Paul's Passing Thoughts

New Calvinism’s Silent and Dramatic Reshaping of American Politics

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 17, 2014

Pundits of American politics are likely missing a major philosophical shift among the voting public. Traditionally, it has been safe to assume that the evangelical vote tends towards American values. After all, the Pilgrims first settled in America seeking religious freedom and much of American heritage is rooted in that narrative. The ultra-conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh has even written a children’s book about the Pilgrims (Puritans) presumably to preserve this rich heritage that underpins American values.

Hence, evangelicalism is assumed to be one in heart with freedom and liberty for all. Furthermore, they are responsible folks with deep convictions, viz, a large percentage of them vote, and vote conservative. The who’s who of American conservatism openly proclaim their love for God and country. When election time is near, this paradigm is a given for the political prognosticators.

But it shouldn’t be. The silent equation that everyone seems to be missing is the New Calvinist movement. This movement has all but completely taken over American evangelicalism, and will result in two things regarding the evangelical vote: low turnout and a shift towards socialist leaning candidates.

Consider: who are the New Calvinists? One is Dr. Albert Mohler, the president of Southern Theological Seminary which is the flagship seminary of the largest evangelical denomination in the world, the Southern Baptists. Consider, in 2009, Time Magazine named New Calvinism as one of the top ten ideas changing the world in our time. That was almost six years ago, and the movement’s tsunami-like growth has not relented in the least.

And consider, there is an ever increasing theme emerging in their massive publication machine of blogs, radio, pulpit, conferences, and books: anti-American sentiment with the primary whipping post being “the American Dream.”  Why?

New Calvinism is a return to the Reformation basics—they are Reformation purists, and few really understand Martin Luther’s worldview that founded Protestantism in its authentic form. Luther, like his Reformation compatriot John Calvin, were rabid followers of Saint Augustine who was an avowed Neo-Platonist. Luther was a friar in the Augustinian Order, and Calvin quoted Augustine over 400 times in The Institutes of the Christian Religion. Let’s skip the specific worldview shared by Plato, Augustine, Luther, and Calvin, and instead point out the inevitable social prescription that it demanded as articulated in Plato’s Republic.

Plato denied that the common people could perceive reality, or what Reformation purists refer to as “total depravity.” Therefore, this idea called for elitist philosopher kings to rule over the masses with a standing army just in case citizens get the idea that they can actually know something. The sole purpose and sum value of a citizen is determined by ability to contribute to the “common good” and society at large. A comment regarding a blog post on New Calvinism stated it well:

In fact Calvinism strikes me as being antithetical to American cultural norms; such as, the notion of the American Dream and all men being created equal…I can see how Calvinism would have been bred in a European society with its history of class [caste system], but it would be a hard fit for America.

The reader rightly assessed with that comment. When the Puritans (who were Calvinists) came across the pond, they brought a European caste mentality with them. The primary goal was to start their own theocracy, what they called “New Zion.” This is why the first Bible to land on the eastern shore of America was the Geneva Bible. Geneva is the place where John Calvin earned the nickname “Pope of Geneva.” Nearly every detail of life was regulated there, including mandatory church attendance where Calvin’s elders tortured people with linguistic drones that lasted for hours. In addition, people were jailed for talking or sleeping during sermons, and Geneva law enforcement patrolled the streets searching for those not in attendance. Penalties for bad behavior were harsh as demonstrated by the fact that a public execution occurred at least once per week.

Please take note that the “elder statesman” of New Calvinism, Dr. John Piper, recently went to Geneva to produce a video announcing the newest phase of his ministry; i.e., to spread Calvin’s  Post Tenebras Lux (after darkness light) throughout the whole world. Like the socialism of the ages, there is always an excuse why the light has never worked—this time it will be different and mankind will finally be saved!

Much could be written on this wise and there is not sufficient room here to do so, but for purposes of this post, we should focus on the question of individualism. The American Dream is a construct that limits government to the task of freeing the individual to pursue all that they can be or want to be. Materialism is a mere result, the American Dream is not materialism—it’s an idea. Another natural result is the collective wellbeing of society. Happy and free individuals make a happy and free society.

This all boils down to the question of individual competence. We know how socialism answers that question while aggressively foisting a nanny state upon the American people more and more. They want to control how we travel, what we eat, and even how we wipe ourselves after using the bathroom. This is more than an annoyance; the horrifying and real question becomes, “Who owns man?” Does man own man, or does the state own man? If man cannot self-govern, and needs government to rule over his being via elitist philosophers or religionists, man becomes property of the state by default.

Is this not the crux of the conflict that we see in American politics? Regardless of the obvious, “you didn’t build that” because “you” are not competent. It only looks like you built it because the government made it possible. And even more horrifying is the idea that all wars would end if the masses would just finally agree to be owned. Yes, then all of Plato’s children could come together and agree on the best way to manage people. Terrorists are really not bad people; actually, they know something very important that Ronald Reagan never figured out: people cannot self-govern.

But yet, there is something even more horrifying: the masses who have bought into the idea of their own incompetence and the incompetence of mankind in general. This is fear of chaos. This is looking to the elitists to protect us from ourselves. Though the recent riots incited by socialists in America over whatever excuse was stumbled upon at the time seem to be pointless, really they are not pointless. The riots serve the following purpose:

See! See! See what happens when people own themselves? Chaos! Oh my! The streets are aflame! What will become of us?

Riots are designed to incite fear and send people scrambling for hasty answers—terrorism likewise. This is all an epic battle for the ownership of mankind. And where evangelicalism stands in that fight is now abundantly clear; they stand with the religious version of socialism: Post Tenebras Lux.

This is a huge reality lurking behind the curtain of America’s political stage. The New Calvinist movement (circa 1970) has created a massive religious subculture with significant sway over millions of evangelicals and has crossed all denominational lines to some degree. Presently, the movement is producing a mass of anti-American propaganda depicting the American Dream as steroidal selfism that is destroying the fabric of our society. Many notable New Calvinists, not excluding the aforementioned Al Mohler, are even writing articles defending terrorism and stating, one man’s terrorist is another man’s patriot. In one article, Mohler equates Nelson Mandella with George Washington. Other articles posted by notable New Calvinists object to the “exaggeration” of atrocities committed by ISIS. If you think this eerily similar to Hillary Clinton’s latest call to better understand terrorists, you rightly assess.

And this article cannot be concluded without mentioning New Calvinism’s latest wave of socialist propaganda: the virtues of slavery. That’s right. In fact, mega evangelical and New Calvinist Dr. John MacArthur Jr. wrote a book in 2010 titled Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ. The theme, also posited by numerous articles flowing from the gargantuan New Calvinist propaganda machine, is that man is metaphysically enslaved and the concept of freedom is a misnomer. In the reality of being, there is no real freedom. Hence, according to the general theses, Christ didn’t see slavery as a bad thing per se because men are enslaved anyway, but probably took exception to naughty slave owners.  Trust me, Hillary Clinton would go to church to hear that sermon and would be in the amen row to boot while promising to be one of those good slave owners that Christ thought well of.

So, what is the new mentality of the evangelical in the voting booth? First things first: vote for who gets it—vote for the candidate that understands man is enslaved by his own incompetence whether he knows it or not. The New Calvinist philosopher kings can go to the negotiating table later with their sphere of influence as a bargaining chip. Remember, the people always outnumber the philosopher kings and the warriors by significant margins. The New Calvinists bring a significant sphere of influence to the table. With any nation, it’s ALL about what people believe, and people can believe particular things that render government force powerless. Ultimately, ideas win wars.

The New Calvinists deem Capitalism little different from that of Islamic terrorists. Job one for them is to get rid of the American Dream by any candidate possible who understands the total depravity of man and the incompetence of the masses.

And political pundits of the patriot stripe would do well to adjust their evangelical equation accordingly.

paul

4 Responses

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  1. lydia said, on December 17, 2014 at 6:10 PM

    Tell me about it. Want to get a glimpse at one of the tactics from a pastors blog? Individualism is bad, dontcha know. Be a good slave. God said so.

    http://sbcvoices.com/id-rather-be-abrahams-slave/

    Like

  2. lydia said, on December 18, 2014 at 4:18 PM

    Hilarious. You know Pearl, this is the “Too bad for you, Gospel.” You were born a slave? That is God’s design. So be a good slave. The guy is reading it as prescriptive. Abraham was wrong in a lot of things, too.

    I am so glad my daughters phase with that game is over. Some of it was down right creepy. As a joke she once asked me if I would rather be married to John Piper or a Vampire. Hmmmmm? I am still thinking about it.

    Like


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