Yes, that title is a mouthful! But, it describes the topics for this page – Bible verses relating to the concerns surrounding some professing Christians talking about “fighting” (physically, not just spiritually) for an earthly kingdom or church, the sad usage of crude language in Christian circles nowadays, and then also a related topic – responding in Biblical faithfulness when facing opposition and hardship.
A number of weeks ago, I began doing some Bible studying into these topics, looking up words and related words and making a list of Bible verses which speak very well to these things, although I’m sure there are more which I could add. (I kept thinking I was done with this particular project but then would end up adding more verses the next day or so. I know God was leading me to His Word, although I was somewhat puzzled at the time as to “why now with this topic”.)
This page is geared towards Christian brothers and sisters, such as homeschool parents, who also notice an increase in seeing military-type images on Christian websites, hear about the terms “Christian nationalism” or “Christendom”, or hear people say some things in response to suffering some things unexpectedly. And they wonder “why” or “what” or “how ARE we think anyways”?!
It isn’t a page I initially planned on making. (I’d rather write on more fun stuff.) But I think doing this sort of page might be helpful to some people, especially young Christians, who are grappling with changes in our world, as even more proposed options for people’s attention surface this spring.
This page is generally accessed from the post entitled, “Be a Berean: See If Things Are Right” and was created to help explain a few of the issues mentioned on that page. It also will be linked to a post entitled, “When His Kingdom Comes” (TBA).
I put up the page you are reading for mainly two reasons.
- First, I believe that the Word of God is so powerful and it is all that is truly needed to counter error. (Isaiah 55:11, Hebrews 4:12). No amount of human reasoning and debate will accomplish as much as simply taking in the Word of God to understand something. So, without arranging verses much or worrying about “which” translation I was using at the time of studying (such would be NKJV, KJV, ESV, or NIV’84), much of this page is about sharing these verses under the headings for you to consider.
Scroll to the heading you want to read about.
If you want to read ALL verses, I recommend taking your time, perhaps for each section, instead of trying to read through everything all at once.
- Second, in researching various places online which relate to these particular topics in one way or another, I couldn’t find many places that I would feel appropriate for a Christian business/ministry to link over to. So, I felt it was a quicker and better to focus on listing out Bible verses and let God’s Spirit speak to your hearts instead. (I did include a few links to other websites as well as a few notes to help define or provide brief explanations but much of what follows are simply Bible verses and passages.)
The Bible guides us to understand what God thinks. The words in [square brackets] indicate word meaning in the Hebrew or Greek.
Fighting and Biblical Faithfulness
The topic of fighting was of concern regarding Christians popularizing the idea of learning physical combat skills for example with swords or other weapons for training in manhood, as well as the general topic of “what does the Bible say about fighting”. While we “fight” for our faith by standing up for truth and opposing error, I believe that this is NOT a physical battle but rather, a spiritual one. Let’s be faithful to the Lord and what His Word teaches us, even in times of hardship and cultural deterioration around us when our human nature wants to fix things ourselves.
Examples of authors, speakers who have some ideologies which if followed, they could lead people into making bad decisions: Doug Wilson is a long-time leader within the homeschool movement. His influence within churches and homeschooling circles (especially in classical education since he helped to found an association of such) sometimes promote a “Christendom” and “Christian” nationalism direction. CrossPolitic is a group of guys from his church in Moscow, Idaho. Another example is Carpe Fide (began in New Jersey). Another is Joel Webbon (“Right Response Ministries”) who helped to write the statement on Christian Nationalism (currently in draft format online). Some within the New Apostolic Reformation also proclaim the dominion theology/”take over” mentality in their beliefs.
Note 1: The battle of the Christian in this world isn’t about physical combat. There’s absolutely no need to learn sword-fighting at all. Actually, due to its potential for a misleading Christian testimony or for harm happening if a man is embittered and tempted, why not let such skills be ignored and focus on the learning the Bible itself, putting it into practice in the world of need for God’s love, and spending time in prayer? (I realize the sword is a medieval symbol of power, status, and a “blessed” object used as a “crucifix for prayer”. But even those aspects sound very out-of-place for the Biblical Christian! When the Bible mentions a Christian’s “sword”, it only means the Word of God, never any physical weapon that shows off man’s control.)
Note 2: It is appalling that some “Christian” organizations today are trying to look proudly tough and threatening with swords on apparel and photos on webpages and/or advertise weaponry (and other products of potential harm) on videos. If they truly want to tell the rest of the world that they really mean the sword that is the BIBLE (which is what it should be for the Christian), then why not use pictures of the Bible and verses written in a reverent manner, instead of trying to appeal to fleshly attention-getting, disgusting, grotesque images?
Note 3: I think this issue boils down to one or more of these reasons…
- A man’s desire for power and control – forgetting to bear up patiently under trouble and commit to the Lord Who is in control while He won’t always change everyone’s circumstance within the time frame that they want.
- The time period we live in has a description of more people within the Church who desire a change from doctrines – sometimes a more “emergent/progressive” outlook and sometimes not that but still definitely they want a change to suit “their own desires”:
- “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:3-5 NKJV
- “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” 2 Timothy 3:1-7 NKJV
- “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.” 2 Peter 2:1-2 NKJV
- A root of bitterness after being wrongfully treated can be grow to not just speak up for justice but also end up considering revenge. Yes, Biblical Christianity is attacked/opposed by those who are anti-God. But the Bible tells us that is to be expected. And despite cruelty shown to us, as Christians, we are to respond with love, even to enemies. Bitterness has no place in a person’s heart who is walking in the Spirit.
- A lack of Biblical literacy on this specific topic of how to think Biblically (e.g. when our world worsens, when our faith is opposed)…
- to understand about His patience of not coming yet to establish His kingdom on this earth.
- If a person doesn’t understand God’s ultimate plan for the future (eschatology) from a plain and reasonable literal reading of the Bible, he/she can get caught up with trying to fix things with human wisdom/plans and tricked into thinking that they can or should aim to control when and how Christ rules in kingdom/world peace. We should avoid helping to build a false/facade kingdom. Christ comes in His Heavenly Father’s time, not ours. When He returns to earth at His Second Coming, then He will set-up His authentic/true kingdom (Daniel 7:13-14, Revelation 19 and 20). The role of the Church is not to set-up a kingdom on earth.
- With a desire to see more people worship God and uphold His values (which is a good desire), some people go beyond what God has already told us is true in His Word, and argue for something that appears better. Their desire becomes to work on strategies to get a Christian majority rather than be a minority. But Jesus said, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew 7:13-14. (There are other Bible verses too which teach us that true Christians are a minority overall.) This goal can become a distraction for professing Christians so that they work on “changing society” rather than spreading the gospel of faith alone through grace alone, knowing Christ personally and serving people with compassionate care (Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 20:35, Hebrews 13:16, James 2:15-17). We cannot expect that the non-Christian will or even has the ability to, live their lives according to righteousness!
- I like how Child Evangelism Fellowship (Singapore)’s Statement of Faith on their website puts it: ““The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then, they that are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:7-8). Therefore, he cannot see nor enter the kingdom of God until he is born again by the Holy Spirit. That no degree of reformation however great, no attainment in morality however high, no culture however attractive, no humanitarian and philanthropic schemes and societies however useful, no baptism or other ordinance however administered, can help the sinner take even one step toward Heaven; but a new nature imparted from above, a new life implanted by the Holy Spirit through the Word is absolutely essential to salvation. Genesis 1:26-27; Romans 5:12; Ephesians 2:1-3; John 3:3, 6-7; Titus 3:5.” (Source link).
- Isaiah 45:11 (NIV’84) states: “This is what the LORD says – the Holy One of Israel, and its Maker: Concerning things to come, do you question Me about My children, or give Me orders about the work of My hands?”
- To see how the point of eschatology relates to the idea of “fighting for God’s kingdom”, you can read the blog post series (4 posts) of Pastor Gary Gilley about Christian Nationalism .
- to understand how God wants His children to respond to adversity (i.e. persecution when it comes).
- It can be tempting for humans to want to seek self-preservation for their beliefs/values rather than entrusting God to protect them, His church, or lead them through times of persecution. BUT it is also very important to follow the Biblical directions for Christ’s followers! Just one example of someone who was gentle while strong in the faith when it came to intense issues was “Brother Andrew”. Others like him in history as well as the examples of the apostles in Bible times are in such a contrast to some men now who try to portray a godly appearance while promoting the training in weaponry for the purpose of trying to defend Christianity and/or defeat evil. Their testimony isn’t godly but rather foolish and even rebellious against Biblical concepts. “Christian nationalism” is like a trap that can have an appearance of some good but in the end, it isn’t about a unity of Biblical faith/doctrine/true gospel.
- Because we encourage Christian families to be Bible literate, you can click here for a summary of this topic in a printable brochure format (pdf) entitled, “Suffering as a Christian – Are you Biblically prepared to be faithful to the Lord?”
- to understand about His patience of not coming yet to establish His kingdom on this earth.
“For not by their own sword did they win the land, nor did their own arm save them, but your right hand and your arm, and the light of your face, for you delighted in them. You are my King, O God; ordain salvation for Jacob! Through you we push down our foes; through your name we tread down those who rise up against us. For not in my bow do I trust, nor can my sword save me.” Psalms 44:3-6 ESV
“To the choirmaster: according to Do Not Destroy. A Miktam of David, when he fled from Saul, in the cave. Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, till the storms of destruction pass by. I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me. He will send from heaven and save me; he will put to shame him who tramples on me. Selah God will send out his steadfast love and his faithfulness! My soul is in the midst of lions; I lie down amid fiery beasts— the children of man, whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens! Let your glory be over all the earth! They set a net for my steps; my soul was bowed down. They dug a pit in my way, but they have fallen into it themselves. Selah My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody! Awake, my glory! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn! I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations. For your steadfast love is great to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens! Let your glory be over all the earth!” Psalms 57:1-11 ESV
“A response when enemies’ swords are destructive tongues/words…. “To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David. Hear my voice, O God, in my complaint; preserve my life from dread of the enemy. Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked, from the throng of evildoers, who whet their tongues like swords, who aim bitter words like arrows, shooting from ambush at the blameless, shooting at him suddenly and without fear. They hold fast to their evil purpose; they talk of laying snares secretly, thinking, “Who can see them?” They search out injustice, saying, “We have accomplished a diligent search.” For the inward mind and heart of a man are deep. But God shoots his arrow at them; they are wounded suddenly. They are brought to ruin, with their own tongues turned against them; all who see them will wag their heads. Then all mankind fears; they tell what God has brought about and ponder what he has done. Let the righteous one rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him! Let all the upright in heart exult!” Psalms 64:1-10 ESV
“Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil.” Romans 16:17-19 NKJV
“The humble He guides in justice, And the humble He teaches His way.” Psalms 25:9 NKJV
The principle of “Scripture interprets Scripture” is important here to understand what the two-edged “sword of the Spirit” actually is:
- “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6:17 NKJV
- “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12 NKJV
- “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.” 2 Corinthians 10:4 NKJV
- “Let the godly exult in glory; let them sing for joy on their beds. Let the high praises of God be in their throats and two-edged swords in their hands, to execute vengeance on the nations and punishments on the peoples, to bind their kings with chains and their nobles with fetters of iron, to execute on them the judgment written! This is honor for all his godly ones. Praise the LORD!” Psalms 149:5-9 ESV (From children to seniors who are bedridden, all godly people of any age can know the Word of God and use it – the Bible – in spiritual battles.)
“There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12:18 ESV
“And the servant of the Lord must not strive [lit. war]; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.” 2 Timothy 2:24-26 KJV
“And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.” Romans 13:11-14 NKJV
“Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared…” Titus 3:1-4 ESV
“Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared…” Titus 3:1-4 KJV (same as above but reading both can help sometimes)
“For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king. Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.” 1 Peter 2:15-19 KJV
“A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1 NKJV
“A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife.” Proverbs 15:18 KJV
“Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.” Psalms 37:8 KJV
“Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul. Be not thou one of them that strike hands…” Proverbs 22:24-26a KJV
“An angry man stirreth up strife, and a furious man aboundeth in transgression.” Proverbs 29:22 KJV
“The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.” Proverbs 29:25 KJV
“Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.” Romans 12:14 KJV
For we know him who said, “It is Mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering. Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of
your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised. For in just a very little while, “He who
is coming will come and will not delay.” Hebrews 10:30-39 NIV’84
“Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:17-21 KJV
“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.” James 3:13-18 NKJV
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you. “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven…” Matthew 5:38-45a ESV
“Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;” Proverbs 24:17 NKJV
“And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure; being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now. I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you. For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Therefore I urge you, imitate me.” 1 Corinthians 4:12-16 NKJV
“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.” Colossians 3:1-5 NKJV
“But now ye also put off all these; anger [violent passion], wrath [fierceness], malice [causing trouble], blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.” Colossians 3:8 KJV
“The older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.” Titus 2:3-5 NKJV
“Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded, in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you. Exhort bondservants to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, not pilfering, but showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.” Titus 2:6-10 NKJV
“See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone.” 1 Thessalonians 5:15 ESV
“But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:25-28 NKJV
“Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”” John 18:36 NKJV
Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should offend [cause to sin] one of these little ones.
Luke 17:1-2 NKJV (Context is about adults’ influences on young people)
“Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” Galatians 5:19-24 NKJV
Even back in the specific and unique situation and purpose of the nation of Israel for that period of time in history, God wanted them to understand…
- “Do not think in your heart, after the LORD your God has cast them out before you, saying, ‘Because of my righteousness the LORD has brought me in to possess this land’; but it is because of the wickedness of these nations that the LORD is driving them out from before you. It is not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart that you go in to possess their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations that the LORD your God drives them out from before you, and that He may fulfill the word which the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Therefore understand that the LORD your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness, for you are a stiff-necked people.” Deuteronomy 9:4-6 NKJV
- “For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for Himself, a special treasure above all the peoples on the face of the earth. The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any other people, for you were the least of all peoples; but because the LORD loves you, and because He would keep the oath which He swore to your fathers, the LORD has brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of bondage, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Deuteronomy 7:6-8 NKJV (Note: The “Church” is not in the same sort of covenantal relationship as a “nation” as God covenanted with Israel (which was the only nation to have that relationship, one He decided to choose “out of all peoples”).
Furthermore, regarding the role of the Church, the Council at Jerusalem were faced with an issue very similar to what we know as “theonomy” today, which is a typically a characteristic of dominion theology. Some men within the church wanted the Mosaic Law to be a set of rules/laws for the new Gentile believers. The apostles decided that the Church’s role was not to lay upon other Christians, the burden of the Mosaic law. (I believe this is also God’s view on the matter for the time period in which we live now. Other passages deal with government’s role(s) which are not the same as the Church. Aside note, nor is the government seen in Scripture as a “ministry arm” of the church, even if Christians can be involved in such as a godly influence.) You can read the full account of the situation in chapter 15 of Acts but here are a few key verses:
“But some believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees rose up and said, “It is necessary to circumcise them and to order them to keep the law of Moses.”” Acts 15:5 ESV
“Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”” Acts 15:10-11 ESV
“Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified…I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Galatians 2:16, 18 KJV
These couple of quotes are from the Got Questions website:
“…Scripture is clear that Israel’s war in Canaan was not a model for future conquest…”
“Jesus came to establish a church made up of individuals whose citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20). His commands were for individuals, not nations.” (The Bible also describes Christians as pilgrims, strangers, foreigners on earth now (1 Peter 2:9-12).)
To understand more of the foundations of dominionism and theonomy, that website also has the following short articles:
Note: Not all of the Christians who identify as “evangelical Bible-believing” are interested in supporting all of the doctrines of “Christian nationalism”. There are still several people within evangelical Christianity who do not, such as ourselves. (The statement(s) that are coming out online for Christian nationalism are a real mixture of truth and error.) We are concerned that this trendy ideology distorts some of the message of the Bible and is a bad witness for true Christianity. I want to add here that if you are a believer in Jesus Christ and also read the Bible in a literal-grammatical sense (“plain, common sense”) that you do not need to follow the ways of dominion theology or its similar ideas in order to stay true to the Word of God. People (e.g. organizations, ministries, authors of curriculum) might try to market to you and “win you over”. You might get pressured or belittled, mocked or misunderstood, but you can remain secure in Christ while not accepting how Biblical Christianity is being redefined or distorted these days. Read the Bible for yourself and sincerely call out to God to help you understand its truth! Rest on His promises despite hardships. He remains sovereign and works out everything in the end for His purposes.
Root of Bitterness
Note: This section is here because I feel it is related to one of the reasons why some (not all) people get caught up into following the ideologies of dominionism and theonomy, of wanting a good kingdom now (e.g. one that stands against evil and doesn’t persecute Christians). People want justice but sometimes, if justice isn’t given and people don’t surrender that disappointment to the Lord, a bitter root can grow.
“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled” [tainted, contaminated morally]; Hebrews 12:14-15 NKJV
“Beware lest there be among you a man or woman or clan or tribe whose heart is turning away today from the LORD our God to go and serve the gods of those nations. Beware lest there be among you a root bearing poisonous and bitter fruit, one who, when he hears the words of this sworn covenant, blesses himself in his heart, saying, ‘I shall be safe, though I walk in the stubbornness of my heart.’ This will lead to the sweeping away of moist and dry alike.” Deuteronomy 29:18-19 ESV
“Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good [beautiful] conversation [behaviour] his works with meekness [mildness] of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” James 3:13-16 KJV
“Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.” James 3:9-10 KJV
“Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes. Now we know that what things so ever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” Romans 3:14-20 KJV
“Let all bitterness, wrath [breathing hard fierceness], anger [exciting of the mind to violent, justifiable, passion or punishment], clamor [outcry], and evil speaking [vilification, blasphemy] be put away from you, with all malice [maligning and causing trouble].” Ephesians 4:31 NKJV
“And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.”” Luke 12:15 NKJV
“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.” Colossians 2:6-8 NKJV
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” Proverbs 13:20 ESV
(This means the language and attitudes/general demeanor of professing believers in Christ but who appear no different in their response(s) to opposition than the crudeness of the world.)
This topic can relate to the downloadable brochure mentioned earlier on this page. There are some “Christian” organizations which purposely offer to train churches, ministries, Christian schools, and homeschoolers, in “security” measures for their homes or ministries, according to military strategies. Slogans on these websites talk of calling men to “stand in the gap” (cf. Ezekiel 22:30 which, if they were to recognize that 1 Timothy 2:5 fulfils that quest perfectly, I don’t think they’d use that phrase) and/or of the “best chance” at dealing with attacks in Christianity is “each other”, which is totally human-reliant for security and ignores “Who” protects His Church the way He wants to. It’s such a crude and unbiblical preparation for how to respond to future persecution. And it teaches God’s people to turn their focus away from their true Shepherd (Matthew 7:15, John 10:10). How sad!
“For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ESV
“If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.” James 1:26 ESV
“Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death is the man who deceives his neighbor and says, “I am only joking!”” Proverbs 26:18-19 ESV
“Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:5-13 ESV
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up, according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 4:29 NIV’84
“…For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?” 1 Corinthians 3:3 NKJV
“He [God, the Messiah] shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.” Isaiah 40:11 KJV
“A man shall eat well by the fruit of his mouth, But the soul of the unfaithful feeds on violence.” Proverbs 13:2 NKJV
“Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more. You, however, did not come to know Christ that way.” Ephesians 4:19-20 NIV’84
“But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.” Luke 6:35-36 KJV
“Thorns [prickly like a cactus] and snares are in the way [road/course of life] of the froward [distorted, crooked, perverse]: he that doth keep [guard, hedge] his soul [life] shall be far from them.” Proverbs 22:5 KJV
“He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail.” Proverbs 22:8 KJV
“Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, And whoever is led astray by it is not wise.” Proverbs 20:1 NKJV
“Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.” 1 Corinthians 15:33 KJV
“And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.” Acts 17:26-27 NKJV
“Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking.” 1 Peter 2:1 NKJV
“Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation. Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.” 1 Peter 2:11-16 NKJV
Why would a professing Christian try to use crude language? Is it to catch people’s attention and market to them? To look “cool”???
“For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.” Galatians 1:10 NKJV
“Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” Luke 14:23 NKJV
Is the language used “compelling” to bring unsaved towards God or does the language turn them away?
“The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.” 1 Timothy 3:1-7 ESV
“Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them.” Ephesians 5:1-7 KJV (and the following verses too)
This chart is mentioned in some titles of our reading curriculum in the appendix:
|Types of Humor to Avoid||Types of Humor to Enjoy|
|Sarcastic Claims: Proverbs 26:18-19, Galatians 5:13-15|
Derogatory/Belittling Stories: James 3:9-12, Romans 12: 9,10
Insensitive Insults: making light of sickness, disabilities, or painful trials as an insult – Ephesians 4:31-32, 5:1-4 (coarse jesting)
Remarks that make light of sin, its punishment, or portrays incorrect doctrine without clarifying what the truth is: 2 Timothy 2:16-17, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, Ephesians 5:6-12, 1 Timothy 1:5-6
“Unclean” humor: Ephesians 4:29, 5:4
Jokes that are disrespectful to authority (especially when we are trying to be a witness to those in government; jokes that make police, parents, pastors, politicians unnecessarily look like fools are poor taste). 1 Peter 2:12-18 (16)
|Cheerful: Proverbs 15:13, 15 – many funny stories fit under this – it is good to laugh!!!|
Healing: Proverbs 16:24, 17:22
Honestly funny things that fit under the Biblical principle of uplifting one another, to teach in a humorous manner so that a truth/ encouraging thought is remembered easily. (Ephesians 4:29, 1 Thessalonians 5:11)
“You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.”
2 Peter 3:17-18 NKJV