Gary North (www.garynorth.com), October 25, 2021
Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints? Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? (1 Corinthians 6:1–3)
This is a familiar passage. Paul was writing to the church at Corinth to raise money. First Corinthians is the first known example of a fund-raising letter. “Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye” (1 Corinthians 16:1). Second Corinthians is the second known fund-raising letter.
The call for money came at the end of this letter. Paul devoted the early section to issues of church discipline. Chapter 5 deals with the sin of incest. Paul called on the church to bring the sinner under church discipline. Chapter 6 deals with church members who were taking other members before Roman courts. Paul said this should stop. By submitting to Rome’s courts, church members were acknowledging that justice from Rome was superior to justice from the church. This meant that they trusted the judgment of covenant-breakers more than they trusted covenant-keepers. They trusted Roman law more than God’s aw. This was an implicit statement of faith. They trusted the gods of Rome more than the God of the Bible. Those gods would provide justice. This is a crucial attribute of the gods in every society.
Then Paul asked a remarkable question. Didn’t they understand that Christians will judge the world? This was not a rhetorical question. Paul did not think that they understood this. This was a matter of eschatology. He was saying this: at some point in between his day and Christians’ entry into the new heaven and new earth (Revelation 21, 22), Christians will be in a position of judicial authority, judging the world. He did not say when, but he made it clear that this would be the case.
Then he asked an even more amazing question. Didn’t they know that Christians will judge the angels? This is one of the most astounding statements in the Bible. It is so astounding that Christians find it difficult to believe. It has significant implications for biblical eschatology: the doctrine of the last things. Yet you have probably never heard a sermon on this passage.
Christianity confronted the ancient world with a unique doctrine: the final judgment. This doctrine was not clearly taught in the Old Testament. It was not taught by classical religion. There will be a final end to history. It will be marked by God’s judgment of everyone who has ever lived. It is described in Matthew 25, but especially the final third of Matthew 25: verses 31 to 46. This is the passage made famous by the phrase “sheep and goats.”
This will not be the final act of the final judgment. John added this: “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:14–15).
If we believe what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 6:3, something will take place after the separation of the sheep and the goats, but before God’s casting the goats and the fallen angels into the lake of fire. Yet 1 Corinthians 6:3 is never discussed in terms of the final judgment’s sequence. It is rarely discussed at all. There will be a final judgment that separates covenant-keepers from covenant-breakers. Christian churches have always taught this. This judgment will determine who will go into the lake of fire: the contents of hell. Fallen angels will be in hell. God made hell expressly for them. “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew 25:41).
There are covenant-keeping angels and covenant-breaking angels. Christians call covenant-breaking angels “demons.” They are sometimes called devils. Who will judge them at the end of history? Paul was quite clear about this: covenant-keeping humans. This will be the final task in history given to covenant-keepers. This will complete history’s phase of the dominion covenant (Genesis 1:26–28). Fallen angels and human covenant-breakers will no longer be factors in history after this final judgment. They will be consigned to the lake of fire.
Conclusion: the final judgment of humanity is not the final act of judgment. Then what is? Execution: the second death. But, before that can be imposed on men and demons, there has to be a trial. Paul said specifically that this trial will be conducted by covenant-keepers. Humans will judge fallen angels. During history, angels have far more power than humans. They are closer to omnipotence than humans. They are closer to omniscience than humans. They understand something of the future. Yet all of this is reversed in what can be called, judicially speaking, a great reversal. Covenant-keepers will judge fallen angels. Until this takes place, the marriage supper of the lamb cannot take place (Revelation 19:9). Neither can the establishment of the sin-free new heavens and new earth (Revelation 21, 22).
The transition from wrath to grace will be completed immediately after the final judgment of humanity. The transition from grace to wrath took place at the fall of man. The fall of man was specifically a failure on the part of humanity to exercise biblical justice. Eve or perhaps Adam and Eve together were required by God to bring judgment against the serpent: execution. But Adam and Eve instead rendered judgment against the word of God. They ate the forbidden fruit. God then brought them under judgment. God held a trial. God convicted Adam, Eve, and the serpent. But He did not end history. Mankind still was required to fulfill the dominion covenant.
The primary assignment to mankind is to exercise godly judgment. That was true in the garden. That is true today. That will be true after the separation of the sheep from the goats. Rendering judgment is the essence of the dominion covenant. There are economic aspects to this. There are technological aspects. But the central task of the dominion covenant is to improve our ability to render godly judgment. The final act of history, according to Paul, will be the comprehensive rendering of judgment by covenant-keepers against fallen angels. This is the narrative of history: the transition from grace to wrath, followed by the transition from wrath to grace. It will culminate with the abolition of wrath for covenant-keepers (Matthew 25). For covenant-breakers, eternity will be marked by excruciating wrath. There will be no transition out of this wrath.
A trial takes time. Under a jury system, competing lawyers present the cases for guilt and innocence. A jury decides which narrative is more plausible. To do this, the jury must exercise memory. One of the advantages of a jury is this: there is a division of labor. This division of labor applies to memory. Jury members remember different points made by the lawyers. It is through discussion that jury members come to an agreement regarding the comparative plausibility of the rival narratives.
In the United States, criminal trials have a high standard to justify conviction of guilt. The standard is this: “beyond reasonable doubt.” The key word is reasonable. The standard is not perfection. Christians should recognize that perfect justice is available only on judgment day. God will supply it for mankind. But it is clear from what Paul said that covenant-keepers will play a role in rendering judgment on fallen angels. God will not fill the offices of judge and jury by Himself. He will invite post-judgment covenant-keepers to participate in the final judgment. Creatures without enormous power in history will render final judgment against those creatures that possessed enormous power in history. This leads me to a conclusion: the essence of the conflict between God and Satan is ethics, not power. The battle for control over history is not primarily between God and Satan. The battle is between the covenantal representatives of God and Satan. Therefore, the supreme skill associated with dominion in history is the skill of rendering godly judgment.B. Casuistry: Applying Laws to Circumstances
Casuistry is the application of general legal principles to specific cases. It can also be the application of general ethical principles to specific situations. It is the exercise of judgment. The Bible calls this wisdom. In the Old Testament, the great model of a master of casuistry was Solomon. He was legendary for his ability to apply biblical law to specific legal situations. However, he failed completely with respect to his multiplication of wives. There, he is the classic example in the Old Testament of a man devoid of wisdom.
We gain understanding of the task of rendering judgment from about the time we turn two years old. In the United States, this age is called the “terrible twos.” Children begin to use this word: no. The only word that rivals it is this one: mine.
Children learn about discipline. They learn to exercise self-discipline in order to avoid the imposition of physical or other discipline by parents. They learn to render judgment in their own lives. The parents give them instructions, just as God gave Adam and Eve instructions. The children then learn how to follow these instructions in order to meet the standards set by the parents. The parents are in a position to impose negative and positive sanctions. These sanctions are teaching devices. They help children learn the crucial discipline of self-discipline. Children learn about rules early in life. They also learn how to manipulate parents by playing one parent off against the other. Not possessing power, they learn how to manipulate people who possess power. They become remarkably skilled at this at a young age.
The process of becoming an adult has more to do with learning and then applying the skills of self-discipline than any other skill associated with adulthood. Every society has rituals associated with becoming an adult. But the essence of becoming an adult is not passage through a ritual. The essence of becoming an adult is learning how to apply general principles of law, especially ethical principles, to specific circumstances in life. This used to be known as casuistry, but the term has fallen out of favor. From a young age, we are told by those possessing the power to impose sanctions that the rules are constant. We are told to observe the rules in specific circumstances. Circumstances constantly change, but we are told that the rules do not change. The rules enable us to make wise decisions. We learn the skills of casuistry. If we do not learn these skills, we suffer negative sanctions: as children and then as adults.
Continuity in life has more to do with the constancy of law than anything else. This may be ethical law. It may be biological law. It may be physical law. There are numerous realms of law in this world. In order to guide our own behavior, we must believe that there is continuity of law over time. If there were not, we would live in chaos. We would have no reliable idea of what will happen next as a result of a decision. The world would fall apart. But the world does not fall apart. This is strong evidence of the fact that there is continuity in law, and it is also a testimony that we learn how to apply general laws to specific circumstances.
We need accurate memories regarding what we have been told the laws are. We also need accurate memories regarding the consequences of disobeying specific laws. If we did not have memories, we would live in personal chaos. We would be as those who have Alzheimer’s disease. We would have to be institutionalized. Someone else would have to take care of us. The fear of Alzheimer’s is one of the most widespread fears in the modern world. Nobody wants to become dependent on somebody else as an adult. Nobody wants to be a drain on family resources. Nobody wants to be in a position of not being able to make responsible decisions. So, nobody wants to forget all of the past. A disease that removes our ability to recall the past is correctly seen as a debilitating affliction. It incapacitates the victims’ judgment.C. Historiography as Retroactive Casuistry
The Bible’s unifying themes for history are these: the transition from grace to wrath, followed by the transition from wrath to grace. The transition from grace to wrath took place in Genesis 3. It was marked by a trial. God cross-examined Adam and Eve. Then He imposed negative sanctions. But He did not kill them: grace. The transition from wrath to grace ends with a trial: the final judgment (Matthew 25).
History after the fall of man is marked by a pair of trials. In between these trials was the most important trial in history: Pilate’s trial of Jesus Christ. Pilate admitted that he saw no fault in Christ, but he sentenced Him to death anyway. Then Roman soldiers imposed negative sanctions. Pilate was a corrupt judge who violated Roman standards of evidence in order to placate a mob. This was a recapitulation of Adam’s fall: rendering false judgment against God’s word. Pilate condemned an innocent man and released a guilty man (Barabbus). He believed that he would benefit from this violation of the law. For this corrupt act, he became the most infamous regional Roman official in history. Millions of people have recited this historical judgment against him: “suffered under Pontius Pilate.”
Pilate was an evil man. The Christian church has judged him accordingly down through the ages. His violation of the rule of law stands as the archetype of a corrupt judge. He committed this act of injustice based on historical evidence and his cross-examination of Jesus. There was no question in his mind that the evidence was not sufficient to convict Jesus, but he convicted Him anyway. This was not ignorance on his part. He did not make a mistake in assessing the evidence against Jesus. It was reliable evidence. But the Jews in the courtyard imputed evil to Jesus’ statements in the Sanhedrin’s earlier trial, and they demanded the imposition of Rome’s negative sanctions. From that day until today, Pontius Pilate has been regarded by the Christian church as the covenant-breaker who committed the greatest crime in history. This was a greater crime than the crime committed by Judas. Judas merely identified Jesus so that the Jewish authorities could arrest him. That crime was significant historically only because Pilate committed the greatest crime in history before the day was over.
The retroactive judgment of the Christian church against Pontius Pilate has shaped the church ever since. Before A.D. 70, the church possessed written evidence of this evil act: the Gospels. The church regarded this evidence as reliable. The Council of Nicea identified Pilate as evil in 325, but the church had concluded this over two centuries earlier. Christian creeds have shaped the church ever since. They have provided a model for Christian historiography. They asserted that Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate. He was crucified. He died and was buried. On the third day, He rose from the dead. He ascended to the right hand of God. He will return in final judgment. This historical and also eschatological account has become authoritative as a major ritual of the church. This testimony is repeated in all the three branches of the church: Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, and Protestantism.
Christians know who Pontius Pilate was. They impute guilt to him. They verbally condemn him every time they recite a creed that mentions his name. No other person in history has been publicly condemned more often by more people as an evildoer. Christians mark the origin of the church by reciting a creed, and the creed identifies Pontius Pilate as the culprit. The centrality of the creed in the history of Christianity marks the centrality of a specific historical narrative. The creed declares the birth, trial, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ at a precise time in history as the central narrative in history.
The creeds provide the model for Christian historiography. They identify righteous figures in history, and they identify a supreme villain. The creeds tell us that the public assessment of guilt and innocence retroactively, based on reliable evidence, is at the center of the biblical understanding of history. Here is one implication of the creeds: Christian historiography should correspond to what the Bible reveals as the structure of history. It must also do justice to the evidence of history. In short, Christian historians must not imitate Pontius Pilate. They are to render judgment in terms of reliable evidence. They are to judge evidence in terms of standards. These evidential standards must reflect God’s evidential standards. Human actions are governed by God’s law. Sanctions in history, both positive and negative, are imposed by God in history as well as in eternity. History is a series of human decisions that are tried by God from heaven, during history, and also at the end of history. He imposes sanctions, during history and also at the end of history. Christian historians, following the examples of the church creeds, should publicly declare people’s guilt or innocence retroactively in terms of objective evidence, God’s ethical standards, and casuistry: the judgment of historical events in terms of reliable evidence.
These declarations over time constitute a biblically sanctioned narrative of history. The narratives of history should conform to this pattern. Christian narratives of history should include retroactive assessments of good and evil, wisdom and foolishness, success and failure. People pay little attention to narratives that are not marked by sequential retroactive judgments of representative figures in history whose decisions shaped history. They want to hear about the good guys and the bad guys. What they want to hear about the good guys and the bad guys is this: the good guys win, and the bad guys lose. They win or lose in terms of permanent ethical standards that still govern success and failure in history today. This is the biblical structure of history from the trial in the garden of Eden until the final judgment.D. The Denial of Casuistry
Covenant-breakers wish to suppress evidence of this structure of history. They do not want to think about the final judgment. They do not want to believe that Jesus Christ will return in final judgment in order to separate eternally the sheep from the goats. They correctly perceive that they are the goats. So, the more self-conscious humanist historians deny that history is structured in terms of a specific form of casuistry. They deny that it is the primary function of historiography to identify those individuals who served as representatives of the forces of good and the forces of evil. They do not wish to think about the fact that the kingdom of God is going to triumph over the kingdom of man. They resent the suggestion. They try to live consistently with this denial of the structure of history as a form of casuistry.
A representative example of a philosopher of history with this outlook was Benedetto Croce [CROWcheh], who was an intellectual leader in Italian society from the late 1890’s until his death in 1952. He was a liberal politically. Because he was a lifetime senator, he served in political office during the reign of Mussolini. He opposed Mussolini during most of this period. In 1938, he wrote a book on historiography: History as the Story of Liberty. Part 4 of the book is “Historiography and Morals.” Chapter 1 of Part 4 is “Moral Judgment in Historiography.” He got right to the point. He cited Matthew 7:1, “Judge not that ye be not judged.” He did not offer any exegesis of this passage that would have indicated its historical context. That was because he did not regard it as authoritative. He was an agnostic. But the passage might be regarded as authoritative by some of his readers, so he quoted it. He then went on to deny the legitimacy of all moral judgments by historians.
He began by describing what history should never be. He denied this view of history: “History is supposed to be the great High Court which reviews all the trouble judgments arising out of the passions and errors of man, corrects them, and pronounces a final verdict as in a universal judgment, separating the elect from the reprobates” (Meridian Books, 1955, p. 201). He spoke of history as if it were a living thing. He meant historians, but he said history. “Neither the future nor history can carry this utterly intolerable burden of the task intrinsically absurd and impractical” (p. 201). In order for historians to pass judgment retroactively, they would have to have inner certainty. He wrote: “. . . no documents can possibly be converted into an inner certainty” (p. 201). “The labeling of men as good and bad is a troublesome enough business in practice and for practical purposes. Surely we need not desire to pursue it and take it up anew in our historical considerations” (p. 202). The historian must not judge people’s motivation. He must only judge the outcome of their actions. “The only moral judgment which attains to consistency and significance in historiography is that which is concerned with the character of the achievement, apart from the private impressions, illusions, and passions which may accompany it in the mind of the author, or which contemporaries and posterity enveloped it” (pp. 202–3). Only God may pass judgment on individuals. But, since Croce did not believe in God, that left everyone off the hook in both history and eternity. He wrote: “. . . we must agree that this intimate knowledge, reserved to man’s conscience and into which alone the eye of God penetrates, or in certain singular moments the eye of love and friendship, is not only not historical knowledge, but is not knowledge of any kind, not even the order of truth which belongs to poetry, where the part is always seen as a part of the whole, the human drama within the divine drama of the Cosmos” (p. 205).
The next year, 1939, Hitler invaded Poland, and this started World War II. Croce had opposed Italy’s participation in World War I. Mussolini took Italy into the war on the side of Germany on June 10, 1940. In 1945, he attempted to escape, dressed in women’s clothes, but he was identified and executed on the spot. The executioners hung his body upside down in the public square. After 1945, the widespread hostility to Hitler as the most evil man in modern times was extended to the legacy of Mussolini: the fool who joined with Hitler. Hitler made it virtually impossible for historians to adopt anything remotely resembling Croce’s view of retroactive silence regarding immoral individuals. Hitler, more than any other person in modern times, undermined the intellectual charade of moral neutrality by historians. Any classroom teacher of American history who would argue in favor of moral neutrality could be removed from his position by this question from any student: “Are you saying, professor, that there was no moral difference between Franklin Roosevelt and Adolf Hitler?” The professor would either have to deny what he just said about moral neutrality in teaching history, or else he would have to affirm that there was no such moral difference. If he affirmed this, he would be put on suspension by the end of the week and would probably be fired at the end of the semester.E. World History
There is a single theme for all of human history after the fall of man: the transition from wrath to grace. The basis of grace is the spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This is the offer of redemption to individuals and institutions. Wherever sin is present, the gospel offers redemption. Sin is present in every institution. Sin is present in every society. Mankind and mankind’s works are under sin, and therefore mankind and mankind’s works are subject to redemption by the grace of God. This view of history is anathema to humanist historians. It testifies to God’s providential control over history. It also testifies to a final judgment. Humanist historians prefer to argue that history has no structure. However, if mankind’s history has no structure, then there is no such thing as a universal history. There can be regional histories, up to and including Western civilization, but there cannot be a universal history.
A major problem with this argument today is this: Western civilization is now spreading across the face of the earth. Western concepts of reason, science, economics, and progress have influenced the whole world since the end of World War II in 1945. This is what the church from the beginning expected would happen. The gospel would spread across the face of the earth. It would transform civilizations. It would lay the foundation for the kingdom of God in history, which is another way of saying the civilization of God.
It is not surprising that Croce was adamant that there is no such thing as universal history. This was consistent with his denial of any kind of moral order governing history.
The idea of so-called “universal history” has arisen from this demand for the impossible. It seeks, precisely, to embrace the totality of history, and in its consequential and logical, if mythological, form, a Universal History was at one time expected to include the future as well, finishing with the anticipated account of the end of the world. Such “universal history,” however, remains an idea and not a fact, because when executed the universal histories are either just compilations, manuals, and historical repertories, or else under the name of universal histories are really particular (universal-particular) histories, like every genuine history (p. 268).
Today, we see this universal history beginning to take shape across the world. It is not self-consciously Christian, but it is the historical outcome of the biblical view of the world. Croce recognized this. He wrote that “a Universal History was at one time expected to include the future as well, finishing with the anticipated account of the end of the world.” He was dismissive of Christianity’s view of history.F. War of the Worldviews
My book is about the debate between covenant-keepers and covenant-breakers over the foundation of history, the understanding of history, the laws of history, the meaning of history, the scope of history, and the future of history. Covenant-keepers and covenant-breakers have radically different views on these issues. That is because they have radically different worldviews. That is because they have radically different definitions of God, man, law, sanctions, and time. They operate in terms of rival covenantal structures.
Most covenant-keepers are naïve about the irreconcilable warfare between the covenant-keepers and covenant-breakers. Covenant-keepers have adopted the official doctrine of the covenant-breakers: the myth of neutrality. Jesus was clear that there can be no neutrality regarding Him. “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad” (Matthew 12:30). Despite this declaration, covenant-breakers have successfully infiltrated almost every area of academia by means of the myth of neutrality. The myth of neutrality becomes the justification for tax funding of education, from kindergarten through graduate school. Covenant-breakers extract tax money from covenant-keepers, and then they use this money to indoctrinate the children of covenant-keepers in the worldview of covenant-breakers. This has gone on successfully in the West for over two centuries. Covenant-breakers in classrooms have taught the children of covenant-keepers the humanistic content of their covenant. Most covenant-keepers generally remain content to send their children into the schools run by covenant-breakers. There is beginning to be resistance. That is because covenant-breakers are becoming more open about the implications of their God-hating worldview. They steadily move the curriculum toward nonsense and degeneracy. The content of the curriculum materials in the public schools is becoming more straightforwardly antithetical to Christianity. In the name of neutrality, the courts have forbidden state-run or tax-funded schools to teach Christianity, but the schools then teach a highly religious worldview: the worldview of humanism. The courts not only uphold this, they encourage it. They mandate it.
This is why it is imperative that Christians develop comprehensive alternatives academically. They should give up any attempt to compromise with the humanists with respect to the content of the curriculum. The courts have made it clear that no compromise by humanists is allowed. The humanists are in control of the tax-funded schools. They have been in control of tax-funded schools in the United States ever since the development of tax-funded public education in the state of Massachusetts in the late 1830’s. It has been the same all over the world.
This book is my contribution to the reclaiming of history and historiography by Christians. There have been lots of Christians who have taught history. There have been almost no Christians who have taught an explicitly Christian history. They have taught some compromise version of humanism’s narratives of historical development. They were certified as teachers in institutions that were accredited by humanists. These institutions taught a specifically humanistic view of historical causation. Christian teachers went into Christian schools to teach some variant of the humanists’ historical narratives. The war of the worldviews has always been a war of historical narratives. It is therefore the moral obligation of Christians to begin to replace the humanists’ narratives with narratives that are based on the Bible’s concepts of sovereignty, authority, law, sanctions, and succession.G. The War of the Narratives
I go into details on this issue in the appendix on narratives. Here, I sketch briefly the nature of the conflict. Humanists are evolutionists. They do not believe in the sovereignty of God. They have constructed a narrative of the history of the universe that explicitly denies any purpose whatsoever. Cosmic evolution is purposeless. It has no design. Out of the cosmos came life about 4.5 billion years ago, we are assured. Then came mankind about 2.5 million years ago. Only since the evolution of man has purpose appeared in the universe. Humanists have substituted their doctrine of the sovereignty of man for the Bible’s doctrine of the sovereignty of God. This underlies all of their historical narratives. There are major conflicting humanistic historical narratives, but they all agree on this point: man proposes, and man disposes.
Humanists have understood that narratives are central to society. There is no society that is not heavily reliant on specific narratives about the origin of the universe, life, mankind, and the society. Humanists have understood that they must be in control of the narratives. If they do not control the narratives, they cannot control the thinking, the voting, and the decision-making of the vast majority of individuals in any society. They have been self-conscious about taking control of the educational system that teaches the narratives to each generation.
The great barrier to this program has always been the church. Weekly sermons are sources of the Christian worldview. The Bible is structured mostly in terms of historical narratives. Constant preaching and teaching of these historical narratives has been basic to the establishment of Christian civilization. Therefore, it has been the policy of humanists to offset the effects of one or two sermons a week with 30 hours a week of lessons in schools controlled by humanists. Control over the content of historical narratives has been basic to the humanists’ agenda from the beginning.
One humanist who pursued this substitution systematically was Andrew Dickson White. He was the first president of the American Historical Association in 1884–85. He was the first president of Cornell College. He wrote one of the most important humanist books designed to undermine respect for Christianity: History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom (1896). He was a Protestant theological liberal. He hated any form of Protestantism that affirmed the final authority of the Bible. In the Introduction to his book, he described how he viewed his career as a college president. “My hope is to aid—even if it be but a little—in the gradual and healthful dissolving away of this mass of unreason, that the stream of ‘religion pure and undefiled’ may flow on broad and clear, a blessing to humanity.” He described his academic opponents, meaning Bible-believing Christians, as vicious. “Our purpose was to establish in the State of New York an institution for advanced instruction and research, in which science, pure and applied, should have an equal place with literature; in which the study of literature, ancient and modern, should be emancipated as much as possible from pedantry; and which should be free from various useless trammels and vicious methods which at that period hampered many, if not most, of the American universities and colleges.” He bragged about the success of humanists in replacing preachers as presidents of Christian colleges. In the final paragraph of the Introduction, he wrote this:
The ideas for which so bitter a struggle was made at its foundation have triumphed. Its faculty, numbering over one hundred and fifty; its students, numbering but little short of two thousand; its noble buildings and equipment; the munificent gifts, now amounting to millions of dollars, which it has received from public-spirited men and women; the evidences of public confidence on all sides; and, above all, the adoption of its cardinal principles and main features by various institutions of learning in other States, show this abundantly. But there has been a triumph far greater and wider. Everywhere among the leading modern nations the same general tendency is seen. During the quarter-century just past the control of public instruction, not only in America but in the leading nations of Europe, has passed more and more from the clergy to the laity. Not only are the presidents of the larger universities in the United States, with but one or two exceptions, laymen, but the same thing is seen in the old European strongholds of metaphysical theology. At my first visit to Oxford and Cambridge, forty years ago, they were entirely under ecclesiastical control. Now, all this is changed.
The academic enemies of Christianity have generally not been open about what their agenda is. White was quite open about it. Christians should take him seriously. His agenda has been systematically implemented in every area of higher education in the West.
Christians need a comparable agenda. They should understand that they cannot beat something with nothing. They must beat something entrenched with something far better. This book is my attempt to show that Christians have something far better.Conclusion
This book is dedicated to changing education back to where it was in the mid-nineteenth century America: funded by Christians, run by Christians, in order to educate successive generations of Christians. But the redesigned curriculum must be far better. It must not in any way be corrupted by the humanists’ myth of neutrality. Christian historians should adhere to the selection of evidence in terms of what the Bible says about sovereignty, authority, law, sanctions, and succession. They must write compelling narratives. They must work systematically to replace all of the humanists’ historical narratives. This is a requirement of the Great Commission. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matthew 28:19–20). Christian historians should observe what the Bible says about history. They should write their historical narratives accordingly.