Volume 12, Issue 1: Magistralis
The Hydrogen Kingdom
In an important respect, separating
church and the civil order of a culture is like separating man
and wife. In our political theory, the attempt which modern America
has made to keep these two forever separate is as ludicrous as
it is revolutionary. When we claim that religion and politics
cannot mix, we are saying that a husband need not have a wife,
which is, of course, self-contradictory. But thats what
we do best.
Of course Christians are the only people who really believe such
a divorce of God-established structures can work. We are the only
ones who think political and cultural activity to be a neutral
indoor sport. And it is not until our cultures vileness
touches us directly that we even attempt to protect ourselves.
But even after our dander is up, we still assume neutrality, beginning
a raging campaign for a moment of silence at the local government
school, so that those who so desire can relieve themselves of
We are the kid in the neighborhood counting to a thousand under
the junipers, and never doubting the sincerity of the other children
who so patiently explained to us the new rule that keeps us there.
Why can we not see it? To return to the first illustration, we
are the poor wife whose husband has begun staying later and later
at the office. He has sat us down and explained that his job is
so delicate that he cannot have any distractions. Our place in
the bed is filled, but not by us. We are indeed a poor wife, our
husband has left us for another woman. But given the fact that
we denied there was a marriage in the first place, how can we
The ideal relationship between church and a societys public
order is not exactly that of man and wife, but it is a useful
picture. A mans wife rules him sexually, requiring faithfulness.
It is impossible for a husband to be without a sexual ruler, just
as it is impossible for a civil order to be without a religious
order. If there is a husband, there cannot be no wife.
The government cannot rule us without an understanding of justice,
and that, among other things, must come from somewhere. It is
now coming from his new friend whom we really hope he doesnt
bring to our daughters wedding.
But how are we to get our rightful position back? How do we begin
to reverse the effects of the affair we slept through? We have
a long road ahead, and must start at the beginning if we are to
get anywhere. Getting to the beginning will be hard enough in
itself. We must begin by locating the problem.
We might think we are well aware of the problem as we watch sodomite
parades and high school shootings. But that is too easy; we must
locate the problem in ourselves. The root cause of our situation
is internal, and we must remedy that before we can begin any culture
wars, or rather, before we begin winning the culture war that
we are already in.
The root cause of all our woes is the fact that we are a bunch
of Hellenists. The kingdom of God is like hydrogen. The church
today thinks that the kingdom of God is in some ethereal, tasteless,
odorless dimension entirely separate from what goes on here. We
look forward to joining the kingdom of God upon our deaths but
do not realize that we are in the middle of it now. Obviously
we are not yet in a heavenly state, but we are still the bride
of Christ, and we still live in His kingdom. And we pray for His
kingdom to come, not for us to go.
The church has rejected its earthly role because we think only
in terms of our heavenly future. We are gnostics, so overly focused
on our soul that our body wastes away in disease. We are an emaciated,
sickly church, not because we are oppressed by our enemies or
because we stand up for Gods kingdom amidst tribulation,
but because we refuse to eat and drink. Anything relating to the
material world is beneath us. We are lofty creatures indeed.
Is it any wonder that the civil order pushes the church away
from the world, when the church has already ostracized itself
from the world? The wife insists that marriage can only be spiritual
as an excuse to grow unlovely, unkempt and to refuse the physical
love of her husband. Can we be surprised that our husband turns
elsewhere? Can we blame the government for not wanting us, when
we first rejected it? But when the bride of Christ is lovely,
the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it (Rev.
Until we realize that Gods kingdom will be established
here, on this mostly blue globe, we will not man the battlements.
Until we realize the physicality of our marriage, we will never
have a good one. As long as we gaze at the stars and think of
that whispy kingdom up there that we belong to, the kingdom here
will continue to be in shambles. Christendom has fallen to the
heathen because the church itself decided that it didn't have
gates, walls, or battlements. How can a castle be defended when
only the attackers can see it? It cannot.
We as a church need to realize that heaven and earth cannot be
divorced. A body must have a soul, a church must have a building,
and a civil order must have a God. The American church has refused
to proclaim God to this cultures government, and so it has
found its god elsewhere. It cannot be without a master, whatever
we tell ourselves to the contrary. If it cannot be ruled by us,
it will rule against us.
Perversion is rampant in our nation and now sanctioned because
of our foolish abdication. Our government rebels against the law
of God and despises us because we insist that the rule of Christ
is only heavenly. It is time that we bathed, for we have been
carrying this gnostic smell for several centuries.