by Al Benson Jr.
There was an interesting article on World Net Daily for October 22nd by Michael Nedderman about the millions of Christians in this country who just don’t bother to vote or assume any civic responsibility at all. They just ignore it all as if it didn’t exist. Mr. Nedderman estimated that there are about 40 million Christians who do not vote in our elections.
He observed that “Every American who doesn’t want to see our beloved nation transformed into a godless, socialist, ‘workers’ paradise’ must vote to stop the threat of the systemic Marxism that has infected our society through the efforts of today’s Democratic Party. Sadly, about 40 million Christians don’t take this threat seriously enough to even vote (15 million Christians not registered;…).”
Again, he noted that “Those non-voting Christians are a huge percentage (44%) of the 90 million eligible Christians (all denominations). How is it possible that so many who aspire to Christian moral responsibility are so cavalier about such a consequential civic responsibility, one that has such grave moral significance?”
The questions he asked are good ones and need to be discussed and debated in Christian circles. But they won’t be for the most part. Why? Because the church has been almost totally neutralized in the area of politics and this is not a recent development. It goes back to the 1830s, maybe a little earlier and neutralization in this country became very apparent in the early 1900s with the advent of the Scofield Reference Bible and the eschatology it promoted.
Scofield got a lot of his theology from John Nelson Darby in England. Check out Darby on the internet. You will find more than I can deal with in this article. In his book Death of the Church Victorious Pastor Ovid Need Jr. explains Darby’s eschatology of the failing Christian church. On page 187 he tells us: “Having no promise of victory on this earth, the church failed. Therefore, it must be spewed out of God’s mouth. Then God will establish his throne in Jerusalem and literally reign, doing what the church failed to do, for it had no grace from God to make her any different from the world. Darby was quite dogmatic–the church cannot be restored in strength to reach the world. With no grace from God, the church has no power to overcome sin. The early church failed, and, therefore, has only God’s judgment against it. Darby took several shots at the Postmil Reformers,…The apostles, taught Darby, never looked for a long continuance of the church; rather they looked for the Lord’s soon return. Accordingly, the only thing left for the church is to realize its lack of responsibility.It has no worldly concerned on this earth, for it is forbidden to try to set evil right.”
I don’t know about you, but Darby’s vision for the church, or its lack thereof, is not the way many of us view the church and its mission in this world. Yet millions of Christians in the last 130 years have bought into Darby’s failing church syndrome and they use that for their justification that Christians should have nothing to do with politics ,culture, education or any other human endeavor. They believe it is all “of the world” and so they just refuse to have anything to do with any of it.
It seems like every new generation has a Hal Lindsey type out there telling us that the Lord’s return will be anytime in the next 3 minutes and therefore we should do nothing in this world but prepare to be “raptured” out of it. I’ve been hearing this for about 60 years now. As for Hal Lindsey it seems about every ten years he puts out an updated version of one of his books telling us that the Lord’s return is imminent and we can all prepare for it by buying one of his latest editions. I have often said that I would love to see the stock portfolios of some of these “end times” preachers who tell us the world will end soon (hopefully not before we buy their latest book). This do-nothing attitude among Christians in our day is a result of the eschatology of Darby–that was seized on by Cyrus I Scofield and popularized in his bible back in 1909, although he didn’t give Darby much credit for it.
If you want to check out Scofield I would recommend a book by Joseph Canfield, a friend of mine, now deceased. The book is The Incredible Scofield and his Book and it was published by Ross House Publishers in Vallecito, California. Check it out on Amazon. The orthodox Christian faith which follows sound doctrine has little use for the theological wasteland of Darby and Scofield, yet these two seem to have captured and neutralized much of the church in this country.
The faulty theology of Darby and Scofield is one major reason that Christians in our day don’t bother to vote or get involved in politics or do much of anything else except try to “be nice” to everyone. Christians need to be concerned with what kind of country they are leaving for their grandchildren because, in all probability, their grand children are going to have to live in it. If they refuse to take any action to improve things what are they leaving for a legacy for their posterity? And what if their hoped-for “rapture” doesn’t come along to get them out of this mess? Then they will have to learn to deal with it like the rest of us.
Suffice it to say that their view of the church is not my view of the church. I believe the Christian church will be victorious in the long run as long as Christians are willing to pitch in and do their part to make it so. The Lord will exercise His Sovereignty through His people–regardless of what Darby and Scofield have tried to peddle to us as the “great neutralizer.”