Slowly, Slowly, Things Get Off the Ground

From the Washington Post article, “The rise and rise of religious arbitration” by

The Causes

The rise of religious arbitration (RA) is a result of three phenomena that are together changing aspects of American society. The first (and not the focus my book) is the rise of arbitration generally. Over the last twenty-five years, more and more parties, from credit card companies to law firms themselves, have agreed to leave the court system and its laws, opting instead for private resolution of disputes. This has brought about renewed interest in the question of whether expanding arbitration law is generally good in areas as diverse as family law, religious law, class actions, and securities law. It has further engendered discussion about the values and virtues of allowing members of secular societies and subjects of secular legal systems to choose both different forums and different legal systems to resolve their civil disputes.

Second, almost all of the more conservative religious communities (Evangelical Christianity, Catholicism, Orthodox Judaism, Islam, to name just a few) feel more and more that they are at the margins of American law, and are seeking to opt out where possible from vast amounts of civil law, particularly family law. To some extent this is about same-sex marriage, but it has been a significant issue since no-fault divorce was introduced many years earlier.

A third phenomenon is now occurring because of these first two — almost otherwise unrelated — trends: Many religious communities are now forming arbitration tribunals to resolve disputes within their own communities. For example, the rise of Islamic law courts — both perceived and real — within the United States has generated much discussion over whether religious arbitration in particular is a good idea, and even if it is a good idea in the abstract, whether it is a good idea in practice, given the ways in which religions will use it, and how it will or should be implemented.

My book explores the rise of these religious tribunals.

[…]

Although there has been a long and winding road over the last seventy-five years, the Supreme Court has consistently over the last three decades expanded the scope of arbitration to include most fields and most types of litigation. Essentially, by contract, a two people can now choose a forum other than a court and can choose a law other than American law. The forum can be an arbitration panel made up of sixty-three Polish-speaking Italian jurists residing in New York or three members of the American Arbitration Association. It can be French law, British law, Jewish law or Islamic law. So long as it is clear in the contract, it works.

This has given rise to a thriving network of independent rabbinical courts throughout the United States, many Islamic courts that have been created over the last decade, and the beginnings of Christian arbitration as ever more people in the Evangelical community realize that individual Christian denominations, too, are a minority religion in the United States.

Hmm…. I wonder how Christianity has declined to become a minority religion in the United States?

(Points to the intensely secular and pointedly anti-Christian Public Education System, lovingly protected by conservatives almost everywhere…)

Anyways, let me end by providing some constructive recommendations to end today’s secularist tyranny, contempt, and rule over Christian lives, businesses, property, and families.

Apostles: Prices Paid

Why doesn’t this surprise me?

Because the apostles actually changed things, and if you want to any kind of substantial victory, you must pay the price.

“The bigger the victory, the bigger the price.”

This is in contrast to the utter powerlessness, pathetic ineffectiveness, and utter irrelevancy of modern Western Christians… and their adamant refusal to pay any price whatsoever to expand the Kingdom of God.

Thanks to kevron2001 for permission to repost his art!

Libertarian Law in the Middle Ages

Just an excerpt, originally written by the Bionic Mosquito

The Middle Ages

I take from Fritz Kern, author of “Kingship and Law in the Middle Ages”:

For us law needs only one attribute in order to give it validity; it must, directly or indirectly, be sanctioned by the State.  But in the Middle Ages, different attributes altogether were essential; mediaeval law must be “old” law and must be “good” law….If law were not old and good law, it was not law at all, even though it were formally enacted by the State.

Law was in fact custom.  Immemorial usage, testified to by the eldest and most credible people; the leges partum….

Where we moderns have erected three separate alters, to Law, to Politics, and to Conscience, and have sacrificed to each of them as sovereign godheads, for the mediaeval mind the goddess of Justice is enthroned, with only God and Faith above her, and no one beside her.

Another who has written of this time is Jacques Barzun, a phenomenal scholar of European history and culture.  His book, “From Dawn to Decadence,” is a must-read for anyone interested in European history of the last 500 years.  Barzun offers, regarding the law of the Middle Ages and the Middle Ages generally:

The truth is that during the 1,000 years before 1500 a new civilization grew from beginnings that were uncommonly difficult….showing the world two renaissances before the one that has monopolized the name.

…the Germanic invaders brought a type of custom law that some later thinkers have credited with the idea of individual freedom.…no rule was held valid if not approved by those it affected.

Anglo-Saxon law…defined crime literally as breaking the peace.

Such was a nation of laws, not men; every noble vested with veto power; the king below the law, whose duty was limited to enforcing the law – not creating the law; law based on oath – sacred oath between the parties and including God.

All in a cultural milieu that fully incorporated the Church; kingly authority tempered by the competing governance structure that the Church offered.

Returning to Kern:

For us, the actually valid or positive law is not immoral but amoral; its origin is not in conscience, God, nature, ideals, ideas, equity or the like, but simply in the will of the State, and its sanction is the coercive power of the State.  On the other hand, the State for us is something holier than for mediaeval people….

Such is our lot: legislation and regulation by men wiser than us and wiser than God.  I know many readers don’t like the “God” part of this; just stick to customary law as it was known in the Middle Ages: the old and good law, with crime defined as breaking the peace.  I can live with this if you can.

Law must come from somewhere.  Which of these two models is more predictable, less arbitrary, more libertarian?  To ask the question is to answer it; yet, many libertarians (and most everyone else) avoid (or even fight against the logical answer to) this question.

The Renaissance

The one that monopolized the name….

The Renaissance was a period in European history, from the 14th to the 17th century, regarded as the cultural bridge between the Middle Ages and modern history. It started as a cultural movement in Italy in the Late Medieval period and later spread to the rest of Europe, marking the beginning of the Early Modern Age.

The intellectual basis of the Renaissance was its own invented version of humanism, derived from the rediscovery of classical Greek philosophy, such as that of Protagoras, who said that “Man is the measure of all things.”

That Protagoras; in seven simple words he said so much.  Man is the measure; of allthings; science advances; progress, always progress; we know better today than yesterday.

Man is the measure.  Talk about a flexible standard.  Those of you who value Austrian Economics might consider how well this has worked out regarding money: the flexibility of man-made money as opposed to the standard offered by commodity, market-derived money.

As opposed to custom, man can make better laws, scientific laws.  How is that working out for you?

Actually, it’s working out very badly for me.

And for all Christians.

Time to ditch the tyrants, and return to kneeling to God… alone.

“Hey! We haven’t even got to the part about the Enlightenment or the Progressive Era yet!”
“I can see where this is going from here. Let’s stop wasting time, and get to the right road now… the road God laid down so very long ago, with Christ and Moses”

Christians who Assume WAY Too Much

From North’s Christian Economics: Teacher’s Edition Chapter 21: Dominion and Education

The family is the primary institution for the education of children with respect to informal education: language, social interaction, and ethics. Parents are responsible before God to rule their households as trustees. This responsibility cannot be deferred to others. The tasks can be lawfully delegated, but not covenantal responsibility. This is why parents should be the primary source of funding for formal education. There is an old phrase: “He who pays the piper calls the tune.” If the family refuses to fund education, then some other institution will take over. It will call the tune.

Meet our friend enemy, the Secularist State.

“But we’re not really enemies… we’ll happily pay for your child’s education, to teach him in the way we think he should go!”

“Free money! Don’t you want free money? Don’t you want us to free up your time?”

“So what if we teach him to spit on your faith and your ethics? We’ll educating him for free, and taking a huge burden off of your shoulders! Can you imagine what you can do with all the money and time you get to keep?”

Most Christian parents pretend that this principle does not hold. They argue that education is neutral covenantally, and therefore the supposedly neutral state should fund education. They assume that the first principles of Darwinian evolution by means of unplanned, purposeless natural selection do not shape the entire public school curriculum from day care through graduate school. They assume that the ethical content of education is the same for all educational programs. They assume that state-funded instructors will be neutral in both their selection of facts and their presentation of facts.

Most Christians assume WAY too much.

As they are in explicit defiance of Biblical teaching on the matter, it would be best to avoid the path of these rebels.

Yes, yes, back in 1950… or maybe even in 1980… there could be some excuse offered. A poor excuse, but something.

But NOW?!?

They are close to immune to the biblical idea that the content of education is not neutral. They pretend that the education provided by the king of Babylon was not a way to train Hebrew children to become agents of the Babylonian empire (Daniel 1). But then came the day of reckoning when payment for the free education was demanded. The payment was obedience to the king.

Ah yes. Our Enemy, the State.

An enemy-idol that has been around for a long, long, long time.

(See I Samuel 8 for details.)

Once again, if it wasn’t for the raw financial incompetence of our enemies, coupled with the technologically-driven push to decentralization, the only realistic future would be a future without any Western Christians, whatsoever.

As it is, it’s going to take centuries to pick up the shattered shards of Christendom that our ancestors left scattered around us, in their lust for National Greatness, the Welfare State, and the Needs of the Race.

(And it’s going to be Africans – Arab or Black – who will have to rebuild Christendom in (Western) Europe. Thank God for the power of the Holy Spirit, or I would have written that region off as gone forever myself.)

Awaiting the Purge

From America’s Pastor-Led Abandonment Of The Great Commission

Does your Pastor embrace the Gospel-fueled Great Commission?

Or does he not?

Is your Pastor all about the full life-, culture-, and civilization Gospel?

Or is his gospel something smaller.

Much smaller.

As in: man-sized with no room for anything else.

Sadly, it’s this little man-sized, eek-a-person-into-heaven counterfeit gospel that has become the norm in most self-described “conservative, Bible believing” (and even “Reformed”) churches in America…which tells us all we need to know about how and why the American culture has come to its current pathetic and getting-worse-by-the-minute state.

In it’s place, they’ve embraced a sort of neo-Gnostic, hyper-spiritualized, insanely pietistic alternative worldview that enables and encourages the preemptive surrender of any area of life, culture, and civilization deemed not to fit into the teeny, tiny, man-made counterfeit definition of “spiritual”.

In their open rejection and replacement of the everything-touching, everything-defining Gospel-fueled Great Commission of Jesus Christ, these often kind seeming, friendly Pastors and church leaders are, in reality, escorting the culture (and everyone in it) to hell.

The Fire-breathing Christian is right.

So, while preparing for the purge of the pulpits, we laymen will have to do the job ourselves, of preaching the gospel of the Kingdom of God.

The below comes from the supplementary text of the video:

Bojidar Marinov says,

Every single positive change in history starts with change in our hearts, and change in the pulpit. Which means, concerning the standing occupying army of police, we need to first change our hearts and trust God that maintaining a social order is not the same as having a standing army for terrorizing the population. Then we need to purge the pulpits of any preacher who supports the existence of police, or the existence of any other tyranny. At the very least, do not support with your money pulpits which support tyranny.

Once preaching is changed, the change in the culture will come very quickly.

Also, see http://AbolishThePolice.com

Business: The Worship of God

From Gary North’s Christian Economics: Teacher’s Edition

Chapter 16: Success and Failure

Success in business is not necessarily a test of success in politics. The two realms are different. Business is government by supply and demand. There should be open entry. There should not be a state-granted monopoly. Civil government asserts a monopoly of violence. It operates monopolistic legislatures, police forces, and courts. But with respect to financial success in history as a representative test of success in the post-resurrection world, Jesus’ pocketbook parables made plain to His listeners that business success is not only legitimate, it is representative of success beyond the grave. This fact legitimizes business as a calling.

Business is not supposed to be the worship of mammon: more for me in history. It is the worship of God: more for God in history. Business is trusteeship, not rebellion. Here is the covenantal issue:

Beware lest you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.’ You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day (Deuteronomy 8:17–18).

The investor must serve the consumer in order to be successful. He searches for asset managers who can multiply his wealth. He lets them manage a portion of his capital. He tests their ability to forecast the future accurately.

This is what I love most  about the above passage: More for God in History.

And another excerpt, from Christian Economics: Student’s Edition, Chapter 4: Ownership and Responsibility

How do we know that something is good? When I say “we,” I mean each individual, but I also mean groups. We make evaluations as individuals. Next, we take specific actions in light of these evaluations. We must then bear the consequences of our actions. We also are members of groups that make evaluate situations and then make collective decisions. The members must individually bear the consequences of their collective actions. After the final judgment, we must bear the these consequences individually. So, each person’s primary focus should be on how we as individuals decide what is good and what is bad–morally, but also technically. We must individually decide what is right to do, and then decide how to do it right.

We are not autonomous. We are subordinate to God. We are stewards. So, we are required to make our evaluations and decisions in terms of our covenantal roles as stewards. We should ask: “What is best for God?” Our evaluations and decisions should be theocentric.

The fourth point of the biblical covenant has to do with covenantal oaths: the judicially binding vows that we take in the special judicial presence of God. We take formal oaths individually, as family members, as church members, and as citizens. These vows possess greater authority than other promises. They are covenantal, not merely contractual. The eternal stakes are much higher with covenants than with contracts. Three of these vows involve corporate membership. Individual vows to God and vows made in church carry into eternity.

To understand how we can evaluate the way God does, we should consider the week of creation.

What do I love here? In the quote below, especially the parts I have put in bold:

We should ask: “What is best for God?” Our evaluations and decisions should be theocentric.

It is time for Christians to be Christians, to be willing, effective tools for the expansion of God’s Kingdom.

On this earth. And with everything we have, with our whole lives as well as our children’s lives.

Why should God settle for anything less?

Especially after the great sacrifice Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, made to rescue us from the hellfire we so obviously deserve!

Jesus Christ is King. It’s about time we recognized this… with our actual obedience, not just praise and worship.

From North’s Christian Economics: Teacher’s Edition

Chapter 20: Dominion and Inheritance

History is a covenantal battlefield. This means that it requires well-armed, well-trained soldiers of the cross. The stakes are high: conquest in history. This has not been the attitude of the vast majority of those who call themselves Christians. They have been taught that the kingdom of God will fail in history. There will never be a worldwide Christian civilization, they believe. They have also been taught that poverty is a valid way of life for covenant keepers. Yet ever since the 1850’s, Western Christians have lived in the richest nations in history. They have been debt-burdened middle-class people who are richer than 90% of the world’s population. They live in homes that would be considered mansions by most people. Yet they have the mentality of beggars. They see themselves as eschatological also-rans in a world in which covenant breakers control most of the world’s wealth and political power. They think this is what God wants for His people. They believe that the righteous will inherit the leftovers. They read the story of Jacob and Esau, and they somehow conclude that Esau was the big winner in the economic competition with his brother.

Inheritance and dominion are linked ethically and also eschatologically. Capital accumulation is a moral obligation for covenant keepers. Why? Because capital is a tool of dominion. Covenant keepers, not covenant breakers, will be the big winners in history. Preparation for dominion must begin in youth. This involves education in the broadest sense. It also involves money management.

When Christians decide that it’s time to win, they’ll take the aggressive, disciplined spirit behind the above two paragraphs to heart.

Let’s decide to win TODAY.