does nothing to reduce the moral duty to Him; just as a failure to believe there is any police officer near, does nothing to reduce your necessity of keeping to the speed limits, as a Christian.
The superiority of the moral splendour, the necessity of the moral law of God therefore becomes a method, measure and criterion in a vast range of cases. If the one party taunts you, divine moral law forbids you to return evil for evil. If an enemy presses you, divine spiritual law forbids you to be evil to that party, but rather you must love your enemies. If you are invaded, you may repel, but not dispel moral duty in the process.
This, then, does not mean that you await your destruction at their criminal hands, if so be, but that beyond your own dangers, you consider your neighbour as yourself, and see what you can yet somehow do for the welfare of the sick, the deceived or the passionate.
THE TWO REALMS
Thus as the two realms sometimes contrast and the clash, this means that if it is a matter of the divine name, the divine orders or the divine perspective as revealed being by Christ's dictum, the pre-eminence since God is above man: thus the realm of Caesar becomes an interloper if it seeks to control you without limit; and ACCORDINGLY, in such cases, you do not do what he says. The word of Christ severs that option! and this is vacuous ? Not for your salary!
Perhaps the most obvious case is that of emperor worship, and the same applies more recently as in Victoria, where in law suits in what are alleged to be discriminatory areas, the INTENTION of your words is deemed irrelevant, the question being rather whether someone or other feels demeaned by them (cf. News 156 ). Thus, the whole question of objectivity and truth is waylaid into subjectivity. Safeguards themselves, when these are added, are readily socially interpreted on this or that theory or thesis, and so safety for truth becomes an outage and the action an inroad to the things of God. It is one step where sale of the soul becomes readily the price of a State. Here sundry legal results can rise in arrogant defiance to the skies, but without, as in Victoria, bringing much rain (cf. Amos 4!).
If again, the State requires you to follow certain procedures in securing certain advantages in this or that realm, undertaking silence at all costs, in this area, and binding yourself to do the other in all circumstances in something else, or to give unquestioned obedience to some party, then if any of these things pre-suppose the unknown in principle, you cannot agree; for God is known by the Christian, and what is unknown MAY clash with His commands. You cannot therefore, if serving the one Master, give pre-emptive power in the future to the other. NO MAN can serve TWO MASTERS! (Matthew 6:24, Luke 16:13). That is obvious.
Hence all such impositions cannot secure agreement from the Christian: nor is this altered if they are taken in trust, assuming that of course the State would never do this or that. Consider Hitler: a few years before his rule, the German State perhaps would never have considered building the refined and gargantuan gallows in the form of gas chambers, that came to require much of staff and workers, and at least as much consent as silence required, or the Gestapo might exact.
Such was the moral, the ethical, the personal, social and racial situation. SOME people, however, such as the ten Boon parent of Corrie, would not consider obeying the military and government desires of the lawful authority, and so with prudence, but with power, sought to circumvent this rule. Death was the payment to Corrie's father; and though pity allowed him to return home if he promised never to help Jews again, during this persecutory pilgrimage of the German nation under Hitler, he WOULD not do this. He could not do it; it would secure compromise to the THINGS OF GOD. He could give no such guarantee concerning the future, and would rather die than do so; and he did die, very soon, left wandering unaided in the uncaring hospital area.
How then could so asinine an announcement as this of the future philosophy Professor to whom reference was made at the start of this chapter, even have been thought of, far less actually spoken! The things of God and of Caesar are too hard to grasp, in the context of Christ, as to their applicability ? It is constant, contemporary and complete. Even if, in the dim mists of an atheistic heart, such was the case, how on earth or out of it could the irrational heights or depths of such a thing be SPOKEN in public and this to a class as if to instruct them!
There can be little doubt that Australia, in the extremities of the irrationalities it has for so long suffered in so many of what are often, alas, merely quasi-educational institutions, has given Caesar his hand in capitulation to gross imposition. In so doing, it has notoriously been breaching the dictum of Christ, taking the things which belong to God and putting them in the hands of Caesar, and so asking for trouble from that Ruler beyond human law, whose own laws are of millenia, unchanged in spirit and in heart. If it demeans man by allowing such presumption in colleges or universities, does this not demean the work of the Maker, and violate His purity, and do this in the minds of many!
States have taught as sound learning, much merely tainted prejudice*1, and none of them with more daring devilry than in South Australia in its explicit attack on religion which it REFUSES to remove over decades (cf. That Magnificent Rock, Ch. 8), an attack which MUST include Christianity as part of its unscholarly generalisation, a rash act which indeed seems to meet as shown in the reference given, the depths of that delightful old saw, "rhetorician of your own verbosity." It speaks with solemn folly about the things of God as if Caesar knew all, and needed no reason.
Well does one remember having to turn from a debased tertiary class in Education, on English as a Foreign Language, because the tutor made it clear that not only did she personally have evolution as a ground in her thoughts, but would assume, require, apply this throughout. Such a breach of free thought, speech and such doctrinaire fundamentalism in what is a realm of fiction (cf. Secular Myths and Sacred Truth) could not cohere with any sort of learning. It would be like assuming 2+2 could NOT under any circumstances equal 4, as a prelude to higher mathematics study. This was not even relevant to debate!
It is the swagger of sensual folly, naturalistic fairy tales (cf. The gods of naturalism ... op. cit) that infest learning that makes such things all the more to be parallels to Hitleresque indoctrination. The same theories of force masquerade as truth, as if what force does and what is required for it to do it were irrelevant; as if a moron could in the long run equal the productions of genius. The irksomeness of the folly makes of many a college course, an unholy Hiroshima, a stricken Nagasaka, a ruin before building; and many build on such as a basis.
On this, the reader may care to consult SMR on Vulture Culture, 422Qff., and the presuppositional annexations of pseudo-neutralism so readily found in the suction apparatus of the academics, like octopuses, feeding on the souls of the dispossessed youth, 376ff..
One young lady in such a situation, had to advise the Lecturer who so proceeded on ludicrous assumptions without supporting them, as a matter of cultural kingship - in that case, evolutionism, that if this were to re-appear groundless further in his lectures, she would walk out. As the subject at that time may have had some sensitivity, he did not press the issue; but few are those who dare to show any colour of courage when their careers are concerned. Spiritual oppression continues as minds are dashed for the dynamic of professional hopes, while culture gives anaesthetic to perceptions of reality.
In such milieus, then, the precept of Jesus Christ is certainly to be kept, is not only most exacting in its impact, but requires a refusal to conform to or confirm the lusts of spiritual darkness, allied to cultural captivity! That is a prescription which relatively few are willing effectively to combat. Caesar emphatically and if need be, dramatically, MUST not be given rule over the soul in his aggressive pretensions, as if offending and demeaning the Almighty, or the Lord, were part of being alive in the 21st century. Apply the word of Christ, and the read-out, so far from being unclear, is decisive, demanding, a spark to courage and a grant to purity of heart.
Caesar, on the other hand, remains adamant for his acquired territories, which unyielding, those of God Himself, he desires for his playground, battle-ground or pleasure.
THE COURSE OF HISTORY
This is the course of history, which is following faithfully the very concepts the Lord laid down through John, as seen in the book of Revelation, where the climax comes in such phases as Revelation 13 and 17, in which the beast gains oppressive rule over the spirits of men who must WORSHIP him, that is, the cultural, political, military-industrial complex with its personalised projections into god-like pride. It is no mere Statism that is in view, but rather the evil flower of it, where there is clear perception of the governmental desire for divine grandeur, however 'divine' might be divined. Thus at last, a personal face contoured for this disintegrating but powerful phase of devil-worship, aimed from below to strike to the heart of the human race. So comes the devil's 'messiah', the antichrist of I John 2:18, the figure of II Thessalonians 2, the focus of Revelation 16,19.
It is one of the most intense and immense ironies of history, to see the price of predation and the vice of victory. Thus, loss is often the result of gain, and defeat of victory, as you move from the material to the spiritual, as nation after nation seeks power and uses oppression - not that the process is as simple as that*2, but such is often a salient feature. In many phases of history, aggressive desire and grasping for territories and self-aggrandisement have played no small part (cf. Fifteen Decisive Battles of the World, Sir Edward Creasy), betraying the more important things of God in the wildness of ostentation, pride or possession. When the result, as in the case of Lady Macbeth, appears, that is a different story, better left to Act V...
Indeed, victories can be short-lived, but the lives which the specious majesty of vainglory fools and spoils amidst its power lust, become permanent disadornments, as they are sucked as by an immense subterranean wash into the dark waters of spiritual doom. False ambitions readily become lost lives, and self-importance in nation and power among men, the prelude to a blindness which spreads as if there were some clinic to which the seeing might go, in order to achieve obscuration of vision. It is not least because of this pathology, one of many among men, that nations continue to seek security by squandering resources, or pre-eminence by seizing those of others, or glory in order to intimidate or advance in order to advance, without raising the question of the direction of movement, delusively termed 'advance'. Do you advance into hell ?
The twisted and tormented souls, that seize and gain power, increasingly raise amazement that such beings could hold such positions of directive leadership; yet their advance to such vainglory is often at the dismal loss of their souls. Thus misformed, deformed or spiritually derelict, as all but soulless they rule, and seek ruin by gouging out eyes, as did Hitler and Stalin and the Inquisition, figuratively speaking: though what such rulers and peremptory prescriptions did in the realms of horror of torture and torment, is not at all metaphorical.
In such milieus, then, to give to Caesar only the things which do not involve
a) his system of morals either
instead of or on a par with those of God,
b) his worship of power instead
of the worship of the Creator's power,
c) his tendency to glorify
himself, as a moon to the sun of divine glory,
make for the clearest distinction.
It is often a most sacrificial one, as Caesar, the military and political power under the sway of the various pathological philosophies that have beguiled the human race, most vigorously and vagrantly resents competition! What is deemed, in word or outcome, lèse-majesté often does not at all please his political or regal majesty! The Roman Empire and its Augustus models, like the Japanese with their own Emperor worship of not so distant a time past, and the racial epics of Hitler and the class convoys, delusive as they were, of Stalin: all exhibit all too clearly the competitive character of the desire for human glory in the State, and the necessity for divine glory where and where alone, it belongs. The chasm the secular loves to cross, and the falsely religious delights to ignore.
Thus the word of Christ enters continually into the dynamics of life, and it depends naturally on what was something that the straying Lecturer noted at the first, might have found, had he troubled. It is this. The entire Old Testament in the day of Christ not only showed a moral, an ethical, a legal, a religious, a civic, an ecclesiastical - in the broad sense - array of truths and their applications, to a most refined degree, thus defining the term God and Caesar by contrast and by exclusion of their various features, but it applied these things to foreign countries. In terms such as those concerning Nebuchadnezzar, Sennacherib, Pharaoh, the things acceptable and not were outlined, concerning 'Caesar' and concerning God.
Thus the torment of the Pharaohs, of the Tyrian Empire and of the Babylonian monarch are given vast attention in Ezekiel 26-32, where their fraudulent self-importance and fatal omission of recognition of the Lord are marked out, as if by flaming stakes. What is NOT for Caesar, for example, is shown in Isaiah 37ff., where a daring Assyrian king, Sennacherib, who had set his heart on taking Jerusalem, at the time when godly Hezekiah was it king, is mocked openly for his aggressive desire to gain for Caesar the things which belong to God.
It is in Isaiah 36:18ff. that we see this conflict of interest between the Creator, the Lord, and the desecrator, Sennacherib, as the latter pursues his propaganda putsch against Israel. We hear one of the Sennacherib's servants making this specious speech in order to subdue the spirit of resistance to his coming assault, in Israel.
" ‘Beware lest Hezekiah persuade you, saying, 'The Lord will deliver us.;
'Has any one of the gods of the nations delivered its land
from the hand of the king of Assyria?
'Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim?
Indeed, have they delivered Samaria from my hand?
'Who among all the gods of these lands have delivered their countries from my hand,
that the Lord should deliver Jerusalem from my hand?’
"But they held their peace and answered him not a word; for the king’s commandment was, 'Do not answer him.' Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, Shebna the scribe, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder, came to Hezekiah with their clothes torn, and told him the words of the Rabshakeh."
That, if you will, was the Dr Goebbels of that war. The Lord responded with derisive devastation, the former first coming to the fore.
First however, Isaiah 37:14-20 shows the prayer of Hezekiah, in which the divine glory and the site of Caesar's just concerns are made as clear as a scalpel is sharp.
"And Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord.
"Then Hezekiah prayed to the Lord, saying:
'O Lord of hosts, God of Israel, the One who dwells between the cherubim,
You are God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth.
You have made heaven and earth. Incline Your ear, O Lord,
and hear; open Your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear all the words of Sennacherib,
which he has sent to reproach the living God.
"Truly, Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands,
and have cast their gods into the fire; for they were not gods,
but the work of men’s hands
- wood and stone. Therefore they have destroyed them.
"Now therefore, O Lord our God, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord, You alone."
The Lord then acted, destroying Sennacherib's army by what appear to have been astronomical events, perhaps a shower of meteorites; but in any case, the divine retort to this challenge by the Assyrian king was not obscure. It was in fact, just this, as found in Isaiah 37, and transmitted faithfully by that prophet, before the destructive results on Sennacherib's stricken army followed.
"The virgin, the daughter of Zion,
Has despised you, laughed you to scorn;
The daughter of Jerusalem
Has shaken her head behind your back!
"Whom have you reproached and blasphemed?
Against whom have you raised your voice,
And lifted up your eyes on high?
Against the Holy One of Israel.
"By your servants you have reproached the Lord,
‘By the multitude of my chariots
I have come up to the height of the mountains,
To the limits of Lebanon;
I will cut down its tall cedars
And its choice cypress trees;
I will enter its farthest height,
To its fruitful forest.
I have dug and drunk water,
And with the soles of my feet I have dried up
All the brooks of defense.’
"Did you not hear long ago
How I made it,
From ancient times that I formed it?
Now I have brought it to pass,
That you should be
For crushing fortified cities into heaps of ruins.
"Therefore their inhabitants had little power;
They were dismayed and confounded;
They were as the grass of the field
And the green herb,
As the grass on the housetops
And grain blighted before it is grown.
"But I know your dwelling place,
Your going out and your coming in,
And your rage against Me.
Because your rage against Me and your tumult
Have come up to My ears,
Therefore I will put My hook in your nose
And My bridle in your lips,
And I will turn you back
By the way which you came." ’
In this, the Lord makes it clear that he had appointed Sennacherib for a purpose, and He would deal with the axe that exalted itself against its Maker who had wielded it! Indeed, the reference to that nation, Assyria, as a means of rebuking Israel had long been told to Israel, as seen in Isaiah 7, and the Lord, foreseeing the arrogance that would then possess Sennacherib, had already told of his coming doom. Thus we find this in Isaiah 10.
"Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Lord has performed all His work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, that He will say,
'I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria, and the glory of his haughty looks.'
"For he says:
'By the strength of my hand I have done it,
And by my wisdom, for I am prudent;
Also I have removed the boundaries of the people,
And have robbed their treasuries;
So I have put down the inhabitants like a valiant man.
'My hand has found like a nest the riches of the people,
And as one gathers eggs that are left,
I have gathered all the earth;
And there was no one who moved his wing,
Nor opened his mouth with even a peep.'
"Shall the ax boast itself against him who chops with it?"
Thus the arrogance of Assyria met the factuality of the Lord.
Then as above seen in Isaiah 37, the dénouement strikes the arrogant pretensions of the all too 'successful' Sennacherib, and his demise becomes a byword of history, as he lay stricken by the hand of one of his own sons, on his return. To complete the irony, this assassination occurred, as the once so mighty king sought to worship one of his false gods!
Again, in Ezekiel we find God telling Nebuchadnezzar that as an instrument in bringing down the pride of Tyre, he needed payment, so the Lord would give him as salary, Egypt! (Ezekiel 29:17-20).This of course became a coming port of call for the Babylonian before that Empire itself became a perpetual proverb for overthrown power, ruined beauty and relegation to dust, its ruins indeed a testimony to the divine thoroughness (as foretold in Isaiah 13, long before).
Thus the diversity and immiscibility to the uttermost, of the glory and command and morals and majesty of God, and the aspirations of man, nation or empire as it may be, require the most acute concern that the one be not confused with the other. In fact, not only are the principles of discrimination for the one and the other, made resplendently clear, but the confusion of the two is ridiculed to the uttermost.
THE CLARITY OF DISPARITY AND THE COST OF BLINDNESS
What then ? Failure here becomes professional blindness, always dangerous for any ... operator.
When it comes to God, there is one, and He is omnipotent; when it comes to Caesars, they vary, and are not almighty, and fearing none but their apparent foes, and sometimes not these, they often tend to become diseased in the spiritual eye and deaf in the spiritual ear, until the quasi-crown of Caesar is shown as mere weight on top of a diseased brain, a disordered spirit, a broken understanding, or all three. To give to GOD the glory and the majesty, and to find from Him the power and the understanding is a course so simple and secure that it provides a continual clash with the fearful pride and fallacious follies of the governments that growing great, aspire to the role of Caesars, with incessant presumption in scope.
But, to take the term more literally, what of Caesars now! Their glories like those of Babylon, are mere prodigies, in which some vestiges of responsible use of their proper functions has led on to the most callow wallowing in worships inebriate and wanderings inane.
The brutalities associated with their regimes, as with those of the last century where passing pride and polluted philosophy often most rigorously ruled, lead rather to revulsion than admiration. Their disregard for the significance of this little mite, man, one however by the spirit given to him, of significance unique before the Lord, and owned by Him, has led them into a Caesar-God combat in which the issues were as clear as the shining windows of a glass emporium, even if opaque by damage to the spiritual retina, in the case of those who cannot understand the most simple of equations.
What then is the equability of the equation, and how should it stand ? It is this. The glory of Caesar and that of God have the disparity of infinity and finite, the glorious and the vainglorious, the emptily aspirant and the resolutely true; and to fail to see the application of the rule of Christ, His famous dictum, is as excusable as failing to see the red lights, in one of those traffic intersections where for this and that purpose, one might on occasion count up to 8 red lights, blazing away at once. To fail to see this is more than blind; it is a binding of sight, as if the eye were encased in lead.
One example will here suffice. In South Australia, in January 1988 ( That Magnificent Rock, Ch. 8), as noted in the text above, the Government brought in a Circular to Principals of schools so vile in its anti-educational presumption, so gratuitous in its assumptions, so unscholarly in its irrationality (see SMR) that it becomes a testimony to all time of what undisciplined government or sleepy churches or both will on the one hand dare to do or supinely suffer, in a recklessness that for youth would be perhaps considered rampageous devilry, and for maturity, insufferable insolence against the Almighty.
Insolence ? That is the whole point. There is what are the things of Caesar and what are those of God appear in solemn simplicity and stark reality.
When Caesar, the perhaps ambitiously deluded government of the time, dares to bedevil the truth by acting as though it had a statutory or educational axe so that under the guise of plastic facial surgery, it should cut once more into the very tissue of the body of Christ, then there is the distinction Christ made. This is not a matter of truth, but brutality to youth.
Here legislative authority for the civil becomes arrogation of presumption concerning the divine. There is talk of water shortage. What do you expect when an intransigent government utterly refuses to remove such an arrant piece of theological adventurism as this, and never even answers the points made ?: that this is defamation of deity on the one hand, educational wantonry on the other. In fact, the claims made and imposed in this long-used Circular have not academic presentation given behind them, and exhibit pre-emption of the mind of youth by preferred theory, including a sort of political papacy, in which no other view is PERMITTED to be rationally presented. In this way acting to undergird with fallacious irreligion, as if it were truth, what follows in curriculum, the government thus at one blow becomes guilty of mis-education and theological mischief, surging into the things of God, indeed directly, with all the arrogance of callow youth, though their years are more than that!
The things of God are not rendered to God, but wrested with indifference; the things of Caesar seek to expand, like some demented Hitler, taking first this land and then that, as if of right.
This is one extreme illustration of what many take for granted in many democracies of the 21st century: that of course ludicrous and defamatory attacks will be made in educational spheres on Christianity directly, or as here indirectly, as a pre-emptive privilege, as if this were cultural liberation, when in fact it is shameless irrationality! (cf. SMR, The gods of naturalism have no go! and Secular Myths and Sacred Truth et al.). NOT EVEN open and ratdional discussion occurs in the schools in this arena, but truth is exiled as if by decree, and presumption rules as a princess, though one of ill-fame.
Is this the way to honour God ? Is this the way a nation expects the blessings of the Almighty, and to gain necessary water; and if some have the privilege of not believing, does this become ground for a rampant exercise in manipulation ? And is such wilful manoeuvring to occur even to the point that secular examination papers are set on the basis of assumptions not established and preferences not validated, but in fact invalid! (cf. Celestial Harmony for the Celestial Host), when validation and verification that is not only theological but Christian awaits with never a tremor (Light Dwells with the Lord's Christ), while the academic options dictatorially chosen cannot rationally stand at all! and are indeed in some cases, a direct contradiction even of scientific method (Scientific Method, Satanic Method and the Model of Salvation)!
Vain is any reply that one seeks privilege for Christianity in a secular community. This is mere evasion. What is sought is an end to assumptions that do not bother to find validation, to incursion into the things of God which is not even backed by argument or presentation, and to irrational insistences on things gratuitous wrought, so that these become without argument, scholarship, or justification even logically attempted, standards for society in their schools. Freedom of thought, actuality of argumentation, openness for debate both official (always rejected by the Government or simply ignored when the challenge is made) and in schools themselves is far from preference; and the current assault which is implied in the Circular extends to the point that when applied, it denies the bodily resurrection of Christ. Testing is a specialty of Christianity and it is this which is made irrelevant to religion.
When argument is irrelevant you have dictation, and this is not fitting in any democracy; and in fact, this flitting from fact into the realms of misty theory and imaginary omniscience allowing such callow concepts to flourish without exposure, is social engineering, building with nugatory bricks, on clouds. What do you expect of the tissue of society when such engineering expands its wantonry! You get it, however, you get it; and this is no small contribution to the result to be found.
On Wars, Kingdoms, Empires, Rulers, Rules and their Breach
It is interesting as one reads Sir Edward Creasy's account of 15 decisive world battles, to see some of the ingredients of change and martial result. Thus, he dwells on the sense of purpose and thrust, discipline and determination which Peter the Great over time helped instil into Russian soldiers before the decisive battle of Pultowa, 1709. In this, Sweden, once much larger than now, and with an imperial history of note, and a reputation weighty, was defeated unexpectedly.
What were the ingredients of that defeat ? Amongst them was one as clear as the fault of Hitler in spending thorough time to teach Yugoslavia a lesson, perhaps delaying him three weeks in his invasion of Russia, a time which would have been invaluable and conceivably decisive, had they become available as he neared Moscow. That time spent in this preliminary thrust of power into the Balkans, to subdue and teach, might if omitted have enabled what at that initial phase of the war was an overpowering thrust, to be consummated! How ? It might have allowed Hitler just that time, as Winter drew near, to secure Moscow while it wilted under his blitzkreig, and to have its comforts and power at his disposal during the frigid season. Such an occupation of the Russian capital for Winter, other things equal, could have changed the result immeasurably.
The alternative ? intense cold and failure, jointly affecting the troops. It was this, and not the other, which his intemperate action at the outset, secured for him. In this case, a spiritual aspect became far more important than a military one, and appears to have militated decisively against his entire effort in Russia! We move back to an earlier Russian adventure.
In the case of the 18th century Swedish King Charles XII, the final battle of large numbers of troops from either side, was close. He did not lose by much; and his men fought valiantly. However, an earlier mistake had tilted things, and the wobble proved too much. Thus, it seems he spoiled his results in allowing what Creasy, and not he alone, regards as a particularly bad strategy, lines too far stretched for early reinforcement from one major block of troops in timely fashion to reach another, with an area of strike left exposed to the enemy (who exploited it with tremendous negative results for Sweden). Thus instead of having a massive surge of courageous troops ready at the crucial point of battle, coming to back his efforts at the turning point, he lacked a vast number through the strategic failure.
WHY had there been that failure ? It is apparent that he did not conceive the vision of defeat, and over-confidence allowed him not to be thorough and careful; even though courage, tenacity of purpose and no small determination in his troops carried him near to a victory which passed like a cloud, to leave him broken.
Peter the Great, his opponent, by contrast had been agile and valiant, and had instilled into his troops a growing sense of possibility, of resolve, and of hope, which relegated the previous trend to rabblish defeat, to a memory.
These aspects of these two cases, those of Hitler and Peter the Great illustrate the point of national risings and fallings, to no small extent. Thus, in addition to the often virtually insane pursuit of glory, instead of USING qualities of courage, loyalty, co-operation, brotherly concern and active intelligence, nobility of spirit and resolution of heart, for a good purpose, there are other elements that act. The spirit of the enterprise, explicit or implicit - for degrading gain, for exploitation as of the Chinese in the opium wars, for seizing of riches, as in the case of the Belgium king in Congo, this has an aura, an atmosphere; and it tends to mould a characterisable contour of heart.
Greed, cruelty, unnaturalness, these things tend to make of the soldiery little more than authorised murderers. The results may not be as apparent as for individuals, but they exist. Brutalising of feelings, by these or other means, as in the trenches of World War I's Anglo-German meet, with many in attendance: this also has both short term and long term effects.
The warming of the heart, the clarity and purity of the spirit of an enterprise, the nature and character of the rulers, the disposition of intelligence and the activation of imagination, in a context of good or evil aspirations: all these things influence both directly and indirectly, not only the outcome, but just as important, the residual atmosphere and impact on the nation or Empire concerned. The flow may continue for generations, especially as each of them submits to the result or the evil, rather than overcoming it, in a flow-on failure.
Above this, there is the sense of care, humility or other, and the reliance on Almighty God, which some allege, but few in fact show, relative to the scope of the divine commandments of what belongs to God, and what to the nation's reputation or designs. Indeed, these spiritual things not only bring the scenario into a broader perspective, where the main thrust becomes more directly assessable, not merely contribute forcibly to the result, but bring shadow or light to the international concept of what has been done, to the nation's standing in view of that, and far more important than this, bring the blessing or reprimand of the Lord.
This may be seen in the loss of wealth, in part improperly gained, as in the of say 1912 Britain, with an industrial revolution cruelty in her past, and an even more cruel slavery abuse, so that illicit gain became explicit pain. Again, it may be seen in the humiliating crushing of a proud nation, as with Germany in 1945, and in the unspeakable brutality of the Russian army, most sadly allowed by mere military command, to enter Berlin as if a prize, where as in terms of what is due to God, there should have been mercy, with Montgomery or some such leader, entering first. It appears that this was entirely possible in military terms; and the result of its not being done was paid for in terms of the Berlin wall, and much grievous suffering that went with this.
The nations and empires, no less than individuals, are tested, and their plumes re-arranged or plucked out, their pasts estimated and the lessons shown, seen even if not learned, by many.
The spirit of man beneath the Spirit of God, and the word and wit of man below the wonder and wisdom of God, these are cardinal aspects; and within this, there is the will of the Lord that people learn from follies the nature of sin, and the need for salvation; and the need to see what belongs to God, and to Caesar, and to act accordingly. The 20th and 21st centuries seem ready to assure us that as far as the nations and the United Nations are concerned, mankind is as abysmally slow to learn the more obvious lessons, as he is rapid to realise his own petty tyrannies and self-congratulations when he unearths this or that facet or feature of the creation, and parades the divine power that made it, as if it were his very own!