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John Webster (1610–1682), writing in 1654, stated, “But if man gave his assent unto, or believed the things of Christ … because they appear probable … to his reason, then would his faith be … upon the rotten basis of human authority.” When the full-orbed biblical worldview is given up for some claim to neutrality and unaided reason, the center collapses and the edifice falls in on itself. For centuries, Christians have tried to placate the rationalists and secularists by claiming reason is an autonomous authority that ends up supplanting Revelation. Stanley Fish makes the following observation in his article “Why We Can’t All Just Get Along”:

By the end of the nineteenth century, human authority has been put in the place of revelation; or rather human authority, now identified with the progressive illumination afforded by reason, has become the vehicle of revelation and of a religion that can do very nicely without any strong conception of personal deity.

There’s been a steady history of removing anything related to God and the Bible from our culture. The Bible was relegated to the Church on Sunday, but even that’s under attack. Some want the Bible banned for what it says about same-sex sexuality while at the same time claiming the Bible is authoritative when it says, “you shall not judge” (Matt. 7:1; but see verse 2). That is, keep your revelatory nonsense to yourselves; we know what’s best without any word from your so-called god. There is no way to appease the moral anarchists. They want it all. “[L]eft-wing radicals burn Bibles, assault and murder policemen and civilians, set fire to courthouses, vandalize and loot all manner of businesses,” Roger Kimball writes. “The clips of the savages burning Bibles put me in mind of Heinrich Heine’s solemn observation that Dort wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man auch am Ende Menschen: ‘Wherever people burn books, they also end up burning men.’”[1] That’s what happens when God is displaced from the cosmos. The cosmos burns.

The Marxist revolutionary Antonio Gramsci understood the role that Christianity played in society. He knew if his idea of Marxism was going to succeed Christianity would have to go, and the thing of it is, Christians made it easy for him to accomplish the task. Gramsci (1891–1937), like the revolutionary Marxists before him, considered Christianity to be the “force binding all the classes — peasants and workers and princes, priests and popes and all the rest besides, into a single, homogeneous culture. It was specifically Christian culture, in which individual men and women understood that the most important things about human life transcend the material conditions in which they lived out their mortal lives.”[2]

Gramsci broke with Marx and Lenin’s belief that the masses would rise and overthrow the ruling “superstructure.” No matter how oppressed the working classes might be, their Christian faith would not allow such an overthrow, Gramsci theorized. Marxism taught “that everything valuable in life was within mankind.”[3] Perceptively, Gramsci realized that in the long run what people did not ultimately believe in they would not fight for. Was Gramsci right? “The only Marxist state that existed” in Gramsci’s day “was imposed and maintained by force and by terrorist policies that duplicated and even exceeded the worst facets of Mussolini’s Fascism.”[4] The building of the Berlin Wall was the most visible evidence of Gramsci’s early critique of traditional Marxism. Walls had to be built to keep people from escaping the “Workers’ Paradise.” Today, a majority of Americans, including Christians, accept Gramsci’s dualism—a belief in God but not history. Not a shot was fired, or a wall was built to bring this new type of Marxism to America.

While Gramsci was still a committed Marxist and “totally convinced that the material dimension of everything in the universe, including mankind, was the whole of it,”[5] he believed that the road laid to “utopia” by traditional Marxists was lined with formidable obstacles. Gramsci began his re-imaging of Marxism by dropping the harsh slogans. “It wouldn’t do to rant about ‘revolution’ and ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ and the ‘Workers’ Paradise.’”[6] Instead, Marxism would have to put on a new face and talk about “national consensus,” “national unity,” and “national pacification.” The democratic process rather than revolution would be used to bring about the necessary changes. At first, pluralism would be promoted and defended. Further, Marxists would join with other oppressed groups—even if they did not share Marxist ideals—to create a unified coalition. After building their coalition via secular consensus “they must enter into every civil, cultural and political activity in every nation, patiently leavening them all as thoroughly as yeast leavens bread.”[7] To change the culture, Gramsci argued, “would require a ‘long march through the institutions’—the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium [of the time], radio”[8] that Christians mostly neglected.

Following Gramsci’s paradigm, the mind had to be stripped of any notion of the transcendent—“that there is nothing beyond the matter of this universe. There is nothing in existence that transcends man—his material organism within his material surroundings.”[9] The pagan notion of the separation of the two realms[10] that has dogged orthodox Christianity since the first century had to be reintroduced and reinforced:

In the most practical terms, he needed to get individuals and groups in every class and station of life to think about life’s problems without reference to the Christian transcendent, without reference to God and the laws of God. He needed to get them to react with antipathy and positive opposition to any introduction of Christian ideals or the Christian transcendent into the treatment and solution of the problems of modern life.[11]

The here and now must be absolutized and made the reference point for everything we think and do. “Everything must be done in the name of man’s dignity and rights, and in the name of his autonomy and freedom from outside constraint. From the claims and constraints of Christianity, above all.”[12]

Christians dug their own pit with inevitable results: “One who digs a pit will fall into it, And one who rolls a stone, it will come back on him” (Prov. 26:27). The following is typical of what Christians believe and teach.

The greatest danger the false views of eschatology (such as postmillennialism) pose to the Church is not a misplaced hope in redeeming the culture, but that an effort to do so will enviably shift its gaze from 1. the mission of redeeming sinners and 2. from the blessed hope of Christ’s imminent return. Jesus and His disciples did not endeavor to transform the fallen world and its systems, but to call sinners to be set apart from the world with the hope that Christ would one day return to take us to be with Him. The question we all must answer is this far-reaching one, “In this matter are we willing to do as Christ taught?”

There you have it. For nearly 2000 years the mission is to bring redemptive babes in Christ into the world and leave them to themselves until some always near end-time event rescues them while God’s world is taken over by the God-haters.

Worldview 101: A Biblical View of the World

Worldview 101: A Biblical View of the World

Utilizing audio, video, and printed material, Worldview 101 will equip the student with the tools necessary to ‘think God’s thoughts’ about the world and the created order. It will reveal and re-direct the humanistic thought patterns that exist in each of us. The Enlightenment promised freedom, but brought slavery to man’s ideas instead. Worldview 101 points the way forward to true freedom of thought in Christ. BUY NOW

Author: Gary DeMar

Gary—who served as President of American Vision for thirty-five years—is a graduate of Western Michigan University (1973) and earned his M.Div. at Reformed Theological Seminary in 1979. Author of countless essays, news articles, and more than 27 book titles, he has been featured by nearly every major news media outlet. Gary also has hosted The Gary DeMar Show, History Unwrapped, and the Gary DeMar’s Vantage Point Webshow and is a regular contributor to AmericanVision.org. Gary has lived in the Atlanta area since 1979 with his wife, Carol. They have two married sons and are enjoying being grandparents. Gary and Carol are members of Midway Presbyterian Church (PCA).