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Good Morning Nanty Glo!

 

Tuesday, May 24 2005
Jon Kennedy, webmaster

A confession of
atheistic faith

A letter in the Barre Montpelier, Vt., Times-Argus on Monday provides the springboard for today's discussion. The writer, Marc Alexander, says that the paper's editorial cartoonist, Kevin Siers "refers to Republicans Frist and DeLay and indirectly to their connection to the Christian Reconstructionists, also known as Dominionists. Although there is an article in the current Harpers magazine, few in the mainstream media have followed these radical Christians. The Dominionists are a minority of conservative, of even fundamentalist Christians. They do not believe in the separation of church and state, in fact they believe the United States should be a Christian state. By Christian they mean their version of Christianity, an Old Testament version, crusaders for Christ. They believe in the Second Coming, Armageddon, and soon—so why worry about the environment or entitlement programs. And why tolerate other world religions, or Catholics or most Protestants for that matter.

"Who are these Dominionists. The founding leader is the Rev. D. James Kennedy with a 10,000 strong congregation in Florida, who has preached: 'As the vice-regents of God, we are to bring His truth and His will to bear on every sphere of our world and our society. We are to exercise godly dominion and influence over our neighborhoods, our schools, our government our entertainment media, our news media, our scientific endeavors in short, over every aspect and institution of human society.'"

There is another paragraph in the letter quoting a liberal Republican to the effect that religion is ruining the party, but that's beyond the scope of this discussion. (Frankly, I am not "Republican" enough to care about that.) There is much food for thought in this letter. There are untruths as well as truths worth commenting.

I have been a "dominionist" (lowercase "d" because there is no organization taking that name, at least that I know of or am a member of) most of my life. Dominion means "lordship," and in this case refers to the Lordship of Christ. As a slogan of the Jesus Movement revival of the 1970's often said, "you can't have Christ as your savior if He's not also your Lord." Despite the widespread assent to this idea, relatively few professing believers in Christ give much thought to the implications of the Lordship of Christ. To embrace the implications of this proposition is to be, first, a theoretical thinker and, second, a dominionist. I was a "dominionist" decades before I knew of D. James Kennedy (no relation) and my major published book was in the marketplace advocating the same philosophy described here (as it pertains to journalism), before he became its best known American advocate by virtue of his media exposure. I do agree with everything attributed to him above (though not the interpretation of it Marc Alexander is imputing), but hasten to say this is not connected with so-called "Reconstructionist Christians," with whom I claim very little common ground.

I'm running out of "space" for today so will take up these points in later entries. For now, two teasers: Though perhaps Reconstructionists (I have no interest in speaking for that tiny movement which I'm guessing is smaller even than the membership of Dr. Kennedy's Florida congregation) may not believe in separation of church and state, for dominionists that doctrine is a fundamental building block of our Christian worldview. And not only do dominionists not promote making America a Christian state, the movement is the major proponent there is of true pluralism in politics and social structures of all kinds.

I'll close by explaining the title I chose for today's post. If Christ is God, as Christians all profess (and those who deny it are mistaken if they think they are Christians), the world is His. Everything is under his dominion. To be His subjects is to be under His dominion in our worship but also our vocations, our families and marriages, our recreational and entertainment pursuits, our legal and political theory and practice...in everything. To deny Him dominion in any thing is to be, in that thing (more correctly "those things") an atheist.

—Webmaster 

A complete index of Jon Kennedy's Jonals for 2001 - 2005

Perspectives on growing older

When I was young we used to go "skinny dipping"; now I just "chunky dunk."

Sent by Trudy Myers  

Thought for today

In the total expanse of human life there is not a single square inch of which the Christ, who alone is sovereign, does not declare, "That is mine!'"

Abraham Kuyper 1837-1920  
Prime Minister, the Netherlands, 1901-1905  
and the real founder of "dominionism"  

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