Sunday, February 26, 2006

Christian America and The Rule of Law

This is a collation of posts by me and Chris Rhoades on the politics forum at Puritanboard.

Separation of Church and State
Historically, this is how it has been viewed:1) Papalism: The Church dominates the State. I reject this view for obvious reasons.2) Erastian: The State dominates the Church (the functional position of most Americans). I likewise war against this view.3) (Modified) Voluntarism: I do not believe that the State should dominate the church, nor vice-versa. However, this does not necessitate pluralism (a logical joke). However, someone's morality WILL form the basis of a society's legal policies. With R.B. Kuiper I maintain "Both the church and the state are sovereign, each in its own sphere, and each must recognize the other's sovereignty" (316). --------------------------------------------------------The State can only give negative sanctions. It can only restrain the sinful nature of man. Whenever it interferes into economics, education, The Church, etc., it screws everthing up. I will conclude, decisvely, with the words of Patriot John Adams, "Statesman may plan and speculate liberty, but it is religion and morality alone upon which freedom can securely stand. A patriot must be a religious man>: No, I won't conclude. I am on a roll. Enter Groen Van Prinsterer. He maintained that political programs are "inescapably value-laden, or based on ultimate philosophical principles." In other words, whose morality will dominate: Christ's or Humanistic Judges?Francis Schaeffer thunders, "No totalitarian authority nor authoritarian state can tolerate those who have an absolute by which to judge the State and its actions!" (emphasis added for "annoying" reasons).How Should we Then Live? I could go on but that would be overkill. Summary Statement: I stand for maximum individual liberty under biblical law.
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In other words, thing "Kuyperian" on this area--sphere sovereignty. This way, we avoid a Byzantine fusion of Church and State.

19 comments:

Ryan S. said...

You're against the separation of church and state! That's just shameful Jacob, what kind of American are you?

;)

Vic Bottomly said...

"Both the church and the state are sovereign, each in its own sphere, and each must recognize the other's sovereignty"

When the state denies God's law, can it still be sovereign? By force perhaps, but not by principle.

Even more critical, if the church (I use the term to mean politically misguided tin-earred evangelicalism) ignores God's law, can it lay claim to its sphere?

I like your formulation. Of course, the only way to bring it about is by mass conversion, and that can only be done by God. It's one reason I'm glad I'm a Calvinist. We can strive to be obedient, work hard, but the outcome doesn't depend upon how good we are at it.

Ryan S. said...

Yeah, I like Abraham Kuyper on the matter. His Lectures on Calvinism are good.

Ryan S. said...

Patrick Henry blog is on life support;)

confederateson said...

I agree that Church and State as institutions are seperate. If the Church does what it is supposed to do then society would hopfully have many qualified people to chose from to put in public office. As it stands now in our country this is obviously not the case.

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