What happens in America politically has absolutely nothing to do with the kingdom of God. Whether America is Republican or Democrat, whether it is libertarian or socialist, whether it becomes a communist country or whether it becomes a dictatorship—what happens in America has absolutely nothing to do with the kingdom of God [his emphasis].
Note the stark dichotomy marked by the word “absolutely.”
Friel splices himself in to concur with this view: “No earthly kingdom has anything to do with the kingdom work that Jesus is doing.”
What is their rationalization for this view? Here’s is MacArthur’s scriptural support:
Jesus said to Pilate, ‘My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world my servants would fight.” We don’t fight on that level. I’ve got a lot of battles. None of them are political.
This verse is to Dispensational, premil, fundamentalists what “judge not” (Matt. 7:1) is to the unbeliever—that is, it is the most frequently abused verse related to the issue of the nature and scope of the kingdom of God. Thankfully, there is no need to write a new dissertation on it: Christian Reconstructionists already did this long ago, notably in a 1991 essay in the book Christian Reconstruction: What It Is and What It Isn’t (see p. 27 ff.).
I gave a lecture on this very topic, on this very essay actually, at GGC15. Listen to it, or read Gary North’s original version reproduced below. However you imbibe this, please learn it so that you will not be deceived and ruined by the misapplications of men like MacArthur and Friel.
(For more on what I mean about the danger of these guys’ position, see “Driscoll, MacArthur, Trump: who’s really to blame?”)
More misty-magic, pieistic Retreat from Reality….
And, Retreat from the Sacrifices Needed to OBEY JESUS CHRIST.
(One gets weary of these con artists.)
The article quotes North, below:
In sharp contrast, the Protestant Reformation was based on the idea that the institutional church must be defined much more narrowly than God’s world-encompassing kingdom. Protestants always argued that God’s kingdom is far wider in scope than the institutional church. So, from the Protestant viewpoint:
1) The kingdom is more than the church.
2) The church is less than the kingdom.
The Protestant doctrine, “every man a priest”—as Protestant an idea as there is—rests on the assumption that each Chris tian’s service is a holy calling, not just the ordained priest’s calling. Each Christian is supposed to serve as a full-time worker in God’s kingdom (Romans 12:1). What is this kingdom? It is the whole world of Christian service, and not just the institutional church.
This same definition of the church can also lead to the ghetto mentality and cultural isolation: it places nothing under Christianity, because the kingdom is narrowly defined as merely the institutional church. Because the institutional church is not authorized to control the State (correct), and because the kingdom is said to be identical to the church (incorrect), the kingdom of God is then redefined as having nothing to do with any thing that is not strictly ecclesiastical. This is our critic’s view of the kingdom.
And the Christian flees to his tiny, irrelevant ghetto…
So, pietists have sharply separated the kingdom of God (narrowly defined) from the world. Separating the institutional church from the world is necessary, but separating God’s kingdom from this world leads to the surrender of the world to Satan’s kingdom. Thus, it is never a question of “earthly kingdom vs. no earthly kingdom”; it is always a question of whose earthly kingdom, God’s or Satan’s?
To deny that God’s kingdom extends to the earth in history—the here and now—is necessarily to assert that Satan’s kingdom is legitimate, at least until Jesus comes again. But Satan’s kingdom is not legitimate, and Christians should do whatever they can to roll it back. Rolling back Satan’s earthly kingdom means rolling forward Christ’s earthly kingdom.
Satan rightfully owns nothing.
Jesus Christ and His Crown Rights covers Everything, so King Jesus Rightfully Owns ALL
Not in some distant, far away future, but Right Here, Right Now.
All Christians admit that God’s principles can be used to reform the individual. They also understand that if this is the case, then the family can be reformed according to God’s Word. Next, the church is capable of restoration. But then they stop. Mention the State, and they say, “No; nothing can be done to restore the State. The State is inherently, permanently satanic. It is a waste of time to work to heal the State.” The Christian Reconstructionist asks: Why not?
They never tell you why not. They never point to a passage in the Bible that tells you why the church and family can be healed by God’s Word and Spirit, but the State can’t be. Today, it is the unique message of Christian Reconstruction that civil government, like family government and church government, is under the Bible-revealed law of God and therefore is capable in principle of being reformed according to God’s law.
This means that God has given to the Christian community as a whole enormous responsibility throughout history. This Godgiven responsibility is far greater than merely preaching a gospel of exclusively personal salvation. The gospel we preach must apply to every area of life that has been fouled by sin and its effects. The church and individual Christian evangelists must preach the biblical gospel of comprehensive redemption, not just personal soul-winning.3 Wherever sin reigns, there the gospel must be at work, transforming and restoring. The only area of life outside of the reach of Spirit-empowered restoration is an area that was not affected by the fall of man. This, of course, means no area at all.
It’s long past time that Christians grabbed the Sword of Truth, and started driving these God-hating, credentialed, delusional half-wits back under the rocks they crawled from.
There are millions of Christians today (and in the past) who have denied the obvious implications of such a view of God’s earthly kingdom. Nevertheless, very few of them have been ready to deny its theological premises. If you ask them this question—”What area of life today is not under the effects of sin?”—they give the proper answer: none. They give the same answer to the next question: “What area of sin-filled life will be outside of the comprehensive judgment of God at the final judgment?”
But when you ask them the obvious third question, they start squirming: “What area of life today is outside of the legitimate effects of the gospel in transforming evil into good, or spiritual death into life?” The answer is obviously the same—none—but to admit this, modern pietistic Christians would have to abandon their pietism.
What is pietism? Pietism preaches a limited salvation: “individual soul-only, family-only, church-only.” It rejects the very idea of the comprehensive redeeming power of the gospel, the transforming power of the Holy Spirit, and the comprehensive responsibility of Christians in history. In this rejection of the gospel’s political and judicial effects in history, the pietists agree entirely with modern humanists. There is a secret alliance between them. Christian Reconstruction challenges this alliance.
This is why both Christians and humanists despise it.
I strongly advise Christian believers to avoid personally discovering for themselves the penalty for out-and-out treason against Christ Jesus and His Kingdom.
Or for secret alliances with Satan and his repugnant, repulsive, demonic representatives.
All faithful Christians must expand the Kingdom Jesus Christ came to establish. The Holy and Everlasting Kingdom of God, which we can, should, and must push forward with all of our body, soul, and spirit.
Until it, inescapably, covers the entire earth.
(This blog, Across the Stars, suggests that the Kingdom of God will cover the very stars as well! But even if the stars are forever out of reach of the Church in general, it is certainly under the authority of Christ the Creator, for He made the stars also!)