Socialism or Communism is supposed to be “all for one and one for all.” If it were not for greed and fear, it might work. Power hungry appointed or elected leaders reign by fear. A change of the guard does not change the way power operates. Kings and dictators rule by brutal force and elected leaders build a support base by favoritism. Nasty issues are avoided and passed on or left to a president with executive orders. A nation with too many in power overburdens the people and innovative ways must be found to make the system viable. I have lived under four systems. The Polish government raised funds by selling delinquent tax properties. The Soviets simply took our property and called it community property. The German Nazi party disowned everyone that did not support their nationalistic and racist ideology. In the U.S.A., all the above ways are used to sustain an out of control administrative system.
Christians are obsessed with grace and unconditional love. No doubt, it is the most celebrated concept in Christendom, but is the unconditional interpretation the correct one? Jesus Christ did reintroduce God’s grace and love into the world. He also introduced a gentler concept of God. He is a heavenly Father that is willing to forgive prodigal man. It is man who is lost and must return into the Father’s arms and be reinstated into the family of God or the kingdom of Christ that begins in the heart. Man must return to claim God’s grace and love. It is of the utmost importance for man to understand how grace and love can become his. Grace (hesed, xaris) in the Hebrew and Greek Bibles has many applications. It is used to express appreciation, gratitude, granting favors, being merciful, showing kindness and others that have to do with loving someone else as much as one loves him or herself. During the time of Jesus and Paul, our modern interpretation would raise more than an eyebrow.
The book of Revelation appears shrouded in mysteries that come alive in current events. It becomes a window into what causes shall affect human destiny. The following prediction slumbered seven hundred years after Christ before it became the most serious threat to Christianity. The Risen Christ handed to John this intriguing disclosure: “When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the desert, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent’s reach. Then from his mouth the serpent spewed like a river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent. But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring – those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And the dragon stood on the shore of the sea” (Rev. 12:13-13:1). In the eyes of history, the above heavenly message
The Churches in North America are separate entities (denominations) comprising a religious kingdom within a secular Kingdom where they are being held hostage. Their bizarre arrangement with the secular political establishment was their own design. The separation of Church and State was no longer intended to free the individual but independent groups from the clutches of a political religious system that had charge over their destiny. Before Luther, man’s salvation was in the hands of those that defined the rules by which he could be saved. In the colonies that issue was settled. The new threat was an overpowering Anglican faith that sought to dominate the new nation. The reformers had reintroduced the individual’s right to believe; but they too forced their convictions on others and man was again trapped by someone else’s’ dogma. In the old world the State decided what reformer to follow. In the new world, necessity coerced the colonists to accept tolerance. The idea of separating the Churches from the State was the best solution the world had ever had. The Churches became a kingdom within a kingdom and prospered materially. For the next one hundred fifty years, the state had no reason to look for a loophole to step on separation. During this time, the religious individuals and groups kept their differences alive by proselyting among each other and converting the world. As the nation expanded its territory so did the denominations and their missions. What disrupted that harmonious coexistence?
The United States of America was not born over night nor was it planned. The need to become a separate nation was forced on the colonies by the English government that treated the colonists like slaves or a conquered people with no rights of their own. The King tried to impose Anglicanism with a Bishop on all the colonies. To pay for his costly war and lifestyle, his government imposed a number of taxes and enforced them with the army. The Colonists responded by dumping the heavily taxed tea into the harbor. The soldiers began to use force and the colonists that were aching to show their grievances fired back with their guns. The fight for freedom, justice and equal rights exploded into what is known as the War of Independence. It divided the colonists into two camps. Those loyal to Britain did not join in the fight for independence and were branded as traitors. They had no alternative but to move to Canada, back to England or somewhere else. Hereinafter conflict and conditions dictated and directed the outcome of the war. It can be compared to David and Goliath. The colonists had adapted to Indian guerilla fighting. Small bands attacked the British army details and depleted their men power and supplies. The British soldiers had to spend way too much time hunting these hit and run fighters and began to alienate even some loyalists. Meanwhile, General Washington could build up an army and force the English to surrender.