Systematic Theology (Post Mill) - RR100A2

From Pocket College
Jump to: navigation, search

The media player is loading...

Lesson[edit]

Professor: Rushdoony, Dr. R. J.
Title: Systematic Theology (Post Mill.)
Course: Course - Classroom Lectures - Jackson Seminary
Subject: Subject:Philosophy
Lesson#: 2
Length: 0:52:22
TapeCode: RR100A2
Audio: Chalcedon Archive
Transcript: .docx Format
Classroom Lectures - Jackson Seminary.jpg

This transcript is unedited. It was:
Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library
Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules
Posted by with permission.


[Introductory Speaker] …through eighteen. Let’s stop at sixteen, I believe it may be a better stopping place. And I saw the heavens open and behold a white horse and he sat thereon called Faithful and True. And in righteousness he doth judge and make war, and his eyes are a flame of fire and upon his head are many diadems and he hath a name written, which no one knoweth but he himself. And he is arrayed in garments sprinkled with blood, and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which are in Heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in white linen, white and pure. And out of his mouth proceedeth a sharp sword that with it he should smite the nations and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, and he treadeth the wine press of the fierceness of the wrath of God Almighty. And he hath on his garments and on his thigh, a name written. King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. Let’s pray.

We thank thee our Heavenly Father for this glorious portrayal of our Savior, and the fact that He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. And as we think on this figure that is given to us, may it be that we will truly embrace that hope that is ours in Christ, and that we may embrace the victory is ours through Him upon the Cross, that in Him we are more than conquerors through all of these things. And we pray again for our speaker as he comes and as he’ll be talking about some of these very matters, we pray Thy special blessing upon him during this hour. Guide and direct us in our study and our labor here on this campus, throughout this hour, throughout the day, we ask it in Christ’s name, Amen.

Alright, I have asked Dr. Rushdoony to come back in, I won’t be able to have him in on every hour during this, the two weeks that he’ll be here, but I thought, for a couple of reasons, I’d go ahead and have him in again this hour, one is that I am still trying to make arrangements to have him on television, and one of the things, Judy Denson is on the, just getting off the air, and she leaves that studio before eleven. I tried it yesterday, and I missed her, and so I’m going to try to run down right as soon I hand the class over to Dr. Rushdoony, to talk to her and see if we can get him on talking with Judy. We’ve just had, we’ll have four programs with Keith (Tonkell?), which I believe he said started Tuesday of next week, did he say Monday or Tuesday? Keith (Tonkell?) on the radio WSLI. Of which we have about four, five minutes of interview that will be on successive days next week on WSLI, heard at various times during the day. And we’re trying to get our, we’re also trying to arrange to have him on, I believe it’s called Lins Diary, another women’s talk show on Channel 16, so these things take some arranging, and I still haven’t got in touch with the governor’s office, I’ve been talking to Herman Glacier, been missing getting him, actually, but we’re hoping to get him before the legislature, so I’m going to try to go make some of those arrangements at this hour while turning the class over to Dr. Rushdoony, and asking him to talk today, since it is one of the areas that’s part of our course, to talk about his views of eschatology. He has his attitude of postmillennialist and he has some very optimistic views about this matter, and I think that it would be well to get these set forth before the regular part of our course. I’ll be back as soon as I can. [00:03:48]

[Dr. Rushdoony] Our approach on the matter of eschatology this hour will be theological and philosophical, rather than exegetical. For an exegetical study I would recommend various works such as Alexander’s Commentary on Isaiah, (Fetner’s?) book on the Millennium, and of course I’ve written something on the subject, ‘Thy Kingdom Come’.

When we examine the subject of eschatology, we find that the whole eschatological perspective has been, through the centuries, very heavily infected by neo-platonic and Manichean thinking. So that as the Church, through the centuries, has approached the subject, it has had to do it with a handicap, the handicap of alien philosophies. We shall be dealing with the influence of some of the alien philosophies on the Church Father’s in passing, as we deal in epistemology, with Justin Martyr, sometime later, I don’t know whether it’s today or tomorrow. I’m a little mixed up on just where I am in my series, as far as Justin Martyr is concerned. But we have in Justin Martyr, for example a man of very great faith, who died a martyr for the faith, and yet there is no question that some of his statements are so deeply saturated with his pagan background, that you wonder at times how could a man make a statement like this and be a Christian. Thus we should not be surprised that very often, in the history of the Church, we do find very definitively, alien strands in Christian thought. Now the two alien strands we’re going to deal with particularly, are Neo-Platonism and Manichaeism, and first of all, let’s consider Manichaeism and what kind of an influence it has exercised on the Church. Manichaeism comes from Mani, the ostensible founder thereof. Manichaeism is related to Zoroastrianism, Mazdaism, and various Iranian dualistic religions. For Manichaeism, instead of there being one god, there are two equal gods. The god of matter, who created the material world, and the god of spirit, who created the spirit world. [00:07:14]

Now here you have darkness, and here you have light...[edit]

Now here you have darkness, and here you have light. Here also you have evil, and here you have good. Now, there is no victory possible in Manichaeism. It is a religion without victory. History ends in a standstill. Because both gods, both ultimate substances are equally powerful. You can choose which one you want to serve, so that you can follow the world of spirit or you can follow the world of matter. And very commonly, in the history of dualistic religions, men have chosen one side or another. We have a long tradition of the infiltration of Manichaeism into Christianity, you have Bogomils, you have the Albigensians, and the Cathars, and various other groups that were very influential in the early centuries, and especially in the Middle Ages, that were all Manichean. Now, the influence of Manichaeism thus meant no victory is possible for either side. History ends in a standoff. You choose sides, and that’s the substance of it. You can forsake spirit, or you can forsake matter. There isn’t much difference between the two, neither has the victory over the other. St. Augustine, as you know, was a Manichean, as well as a Neo-Platonist, which is something else we’ll consider in a moment, before he became a Christian. And as a Manichean, he was very profoundly influenced by this, and very conscious, finally, of the fact that there was no victory here. There are lingering elements here and there, in Augustine, of Manichaeism, and Neo-Platonism, in some of his early works. But he progressively broke with the remnants of this kind of thinking. [00:10:24]

Now you find elements of Manichaeism in the Church...[edit]

Now you find elements of Manichaeism in the Church today. For many people will look down upon the material world, and material things, and speak of spiritual things as though they were alone good. That’s nonsense. There is nothing good, per say, about that which is spiritual. Remember, Satan is a purely spiritual being. So the idea that is so prominent in some circles, that what we need is more spiritual Christianity, is rubbish. That’s a latent kind of Manichaeism, or sometimes a Neo-Platonism, we’ll come to that later. It is not a return to a more spiritual religion that we need, but a return to Biblical religion. And the Bible very clearly deals with the world of matter. St. Paul tell us the marriage bed is honorable. It does not regard sex, for example, as Manicheans do, and Neo-Platonists also for their own reasons, as something that is either bad, or lower. When man Fell, it was not as the scholastics held, that it was his material being that fell, while his spirit or mind remained un-fallen, so that by reason, which is supposedly not fallen, Adam Fell, the whole man Fell. His mind was Fallen, his body was Fallen, everything in him was Fallen. And Jesus Christ redeems the whole man. The whole man is in view in the New Creation. The resurrection of the body, is an article of Christian faith. So that we rise again as a whole being, to enjoy life eternally. There is nothing about matter that is evil, per say, any more than there is anything about evil, er, the spirit, that is evil, per say. This is the Manichean outlook, however. Two alien substances, you take your choice. Never the twain shall meet. [00:13:28]

On the other hand, Neo-Platonism, which was a development...[edit]

On the other hand, Neo-Platonism, which was a development of a philosophy of Plato, and particularly in Plotinus, took a very different view than Manichaeism, although it had certain resemblances. Again, it had two substances, mind and matter, or ideas, forms and matter. But instead of seeing them as two alien substances that were irrevocably different, it saw them in dialectical tension as higher and lower, so that mind, or idea, and form, was higher and matter was lower. And so progress, growth, in Neo-Platonism was to forsake the world of matter, and move upward into spirit. And the more spiritual you became, the closer you were to truth. In terms of Neo-Platonism the world of matter was the world of meaninglessness, irrelevance and evil. Although it did not go so far as Manichaeism, in seeing the radical cleavage of the two. What you did in the realm of mind was determinative. And if you were not ruled by matter, you could deal very casually with the realm of matter. Thus, in the dialogues of Plato, we have actual accounts of the fact that at one of these meetings where they were chatting about philosophy, Socrates was engaged in homosexual play with one of the other people in the dialogue. Now, here was the great philosopher, the great moralist, of Greece. But what was the problem there? None. Because there was no urgency, no necessity to be bound by it, so it was not a matter of moral offense in Socrates, from the Neo-Platonic perspective. Had he, however, felt a lust and been driven by his vice, that would have been different. But if you treated it casually, it was not really a sin. And this is why you treated fornication casually. It was not regarded as an offense among the Greeks. You were treating it as nothing. It was a part of the world of matter. It was irrelevant, it was lower. And just as you don’t take care of Kleenex as you do, say, of your shirt, when you take your shirt off, you put it in the wash and when it is laundered you put it away carefully, it’s something to be treated with respect. But a Kleenex you use and you throw away. So it is with the body. So the appetites of the body are to be treated casually and carelessly, and there’s no sin in that, it is only when you are compelled by the world of matter, and bound to it, that you have evil. So the idea of sin, in Neo-Platonism, again is very radically anti-Biblical. [00:17:31]

Now, for the Neo-Platonist, the goal of man is to escape...[edit]

Now, for the Neo-Platonist, the goal of man is to escape from the world of matter. Plotinus, who was a great figure in Neo-Platonism, deeply regretted the fact that he had a body, and he longed for the time when he would be freed from the flesh. Thus, you have, both in Manichaeism, and in Neo-Platonism, a fundamental disrespect for the material world. In Manichaeism it is the creation of an evil god, not of the good god. Therefore there is no concern about the redemption of the material world. It cannot be overcome, it cannot be redeemed, it is a perpetual enemy. In Manichaeism, the material world can be transcended, and the goal of history, and the goal of man, is to transcend matter and to become pure spirit. And therefore, the more the body decays, the better off you are. The Church Fathers, who went into the desert, were Neo-Platonic. I have a little paperback that’s coming out soon: ‘The Flight From Humanity’ is the title, ‘The Influence of Neo-Platonism on Christianity’. And in it I cite some of the wild and extravagant practices, Aesthetic practices that were normal for some of these desert monks. Of course, the desert monks were simply copying the pagan Aesthetics who preceded them. Who were Greek and Roman, who were under the influence of Neo-Platonism, and therefore running away from life, from the world. Now the influence of Manichaeism and Neo-Platonism in the Church, led of course, in the early centuries, to an emphasis on the monastic clergy as against the married clergy. For centuries the Church had a married clergy, it was not until Gregory the Great, and, excuse me, not Gregory the Great, but, who was the Pope about the year 1000 who instituted sacerdotal celibacy? But any rate, it was some centuries later, before the idea of sacerdotal celibacy for all clergy was instituted, and it was not until after the Reformation that they really made it stick for the clergy. The reason for it was, of course, the horror of the world of the flesh, under Manichean and Neo-Platonic influences. [00:21:03]

For some centuries in the Church of Rome, the monks...[edit]

For some centuries in the Church of Rome, the monks were regarded as the real clergy, and they were called the regular clergy, and the parish priests were called the secular clergy. He had an inferior status, because after all, he still compromised with the world. He married, he lived in the world. He was not truly spiritual. There was a distrust of the family. It was only as a result of the influence of the Reformation, the strength the Reformation had, because of the development of the family, that the Church of Rome began to develop the cult of the holy family, and made a great deal of St. Joseph. So that the cult of St. Joseph has, since the Reformation, been the Catholic answer to the Protestant development of the family and family worship. Now it’s not surprising that the eschatology of Rome very strongly reflected Manichaeism and Neo-Platonism. In the Church of Rome, the goal was escape from this world. The emphasis was on the misery of man. Preaching emphasized what a sinful thing it was to live the life of flesh, and to enjoy the pleasures of this world. Now it’s very interesting to note that during the Puritan era in England, scholars tell us, one of the favorite texts of the Puritans was, ‘and Isaac was sporting with Rebecca, his wife‘. And this was used over and over again, there are some really marvelous sermons, I’ve read some, by the Puritan preachers in England, to preach that marriage is Godly and the marriage bed undefiled. That God made the whole man, and we are to rejoice in the things of mind and body as we use them under God. And there are some really beautiful sermons on this subject; I quote a passage from one of them on precisely this text in my little paperback on Neo-Platonism. But you see you have moved into an entirely different world, the minute you come into this Puritan atmosphere. Instead of being joyless, and instead of being hostile to the body, the Puritans were the ones with whom the body came into its own. The usual caricature of the Puritan applies, not to the Puritans but to their successors in New England, the transcendentalists and the Unitarians. You see, when the term transcendentalist was picked up, they were not thinking of transcending to God, to a supernatural realm, but transcending the material world in terms of Hegel’s geist, mind or spirit, or soul. [00:00:24]

And you’re probably familiar with the famous story...[edit]

And you’re probably familiar with the famous story of Margaret Fuller, one of the leading transcendentalists, who found it a problem that there was a universe, a material creation, and she could never overcome the feeling of horror, why should such a horrible thing as matter, body, material creation, exist. And finally she wrote, with an air of great resignation, that she, she said, ‘I accept the universe‘, with resignation. And Carlyle’s famous answer was, ‘Egad, she’d better.’ I think however, Daniel Webster’s answer was very much more to the point. On one occasion, in, at Mt. Hope in Rhode Island, there was a conference, and in those days they had big, big old-fashioned outhouses with a little divider and you walked in and you went to this side if you were male, and to that side if you were female. And Margaret Fuller was in there on the female side, when Daniel Webster walked in, and it was a horror to Margaret Fuller, to have a body, and for the body to have any kind of urge. It was so degrading, so humiliating. So she had slipped out when she thought no one would be there, because this was a traumatic experience for her, because it brought home to her the horrible fact that she had a body. And Daniel Webster came in and he noticed her over there, and he averted his head and rumbled as he headed for the other side, ’Madam, we are fearfully and wonderfully made’. [00:27:05]

Now, you can see why, with this kind of background...[edit]

Now, you can see why, with this kind of background, you had the pessimistic world view that characterized the Middle Ages. The despair of this world, the feeling that the best thing man could hope for was to be delivered from the body. And this, of course, progressively colored the medieval world view, so that as the Middle Ages deepened, even in the attitude of worship, we see the difference. At the beginning of Western Europe, after the fall of Rome, we have some pictures of people as they worshipped, drawing from the like, and they’re very remarkable. We see them in church praying like this. With their hands outstretched, a very historic and Biblical form of prayer, to receive, you see, you pray expecting to get something. And their faces looking upward, to receive. But at the end of the Middle Ages, we have pictures of worshippers, and they’re hunched over, like this, in fear. There is no hope.

Now it’s not surprising, as some writers lately have been telling us that with Puritanism post-millennialism came into its own. Now, as I point out in my little paperback, when Cambridge University was taken over by the Platonists, the Cambridge Platonists, Puritanism was killed, because they were the training ground of Puritan thought. But, until that happened, because they went to the Reformed faith, they were Calvinist to the core, they did two things that are of very great significance. First, they said, God created Heaven and Earth and all things therein, God is the Creator of mind and body, so both are alike, were made very good. Both alike were redeemed by Jesus Christ, both alike have a destiny in Christ. Both alike are to reign eternally with Christ in the new creation, because the resurrection of the body is an article of our faith. Therefore the triumph of Christ is not only spiritual, it is material also. It is in history as well beyond history. Thus they were post-millennial to the core. And second they had a program for the conquest of the world. Scripture, Biblical law. I have a book forthcoming, I hope in April, according to the book binder it’ll be ready, it’s a nine hundred page book which is preliminary study, I will have a second book in maybe five or ten years, ‘Institutes of Biblical Law’. Because this was the program. God had given a law, whereby the earth was to be subdued by His saints, and all things brought into subjection to God, through His Law Word. [00:30:59]

The Law therefore was a plan of conquest...[edit]

The Law therefore was a plan of conquest. The whole framework of the Law is post-millennial. Go back and read Deuteronomy 28. The promises concerning obedience and disobedience. Incidentally, that was the place where once, when the oath of office was taken, men opened the Bible in this country. You see, the idea of an oath is purely Biblical, the requirement of an oath of office in the United States in the Constitution is Biblical. A few years ago I noticed that one of our Presidents, when he took the oath of office, took it on a covered Bible, which was fitting, but it used to be, a closed Bible I mean, but it used to before an open Bible originally, Deuteronomy 28. Because you took the, when you take an oath, this is its meaning, and Dr. Meredith G. Kline, who doesn’t share my eschatology, has done some brilliant work on oath and covenant. It’s out in book form, I’m not sure of the title, but you’ll have it here in the library. Now, the substance of what he points out is, that when you took an oath, you swore to obey God and the covenant law. And you thereby invoked upon yourself the blessings of God’s promises for obedience, and His curses for disobedience. It’s a magnificent chapter incidentally, and if you’ve never preached on it, those of you who have churches at present, you most certainly should. Because God says, if we observe and do all His commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth, and all these blessings shall come on thee and overtake thee if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city and blessed shalt thou be in the field, blessed shall be the fruit of thy body and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle and the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store, blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out. And so on, and then the curses, which are similar. The exact opposite for disobedience. Cursed shalt thou be in thy going out and thy coming in, and the fruit of the field and the fruit of thy body. In other words, God is totally operative in the whole man in the whole world. And where He is obeyed, there is total victory in every realm. Now these two emphases of Puritanism led to a tremendous optimistic outlook. It has been of late point out by Iain Murray in the Puritan hope and pulse in his book on the restoration of Israel, how the great missionary Embert{?}, of the last century and of the century before, was post-millennial in his faith and impulse predominately. [00:34:50]

Another fact of interest that has been developed of...[edit]

Another fact of interest that has been developed of late by some historians in this country just beginning to be published, is this. The Puritans who came here were predominately, not universally but predominately, post-millennial. They came here self-consciously determined to establish God’s New Israel, or New Zion, as a hope for the world. To have an opportunity to do here what they could not do in the mother country, to build a nation in terms of God’s law word. And to make it the stronghold from whence all the nations were to be conquered. They had thus, a missionary task. A world mission. Now when they lost that hope and became au-mill and pre-mill, they began to decline. Then, with a man who, not always consistent in his Reformed theology, but at this point he was sound, he revived post-millennialism. Jonathan Edwards. Samuel Hopkins, and Joseph Bellamy. Men like Bushmen and others, American historians who don’t even know the word post-millennial, but who none the less point out, that because they revived the original eschatology, an eschatology that was optimist, an eschatology of conquest, it was their followers who made possible American Independence. And some have gone so far as to say, without this revived eschatology there would have been no War of American Independence, and the United States would be today another Ireland. That’s the impact that this eschatology had. It was an eschatology of victory, which is the title I gave to the republication of Dr. Kick’s writings. And I recommend that very heartily to you, Dr. Kick is a very able writer, or was a very able writer in this field.

Now I’ve tried to give you something of the theological, philosophical premises that under-gird eschatology. Are there any questions now? Yes.

[Audience] I’ve missed something, I’m sure, Doctor, but the basis for the Puritan eschatology was theological, and exegetical, it wasn’t philosophical. [00:37:45]

[Dr. Rushdoony] Yes. But you see, it was when they rejected all of Thomism, and when they returned to a Biblical faith and derived their philosophy from Scripture, they said, we cannot reject the world, we are summoned to become more than conquerors through Christ. So you’re very right. They derived their philosophical presuppositions from Scripture. They were scriptural to the core, emphatically so.

Yes.

[Audience] …{?}…

[Dr. Rushdoony] Well, historically there has not been the same drive when an era becomes au-mill or pre-mill. There is a waning of the missionary impulse. So that I’m not saying they do not have missions, but definitely as, since the, oh about the time of World War 1, post-millennialism just almost disappeared in the United States. And the missionary enterprise began to collapse.

[Audience]…{?}…

[Dr. Rushdoony] There are more causes than one, you’re very right. So it was not entirely eschatology, but eschatology was very definitely a part of it. So that as you go through the centuries, you find where there has not been, say, drift into modernism. As for example, from about 1690 to 1750, in Colonial America, there was no drift into modernism, but the old impotence to conquer was gone, and there was nothing but a sense of defeat, precisely because they had lost their original eschatology. They no longer had the same missionary impulse. [00:40:26]

No longer the feeling that they were, as they originally...[edit]

No longer the feeling that they were, as they originally said, a city set upon a hill. There’s a book by that title describing the early years, and it was their duty to give light to the world. Now it’s very remarkable, some of the things they did in the period immediately after the first, with the eschatology that they gained from Hopkins and Bellamy in particular. And Edwards has a famous sermon in terms of which he sees America, again as the means for bringing the whole world under Christ, a missionary people. A missionary nation. And this was in the Colonial period. They were not yet independent. But in terms of this eschatology, what happened in the years ahead was one of the most remarkable things, we see just the foreign missionary enterprise, that was a small aspect of the matter. I have, in one of the books that is being typed now, ‘Revolt Against Maturity: The Biblical Doctrine of Man and His Psychology’, an analysis of what happened in Salem, Massachusetts . I selected Salem, in terms of illustrating what was happening across country. Salem was not outstanding in this, but between 1895, or excuse me, 1795 and 1845, in fifty years, Salem went from a, I believe something like, 2000 people to 15-20,000. In other words, it doubled several times, through immigration. Other cities doubled many times over. Now who were these people who came? Well, they were foreigners who often did not speak English, were usually Catholic or of no faith at all. And yet in 1845, Salem was still an old-fashioned, Puritan community. How did this happen? They said, we have an obligation to conquer in Christ’s name. Now here were new people coming in. They started all kinds of tithe agencies, to evangelize every immigrant who set foot on the shores of this country. There were literally thousands of tithe agencies for this purpose. Now, after our Independence, the immigration that came here was of a very different caliber. As a matter of fact, it became common place in England, in Germany and France, Sweden and elsewhere, to empty the prisons, and to load people onto boats, pay their fare and ship them to America. Get lost, that was their attitude. If a girl became pregnant out of wedlock, the family didn’t want any part of her, she was a disgrace to them, they’d put her on a boat and let her go. [00:43:49]

Now of course, the immediate result in New York and...[edit]

Now of course, the immediate result in New York and some of the other port cities was staggering. If you read about the five points neighborhood in New York in those early days, you wonder that man could be so depraved. Because here were these people, the scum of Europe, being poured out here. In late 1820’s, when De Tocqueville wrote his ‘Democracy in America’, and get in an unedited, unexpurgated edition, because they have abridged it endlessly, as a long footnote of a paragraph or two, in which he says, the slums of the big cities of America are far worse than anything Europe has ever known. And he says, that unless in a very few years, unless immediately the United States creates a huge standing army, to police its cities, in a few years there will be a revolution. Now we had a standing army, I think of about two hundred men at the time. We did not have a revolution. Why? Because these people were all converted. Converted. These tithe agencies would go out and start Christian schools for the children of these immigrants. They would start societies to teach these women home-making, how to cook, to bake, and so on. They’d have classes to teach them English, they would have job corp. programs, I’m using the modern name, for the men, so they could teach them a trade, how to work with their hands, how to do this, that and the other thing. As fast as those people poured into this country, they were won for Christ, as a part of a systematic program. Now, this is the greatest single missionary enterprise of the last century. Because you had a country with three million, wind up with about a hundred million at the end of the century, and a large portion of that was immigration. And yet it retained an essentially Christian character, as a result of missionary work. Nobody has bother to deal with the story, but it’s the greatest single missionary story of history, and it was done on a post-millennial impetus. [00:46:27]

It was a tremendous thing, and I could on at length...[edit]

It was a tremendous thing, and I could on at length about some aspects of it, it was so remarkable. But one of the remarkable things about it was that New York, which was such a cesspool so that Americans spoke of it as Sodom and Gomorrah, was the main dumping point, during the war, well the War of Northern Aggression, New York was in the hands of this wild mob for several days. For several days. They were burning the city down, because they didn’t want to be drafted. But within a few years, because of redoubled missionary effort in New York, and concentration on this, you know what was commonplace in Wall Street? The bank messengers were walking from bank to bank up the length of Wall Street, carrying sacks of gold coins, without a guard, or without a weapon. And we have eye-witness accounts as to what would happen every now and then, those bags would break and all the coins would scatter. And immediately, every man in the area would form a circle around the scattered bag and put their arms on one another, and stay there until the messenger got another bag, counted out the coins and put them in there. And if any man in the area made the mistake of bending over to tie his shoelaces, he got a boot in the rear. Now can you imagine that happening on Wall Street today? A guard could not go up and down the length of Wall Street with a bag of gold coins, except in an armored truck with guards, and they have to, when the armored trucks run, change their schedule increasingly, or they are hit. Now that was a Christian character, and you see, it was an eschatological faith, that led them to feel, we’re going to make this nation Christian to the core, and we’re going to use it as an instrument for the conquest of the world. So at one and the same time they were sending out missionaries to every part of the world, and the great effort was right here. It’s a magnificent story. We have a great deal to be proud of in our heritage. The sad fact is we’re never taught this at schools. Nobody has bothered to write it out. There’s been one book on it in the twenties, and it disappeared almost without a ripple, on all these tithe agencies. [00:49:18]

De Tocqueville says, the real government of America...[edit]

De Tocqueville says, the real government of America was the voluntary associations, by which he meant these tithe agencies. Most of the government, most of the education, most of everything, was done by them. Now this is the kind of thing the eschatology produces. It’s a marvelous story.

Yes.

[Audience] …{?}…

[Dr. Rushdoony] No, because its hope is thoroughly Scriptural. Its hope is, you see, when you have a dualistic or a neo-platonic influence, you see the two things, mind and matter, is either higher and lower, or one against the other. But when you have a Biblical perspective, you see them as a unity. You see a hope in terms of time and eternity, as a unified thing.

Now, I’m going to be referring to it in chapel probably, but it’s such a beautiful fact it won’t hurt you to hear it twice. Baptism in the Early Church had a post-millennial emphasis. Immediately after the conclusion of baptism, the person who was baptized was given milk and honey, to signify that he was now a citizen of the Promised Land, and had entered into the paradise of God. Now for suffer saints in times of persecution, as the Early Church was in those days, to set forth that note of hope and victory, is a remarkable thing. But that’s exactly the note they had.

Well, I think our time is up now, and if it isn’t, let’s say it is, because I’m wanting a chance to catch my breath.