Hearing, Fearing, Obeying… and Bastardy

From Gary North’s Hear, Fear, And Testify:

My words in bold, outside of the quotes.

—<Quote begins>—

Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons; Specially the clay that thou stoodest before the Lord thy God in Horeb, when the Lord said unto me, Gather me the people together, and l will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children (Deut. 4:9 -10).

The theocentric basis of this law is the fear of God. As covenantal agents of God, fathers were required to teach their sons and grandsons the law of God. The family’s hierarchy was to extend Israel’s national covenant into the future. This was not a seed law in the sense of a tribal law. It was an affirmation of the covenant in the life of Israel. It is a universal law that is to govern covenant-keeping fathers throughout history. Only when God is no longer to be feared does this law cease in history, “that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth.”

Moses spoke these words to people who could remember the giving of the law. Through their parents’ oath of allegiance to God, they had participated in the sealing of the covenant at Sinai-Horeb (Ex. 19), immediately prior to God’s giving of the Ten Commandments (Ex. 20). Moses warned them not to forget, and to tell what they had seen to their children and grandchildren.

The threat to Israel was a break in this verbal inheritance. There was a risk that their memories of this covenantal event might depart from Israel. But how? Through a failure to tell this story. The focus of this warning was not primarily individual; it was corporate. Old people remember the events of their youth even when they forget their own names. The memory spoken of here was corporate memory, i.e., the transmission of the story. If this story should ever depart out of the nation’s corporate heart, it would no longer define Israel. It would no longer motivate them to fear God and obey Him.

—<Quote ends>—

Christian fathers are required to teach their sons the workings of God’s Law: What God expects us to do, what we should avoid, and — in our lawful spheres of governance — what we should punish.

(Yes, yes, I know that a bunch of Serve-(certain)-People, Adore-the-State oppressors – empowered by our lack of faith in God’s sovereign rights – have caged us and restricted out ability to govern ourselves. But they are already on their way out… and can be kept out, if we hew to the Law and Will of God.

And we don’t have to guess what it is: it is written down, in the Bible (Old and New Testament), and in our hearts. The Holy Spirit empowers us to do what Christ said we should do.)

“Old people remember the events of their youth even when they forget their own names.”

Teach the law to your children, and live the law before them, when you think they are watching… and when you think they aren’t.

—<Quote begins>—

Hearing Is Believing

Modern man has a phrase. “Seeing is believing.” The technology of photography launched a new era. Men could at last record faithful images of what they had seen. This elevated the eye to a position of authority that it had enjoyed only in trials, where witnesses had to confirm the event. Now the photograph replaced one of the witnesses. But this legal authority as a witness is about to depart unless modern computer technology is reversed. The technology of digital imaging is going to make possible the altering of photographic images to such an extent that seeing will no longer be believing. For example, the immensely popular 1994 movie, Forrest Gump, brought to the screen mixed images of old newsreels and a modern actor. Several of these mixed images looked real. Similar image mixing had already been used by television advertisers.

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Search the phrase “Deep fakes” for more.

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The rise of modern science is generally explained in terms of the rise of experimentation. Only whatever can be measured is said to be scientifically valid. The repeatability of an experiment is the source of its validity: other scientists can see the same results. But the description of these experiments is always conveyed verbally. Words must accompany the images and mathematical formulas in order for others to understand the procedures and repeat them. Never has seeing been believing except for the individual who saw. To transmit a description of what he saw to others requires more than images. It requires words. The images confirm the words. Images do not speak for themselves. Facts do not stand alone. Facts are never brute facts; they are always interpreted facts.

This does not mean that seeing is irrelevant. I think of the scene in a Marx brothers movie where Groucho is discovered in the arms of some young woman. “What are you going to believe,” he asks the intruder, “me or your own eyes?” Eyes are a valid source of information, but there is always an interaction between sight and interpretation. The persuasive power of belief and habit is usually greater than the power of sight. The Israelites saw the Red Sea open before them; then they crossed over dry land; then they saw the water close over the Pharaoh’s army. Still, they soon ceased to believe that this unified event was in any way relevant for their new trials. Seeing was believing, but what Israel believed was highly restricted through their lack of faith. Seeing lasts only for a moment; then memory takes over — memory filtered by faith.

—<Quote ends>—

The Israelites saw God deliver them with their own eyes… and soon returned to their idols and their whoredoms.

The Jewish leadership saw the miracles of Jesus, often with way more than “two or three witnesses”… and underwent zero repentance. They still hated Him, using the Roman sword to get what they want.

We have seen the Eastern Bloc fall apart… and, forty years later, there is a college-fueled resurgence of socialistic doctrine.

What people hear, what they are taught, is what they believe.

—<Quote begins>—

Hearing and Obeying

There is a strong ethical element in the Hebrew verb “to hear.” The word for “hear” in Hebrew is the same as the word for “obey”: shawmah. “As soon as they hear of me, they shall obey me: the strangers shall submit themselves unto me” (Ps. 18:44; emphasis added). “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine” (Ex. 19:5; emphasis added). “And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient” (Ex. 24:7; emphasis added). When God speaks, men should obey. When those in authority speak of God, the listeners should obey. This is why telling the story of the giving of the law was mandatory in Israel. The story was intended to persuade men to fear God, hear God’s law, and obey what they heard.

Stories possess great authority when told by those in authority and confirmed by others in authority. The command to tell the story of the giving of the law was directed to parents and grandparents: people in authority. Children look up to their elders — literally when children are young. The awe associated with tall parents is analogous to the awe associated with God. The Israelites repeatedly expressed fear of the giants in the land; it was this that kept the exodus generation from the inheritance. They feared the children of Anak: “And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight” (Num. 13:33; cf. Num. 14:28). They saw other “men of great stature” (Num. 14:32).

Israel’s spies had seen giants. But seeing was not to be believing. Hearing was to be believing. Joshua said: “Hear, O Israel: Thou art to pass over Jordan this day, to go in to possess nations greater and mightier than thyself, cities great and fenced up to heaven, A people great and tall, the children of the Anakims, whom thou knowest, and of whom thou hast heard say, Who can stand before the children of Anak!” (Deut. 9:1–2); Not only were the Israelites to hear; they were to obey. It was time to claim the inheritance. But to do this, they had to trust what they heard, not what they saw.

—<Quote ends>—

Hearing God’s Word is expected to lead to Obeying God’s Word.

Giants who despise God exist only to be toppled. Nothing more.

Teach your children to know and uphold the Law-Word of God – in their lives, and in their world – to give them power to expand the Kingdom of God, and crush the serpent’s head while reaping the blessings of a life well-lived themselves.

—<Quote begins>—

Bastardy and Culture

Moses told his listeners to teach the next generation. They were also to teach their grandchildren. This would either constitute a double witness — parents and grandparents combined — or else it would overcome the defection of the children. The grandparent factor becomes a kind of covenant- al insurance policy against a breakdown in the inheritance process.

This is why bastardy is such a threat to a society. When fathers are absent, mothers must sustain the legacy. They do not enjoy the benefits of the division of labor. This places heavy burdens on mothers and children. Mothers must earn money to support their children. They must also allocate time to teach them. The covenantal legacy is threatened by a break in continuity. Grandmothers may intervene at this point, caring for the children while mothers are at work. If the grandmothers fail in their task of transmitting the story of the covenant. The third generation is cut loose from the covenant. This is when the breakdown begins.

This has now taken place in the United States among the black population. In the early 1960’s, the rate of black illegitimacy was about 25 percent: high. By the 1990’s, it had reached the two-thirds level. In the inner cities, it was above 80 percent. The social breakdown in the black community that was predicted by Harvard professor Daniel Patrick Moynihan in 1965 has taken place. Crime has escalated; welfare dependency is becoming universal among unmarried mothers.

There has been a one-generation cultural echo: black to white. The rate of illegitimacy among whites was 22 percent in the early 1990’s — only slightly under the rate of black illegitimacy in the early 1960’s. By 1990, one quarter of children in the United States were growing up without fathers. Writes Nicholas Davidson: “This is the greatest social catastrophe facing our country. It is the root of the epidemics of crime and drugs, it is deeply implicated in the decline in educational attainment, and it is largely responsible for the persistence of widespread poverty despite generous government support for the needy.” Some 70 percent of all the juveniles in U.S. correctional facilities grew up without fathers in the household. There is no indication that this demographic process is decelerating; on the contrary, it is accelerating. Between 1983 and 1993, the birthrate for unwed mothers in the United States rose by 70 percent.

—<Quote ends>—

You have a plan to cripple, then dispose, of a competing culture that challenges the supremacy of your own?

First, dig two graves.

“Oh, but we will never be as stupid or as self-destructive as you are! NEVER!”

Wait until White illegitimacy matches Black illegitimacy. Forty years is probably way too long: ten, twenty years is more like it.

The riots, instability, and despair of those days will, indeed, make today feel like The Good Old Days.

Especially when you throw in the Great Default, when the government promises of salvation, healing and bread crumble and blow away.

—<Quote begins>—

Restoring the Testimony

When Christian parents send their children to secular public schools, they are inevitably telling their children that knowledge – useful knowledge – has nothing to do with the Bible. Yet the words of Moses convey the opposite viewpoint: the knowledge of God’s revelation in the Bible is the foundation of all useful knowledge. The parents then have a major problem: to persuade their children of the moral consistency of the parents’ outlook, which is pro-secular education and pro-Bible. They do this by appealing to the traditional argument of the two hermetically sealed compartments of revelation: biblical and natural. Somehow, the two are consistent, yet they are separate. This outlook affirms that the Bible does not instruct natural revelation. But because of the hierarchical structure of all knowledge –from God to man — this argument cannot be sustained. Either secular presuppositions regarding cause and effect in history replace the Bible’s providential view of cause and effect, or else the Bible’s cosmic personalism is substituted for the cosmically impersonal universe of humanism. We cannot begin our reasoning-process from the presupposition of the autonomy of nature and human thought and then logically reach the conclusion that God is totally sovereign in history. We cannot reason consistently from the god of humanism – evolving nature as interpreted by autonomous man — and end with the God of the Bible.

The philosophical dualism of a majority of modern fundamentalists and evangelicals rests on their theory of knowledge: two sources of truth. This presupposition has led Christian philosophy into compromises with humanism from the days of the early defenders of the faith. It has culminated with the widespread support by Christians of the compulsory, tax-supported school. Christians send young children into an educational hierarchy in which the God of the Bible is either ignored or ridiculed. This has broken the covenant of the modern evangelical church. This substitution of covenants begins in kindergarten. It accelerates through graduate school. The American graduate school has been secular from its beginnings in the late nineteenth century. The opinions of a majority of college-educated Protestant evangelicals are not significantly different from the opinions of college-educated non-Christians. This is not surprising, since the colleges require all of their faculty members to have earned graduate degrees from secular universities. The professorial drift on campus into liberal humanism is disguised by a cloak of verbiage about Christian relevance in a pluralistic world. Such relevance usually is said to be available by baptizing some discarded humanistic fad.

—<Quote ends>—

Somehow, whenever Christianity and Secularism clash, it is always the Christian who kneels and compromises, and the Secularist that laughs and — after putting the Christian in his proper place, in public, and in as humiliating a fashion as possible — gladly offers the hand of friendship.

Christians hate the Law of God, and refuse to be held accountable to God for their actions. So, they will submit to the law of some other supernatural god, and be held accountable to the laws of their enemies.

A just reward, for faithless, worthless, and frankly treasonous servants.

But I am interested in encouraging a people who hold Christ as the Source of the Law. I prefer the will of God to the will of Powerful Men.

Better the easy yoke and light burden of the Commandments, than the heavy yoke and crushing burden of the secularists and their arbitrary grasping for power, their worthless definitions of truth.

All Christians should agree on this point. And work to build upon it, in private and in public.

—<Quote begins>—

There has been an implicit, unspoken alliance between Christians and right-wing Enlightenment culture since at least 1700. In the name of Sir Isaac Newton, right-wing humanists have presented their case for universal principles of knowledge, law, and culture. But this implicit alliance was not self-consciously adopted in the name of an alliance; it was believed by the Christians to be inherently Christian. The fact that Newton hid his Unitarianism from his superiors at Cambridge in order to retain his teaching position only added to the confusion.

—<Quote ends>—

A “right-wing alliance” built on lies and deception, focused on the Might and Power of the State — and, explicitly, NOT on the Authority of the Law of God — has no future.

The better we Christians put an end to it and the baptized fog of implicitly antiChristian cant and deceit, the better.

The Enlightened, State-Adoring Humanists of the Left aren’t the only ones interested in an unending stream of concessions from Christians, in return for some flimsy promises that will be broken at the very first opportunity.

The Enlightened, State-Adoring Humanists of the Right are much – no, exactly – the same.

It’s time we stopped bending the knee to the Power of Mighty Men.

Of the Left, or of the Right.

—<Quote begins>—

The restoration of Christian culture can come only from outside the existing educational system.

—<Quote ends>—

OK, let’s highlight the money shot:

The restoration of Christian culture can come only from outside the existing educational system.

Let’s start that paragraph again… and read that sentence a third time!

—<Quote begins>—

The restoration of Christian culture can come only from outside the existing educational system. The churches must abandon the lust for certification through secular college education, beginning with the removal of all requirements for candidates for the ministry to attend State-accredited colleges and seminaries. Parent-funded Christian education, beginning at the lowest level, must steadily replace the tax- funded system of State-accredited secular education. The graduate schools will be the last to fall. This means that curriculum materials must be written which are systematically in opposition to the presuppositions of modern secularism. The Bible must be placed above conventional curriculum materials.

The problem here is that the academic accreditation system was deliberately designed to keep out graduates of non-approved institutions. This keeps non-certified people from entering the professions. Academic accreditation has been the humanists’ means of centralizing the curriculum of all schools, not just tax-funded schools. This system was designed by a liberal Baptist minister, Frederick Gates, and sold to his employer, oil billionaire and liberal Baptist John D. Rockefeller, Sr., who in turn persuaded the U.S. Congress to authorize the incorporation of the General Education Board in 1903.

—<Quote ends>—

It’s well past time that Christians stopped grovelling at the boots of their laughing masters.

It’s not that difficult, even now. And it will only get easier, as the System self-destructs under the waves of bankruptcy, political delegitimacy, and tech-powered decentralization.

“But standing against the System means paying a price. And Christians refuse to pay any price that might disturb the comforts they have grown accustomed to!”

American Christians do like their religion cheap, don’t they?

To the extent they refuse to pay the price, to that extent they can continue to beg under the table of their Betters, looking longingly at the scraps the power elite flicks off their table.

—<Quote begins>—

For non-parochial school, non-immigrant group Protestants in the United States to break with this entrenched monopoly would have seemed impossible in 1960, but since that time, the Christian school movement has grown rapidly. The deterioration of the public schools has paralleled and accelerated the exodus of the Christians. These are self-reinforcing phenomena. Christian-fundamentalist curriculum materials are still highly influenced by traditional secular outlines, and none of them is at a truly high level academically — there is no market at today’s prices for such an academically rigorous curriculum — but independent Christian schools represent an advance over what existed a generation earlier. A minority of Christian parents has begun to take seriously Moses’ words regarding the necessity of teaching their children the stories of the Bible.

—<Quote ends>—

The Americans that do this, are the Americans that will shape the future.

Not the increasingly discredited humanists.

—<Quote begins>—

These stories, when coupled with the law of God, provide God’s people with the means of conquest: the cultural compounding process. But so much covenantal capital was dissipated by Christians in the twentieth century that it will take centuries to reclaim lost ground unless a revival – very high compound growth – should begin and be sustained. But in the past, revivals have never been sustained.

—<Quote ends>—

If Christians have their faith in God and His victory, God will most certainly come through for them, and secure their future.

Lost ground is easy to regain, when a spiritually living & productive people simply step over the flailing, pleasure-focused, lazy and wasteful relics of a dying and unrepentant culture.

Easiest thing in the world.

Especially when the wealth-generating and fertile living refuse to be ruled or pushed around by the bankrupt and sterile dead.

—<Quote begins>—

The church must tell the story and show people how to apply it in New Covenant times. Parents must tell the story to their children. But the presumed judicial discontinuity between the Old Covenant and the New Covenant has created a problem. Of what relevance to the kingdom inheritance is the giving of the law at Horeb, if there is no continuity between the Ten Commandments, the case laws of Exodus, and New Covenant historical sanctions? If there is no visible kingdom of God in history that is tied covenantally to God’s revealed law, and it there is no predictability between corporate faith and corporate sanctions, then the story becomes little more than a testimony to personal moralism, if that. It loses its character as inheritance-preserving. This is the situation in the post-Puritan West. The assumption of judicial discontinuity has undermined the relevance of what had been a mandatory story.

—<Quote ends>—

To the extent Christians hate the Law of God, to that same extent they will live under the lash of Their Betters.

Those Christians can be left to die in the desert, living in the past, longing for the leeks and onions of Egypt. Or the easy pleasures and arts of Sodom.

—<Quote begin>—

Moses warned his listeners not to skip a generation. Parents were told to tell their children about the meeting between God and Israel at Mt. Horeb. God delivered the law to them at that time. Respect for the law was given added support by the testimony of parents and grandparents who had heard God speak in history.

This covenantal legacy was to be handed down verbally, generation by generation. This legacy would in turn undergird the legacy of land, which followed the giving of the law and the wilderness experience. Moses understood the threat of a break in Israel’s covenantal inheritance, which above all was an inheritance of law. The authority of God’s law was to be attested to by the testimony of the parents, who could trace back their unbroken testimony to the revelation of God at Mt. Horeb. When the children heard about God from their household elders, they were to fear God. They were to obey Him. The fear of God was to lead to the expansion of the inheritance, generation after generation.

—<Quote ends>—

Do you want to win in history, generation after generation, century after century?

Or do you want to lose in history, for a generation or three until your name and your people are utterly forgotten?

Christians are expected to choose the first choice!


Addendum:

From Gary North’s Voluntarily Disarmed: The Impotence of the Victims in Western Europe. After noting the collapse of European reproduction rates after the collapse of their empires (The Greek Empire, the Roman Empire, the Western empires, and the Soviet Empire):

—<Quote begins>—

American liberalism is not yet in retreat internationally. The American empire still holds. But we are not at the Great Default yet. We will be. That will be the moment of truth for America’s empire. If the loss of empire affects us the way World War I and II affected Western Europe, and the way that Communism affected the USSR after 1980, our culture will be replaced.

—<Quote ends>—

North could have added the Chinese and Japanese empires, too.

Lesson?

  • Don’t put your faith and trust in guns and money, the Power of Empire and the Words of Mighty Men.
    • You and yours will die, forgotten, along with the idols you exalted above you.
  • Living for the Masters means Dying for the Masters.
    • Better to keep your distance, ignore their promises, and get going on building the culture that will replace the dying Empire.

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