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Some more on politics and Christianity

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  • Shawn Anderson
    Hi folks, 1) I recently posted on my blog about the political agenda of Red-Letter Christians . Any feed back that you (especially you folks in this forum)
    Message 1 of 23 , Oct 2, 2007
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      Hi folks,

      1) I recently posted on my blog about the political agenda of "Red-Letter Christians". Any feed back that you (especially you folks in this forum) could offer would be great.

      http://shawnanderson.wordpress.com

      2) I did recently read a post as well on "A Modest Proposal" that I think is engaging and ought to be a means of dialogue. How are we to practice the doctrine of Christ's Mediatorial Kingship? Is political dissent our only alternative?

      http://deregnochristi.org/2007/08/27/a-modest-proposoal

      3) Does anyone know of any resources (lectures, sermons, papers, books, etc) that takes on this issue and offers any alternatives? I did hear Rev. Ray Lanning teach on the Mediatorial Kingship of Christ, and talked about the shift in the RPCNA, where they have maintained the doctrine, but have sought to move beyond the application of political dissent to the doctrine. I still think voting is moral, and owning or dissenting from the Constitution is moral as well.

      http://arcgr.org/sermons/070812pm-Reformed_Presbyterianism_4.MP3 

      I personally wrestle with the tension that exists in the practice. I don't want to be found compromising the truth. And while I presently defend Christ's kingship (by God's grace) I don't want to deny it by separating myself from the fight.


      -Shawn Anderson
      shawnanderson.wordpress.com
      Albany, NY (soon to be Grand Rapids, MI)
    • forisraelssake
      I m with Murray Rothbard, who wrote: Many anarchist libertarians claim it immoral to vote or to engage in political action–the argument being that by
      Message 2 of 23 , Oct 2, 2007
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        I'm with Murray Rothbard, who wrote:

        "Many anarchist libertarians claim it immoral to vote or to engage in
        political action–the argument being that by participating in this way
        in State activity, the libertarian places his moral imprimatur upon
        the State apparatus itself. But a moral decision must be a free
        decision, and the State has placed individuals in society in an unfree
        environment, in a general matrix of coercion. The
        State—unfortunately—exists, and people must necessarily begin with
        this matrix to try to remedy their condition. As Lysander Spooner
        pointed out, in an environment of State coercion, voting does not
        imply voluntary consent. Indeed, if the State allows us a periodic
        choice of rulers, limited though that choice may be, it surely cannot
        be considered immoral to make use of that limited choice to try to
        reduce or get rid of State power." (The Ethics of Liberty, ch. 24,
        published 1982, http://www.mises.org/rothbard/ethics/ethics.asp )


        Chris T.
        Edmonton, AB
      • Deejay
        I wasn t sure if this quote was for or against, Christians voting. It wasn t clear to me. But I am strongly convicted its the duty of Christians to be
        Message 3 of 23 , Oct 3, 2007
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          I wasn't sure if this quote was for or against, Christians voting.  It wasn't clear to me. But I am strongly convicted its the duty of Christians to be politcal dissenters, for the same reasons as in THIS  essay by Pastor Milne.

          To do any other, is to join in an unholy alliance with the prince of this world. IMO.

          ~Deejay


          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake" <c_tylor@...> wrote:
          >
          > I'm with Murray Rothbard, who wrote:
          >
          > "Many anarchist libertarians claim it immoral to vote or to engage in
          > political action–the argument being that by participating in this way
          > in State activity, the libertarian places his moral imprimatur upon
          > the State apparatus itself. But a moral decision must be a free
          > decision, and the State has placed individuals in society in an unfree
          > environment, in a general matrix of coercion. The
          > State—unfortunately—exists, and people must necessarily begin with
          > this matrix to try to remedy their condition. As Lysander Spooner
          > pointed out, in an environment of State coercion, voting does not
          > imply voluntary consent. Indeed, if the State allows us a periodic
          > choice of rulers, limited though that choice may be, it surely cannot
          > be considered immoral to make use of that limited choice to try to
          > reduce or get rid of State power." (The Ethics of Liberty, ch. 24,
          > published 1982, http://www.mises.org/rothbard/ethics/ethics.asp )
          >
          >
          > Chris T.
          > Edmonton, AB
          >

        • Tom
          ... though that choice may be, it surely cannot be considered immoral to make use of that limited choice to try to reduce or get rid of State power. Would the
          Message 4 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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            > Indeed, if the State allows us a periodic choice of rulers, limited
            though that choice may be, it surely cannot be considered immoral to
            make use of that limited choice to try to reduce or get rid of State
            power."

            Would the State offer a REAL choice? Look at what the establishment is
            doing to Ron Paul here in the States, just as one example.
          • Jasper
            Hi Tom, I may be misunderstanding your take on Ron Paul, which I interpret to be positive. Another presbyterian told me that Ron Paul is a libertarian and
            Message 5 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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              Hi Tom,

               

              I may be misunderstanding your take on Ron Paul, which I interpret to be positive.  Another presbyterian told me that Ron Paul is a libertarian and antinomian.  I do not know, and in mentioning that person's statement I don't mean to spread unfavorable comments about him, so would you please offer more input regarding Mr. Paul as a candidate?  I am interested in hearing a bit more.  Thanks.

               

              Jasper



              ----- Original Message ----
              From: Tom <bndr1643@...>
              To: covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Friday, October 5, 2007 7:10:39 AM
              Subject: [Covenanted Reformation] Re: Some more on politics and Christianity

              > Indeed, if the State allows us a periodic choice of rulers, limited

              though that choice may be, it surely cannot be considered immoral to
              make use of that limited choice to try to reduce or get rid of State
              power."

              Would the State offer a REAL choice? Look at what the establishment is
              doing to Ron Paul here in the States, just as one example.




              Catch up on fall's hot new shows on Yahoo! TV. Watch previews, get listings, and more!
            • forisraelssake
              ... to be positive. Another presbyterian told me that Ron Paul is a libertarian and antinomian. I do not know, and in mentioning that person s statement I
              Message 6 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, Jasper
                <jasperh98@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hi Tom,
                >
                > I may be misunderstanding your take on Ron Paul, which I interpret
                to be positive. Another presbyterian told me that Ron Paul is a
                libertarian and antinomian. I do not know, and in mentioning that
                person's statement I don't mean to spread unfavorable comments about
                him, so would you please offer more input regarding Mr. Paul as a
                candidate? I am interested in hearing a bit more. Thanks.
                >
                > Jasper
                >

                What does "antinomian" mean in this context?

                Paul's view of state power is known as Minarchism
                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minarchism which is within the classical
                liberal tradition. It is not a theonomy or Christian reconstructionist
                position. If it were up to him he would abolish all functions of the
                Federal Government not specifically enumerated in the US Constitution.

                I think that would be a good start.

                Chris
              • Larry Bump
                I consider myself a Christian Libertarian. Your right to limit my behavior is only valid where my behavior has a negative effect on the rights of others.
                Message 7 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                  I consider myself a Christian Libertarian. Your right to limit my
                  behavior is only valid where my behavior has a negative effect on the
                  rights of others.

                  HOWEVER:

                  Since the nations are ruled by a Just God who will punish their sins,
                  there are no so-called "victimless crimes". A nation that allows
                  adultery, sodomy, and other sins to flourish without the commanded
                  punishment by the magistrate will be itself punished, and innocents will
                  suffer for these sins as the society is disciplined/punished. Therefor,
                  these sins are not victimless, and must be punished and restrained by
                  the magistrate just as God commands.

                  I also do not think that the Magistrate has any right to assert any
                  power not granted in Scripture, or deduced by good and *necessary*
                  consequence. Consider it a Regulative Principle of Government.

                  I will cheerfully vote for anyone who campaigns on the plank of
                  upholding both God's Law and Man's Rights under it. Until then, I
                  cannot endorse any as "my man".
                • forisraelssake
                  I consider myself to be a Christian libertarian as well, but I would disagree Elder Bump on your conservative position that argues all sins are essentially (or
                  Message 8 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                    I consider myself to be a Christian libertarian as well, but I would
                    disagree Elder Bump on your conservative position that argues all sins
                    are essentially (or can be) matters of crime and punishment and that
                    there are no victimless crimes whatsoever, and all sins such adultery
                    or fornication or false religion or sabbath-breaking or blasphemy etc.
                    and so forth, are to be extirpated by an entity known as the State.

                    I believe that just because something is immoral and wrong (and wicked
                    and evil, etc.) does not immediately make it criminal. I believe only
                    the sins that are aggressions (defined as the initiation of physical
                    force, the threat of such, or fraud upon persons or their property)
                    create valid grievances on the part of victims that entitle them to
                    retribution against the aggressor.

                    I think the churches of Christ should govern and rule their members
                    and ensure their faithful obedience to all the moral commandments of
                    the Lord and should punish spiritually through spiritual censures
                    (i.e. Admonition and Excommunication) all gross immorality, but as for
                    right to physically punish someone, whether they profess Christ or
                    not, it is limited to their sins of aggression against others.

                    Therefore I don't think sabbath-breaking, or consensual sexual acts
                    outside of marriage, or idolatry are "crimes" that grants anyone the
                    right to initiate physical violence against them (as they were under
                    the theocracy of Ancient Israel, when God was head of state). God
                    himself as our Creator and kingly Lord has the right to punish all
                    these things with death, even the least of sins, but since the
                    abolition of the theocratic commonwealth of Israel, God has not
                    appointed human agents to continue the work of legally enforcing the
                    Law of Moses. Consequently any one who does so now is a mere usurper
                    and tyrant with no lawful commission from the Divine to perform that
                    angelic work. God will judge all sins and immoralities in his own way
                    and in his own time and doesn't need or want human beings to initiate
                    force in each others lives in order to enforce morality.

                    The following flash video (loads up on the first page, scroll down a
                    bit to see it--it goes with the music you might hear) describes very
                    well Christian libertarianism for people unfamiliar with the idea and
                    I think helps show why we should all be libertarians:

                    http://www.libertarianchristians.org/

                    Sincerely,
                    Chris
                  • Larry Bump
                    ... Now, now; I didn t say that. Many sins are not given to the magistrate to punish. But the ones that are, should be. God is not wrong, nor will He be
                    Message 9 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                      forisraelssake wrote:
                      > I consider myself to be a Christian libertarian as well, but I would
                      > disagree Elder Bump on your conservative position that argues all sins
                      > are essentially (or can be) matters of crime and punishment and that
                      > there are no victimless crimes whatsoever, and all sins such adultery
                      > or fornication or false religion or sabbath-breaking or blasphemy etc.
                      > and so forth, are to be extirpated by an entity known as the State.


                      Now, now; I didn't say that. Many sins are not given to the magistrate
                      to punish.

                      But the ones that are, should be. God is not wrong, nor will He be
                      mocked. I dare not say I know better than He.

                      Larry
                    • Larry Bump
                      ... Please show me scripture to back this up, would you? I see where the magistrate (king) was given the right, but not just anyone as you assert. The
                      Message 10 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                        forisraelssake wrote:

                        > Therefore I don't think sabbath-breaking, or consensual sexual acts
                        > outside of marriage, or idolatry are "crimes" that grants anyone the
                        > right to initiate physical violence against them (as they were under


                        Please show me scripture to back this up, would you? I see where the
                        magistrate (king) was given the right, but not just "anyone" as you
                        assert. The Bible does not teach vigilantism.

                        And I believe that Israel was a model for the nations, not an
                        abberration. Other than the separation and levitical laws, the nations
                        were called to model themselves after Israel.
                        If not, why were the cities of the plains destroyed?
                      • forisraelssake
                        ... Well in terms of a burden of proof, we both have the responsibility to defend our positions, neither side gets a bye. Genesis 49:10 ESV The scepter shall
                        Message 11 of 23 , Oct 5, 2007
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                          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, Larry Bump
                          <lbump@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > forisraelssake wrote:
                          >
                          > > Therefore I don't think sabbath-breaking, or consensual sexual acts
                          > > outside of marriage, or idolatry are "crimes" that grants anyone the
                          > > right to initiate physical violence against them (as they were under
                          >
                          >
                          > Please show me scripture to back this up, would you?

                          Well in terms of a burden of proof, we both have the responsibility to
                          defend our positions, neither side gets a bye.

                          Genesis 49:10 ESV The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor the
                          ruler's staff [metaphorically, a lawgiver] from between his feet,
                          until tribute [or, Shiloh] comes to him; and to him shall be the
                          obedience of the peoples.

                          1 Peter 2:13-14 ESV Be subject for the Lord's sake to every human
                          institution [or, authority], whether it be to the emperor as supreme,
                          (14) or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and
                          to praise those who do good.

                          This is central to the expiration of the judicial laws, for we see in
                          Gen that the special kingly rule over Israel as a type of the Son of
                          Man had a determinate period of time, upon which it expired when
                          Christ finally came. Peter is saying to the NT believers that the
                          gentile kings, who have no pretense to being prophetic Judges and
                          Kings over theocratic Israel, made laws apart from the Law of Moses
                          and of different requirements and nature and still we should exist in
                          submission, without getting it into our heads to overthrow by violence
                          the existing legal code and putting in its place Moses' law.

                          Matthew 5:17 ESV "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or
                          the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.

                          The moral law is in no way abolished and its spiritual force on man,
                          but its types and shadows are in every way fulfilled by Christ.

                          Matthew 5:38-39 ESV "You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an
                          eye and a tooth for a tooth.' (39) But I say to you, Do not resist
                          the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn
                          to him the other also.

                          It was said (in the theocracy), but now it is said (in the NT).

                          1 Corinthians 9:8-10 ESV Do I say these things on human authority?
                          Does not the Law say the same? (9) For it is written in the Law of
                          Moses, "You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain." Is
                          it for oxen that God is concerned? (10) Does he not speak entirely
                          for our sake? It was written for our sake, because the plowman should
                          plow in hope and the thresher thresh in hope of sharing in the crop.

                          The Law of Moses said such and such, it was a legal code, it had to be
                          enforced for over a thousand years in the theocracy. But what was the
                          point of this law? It was 'entirely' (the Apostle's own words) for our
                          spiritual sake, to inform our conscience and guide our actions. This
                          is a fantastic evidence of my position, that the Law of Moses was a
                          type and shadow of the real moral substance of reality, and it was
                          there as a guardian/tutor/schoolmaster to show us God's holy moral
                          law, rather than a legal code that carries perpetual weight.

                          Galatians 3:22-26 ESV But the Scripture imprisoned everything under
                          sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to
                          those who believe. (23) Now before faith came, we were held captive
                          under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed.
                          (24) So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order
                          that we might be justified by faith. (25) But now that faith has
                          come, we are no longer under a guardian, (26) for in Christ Jesus
                          you are all sons of God, through faith.

                          The law, writ large in shadowy and typical form in the ancient
                          theocracy of Israel, points to the higher reality of morality, but we
                          are not under it any more in any sense as continuing legal code for
                          our nations. Though the man gathering sticks on the Lord's day sabbath
                          is still in sin, we ought not to put him to death as was the necessary
                          punishment in the theocracy.

                          John 18:33-37 ESV So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called
                          Jesus and said to him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" (34) Jesus
                          answered, "Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to
                          you about me?" (35) Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation
                          and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you
                          done?" (36) Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If my
                          kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that
                          I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from
                          the world." (37) Then Pilate said to him, "So you are a king?" Jesus
                          answered, "You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and
                          for this purpose I have come into the world--to bear witness to the
                          truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice."

                          Rome could only conceive of King Jesus as a competitor to King Caesar,
                          but Christ here explicitly denies that the kingdom of his elect saints
                          is a political organization or is involved in politics, or that his
                          message inspires his followers to law-making activities. No, he says,
                          Christ is a king but of the Church and he is a spiritual king only. I
                          believe that (among the many things Christ is saying or implying
                          here), he is speaking directly against "Christian reconstructionist"
                          or theonomic political views that would seek to revive the Law of
                          Moses or the theocracy of Israel in their own nations in any form.


                          > I see where the
                          > magistrate (king) was given the right, but not just "anyone" as you
                          > assert. The Bible does not teach vigilantism.

                          I am not sure the magistrate was ever given any 'right' to exist. That
                          he is exists and is a fact of history is of course true, the first
                          king by all appearances (and most commentators agreeing with me) being
                          Nimrod, that wicked man in Genesis. Kings and governments perform a
                          valuable function, namely being Isa 10 eradicators of those whom God
                          had decided to kill or persecute, but I suppose you could say I don't
                          share your confessional (WCF) view of the magistracy as the sole
                          legitimate monopoly holder of force in a given territorial area.

                          When we speak of 'vigilantism' what do we mean anyway? Do we mean
                          private lawless chaotic quarrels like the Hatfield-McCoys? Without any
                          objective recognize judge/court pronouncing guilt and innocence? Well
                          that is of course wrong and condemned by God.

                          Yet in the context of accountability and orderly trials, I think the
                          bible does countenance vigilantism indeed, for that was the universal
                          way of administering justice in the time before the rise of peace
                          officers, who are an extremely modern development.

                          The "Avenger of Blood" of Numb 35 and Deut 19 and Josh 20 and 2 Sam 14
                          is exactly a vigilantee, a private citizen working in the context of
                          objective law and administering retributive justice.

                          >
                          > And I believe that Israel was a model for the nations, not an
                          > abberration. Other than the separation and levitical laws, the nations
                          > were called to model themselves after Israel.
                          > If not, why were the cities of the plains destroyed?
                          >

                          I disagree warmly. :) Israel was not an aberration, but it was
                          something utterly unique--a type and shadow of the moral law and the
                          gospel writ large over a people who were the Lord's.

                          I think the separation, the levitical laws, the judicial laws, the
                          whole kit and caboodle were unique to those people and not a guide for
                          us now as we apply the moral law in our lives and hearts.

                          Why were those cities of Sodom and Gomorrah destroyed? Because they
                          were wicked and evil, so wicked and evil that they became a byword for
                          the rest of history. God sent angels to wipe them out. He could have
                          used another king or state, or a virulent plague or any number of
                          things to destroy them, as they richly deserved. Of course we all
                          deserve death but for the cross of Christ. That doesn't mean we are
                          to presume to act as the owner of other people and tell them (at gun
                          point) how to live their lives or tell them what they can or cannot do
                          when they are "victimless crimes" that they are doing.

                          We as Christians should preach to them, gossip the gospel (Act 8:4),
                          and tell them what duty God requires of them, and to Christians in the
                          churches to spiritually rebuke those delinquent in their faith or
                          life, but we should not attempt to revive the Law of Moses in a new
                          garb or emulate OT Israel in NT Pennsylvania or Alberta.

                          Sincerely,
                          Chris

                          P.S. What did you think of that eight minute flash video on Christian
                          libertarianism I posted in my last message? Could you provide a
                          critique of it from your perspective for me so I can better understand
                          at what point you think you are allowed to tell someone else who to
                          live their life, since I apparently misunderstood you according to
                          your first reply.
                        • gmw
                          ... ... I m saddened by this apparent abandonment of reformation principles. Chris, if you commit a consensual sexual act outside of marriage with my
                          Message 12 of 23 , Oct 6, 2007
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                            --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                            <c_tylor@...> wrote:

                            > I believe that just because something is immoral and wrong (and wicked
                            > and evil, etc.) does not immediately make it criminal. I believe only
                            > the sins that are aggressions (defined as the initiation of physical
                            > force, the threat of such, or fraud upon persons or their property)
                            > create valid grievances on the part of victims that entitle them to
                            > retribution against the aggressor....

                            <snip>

                            > Therefore I don't think sabbath-breaking, or consensual sexual acts
                            > outside of marriage, or idolatry are "crimes" that grants anyone the
                            > right to initiate physical violence against them (as they were under
                            > the theocracy of Ancient Israel, when God was head of state).

                            I'm saddened by this apparent abandonment of reformation principles.
                            Chris, if you commit "a consensual sexual act outside of marriage"
                            with my wife, I would be tempted to kill you, and would lament that
                            the magistrate in theses lands fail to carry out their duty towards you.

                            If you commit "a consensual sexual act outside of marriage" with my
                            daughter, I would feel likewise.

                            And should I be offended at these sins committed against me and my
                            family, and wish that the magistrate would bear his God-given sword
                            against these PUBLIC crimes against me and my family, and not desire
                            that the same be done in the case of PUBLIC crimes directly aimed at
                            God (as well as being damaging to public welfare)?

                            And how can the magistrate be called the minister of God for good, and
                            a terror to those who do evil, and not raise his sword against public
                            evil such as adultery, fornication, sabbath-breaking, etc?

                            That the duty of the civil magistrate is to defend and enforce both
                            tables of the law is just good Calvinism, isn't it? It's good old
                            Reformed doctrine, is it not?

                            What's going on, Chris, is there anything we can do to help?

                            gmw.
                          • forisraelssake
                            ... I know it is natural for people like us to think that way, given the WCF 23:3 Reformers we pretty much exclusively read on the one hand, and the strong
                            Message 13 of 23 , Oct 6, 2007
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                              > I'm saddened by this apparent abandonment of reformation principles.
                              > Chris, if you commit "a consensual sexual act outside of marriage"
                              > with my wife, I would be tempted to kill you, and would lament that
                              > the magistrate in theses lands fail to carry out their duty towards you.
                              >
                              > If you commit "a consensual sexual act outside of marriage" with my
                              > daughter, I would feel likewise.
                              >

                              I know it is natural for people like us to think that way, given the
                              WCF 23:3 Reformers we pretty much exclusively read on the one hand,
                              and the strong preference everyone in our perspective has always shown
                              for Bahnsen and Rushdooney against opponents of their views. But WCF
                              23:3 hasn't been my preferred interpretation for a long time now
                              (Savoy 24:3 being my former preferred understanding in its place), and
                              once I started reading Americans on this topic, liberty of conscience
                              and Roger Williams style freedom of religion started making a lot more
                              sense and I came to see it can be justified biblically.

                              As morally outraged as you would be in the above cases of sex, and
                              desirous of making me promptly die of lead-poisoning, would you put
                              your family members in the same category and want to kill them too?
                              You said kill me in that case, you didn't talk about killing them as
                              well, but it is not clear what the difference would be.

                              What is the State's 'duty' anyway? Punish all sin with violence? The
                              distinction between private sins and public sins does not seem well
                              conceived and well-demarcated to me any more, so that I can say "well
                              of course all PUBLIC sins should be punished, but PRIVATE sins are not
                              the State's right to punish". What does that even mean in the case of
                              people's private decisions and actions made with their free,
                              un-coerced consent?

                              > And should I be offended at these sins committed against me and my
                              > family, and wish that the magistrate would bear his God-given sword
                              > against these PUBLIC crimes against me and my family, and not desire
                              > that the same be done in the case of PUBLIC crimes directly aimed at
                              > God (as well as being damaging to public welfare)?
                              >

                              I agree you should be offended at the sins against both our neighbors
                              as well as the sins against God. All sin should grieve the Christian.
                              God himself is continually offended by them as well, as he tells us in
                              his Word. Yet where is the moral foundation for one person telling
                              another person how they must live their life when no aggression is
                              involved in the sin. Where is the victim in victimless crimes?

                              I am afraid of the idea of someone who is not God telling someone else
                              how they must live their life. Even with the best of intentions and a
                              benevolent respect for God's authentic moral will, that is still
                              enslaving someone else against their will to your dictates, which is
                              still a type of slavery. I don't believe States have any more power
                              than the individuals who compose it, so if you don't have power to
                              tell someone how to live their life when your own life, liberty and
                              property are not at stake, then neither does the State made up of
                              people like you.


                              > And how can the magistrate be called the minister of God for good, and
                              > a terror to those who do evil, and not raise his sword against public
                              > evil such as adultery, fornication, sabbath-breaking, etc?
                              >

                              Because that is exactly what he was called by Paul in the Holy Spirit
                              when that exactly is what happened, namely he (e.g. Nero Caesar) did
                              not raise his sword against adultery, fornication, and
                              sabbath-breaking and yet Paul told us he, and all other kings and
                              states, existed providentially to punish evil. I think Romans 13 is
                              talking about the same thing as Isaiah 10 is. In Isa 10, this state
                              itself is just as worthy as death as all those it was wiping out, and
                              yet it was for that time a providential ordinance to restrain evil and
                              carried the sword to avenge God's outrage against the nations
                              (including Israel), then after a while, it was not the providential
                              ordinance, as it easily collapsed and something else became the de
                              facto ordinance of God, and Assyria was wiped out itself as it had
                              done to so many others before it.


                              > That the duty of the civil magistrate is to defend and enforce both
                              > tables of the law is just good Calvinism, isn't it? It's good old
                              > Reformed doctrine, is it not?
                              >
                              > What's going on, Chris, is there anything we can do to help?
                              >
                              > gmw.
                              >

                              Thanks for your sympathy Jerry but I think I made a big mistake when I
                              got involved with paleo-presbyterianism. I know that's not what you
                              wanted to hear but that is the root of these remarks. I warmly embrace
                              the riches of Calvinism and I am a member of a Dutch Reformed church
                              (if you were wondering who I primarily fellowship with), but like many
                              Reformed and Presbyterians today, I don't think something like
                              Bahnsen's Theonomy is true, even if it more or less was the historic
                              Presbyterian view. I can totally see in WCF 23:3 the Jewish Theocratic
                              State between Saul and Zedekiah, but that is the wrong model for us I
                              believe. The free society and libertarianism is I think the correct
                              view for the NT period.

                              Sincerely,
                              Chris
                            • Ic Neltococayotl
                              ... Chris- In other words...human autonomy & a baptised anarchism...then when it does not conflict with the latter the Bible can have its place...that s what
                              Message 14 of 23 , Oct 6, 2007
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                                --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                <c_tylor@...> wrote:
                                >
                                >that is the wrong model for us I
                                > believe. The free society and libertarianism is I think the correct
                                > view for the NT period.
                                >
                                > Sincerely,
                                > Chris
                                >
                                Chris-

                                In other words...human autonomy & a baptised anarchism...then when it
                                does not conflict with the latter the Bible can have its place...that's
                                what it sounds like to me.

                                Roger Williams and American style pluralism of religion is one of the
                                biggest woes the Church has had to endure. What better way to weaken
                                and make effeminate the Church than to divide her and split her as she
                                is today?

                                Your views are dangerous to the glory of Christ's Church and Law. The
                                magistrate has a duty to execute physical Biblical justice against those
                                that violate the 10 Commandments. The Church Court has the duty to
                                execute spiritual Biblical justice against those that transgress the 10
                                Commandments.

                                -Edgar
                              • forisraelssake
                                You are at liberty to think what you want, Edgar. Chris
                                Message 15 of 23 , Oct 6, 2007
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                                  You are at liberty to think what you want, Edgar.

                                  Chris


                                  > Chris-
                                  >
                                  > In other words...human autonomy & a baptised anarchism...then when it
                                  > does not conflict with the latter the Bible can have its place...that's
                                  > what it sounds like to me.
                                  >
                                  > Roger Williams and American style pluralism of religion is one of the
                                  > biggest woes the Church has had to endure. What better way to weaken
                                  > and make effeminate the Church than to divide her and split her as she
                                  > is today?
                                  >
                                  > Your views are dangerous to the glory of Christ's Church and Law. The
                                  > magistrate has a duty to execute physical Biblical justice against those
                                  > that violate the 10 Commandments. The Church Court has the duty to
                                  > execute spiritual Biblical justice against those that transgress the 10
                                  > Commandments.
                                  >
                                  > -Edgar
                                  >
                                • wraezor
                                  ... As a father, am I no longer allowed to mandate to my children how they must live their life while under my authority? (through Biblical correction,
                                  Message 16 of 23 , Oct 6, 2007
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                                    --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                    <c_tylor@...> wrote:

                                    > I am afraid of the idea of someone who is not God telling someone else
                                    > how they must live their life. Even with the best of intentions and a
                                    > benevolent respect for God's authentic moral will, that is still
                                    > enslaving someone else against their will to your dictates, which is
                                    > still a type of slavery.

                                    As a father, am I no longer allowed to mandate to my children 'how
                                    they must live their life' while under my authority? (through Biblical
                                    correction, education, example-setting, house order, etc.)

                                    I may be flawed and frail (and I'm certainly not God), but I'm still
                                    given the authority to make and enforce a decision that "as for me and
                                    my house, we will serve the Lord".

                                    As we discussed before, I still maintain that the family is less of a
                                    'voluntary' authority than the state is. So the argument holds
                                    equally true when the subjection is more voluntary.

                                    Jordan
                                  • Deejay
                                    Chris, that would seem the same argument used by a minority, to legitimize calling themselves Christian homosexuals. As for Bahensen, I know many
                                    Message 17 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                      Chris,

                                      that would seem the same argument used by a minority, to legitimize
                                      calling themselves "Christian homosexuals."

                                      As for Bahensen, I know many Presbyterians, who are not followers of
                                      and disagree with Bahensen on many, many issues. I'm a bit confused
                                      what Bahensen or his theonomic view has to do with much of anything in
                                      this.

                                      ~Deejay


                                      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                      <c_tylor@...> wrote:

                                      >
                                      > I am afraid of the idea of someone who is not God telling someone else
                                      > how they must live their life. Even with the best of intentions and a
                                      > benevolent respect for God's authentic moral will, that is still
                                      > enslaving someone else against their will to your dictates, which is
                                      > still a type of slavery. I don't believe States have any more power
                                      > than the individuals who compose it, so if you don't have power to
                                      > tell someone how to live their life when your own life, liberty and
                                      > property are not at stake, then neither does the State made up of
                                      > people like you.
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > > And how can the magistrate be called the minister of God for good,
                                      and
                                      > > a terror to those who do evil, and not raise his sword against
                                      public
                                      > > evil such as adultery, fornication, sabbath-breaking, etc?
                                      > >
                                      >
                                      > Because that is exactly what he was called by Paul in the Holy Spirit
                                      > when that exactly is what happened, namely he (e.g. Nero Caesar) did
                                      > not raise his sword against adultery, fornication, and
                                      > sabbath-breaking and yet Paul told us he, and all other kings and
                                      > states, existed providentially to punish evil. I think Romans 13 is
                                      > talking about the same thing as Isaiah 10 is. In Isa 10, this state
                                      > itself is just as worthy as death as all those it was wiping out, and
                                      > yet it was for that time a providential ordinance to restrain evil and
                                      > carried the sword to avenge God's outrage against the nations
                                      > (including Israel), then after a while, it was not the providential
                                      > ordinance, as it easily collapsed and something else became the de
                                      > facto ordinance of God, and Assyria was wiped out itself as it had
                                      > done to so many others before it.
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > > That the duty of the civil magistrate is to defend and enforce both
                                      > > tables of the law is just good Calvinism, isn't it? It's good old
                                      > > Reformed doctrine, is it not?
                                      > >
                                      > > What's going on, Chris, is there anything we can do to help?
                                      > >
                                      > > gmw.
                                      > >
                                      >
                                      > Thanks for your sympathy Jerry but I think I made a big mistake when I
                                      > got involved with paleo-presbyterianism. I know that's not what you
                                      > wanted to hear but that is the root of these remarks. I warmly embrace
                                      > the riches of Calvinism and I am a member of a Dutch Reformed church
                                      > (if you were wondering who I primarily fellowship with), but like many
                                      > Reformed and Presbyterians today, I don't think something like
                                      > Bahnsen's Theonomy is true, even if it more or less was the historic
                                      > Presbyterian view. I can totally see in WCF 23:3 the Jewish Theocratic
                                      > State between Saul and Zedekiah, but that is the wrong model for us I
                                      > believe. The free society and libertarianism is I think the correct
                                      > view for the NT period.
                                      >
                                      > Sincerely,
                                      > Chris
                                      >
                                    • forisraelssake
                                      ... Hi Deejay, I have no idea what you re even talking about with respect to homosexuality. This discussion has been about two things, first theonomy vs.
                                      Message 18 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                        > Chris,
                                        >
                                        > that would seem the same argument used by a minority, to legitimize
                                        > calling themselves "Christian homosexuals."
                                        >
                                        > As for Bahensen, I know many Presbyterians, who are not followers of
                                        > and disagree with Bahensen on many, many issues. I'm a bit confused
                                        > what Bahensen or his theonomic view has to do with much of anything in
                                        > this.
                                        >
                                        > ~Deejay
                                        >

                                        Hi Deejay,

                                        I have no idea what you're even talking about with respect to
                                        homosexuality.

                                        This discussion has been about two things, first theonomy vs.
                                        libertarianism, so rather than being an inessential side-point, it is
                                        the point. Do we, in the New Testament, respond retributively to
                                        violations of all 10 Commandments--and enforce God's complete morality
                                        through the sword/at gun-point, or do we respond retributively only
                                        against aggressions and assaults against person and property--while
                                        preaching God's complete morality in all the catholic churches?

                                        We've also started talking about a second related point, is freedom of
                                        religion desirable or undesirable, which more or less collapses back
                                        into the first point about theonomy vs libertarianism.


                                        Chris
                                      • forisraelssake
                                        ... Perhaps we don t disagree. This is what Rothbard wrote about parental rights and children s rights: http://www.mises.org/rothbard/ethics/fourteen.asp By
                                        Message 19 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                          > As a father, am I no longer allowed to mandate to my children 'how
                                          > they must live their life' while under my authority? (through Biblical
                                          > correction, education, example-setting, house order, etc.)
                                          >
                                          > I may be flawed and frail (and I'm certainly not God), but I'm still
                                          > given the authority to make and enforce a decision that "as for me and
                                          > my house, we will serve the Lord".
                                          >
                                          > As we discussed before, I still maintain that the family is less of a
                                          > 'voluntary' authority than the state is. So the argument holds
                                          > equally true when the subjection is more voluntary.
                                          >
                                          > Jordan
                                          >

                                          Perhaps we don't disagree. This is what Rothbard wrote about parental
                                          rights and children's rights:
                                          http://www.mises.org/rothbard/ethics/fourteen.asp

                                          By virtue of your natural rights as father you and your wife have
                                          parental rights of control and guardianship over your helpless
                                          children. Beyond your legal rights, you do have additional moral
                                          rights as well, that go beyond legal obligations but will last yours
                                          and their lifetimes (things such as seeking your consent and blessing
                                          for their major life decisions).

                                          The Christian concept ennobles and enriches the relationship and
                                          deepens it with the ties of love and self-sacrifice.

                                          Remember what I am saying is strictly about the law and using force to
                                          enforce, and not about what is morally proper or required which is a
                                          completely distinct idea.

                                          To give a classic example, it may be legal for a person to separate
                                          from or divorce their spouse 'for no good reason'--in that it would be
                                          slavery and tyranny for somehow use force and violence to keep them in
                                          the home, but on the other hand it would very immoral and wrong to
                                          separate from or divorce one's spouse for no good reason, and is
                                          certainly actionable by one's church for spiritual discipline.

                                          Chris
                                        • gmw
                                          ... Others may bring Bahnsen and Rushdooney into this, I will not, as I have not been influenced by them. I don t believe Calvin or the Westminster Assembly
                                          Message 20 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                            --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                            <c_tylor@...> wrote:

                                            > I know it is natural for people like us to think that way, given the
                                            > WCF 23:3 Reformers we pretty much exclusively read on the one hand,
                                            > and the strong preference everyone in our perspective has always shown
                                            > for Bahnsen and Rushdooney against opponents of their views.

                                            Others may bring Bahnsen and Rushdooney into this, I will not, as I
                                            have not been influenced by them. I don't believe Calvin or the
                                            Westminster Assembly members went to their classes either. Whatever
                                            similarities I may be displaying, I've never read Rushdooney, and read
                                            very little of Bahnsen. Credit Calvin and the Assembly for my
                                            influences. (I mean no disrespect to those men, I'm just saying).

                                            > As morally outraged as you would be in the above cases of sex, and
                                            > desirous of making me promptly die of lead-poisoning, would you put
                                            > your family members in the same category and want to kill them too?
                                            > You said kill me in that case, you didn't talk about killing them as
                                            > well, but it is not clear what the difference would be.

                                            However I answer your question is inconsequential to the point -- a
                                            "victimless crime" does not tend to leave a broken hearted man, who
                                            feels like he's lost everything, crying for justice, does it? Why the
                                            great temptation to load the gun? What has the man lost in this
                                            victimless crime to make him so hurt, angry, and desirous of justice?

                                            And do you not see the PUBLIC harm this behavior causes? Look around
                                            very carefully, it's there for you to see. As Canada and the United
                                            States become less and less influenced by Christianity, they have more
                                            and more adopted the "adultery and fornication and sabbath breaking
                                            are victimless crimes not to be punished" tact, have they not? Or
                                            shall an argument be made that we are more and more adopting the
                                            Biblical view, after the Puritan and Calvinistic influences messed us
                                            up so much early on?

                                            > What is the State's 'duty' anyway? Punish all sin with violence?

                                            What theologian worth his salt has ever advocated that the duty of the
                                            magistrate is to punish all sin with violence? Is this what you
                                            believe the WCF and Calvin taught? Or even Bahnsen and Rushdooney for
                                            that matter?

                                            > The
                                            > distinction between private sins and public sins does not seem well
                                            > conceived and well-demarcated to me any more,

                                            Are you able to distinguish between public and private ~anything~, or
                                            is it just the case of sin that they become undistinguishable? Is
                                            there no difference between my breaking my own coffee mug in anger,
                                            and going around the neighborhood breaking everyone's coffee mugs in
                                            anger? (pausing to calmly sip some coffee...)

                                            > so that I can say "well of course all PUBLIC sins should be
                                            > punished, but PRIVATE sins are not
                                            > the State's right to punish". What does that even mean in the case
                                            > of people's private decisions and actions made with their free,
                                            > un-coerced consent?

                                            Orgy on my front lawn, Ok under your scheme? Suicide party over at my
                                            place, cool with you?

                                            > I agree you should be offended at the sins against both our neighbors
                                            > as well as the sins against God. All sin should grieve the Christian.
                                            > God himself is continually offended by them as well, as he tells us in
                                            > his Word.

                                            Good, agreed.

                                            > Yet where is the moral foundation for one person telling
                                            > another person how they must live their life when no aggression is
                                            > involved in the sin. Where is the victim in victimless crimes?

                                            Is it your argument that there was no moral foundation for punishing
                                            witches, sodomites, zoophiles, sabbath-breakers, etc., in the Old
                                            Testament economy?

                                            I'm quite libertarian ~in some areas~. I don't think the government
                                            should be spending all the time and money and effort to keep Joe
                                            Smoker from smoking a spliff on his couch. That's a "victimless
                                            crime" as I understand it.

                                            But if that stoner starts driving his car around my neighborhood under
                                            the influence, this becomes more public, now doesn't it?

                                            > I am afraid of the idea of someone who is not God telling someone else
                                            > how they must live their life.

                                            Like a minister? A parent?

                                            > Because that is exactly what he was called by Paul in the Holy Spirit
                                            > when that exactly is what happened, namely he (e.g. Nero Caesar) did
                                            > not raise his sword against adultery, fornication, and
                                            > sabbath-breaking and yet Paul told us he, and all other kings and
                                            > states, existed providentially to punish evil.

                                            Ok, let's plug this in and see how it works --

                                            "Let every soul be subject unto NERO, For there is no NERO but of God:
                                            the NERO that is, is ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth
                                            NERO, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist NERO shall
                                            receive to themselves damnation. For NERO is not a terror to good
                                            works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of NERO? do that
                                            which is good, and thou shalt have praise of NERO: For NERO is the
                                            minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil,
                                            be afraid; for NERO beareth not the sword in vain: for NERO is the
                                            minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
                                            Wherefore ye must needs be subject TO NERO, not only for wrath, but
                                            also for conscience sake. For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for
                                            NERO AND HIS LIKE are God's ministers, attending continually upon this
                                            very thing. Render therefore to NERO his dues: tribute to NERO, to
                                            whom tribute is due; custom to NERO, to whom custom is due; fear to
                                            NERO, to whom fear is due; honour to NERO, to whom honour is due."

                                            Could this be what Paul meant, that if you don't want to be afraid of
                                            Nero, just do good, then Nero will praise you instead of punish you, etc.?

                                            DOES THAT MATCH ANYTHING WE KNOW OF NERO?

                                            Nero, and all other tyrants, would love to have that poster on their
                                            wall, and would order all the government sponsored ministers to preach
                                            this in every pulpit (oh... wait...
                                            http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=57219 ).

                                            Maybe Paul (who did good, and yet was probably beheaded by Nero) meant
                                            something else?

                                            > Thanks for your sympathy Jerry but I think I made a big mistake when > I
                                            > got involved with paleo-presbyterianism. I know that's not what you
                                            > wanted to hear but that is the root of these remarks.

                                            No, I'm not thrilled about hearing that, but I do appreciate you
                                            explaining this.

                                            Have a good and profitable Lord's Day,

                                            gmw.
                                          • gmw
                                            ... Is that how you view your opposition? -- that we that hold to theonomy believe that the government should use the sword/gun against you for violating
                                            Message 21 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                              --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                              <c_tylor@...> wrote:
                                              >

                                              > This discussion has been about two things, first theonomy vs.
                                              > libertarianism, so rather than being an inessential side-point, it is
                                              > the point. Do we, in the New Testament, respond retributively to
                                              > violations of all 10 Commandments--and enforce God's complete morality
                                              > through the sword/at gun-point,

                                              Is that how you view your opposition? -- that we that hold to
                                              "theonomy" believe that the government should use the sword/gun
                                              against you for violating "thou shalt not covet?"

                                              gmw.
                                            • Deejay
                                              Hi Chris, ... Sorry, I didn t mean to lose the plot! Just that this statment, (following) is the very same argument I have heard used as to why practicing
                                              Message 22 of 23 , Oct 7, 2007
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                                                Hi Chris,

                                                --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake" <c_tylor@...> wrote:
                                                >

                                                > I have no idea what you're even talking about with respect to
                                                > homosexuality.

                                                Sorry, I didn't mean to lose the plot! Just that this statment, (following) is the very same argument I have heard used as to why practicing homosexuals can legitmately call themseves Christians.  That mere men have no right to tell them how they should live their lives.  It's a different  subject, but its still the same argument which arounses both suspicion and caution just by it being so.

                                                >>>m afraid of the idea of someone who is not God telling someone else
                                                how they must live their life. Even with the best of intentions and a
                                                benevolent respect for God's authentic moral will, that is still
                                                enslaving someone else against their will to your dictates, which is
                                                still a type of slavery. I don't believe States have any more power
                                                than the individuals who compose it, so if you don't have power to
                                                tell someone how to live their life when your own life, liberty and
                                                property are not at stake, then neither does the State made up of
                                                people like you.

                                                >
                                                > This discussion has been about two things, first theonomy vs.
                                                > libertarianism, so rather than being an inessential side-point, it is
                                                > the point. Do we, in the New Testament, respond retributively to
                                                > violations of all 10 Commandments--and enforce God's complete morality
                                                > through the sword/at gun-point, or do we respond retributively only
                                                > against aggressions and assaults against person and property--while
                                                > preaching God's complete morality in all the catholic churches?
                                                >

                                                Thanks for restating the points!  I don't think most people desire retribution in the eye for an eye tooth for tooth variety of the old Testament  unless its very clear that it should be so. (Murder for instance) In fact, I think that's one of the fundamental flaws in Theonomy.  In that goes from divine retribution, and turns into a form of "revenge" by the severity it sometimes advocates.  I have read Bahnsen in the past, but haven't retained much of it.  I don't believe Bahnsen was one of the bad guys,  I just disagree with him some.

                                                ~Deejay



                                              • still_loving_u_143
                                                ... legitimize ... followers of ... confused ... anything in ... is ... morality ... of
                                                Message 23 of 23 , Nov 17, 2007
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                                                  --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "forisraelssake"
                                                  <c_tylor@...> wrote:
                                                  >
                                                  > > Chris,
                                                  > >
                                                  > > that would seem the same argument used by a minority, to
                                                  legitimize
                                                  > > calling themselves "Christian homosexuals."
                                                  > >
                                                  > > As for Bahensen, I know many Presbyterians, who are not
                                                  followers of
                                                  > > and disagree with Bahensen on many, many issues. I'm a bit
                                                  confused
                                                  > > what Bahensen or his theonomic view has to do with much of
                                                  anything in
                                                  > > this.
                                                  > >
                                                  > > ~Deejay
                                                  > >
                                                  >
                                                  > Hi Deejay,
                                                  >
                                                  > I have no idea what you're even talking about with respect to
                                                  > homosexuality.
                                                  >
                                                  > This discussion has been about two things, first theonomy vs.
                                                  > libertarianism, so rather than being an inessential side-point, it
                                                  is
                                                  > the point. Do we, in the New Testament, respond retributively to
                                                  > violations of all 10 Commandments--and enforce God's complete
                                                  morality
                                                  > through the sword/at gun-point, or do we respond retributively only
                                                  > against aggressions and assaults against person and property--while
                                                  > preaching God's complete morality in all the catholic churches?
                                                  >
                                                  > We've also started talking about a second related point, is freedom
                                                  of
                                                  > religion desirable or undesirable, which more or less collapses back
                                                  > into the first point about theonomy vs libertarianism.
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  > Chris
                                                  >
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