Van Til Tool

Using the Van Til Perspective as the tool to discover what life means and how it ought to be lived.

Friday, October 13, 2017

A Review of Kazuo Ishiguro's "The Remains Of The Day" -- winner of Nobel Prize For Literature

Musings On The Ideal Lord and The Ideal Butler

A Review of

Kazuo Ishiguro The Remains Of The Day  (Vintage Books, 1989)
                          $11.00   ISBN: 0-679-73172-5

Reviewer:  Forrest W. Schultz

     This is one of the most interesting and most unusual and best written books I have ever read -- and I have read over a thousand books!  It is a narration by a British butler about his life and about the discussions he and other butlers had concerning the qualities which a butler and a lord should have.  It is no wonder that this book has earned so many awards, the most recent being of the Nobel Prize for Literature.

Polish People Pray for Protection from Islamic Invasion By Dr. Jerry Newcombe October 12, 2017

Polish People Pray for Protection from Islamic Invasion

Monday, October 09, 2017

Our Flag Stands for American IDEALS !!! (NOT The Sins of Americans!!!)

Our Flag Stands for American IDEALS !!!  (NOT The Sins of Americans!!!)

1. The answer to what is going on in re our flag at today's NFL Games is simply this, namely that our flag stands for American IDEALS, NOT the sins committed by Americans and American institutions.

2. Ironically,one of these sins is the tackling and collision in NFL Football games!!  THAT is what we should protest against at football games!!  The answer to that is very simple -- eliminate tackling and collision from football.  Replace tackle/collision football with touch football.

Forrest W. Schultz


Tuesday, October 03, 2017

5OOTH ANNIVERSARY OF THE 95 THESES CELEBRATED: GRAPHIC NOVEL DEPICTS THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERHERO MARTIN LUTHER

   5OOTH  ANNIVERSARY  OF  THE  95  THESES  CELEBRATED:

GRAPHIC  NOVEL  DEPICTS  THE  ADVENTURES  OF  SUPERHERO  MARTIN  LUTHER

Andrea Grosso Ciponte & Dacia Palmerino Renegade -- Martin Luther: The Graphic Biography (Plough Publishing, 2017)
                                                                           155 pp   $19.95   ISBN: 978-0874862072

Translator:  Michael G. Parker

Reviewer:  Forrest W. Schultz

    When I was a boy Superman was my favorite comic book super-hero.   Since then the greatness of Superman has been recognized in  Superman:  The Movie starring Christopher Reeve and in today's "graphic novels" of Superman.  Martin Luther has long been regarded as one of the greatest of history's "movers and shakers" (as we used to say back in the 1980s) and now, with the publication of the book under review he is rightly regarded as one of its super-heroes.  Now, if super-heroes are appropriate as characters in graphic novels, and if Luther is a super-hero, then it logically follows that it is permissible and reasonable to tell us his biography by means of the graphic novel format.  Q.E.D.  Having said that, it must be admitted that it certainly seems very far-out to use the graphic novel for talking about Luther, but that very seeming strangeness is what makes this book so interesting and attractive AND lots of fun to read and look at!!  It is its very unexpectedness that makes it so funny and yet also a striking way of communicating what Luther and his time was like.  AND, because October 31, 2017 is the 500th anniversary of Luther's posting of the famous (or is it infamous?) 95 Theses, this year there are (and will be) lots of books about Luther, the book under review here has a great advantage because, unlike the others, this one presents such a strange and interesting format!!  If you are tired of reading same-old-same-old theology and history books about Luther, I recommend reading Renegade !!   The book's very format is a renegade type! 

    But what about historical accuracy??  Aha!  Glad you asked.  Listen, this innovative graphic novel format is very appropriate because Luther himself was very innovative in HIS time in using the then newly invented printing press to publicize his teachings.  And some of his writings included what we now call cartoons!  AND, Luther not only was up to date but he also was a pace-SETTER in that his excellent German translation of the Bible greatly influenced the very future of the German language just as a century later the excellence of the King James translation of the Bible greatly influenced the future of the English language.  Luther was not only "with it", he also established what later became regarded as "with it"!!  As a famous verse in the Bible puts it, he was "the head" not "the tail" -- an innovator not a copycat. 

     Back in the 60s there was a lot of discussion about "medium" and "message" due to the provocative ideas of a man named Marshall  McLuhan.  My conclusion on that matter is that the medium influences or becomes part of the message.  As I hope I have established above, the graphic novel medium is appropriately used in communicating the message we need to know about Luther.

     I wish to thank Maureen Swinger from Plough Publishing for sending me a copy of this very interesting book.  It will be published next week.  

October 3, 2017

Friday, September 29, 2017

HUGH HEFNER VS. R. J. RUSHDOONY: THE CHALCDON FOUNDATION SPEAKS OUT !!


THE  CHALCEDON  FOUNDATION  ON  HUGH  HEFNER VS. R. J. RUSHDOONY
Chalcedon is Equipping You to Advance God's Kingdom...

Hugh Hefner Dies, and the World Celebrates His Legacy. We are Seeing His Legacy in an Era of Greater Perversion with Greater Accessibility.

Rushdoony exposed the worldview of pornagraphers and their war against Christian civilization.
With his recent passing, the world is celebrating the life of Hugh Hefner, but what’s not realized is that Hefner was but one part of a larger war against Christian civilization that has its roots in the liberation theology of the French pervert, the Marquis de Sade. This war is still with us.
This $57 billion dollar industry is swallowing peoples worldwide as its revenues exceed that of professional football, baseball, and basketball combined. Statistics reveal that upwards of 40 million American adults regularly visit over 372 million published pornographic web pages. How did we get here?
In the “free love” decade of the 1960s, the New Left refashioned pornography into a new image—the symbol of moral freedom. What was once sold “under the counter” as filth was now celebrated as the literary symbol of liberation from God and His law-word. This refashioning was nothing new. It was but an echo of the liberation theology of the Marquis de Sade (1740-1814).
In 1974, R. J. Rushdoony, wrote, “[T]his new pornography, first conceived by Sade - will not be eliminated by moral indignation or by legislation.”
Rushdoony recognized that the roots of pornography are religious, and it must be resisted religiously.
In this powerful book Noble Savages (formerly The Politics of Pornography) Rushdoony demonstrates that in order for modern man to justify his perversion he must reject the Biblical doctrine of the fall of man. If there is no fall, the Marquis de Sade argued, then all that man does is normative. Rushdoony concluded, “[T]he world will soon catch up with Sade, unless it abandons its humanistic foundations.”
In his conclusion Rushdoony wrote, “Symptoms are important and sometimes very serious, but it is very wrong and dangerous to treat symptoms rather than the underlying disease. Pornography is a symptom; it is not the problem.” What is the problem? It’s the philosophy behind pornography—the rejection of the fall of man that makes normative all that man does. Learn it all in this timeless classic.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

RUSHDOONY ON THE REPUBLICAN PARTY



WHAT  R.  J.  RUSHDOONY  THOUGHT  OF  THE  REPUBLICAN  PARTY

HIS  SON  MARK  TELLS  US  VIA  THE  CHALCEDON  REPORT:


The Gospel of Salvation & the Obedience of Faith
Mark Rushdoony
If I can be so bold as to suggest there was a blessing from the Obama years, it would be to note that the assertion my father was the godfather of the “religious right” did seem to fade away.  You see, once they had power, the left viewed the opposition as irrelevant and largely ignored them. (That is a constant difference between the left and the right in the U.S. When the left is in power, it ignores the right and forces the agenda. When the “conservatives” are in power, they seek bi-partisan consensus.) 
I knew it would reappear after the Republicans embarrassed the Democrats last November. The old rhetoric was bound to re-surface. The left would accuse the right of trying to establish a theocratic state. Of course, the sinister mastermind of the plan is always held to be my father, R. J. Rushdoony. 
In reality, my father was disgusted with American politics, right as well as left. He quit voting for the Republican presidential candidate long before I did. When Gerald Ford lost to Jimmy Carter in 1976, he only briefly noted it in his journal: 
Listened briefly to election returns and apparent defeat of Gerald Ford. I detest Carter, but am not unhappy at Ford’s defeat. Any man who has so little contact with reality as to say Poland is a free country is as dangerous as Carter.
My father’s only political interest was in reclaiming power from the political arena and returning it to the spheres of family, church, and the free enterprises of individuals. His political involvement was to fight statism, not use it as a mechanism of Christian action.
Too much thought in theonomy centers around what the state would look like and do in a Christian social order. That makes theonomy an academic subject when it should be a very practical one when God’s Law is brought to bear on our family, businesses, and church life. A theocratic order cannot be imposed by state action and that is not what my father suggested, advocated, or taught.Theonomy means “God’s law” and can only come about when it is embraced by a repentant people. The gospel of salvation must be followed by the obedience of faith. Faith must be followed by faithfulness. Our message is that of the old hymn, “Trust and Obey.”

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Chalcedon Editorial -- The Great Need For Christian Pioneers




The Great Need for Christian Pioneers
Chalcedon Editorial
We are very much in need now of Christian pioneers. This means a people who are zealous to grow and to exercise dominion in Christ.[1]~ R. J. Rushdoony
Have we lost our zeal to grow in our dominion calling and to exercise it in as many spheres as possible? Typically, newcomers to the message of dominion and Christian Reconstruction get excited, buy a lot of books, share the message incessantly, but then eventually settle down. Zeal no longer consumes them, because the mission is a daunting one, and it’s much easier to scratch the itch in online discussion groups.
Theological discussion, however, is not godly dominion. It can certainly lead to dominion, but Rushdoony’s message was more direct: theology is for faith and action.
For me theology means the total mandate of God through His word. What I have written only scratches the surface; it is an introduction to the subject, and it is written to move men to faith and action.[2]
Our Theology Demands of Us Faith and Action
Is it that we as Christian Reconstructionists never truly understood Rushdoony’s overall thesis? Are we more concerned with technical questions about ecclesiology, eschatology, or doxology than we are the application of the faith to every sphere of life? The late David Chilton once mentioned in a sermon that he received innumerable questions about the difficult mysteries of the Bible but was never asked, “How can I better serve God?” Doctrinal truth is vital to the church, but not at the expense of the Kingdom of God. We are called to godly dominion.
Granted, much ground was taken in the area of Christian education by way of the establishing of Christian schools and the untold numbers devoted to Christian homeschooling. No doubt, this is one of the most important developments in modern Christianity, and its full implications have yet to be seen, but that pioneering spirit must expand:
Some are already doing this. They are establishing Christian schools, Christian homes for the delinquent, Christian medical missions in needy areas, and more. All this is Christian pioneering, and we need more of it.[3]
There has been great progress, but we’ve yet to scratch the surface. And as we watch the lights go out on the world system, we are reminded that we are truly pilgrims in a strange land, but our theology demands of us faith and action, and our doctrine calls us to godly dominion. We are not sojourners looking to escape, but rather God’s established holy nation—a city set on a hill.
Heaven Is Our Home, but the World Is Where We Work
The New Testament word “pilgrim” means a person sojourning in a strange land, away from his people and his original home. As Christians, heaven is our home, and this world is the place where we do our pioneering, an area we work in for Christ and His Kingdom.[4]
Heaven is our home, yet we’ve never been there. How can this be? We are “born of the Spirit” (John 3:5-8), and so much of our sanctification involves our being renewed in the spirit of our mind and putting on “the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness” (Eph. 4:23-24). This is a faith position that we work out in our lives by the grace and power of God’s Spirit and the instruction of His Word.
The work does not end with our sanctification but rather begins with it. There are so many more areas in need of the sanctifying work of God’s Word and Spirit, but the primary areas needing attention involve godly service, charity, and welfare. This is the thrust behind Rushdoony’s masterful, concise volume, In His Service: The Christian Calling to Charity:
[A]t one time Christian faith meant that the believer responded by actively working to bring God’s grace and mercy to others, both by word and by deed. This meant the proclamation of the whole counsel of God, the redemption of the lost, the release of the bondage of those captive to sin, poverty, disease, and to various evils. In such thinking man was never the dead end of God’s grace and mercy. The goal of God’s redeeming power and grace was not man’s soul but His Kingdom.[5]
The Restoration of the Diaconate
The work of charity and welfare is more and more the jurisdiction of the state, as the church retreats more and more within its buildings, and the believer retreats more and more into pietism. At some point, the state shall be bankrupt, but the church won’t have much to show for its cultural and social efforts other than expensive buildings, vast properties, and burgeoning staff. This is what consumes today’s tithes and offerings.
The answer, Rushdoony saw, was in a revival and restoration of the diaconate—the deacon ministry—and a more Biblical use of the tithe. This sort of emphasis upon godly service in the areas of charity and welfare would have to be funded significantly in order to offer any semblance of a challenge to the state’s rule:
As the church revives and strengthens the diaconate and makes it a vocation for those called to it so too will the church grow and society become steadily Christianized. Nothing is clearer from Acts than the fact that the seven deacons were not part-time workers but full-time servants of Christ. The Christian Levites were the functioning grace and mercy of Christ’s Kingdom. The deacons revealed clearly that Christ’s Kingdom is indeed a government. The works of charity carried on by the deacons were in marked contrast to the costly and evil welfarism of Rome.[6]
The Chalcedon Foundation represents a “Christian Levite” ministry—a teaching function designed to equip believers for Kingdom service—but we desperately need an army of deacons to establish the fact that “Christ’s Kingdom is indeed a government.” In other words, to show clearly by good works that the city of God is abiding among men:
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid … Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. ~ Matthew 5:14, 16
The city of God is seen because of its light, and its light is seen in our good works, but how can such good works be seen without a clear display of charity, welfare, education, healthcare, and more?
The Work of Christian Pioneers
Does anyone have the spirit of a pioneer to help strengthen Levitical ministries and revive the social power of the diaconate? If not, let it begin within the circles of Christian Reconstruction.
We cannot all be Levites, and we cannot all be deacons, but we can all serve as pioneers by using our resources and families for the direct investment in effective Kingdom work. This is why God placed the power to distribute the tithe within the hands of the family, not the church:
The pattern is a clear one: a high degree of decentralization, with a strong emphasis on the individual and his family to govern in their spheres and to provide the necessary support to enable the Levites, or the deacons and their co-workers, to minister in God’s Name.[7]
This is a work we can all do, and it is a work we all must do. The humanistic age is in crisis, and a nearly forty-year investment by Christians in politics has seen the world grow even worse. Isn’t it time we realized that our emphases are misplaced? Rather than try to seize the reins of civil government, shouldn’t we work to take back government from the state by way of self-government and exercising Christian dominion? We already possess the primary tools for doing such things: God’s law and the tithe.
The law of God thus is a charter and constitution for a decentralized society in which the basic powers of government are exercised by God’s covenant people in their self-government in every sphere, in their families, their vocations, the tithe agencies they create to minister to a variety of social problems and needs, and so on.[8]

1. R. J. Rushdoony, A Word in Season: Daily Messages on the Faith for All of Life, vol. 2 (Vallecito, CA: Chalcedon/Ross House Books, 2012), p. 103
2. R. J. Rushdoony, Systematic Theology in Two Volumes, vol. 1 (Vallecito, CA: Ross House Books, 1994), p. xv.
3. A Word in Season, Vol. 2 p. 103.
4. ibid.
5. R. J. Rushdoony, In His Service: The Christian Calling to Charity (Vallecito, CA: Ross House Books, 2009), p. 145.
6. ibid., p. 160.
7. ibid., p. 158.
8. ibid., p. 4.
9. ibid.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

THE CHALCEDON FOUNDATION: ORGANIZED TO WIELD THE VAN TIL TOOL


THE  CHALCEDON  FOUNDATION:  ORGANIZED  TO  WIELD  THE  VAN  TIL  TOOL


In my most recent post I referred to R. J. Rushdoony as a "wielder of the Van Til Tool"

It has just dawned on me that in all these years I have actually said little about him and almost nothing about the organization he founded in 1965, called The Chalcedon Foundation, for the purpose of advancing what he called "Christian Reconstruction, his term for the wielding of the Van Til Tool! I am going to make up for that now by trying to keep you informed about what the Chalcedon Foundation is doing.  I would like to suggest, though,  that you visit their website and get on their mailing list and also on their emailing list to receive information from them.  Here is the latest word they have issued in the email I received today which I am posting below.

Forrest


Chalcedon is Equipping You to Advance God's Kingdom...

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An Informed Faith: The Position Papers of R. J. Rushdoony
Our faith should be an informed one because the God who created all things speaks to every sphere of life, and all facts should be studied in light of the revelation of God in Scripture. This is the foundation of Christian dominion.
For R. J. Rushdoony, true government was the self-government of the Christian life in terms of God’s law, so he wrote his position papers to better equip Christians to apply their faith to all of life. His objective was not to empower the state, or the organized church, but rather to call every person and institution to God’s Word, which often put him at odds with both church and state.
By starting the Chalcedon Foundation, Rushdoony had created a “think tank for the self-governing Christian,” and his position papers are like “policies for Kingdom-living!”
Until now, Rushdoony’s position papers could not be found in one volume, and many of them were published in the massive Roots of Reconstruction book. The challenge was that Roots of Reconstructionwas not organized topically, and it had no indexes of any kind which made research difficult.
Problem solved! This beautiful three-volume collection of hardback books organizes ALL of Rushdoony’s position papers topically AND they include the most extensive indexing we’ve ever done on any series of books in the history of Chalcedon/Ross House Books including a general index, history index, Scripture index, and works cited index.
Our most comprehensive indexing ever with a general index, history index, Scripture index, and works cited index!
Buying books are a great way to support by Chalcedon by investing in yourself, so we strive to produce the most usable books we can to help equip you for greater Kingdom service. We believe An Informed Faithwill make a powerful addition to your personal library!
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