Separatist? A New Look at Church History, 2

Separatist? A New Look at Church History, 2

Jay Krueger and family, from Stenshult Health Retreat,  Stenshult, Sweden,  recently visited our Bible study group in Bismarck, ND.   Jay was kind enough to share some very interesting thoughts regarding church history.  This is part two in a two part series covering two very different basic schools of thought for society. It is interesting to see how this unfolds for us today!

0 thoughts on “Separatist? A New Look at Church History, 2

  1. Excellent! Yes, God is a God of separation–light from darkness, waters from waters (Rev. 17:15), earth from sea, day from night, etc. The life of a disciple is a life of constant “coming out.”

    In Israel, those who wished to worship other gods were free to go elsewhere. No “Iron Curtain” held them in. And today, we can very quickly list off nations that allow emigration, and others that do not. Slave masters tend to not allow their slaves to leave.

    But, today, we see “churches” that do not allow their members to leave, on pain of harassment in this life, and threats of damnation in the next. But scripture says, “If the unbelieving depart, let them depart.” 1 Cor. 7:15.

    The two swords–excellent thought. Praise the Lord for the accumulated light of 6 millennia!

    Roger Williams (the separatist’s separatist and prince’s prince) finally got it right. All humanity, to be free, needs to have life and property protected, and needs to have the greatest possible freedom of choice in how to use that life and property. The only thing prohibited by the civil realm (the king and princes), is trampling on the physical life, liberty, and property of others. Those who take the sword, trampling on the rights of their fellow-men, must perish by the sword of God’s civil deacons, or of Christ Himself. Every member of the human race has equal rights and duties as princes, under Christ, the Creator-King, to be free, and to protect the lives, liberties, and properties of all–not because of their religion, but because of their equal humanity.

    True religion is the only source of power and wisdom to fulfill these temporal duties perfectly, however. And only true religion can keep us high above the law–the low-water-mark of human behavior–so that we are not in fear of civil authority. Rather, we will be praised by the same, and men will glorify God because of the grace manifested in us.

    In a sinless world, the physical force of civil power is unnecessary. But it has been required ever since Lucifer refused to leave heaven (3SG 38), and will be required until sin is consumed root and branch. Yet, the Christian can do more than this.

    The New-Testament priest (including every believer, who serves under Christ the High Priest) bears a different sword–the word of God. In this realm of the heart and intellect, every instrument of coercion is banished. Economic pressures, social coercion, scorn, ridicule, and physical force are useless to convince the mind, and only harden the heart. These are, therefore, carnal weapons.

    Only the power of persuasion, sanctified reason, and logic that has been taken captive in obedience to Christ, can be used as weapons to persuade the intellect. And only the love of Christ, the beauty of holiness, can be used to constrain the heart. The weapons of our warfare are mighty because they are not carnal.

    While Protestant history has plenty of evidence of true Communist behavior among violent, lawless anabaptists, not all anabaptists were violent or communist. And, infant baptism then was a matter of civil registration, as birth certificates and SSN’s and Vital Statistics are today.

    Christian community is not based on everyone being required to give to other people, but upon each member of the body recognizing and submitting to God’s rule. Each person is a steward, not an owner, of property. Therefore, God is recognized as the true Owner of all, and He is allowed to direct His stewards in the disposition of His goods. All are free to give as God directs, while all are protected from extortion and covetous exaction.

    “The only means which God has ordained to advance His cause is to bless men with property. He gives them the sunshine and the rain; He causes vegetation to flourish; He gives health and ability to acquire means. All our blessings come from His bountiful hand. In turn He would have men and women show their gratitude by returning Him a portion in tithes and offerings–in thank offerings, in freewill offerings, in trespass offerings.” {5T 150.1}

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