Back when the Trump Train was steaming through the Republican primaries last summer, we asked two questions:
Can overtly unbiblical power be seized and reliably used for good?
Or must it be destroyed?
The reason for asking had a whole lot to do with the fact that politically active professing Christians in America were yet again stampeding away from Scripture as their guide to politics and rushing into the arms of the Pagan Political Right flavor of the moment to “make America great again”.
Now here we are almost a year later.
Donald Trump is President.
Has been for months.
During that time, we’ve experienced a failed attempt to tweak/rebrand ObamaCare as TrumpCare, RyanCare, or RINOCare; we’ve bombed Syria; we’ve kicked the (fictional) fiscal can down the road again by raising the debt ceiling; we’ve watched the LGBTQ wave continue to roll over the culture; and we’ve seen a new budget come outta Republican-dominated DC that funds Planned Parenthood along with a million other programs and organizations openly at war with the liberty-defining Word of God.
Have we ditched the Department of Education yet?
But we did get a new Secretary for the Department…
So goes this latest chapter of American Orwellian history.
What’s the biggest reason for this unending lurch down Statism lane in America?
The answer is as clear as it is painful: Americans – especially professing conservative Christians in America – overwhelmingly support big government Socialism and American Statism. The vast majority of professing Christians in America are stark raving Socialists.
We want public schools, which are funded through the confiscation of others’ property and are used to teach the religion of Statism, fulfilling multiple objectives of The Communist Manifesto in one shot.
We want Social Security.
We want Medicare.
We want “help” and “safety nets” for this group and that, all funded through the theft of property from others.
And we definitely want a ginormous military through which to dominate the globe and prop up the increasingly shaky American empire.
We want to keep and use the Ring of Power.
We don’t want to destroy it.
We just want to keep it from [insert perceived/actual enemy group here].
Which brings us to Frodo.
Frodo, for those who are (sadly) unfamiliar with Lord of the Rings mythology, was charged with the task of escorting the potentially world-enslaving Ring of Power to its death. He, as The Ringbearer, was chosen for the seemingly impossible task of resisting the lure of unlimited power pulsing through The Ring long enough to take it to the only place that it can be destroyed and finishing it off there.
The Ring calls out to many along the way, tempting them to make use of its incredible power, knowing that those who succumb to its lure are inevitably warped and dominated by its power. No matter how much they may begin with good intentions, the power they weild always corrupts. It always destroys.
Which brings us back to ‘Merica, where we are still a very proud and far-from-repentant people. We still actually seem to believe that the power of The Ring (or, better put, The State) can be rightly used to interfere with every area of life.
We believe that The State/The Ring can and should be used to promote things like Social Security, a massive (and wildly unbiblical) military, and all manner of “helpful” programs that, in truth, only lead to deeper dependence and bondage (by design).
We have no desire to destroy The Ring.
We want it to take care of us. We want it to keep us from having to live as truly free people, since true freedom includes (and requires) utterly unappetizing concepts like the freedom to fail.
Nope, instead of freedom – instead of the liberty- and freedom-enabling Law of God – we want The State. We want The Ring.
We want The Ring to help The State continue to fulfill the stolen roles of the individual, the family, and the church. After all, if The State didn’t have the power of The Ring, the church would have to be the church, the family would have to be responsible and strong, and individuals would have to be mature, functioning adults.
We seem to want none of that freedom-requiring responsibility and maturity in America. We infinitely prefer to pretend to be free while remaining children. That’s the American Way these days – to sing about bravery and freedom on cue like a trained chimp while living in a land where the State owns everybody’s homes, babies are murdered openly and “legally” by the millions for convenience, and we are “free” to openly worship any false God that we like…all while shipping our children off to the State for explicitly anti-Christian education so that they might continue the multigenerational march toward the Orwellian hellhole that is emerging around us.
This is what The Ring has accomplished in our hands. This is where Republicans and Democrats have led us using its power.
Until we repent of our desire to see that power “used for good” and beg God for the grace to destroy it – to reject every aspect of American Statism that we’ve embraced for over 100 years – we are as pathetic as Gollum and as doomed as Sauron.
Until we start sending truly Spirit-filled, Christ-centered men to DC who are committed to destroying the Ring of Power rather than using it, we will only get more of the same as we consign future generations to a level of debt, darkness, and State-dependence from which they will be unable to escape.
So the next time someone solicits your vote for office – any office – ask them how much unbiblical civil governmental power they want to see stripped from the seat of power in which they hope to sit.
Their answer will tell you all you need to know about the way they’ll handle The Ring…and your freedom.
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Intro to Fire: The Power and Purpose of the Common Believer
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I actually despise the character Frodo. Frodo failed in his task to destroy the ring. It was Golum's greed that destroyed the ring. Frodo in the end was overcome by the rings power. And that is exactly what happens when a seemingly godly man runs for office and wins. They are overcome by power and fail to do what they were chosen to do. So would the conclusion be that the people in power, because of their greed, destroy America?
Frodo's long journey demonstrated many good (and much needed) qualities. The fact of his failure near the end of that journey spoke to the power of The Ring more than anything else. The fact that Frodo brought The Ring to the place of its destruction through such a long, self-sacrificial adventure says something (many things, actually) very good about Frodo.
While there is little doubt that many honestly good, honorable men do fall under the sway of The Ring in a sense when they acquire power (through elected office or anywhere else), we cannot allow those failures to paint the whole concept of political (or any other sort of) power as inherently evil and/or impossible to handle rightly.
Christ has commanded and equipped His people to master, not fear, His creation, including the realms of law and civil government. The sense in which a Frodo-like demeanor is desirable is the sense in which Frodo carried his burden through the majority of his adventure. He was on a mission to destroy The Ring and he sacrificed much to pursue that mission. Where Frodo failed, God's people can succeed. They really can advance His Kingdom in every realm of His creation (including the political realm) by the power of His work on the cross and in accordance with His Gospel-fueled Great Commission, all by His grace and all for His glory.
His people, in that context, can (and must) pursue and complete a mission very similar to that which Frodo undertook, with the Spirit of God enabling them to do even what Frodo failed to do.
I hope that these clarifications are helpful and I really appreciate your chiming in.
Have a good one!
Yes Frodo did go to great length and did get the ring to its destination and it was indeed destroyed even through other means because if Frodo hadn't got the ring there in the first place it wouldn't have been destroyed. But Sam Wise is my favorite hobbit. He was the rock behind Frodo, and as Frodo said he would have gotten nowhere without Sam. I wished at the end that Frodo would have told his friends that he failed to destroy the ring and how it was destroyed in the end.
All that you say about doing what is right and following Christ and obeying him are spot on, but what is disheartening is who even knows what is true and right nowadays. There are so many opinions of what the Bible says. Three pastors, teachers, and whoever cannot agree even on the simplest doctrine of Christ. It's funny that so many people are willing to die for Christ, but not many who are willing to live for him. People who follow false religions are better at following their religion that Christians. And I believe it is the doctrine of once saved always saved that is the cause of this. The teaching goes that once you ask Jesus into your heart, you are good to go. These people think that the asking of Jesus into their hearts is what saves them. They are deceived. Even so called Christian movies miss this basic doctrine of repentance. When someone accepts Christs as savior in these shows there is never any repentance nor sorrow from the sins that were committed. Church is another issue with me. The doctrine seems to be that the pastor is somehow a mini god who is in charge of the lives of the people of his congregation. And I mean telling them what they can and cannot do. My thought is that Christ saves a repentant person. The Holy Spirit in dwells that believer and now it is Christ in me the hope of glory (or the character of God Almighty) giving me the power and ability to live out Gods character in this world. The more I know about Christ and what he had actually done at the cross, destroying the punishment and power of sin in the one who truly believes, the more I want to obey him in all things. It's putting that into practice that is the hard part. But how many sermons have you actually heard about living in the spirit? I have gone to churches who have gone through the entire bible, the teaching of Jesus, and a bunch of other scriptures that make the people feel good about themselves. But attitudes never change. They want money to build bigger buildings, but attitudes never change. People are still nasty to each other. Marriages are in bad shape, families are separated in the churches just like they are in the public school system so that someone else takes charge of someone else's children leaving the parents free from teaching their own children. But if you bring this to the attention of someone with "authority " you are told to keep your opinions to yourself. I want a church that teaches the meat of the word. The true life changing meat where when I go home I have a lot to think about in my own life, but good luck getting that kind of teaching nowadays. You might as well ask for raising someone from the dead.
Anyway thanks for your blog, I enjoy reading it and look forward to more articles of encouragement. God bless.