The Biblical Structure of History: Introduction to Part 1

Gary North – October 26, 2021

My thesis regarding the structure of history is based on my understanding of the biblical covenant model. God has established five covenants with mankind: the dominion covenant, the personal covenant, the family covenant, the church covenant, and the civil covenant. They are all established by a covenantal oath before God. The dominion covenant defines mankind. This is God’s command to Adam and Eve to exercise dominion over the earth. It is found in the first chapter of Genesis, verses 26–28.

Each of the five covenants is structured in terms of a sequential five-point system. There are numerous ways of describing it. Point 1 is the transcendence of God. This transcendence also includes His presence. He is not part of the world, but He is present with it. He is totally sovereign. He is over the world, not part of it. Christianity teaches that God became man. God dwelt among us.

The second point of the covenant is man’s authority over the creation. This is delegated authority. We can also discuss the second point as hierarchy: God is over man, and man is over the creation. Judicially, point 2 is a system of representation. Man represents God to the creation, and he represents the creation to God.

The third point of the covenant is law. Every covenant has a system of law. These laws establish legal and moral boundaries on people’s actions. They serve as guides to men’s actions. Men know what they are supposed to do. They have guidance from God about what to do. More important, they know what not to do.

The fourth point of the covenant is sanctions. Every system of law has an accompanying system of sanctions. In biblical covenantalism, there is consistency between a law and the punishment for violating it. The punishment fits the crime. In civil government, the sanctions are exclusively negative. In the family and the church, there can be positive sanctions. So, covenantal sanctions here can be either positive or negative. We can call them blessings and cursings. These sanctions are governed by the ethical system that undergirds the system of laws. The combination of permanent ethical laws and predictable sanctions is what gives history its predictability. It also shapes the direction in which history is moving.

Fifth, there is succession. People become more skilled as they develop their talents. They must be replaced when they move to positions of greater responsibility. This was true before the fall. Post-fall, there is another reason for succession: people die. They have to be replaced. Institutions also disappear. They have to be replaced. Because of God’s ethical system of laws, and because of His system of sanctions, there is a progressive element in the development of history. Things get better over time because God rewards those who obey Him, and He punishes those who disobey Him. His sanctions shape the future.

This five-point covenant model is developed in the book by Ray Sutton, That You May Prosper: Dominion By Covenant. My Institute for Christian Economics published this book in 1987. I wrote a short introductory book on this: God’s Covenants (2020). I wrote a detailed study: The Covenantal Structure of Christian Economics (2018). I wrote two practical books: The Five Pillars of Biblical Success (2008) and The Five Pillars of Biblical Leadership (2021). In short, I have found the five-point biblical model to be both theoretically compelling and highly useful in real-world applications.

The five points of this structure are found in all varieties of social theory. Every social theory has to have all five points: sovereignty, authority, law, sanctions, and succession. Not all social theorists are self-conscious about the inherent structure of what they are studying, but if they are thorough in their presentation, you will find all five points, although rarely in the biblical sequence.

In Part 1, I show that this structure of history is revealed in the Bible. It is revealed in five sequential points.

The first concept of biblical history is the doctrine of God’s creation of the universe out of nothing. This was an historical event. It began history. Genesis 1 provides the account. Genesis 1 reveals that God is totally transcendent. He is completely separate from the universe. He spoke it into existence. It was not an emanation from His being. Having spoken it into existence, He is sovereign over it. He had a purpose for it. He had a plan for it. He had a decree for it. He will carry out His decree in history. In short, history is providential. It is personal. The whole universe reflects the God who created it. Therefore, the structure of history is governed by the principle of cosmic personalism. Nothing in the universe is outside of God’s providence. Everything reflects God’s personhood (Romans 1:18–22).

The second concept of biblical history is the doctrine of the image of God in man. Man was created to represent God in history. God holds him responsible for this. This task of dominion defines mankind. It will define mankind throughout history, and it will define mankind in eternity. Mankind is God’s covenantal agent in history. People are personal because God is personal.

The third concept of biblical history is God’s law. God has established a law-order that governs all creation. In society, this law-order announces a series of laws governing institutions and individuals. These laws are ethical. They have established the criteria of right and wrong. The essence of decision-making is ethical. Ethics governs the historical process.

The fourth point of biblical history is sanctions. This has to do with judgments in history. God is sovereign, so His judgments are authoritative. His judgments establish the standards of human judgment. He evaluates people’s behavior. He evaluates their motivations. He evaluates everything in terms of His standards. He enforces these standards by imposing sanctions. His enforcement of His laws provides predictability in history. At the end of the creation week, God pronounced the world to be very good. His work during the week met His standards of creation. He said so repeatedly. The technical theological word for this is imputation. God imputes value and meaning to everything.

The fifth point of biblical history is inheritance. God has established that the meek will inherit the earth. The psalmist announced this (Psalm 37:11). Jesus announced this (Matthew 5:5). The meek are people who are meek before God. They are therefore active toward extending the kingdom of God in history. With respect to history, meaning an era in which sin is still present, those who have been redeemed by Christ exercise increasing dominion. The world is their inheritance. This is made clear in 1 Corinthians 15. (See Chapter 5.) Jesus also announced this to Peter: “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). Hell is on the defensive. Gates are defensive tools, not tools of offense.

Humanist historians offer a rival five-point model. In summary, it is this: evolution, autonomy, relativism, nominalism, and entropy. I explain these terms in Part 2. I show how they shape the humanists’ view of history. The essence of their view is this: there is no providential God who directs history. The only source of direction in history, and the only source of meaning in history, is man. Their problem is this: they cannot decide whether they mean mankind collectively (the state) or individuals. They do not know who imputes authoritative meaning to the world: collective mankind or individual people. Therefore, they cannot come to a conclusion about the structure of history. They do not even agree if there is any meaning to history.

In Part 3, I discuss Christian historiography. I explain how the five points of biblical history should shape the way that Christians write history. There are five elements in Christian historiography: stories, representation, civilization, justice, and progress.

All of this may seem overly complex. Actually, it is not complex. It provides a handy way to understand the biblical structure of history, the humanists’ interpretation of the structure of history, and the way that Christians should write about history. You can count each system on the fingers of one hand. Well, not quite. You can count them on four fingers and your thumb. Keep reading. I will show you how to do this.

Christian Education: Tax Exemption vs. the Whole Counsel of God

By David Chilton Biblical Educator, Vol. 2, No, 11 (November 1980)

In the eighth century B.C., a king’s spy reported on the activities of a “subversive” prophet. After receiving further orders, the agent confronted the prophet and ordered him out of the country. This is not particularly surprising: governments have always had secret agents. The shocker is that the government’s man was the high priest of Israel, and the man he threatened was a true prophet of God (see Amos 7). The church of eighth-century Israel was completely dominated by the state—so much so that when Amos offended the state by his call to return to God’s law, a church official was deputized to silence him.

This is astounding. A minister as the ancient equivalent of a CIA agent? How could this be? And if it was true then, could it happen today? Well, maybe in Communist countries, we reassure ourselves. Not in America, “the land of the free” (a phrase which, these days, is about as true as the next line: “home of the brave”). Here we have separation of church and state. We have the First Amendment. No church in America is a Department of State… right? Wrong. We are becoming a nation of state churches.

Consider the case of a prominent evangelical church—let’s call it the “Free Church”—where the pastor is legitimately considered one of the most gifted Bible teachers in the country. He is a theological and political conservative, a Calvinist whose exposition on Romans 9 is better than that of Charles Hodge. What more could a church ask for? Incredibly, the church has a serious problem: it is enslaved to the state. Here’s how it happened.

The Free Church recently constructed a beautiful new building, at a seven-figure price. Naturally, they didn’t have the money, so they went into debt—mistake No. 1. “The borrower is servant to the lender” (Prov. 22:7); the church is no longer really “free.” But there’s more. To help finance the debt, the Free Church leaders asked the members to purchase interest-bearing notes, redeemable after a specified time, to be repaid out of the future receipts of the church. (This common practice, incidentally, is specifically prohibited by Scripture—Deut. 23:19-20—but then the word “Free” in the church’s name ought to stand for something.)

Now comes the sticky part. Every year, the church files an innocent-looking form with the State of California, amounting to an annual request for tax exemption. The state requires that any church receiving such exemption must not attempt “to influence legislation or any ballot measure.” For violating this mandate, some churches have already had their property confiscated. The Free Church officers are aware of this problem, and are taking definite action: bowing, scraping and kissing up. The pastor doesn’t preach against abortion, ERA, homosexuality, ungodly taxation or inflationary banking policies. He can’t afford to: his beautiful, heavily mortgaged temple might get taken away.

Or at least they could lose their tax exemption, and it’s hard enough getting people to donate now—what would happen if the donors couldn’t claim deductions? The church’s receipts would drop. And if the cash flow stopped, the church wouldn’t be able to pay its debts to the bank and the usurious church members. Then the church would default, go bankrupt, and lose the property anyway. So the pastor keeps quiet. The whole counsel of God is not preached. The church of Jesus Christ is enslaved. Of course, the pastor does have some freedom—all slaves do, within limits. But the Master defines the limits of the slave’s freedom. Where the state defines the church and its legitimate functions, there you have a state church.

Of course this is not how the preachers of the eighth century B.C. were muzzled, but the result was the same. The priests and prophets found it expedient to follow state prescriptions for the exercise of their ministry. Therefore, the presence of Amos was irritating, on two counts. First, Amos called them back to the law of God, and they were shamed and convicted of their sin. Second, they knew that the preaching of God’s word would anger the king: he just might lump them together with Amos, and revoke their tax exemption, or whatever. Thus, to protect their position and sear their consciences, they had to oppose Amos.

But this could not happen without severe consequences. First (8:7-10), Amos warned of national disaster (earthquake, flood, etc.), which had been promised in the law as necessary results of cultural apostasy. Because God is Lord of all, the ethical standing of a people will eventually be reflected in their environmental conditions. The earth experienced tremendous physical and economic blessings in the two centuries or so after the Reformation. And, as we have rejected the Reformation message, our environment has been increasingly polluted. In Biblical terms, the earth is “spewing us out” for our rejection of God’s law (Lev. 18:24-28). Routinely, the state churches receive “comforting” and “how-to-cope” sermons in periods of disaster—but only rarely (and then vaguely) do the pastors instruct the people about the causes of disaster, which are often related to the apostasy of those who claim to be God’s people.

The second consequence of apostasy, however (8:11-14), was to be even more severe: a famine, not of bread or water only, “but of hearing the words of the Lord.” God’s response to those who neglect His word is to simply deprive them of it. Without revelation, there is no hope, for the individual or for his culture. Those who acknowledge the state’s authority to define the faith, Amos says, “shall fall, and never rise again.” Note well: It is not the oppressive acts of godless governments that cause the famine, but the flight of those who claim to serve God. Last January, a group of Christian leaders issued a “Christian Declaration,” denouncing the evils of the state in terms of Biblical law.

A prominent, “born-again,” socialistic Senator from the Northwest was outraged at the audacity of these Christians in attacking his god. He and other statists threatened the believers that, unless they backed down, the tax-exempt status of their movement would come under close scrutiny. That’s all it took. Faster than you can say “Onward, Christian Soldiers,” the reformers dropped their little manifesto. Out the window went the word of God and Christian reconstruction, but the church property was saved. And so the famine spreads.

What then should the Christian school and church do about the tax exemption problem? After all, shouldn’t Christian organizations be free from taxes and the controls they involve? Yes—but so should every institution. There is no Biblical justification for taxing institutions, although individuals may be taxed. Furthermore, tax exemption is increasingly being used by the state to bludgeon Christians into submission. I don’t recommend it, but a church that paid taxes (i.e., bribes) would probably be more free to speak out than many untaxed, regulated churches. And you thought it was a simple issue.

My point here is not to bring massive guilt on any church or school that receives tax benefits. If you are already in that position, you’re in good company—but you also need to think about the problem. Tax-free institutions are being judged in court cases as “public trusts,” meaning that the state has full jurisdiction over their activities. The crisis will be too late to start thinking about solutions. At least, in faithfulness to God, you should determine to do this much: Regardless of the cost, never allow the state to dictate the content or method of your teaching in church or school. Speak to the issues. Influence legislation. Throw out the rascals, and vote in the good guys. Make an impact on society, and turn the world upside down (i.e., right side up). Won’t that make the statists mad? Yes. Couldn’t we get taken to court and thrown in jail? Yes. Just like in the Book of Acts, when the believers realized that “we must obey God rather than men.” The conflict will escalate in this decade, and we had better make a clear stand now, while the heat is relatively mild, than set precedents for compromise.

There are other ways to deal with the problem, however. While each of the following solutions has problems, they have merit as well (besides, we haven’t thought of anything better), and so I’m throwing them out for your consideration. I’m not giving ivory-tower cogitations, but the examples of our school and church. (I have to stress that point, in case this falls into the hands of a bureaucrat. I’m not giving legal advice, just personal testimony. What my readers do is their business.)

I’ll begin with the school. Our solution really isn’t so radical—quite a few are doing it—but it’s surprising that it’s so rarely considered. The school is simply a profit-making institution. In many ways, this seems about the smartest thing for a school to do (see Robert L. Thoburn’s How To Establish and Operate a Successful Christian School, Thoburn Press, $125.00), but the best aspect, in terms of this discussion, is the freedom from state control. Not that we don’t have run-ins with bureaucratic racketeers: the head of the city planning commission tried to legally prevent us from getting the property we wanted for the school. In a private conversation, however, he informed us that the realty agency he owned had a listing that would suit us just fine. That was one bribe we didn’t pay, and we got the property we wanted in the first place. So we do have headaches, as any business does. But no one tells us what to say. We can give enormously biased lectures on any issue, and nobody’s holding a gun to our heads or threatening to charge us back taxes. We have no back taxes.

The obvious drawback is that this costs money, which is always the main issue in Christian circles. “Sure, Jesus said we should take up our crosses and follow Him, but He didn’t say anything about giving up our tax benefits!” We all want the faith as cheap as we can get it, but we have to face facts: resistance to an ungodly state is a necessary cost of Christianity. And to get the state off our backs, we dumped the benefits. It just makes it harder for them to get us. They may get us anyway—but they’ll get you first.

My second example is our church. Should it go profit-making top? I once heard someone seriously suggest that, but he never followed through, so I’m not sure how that would really work out. Of course, if I had the clear choice between being untaxed but controlled, and being taxed but free, I would pay the bribe. But those aren’t the only choices—yet. Obviously, the best thing would be an untaxed, uncontrolled church, right? We’ve got it. (Pick up your teeth and read on.) First, and most importantly, we never applied to the state for exemption. As I said, the state has no Biblical right to tax any institution. More to the existential point, the First Amendment denies state control over churches. Taxation is control—”the power to destroy”—and thus the state has no legal right to tax the church. But if you apply to the state for exemption from taxation, you are implicitly acknowledging the state’s right to tax you. Our position is simply that we won’t ask for what the state has no legal power to give.

That isn’t the whole story, naturally. It helps that we have really nothing to tax. The church owns no property—we meet in homes. If we get too big, we’ll either find a bigger home, or have a good old church split (which reminds me of the church that had a revival—they didn’t add any new members, just got rid of a few old ones). A church that is regularly dividing and multiplying in smaller groups is probably more healthy anyway: it increases the members’ responsibility, and discourages clerical tyranny.

Another plus is that we are legally invisible. We have not incorporated. We’re so decentralized that we don’t even exist, legally. Now you’re wondering if we exist at all, right? What could such a church really accomplish? Well, we minister to the community, teach the Bible to scores of neighbourhood kids, testify at city council hearings, meet with local businessmen to discuss Christian economics, and pass out lots of inflammatory leaflets. Of course, we protect ourselves a little—when we published a tract condemning homosexuality and supporting a ballot measure to limit gay activity, it was titled: We Wouldn’t Dream of Telling You How to Vote on Prop. 6… Then we told them how to vote. (If you’d like a copy, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to the editorial address.)

Getting back to the main issue, we must do anything we can to keep from being seduced or muzzled by government power. Maybe you don’t like the solutions I mentioned. Maybe you think I’m politically naïve. Maybe you have a better idea (if you do, write it in 1100 words and send it in). But if you think there’s no problem with tax exemption, you’re already caught. And if most Christians in this country end up agreeing with you, our future will look like Israel’s history—concession, compromise, apostasy, and destruction.

Biblical Educator, Vol. 2, No, 11 (November 1980)

The Bible and Modern Science

By James Jordan, Biblical Educator, Vol. 2, No, 11 (November 1980)

While there has been published, in recent years, much excellent material from the Creationist and Flood Catastrophist position, there is an area of real importance to science teaching which has not been addressed with any great thoroughness. That is the philosophy of science. It is assumed by our Creationist scientists that there is such a thing as “natural law,” and this “natural law” was created by God to rule the universe. This notion is, however, not Christian but Deistic.

Henry Morris, for whom I have the utmost respect, writes this erroneous paragraph in his book The Genesis Record (Baker, 1976; $12.95): “It would be helpful to keep in mind Occam’s Razor (the simplest -hypothesis which explains all the data is the most likely to be correct), the Principle of Least Action (nature normally operates in such a way as to expend. the minimum effort to accomplish a given result), and the theological principle of the Economy of Miracles (God has, in His omnipotence and omniscience, created a universe of high efficiency of operation and will not interfere in this operation supernaturally unless the natural principles are incapable of accomplishing His purpose in a specific situation), in attempting to explain the cause and results of the great Flood” (p. 195). Everything in this paragraph is wrong.

First, the problem with Occam’s Razor is that it implicitly denies the doctrine of the Trinity. (Not that Dr. Morris intends any such thing; my point is that Dr. Morris is mistaken, not that he is a heretic, which he surely is not.) The doctrine of the Trinity teaches us that God is ultimately One and Many at the same time. His Oneness is not more ultimate than His Threeness, and vice versa. Unity is not more ultimate than diversity, and this fact is reflected in the created universe. Any attempt to reduce explanations to the “simplest” is reductionistic and denies the unity and complexity of existence. That explanation is correct which is correct, not which is most simple. Thus, the Flood may be both a simple and a very complex event.

Second, the Principle of Least Action is explained as something “nature” does. Now, this is a personification of an impersonal principle, called ‘nature.’ What is this ‘nature?’ Does it exist? The Bible does not teach any such thing. The Deistic philosophy is that God created the universe and infused it with natural laws. Now God does not interfere in the universe, but lets it run itself. Christians try to modify this Deistic philosophy by asserting that God occasionally intervenes in the natural processes, such interventions being called miracles.

This is fundamentally wrongheaded. The Bible teaches that God directly runs his universe. What we call “natural laws” are simply summary statements of what God usually does. There are no “natural laws” which God has infused into the universe to run the universe automatically. God is wholly Personal, and He personally runs all things.

God manifests His Lordship in three simultaneous ways. God is the Controller of all things, and by His providence He ordains all that comes to pass. He personally brings all things about. Second, God is the Authority or Lawgiver to all things. He rules by, His Word, or decree. His Word establishes those things which come to pass. This may look like an impersonal natural law, but it is the personal Word of a personal God. Finally, God is actively Present in all that comes to pass. God is extremely near, working things according to His plan. It is this concept of God’s presence which natural law theory cannot accommodate. It is the goal of secular natural law theory to push God out of His universe, to deny His presence. Christians make a mistake when they concede this point and only seek to retain God’s occasional presence through miracles.

This brings us to the third error in Dr. Morris’s statement. There is in the Bible no such thing as an Economy of Miracles. The doctrine of the Economy of Miracles goes along with the doctrine of natural law, but both are false. A miracle occurs when God chooses to act in a way different from the way He usually acts. Miracles occur, as Professor John M. Frame of Westminster Theological Seminary is fond of pointing out, to shock us out of our sinful complacency. Miracles have a saving function when received in faith, they manifest God’s special redemptive nearness, which is distinguishable from His general presence with His creation

Why doesn’t God do miracles all the time? Well, the answer to that is so that we can fulfill the cultural mandate of Genesis 1:26-28, 2:15. If God were always changing His ways of doing things, we could not count on the world’s going along the same way from day to day. God, however, has covenanted to keep the world on a predictable course (Gen. 8:20-22). What we have here is not some natural law which we may ‘take for granted, but God’s covenantal faithfulness which must lead us to worship. Science is possible only on the basis of faith in God’s Word, His promise to keep things going in a predictable way. We can count on God, depend on Him. Thus, all scientific investigation is based on faith, and is a branch not of philosophy but of theology.

The “law of gravity”, then, is not some natural law built into the universe, but it is God’s continual action of pulling or pushing things down to the surface of material bodies. He can reverse this action, if He pleases, so that iron floats (2 Kings 6:1-7).

The same is true of life. We do not have life in ourselves, as if God infuses life into us and then it drains out over the years until finally we die. Rather, life is a gift of the “Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of life,” as the Nicene Creed states. The breath of God which was breathed into human clay at the beginning is the Spirit (Gen. 2:7). Men die when the Spirit leaves them (Gen. 7:22; Eccl. 12:7). We depend on Him moment by moment for our breath.

Moreover, the angels are God’s personal agents who enforce His Word and are present in the universe running it. Both the eternally active God and His angels are busy working the universe. The Bible associates the angels with the stars (Job 38:7; Is. 14:13; Rev. 12:4; Judg. 5:20). Whether the stars are angels in one of their forms, of whether the stars are the homes of the angels, or whether they sustain some other kind of relationship, we do not know. But when you look at the stars at night, see the angels in their dance, as they govern God’s world for Him.

The Bible associates angels (stars) with the weather. Special storms are brought by the angels on special occasions (Ezek. 1, 10; Ps. 18: 1-9; Ex. 19:6; and Heb. 2:2), but weather in general is also controlled by the angels (Ps. 104:2-4). Evil as well as good angels have a hand in the weather (Eph. 2:2), which explains those sudden storms on the Sea of Galilee which threatened Jesus Christ when He walked the earth. Next time you fly in an aircraft, remember that it is God’s good angels who restrain the demons which might toss you right out of the sky.

God’s other personal agent in running His universe is man. Man was given dominion over those things listed in Genesis 1:26-28, and so man establishes the “law” for the animals, etc. We have no trouble seeing that man’s governance is not “natural law,” and if we keep this in mind, we will be able to see that the angelic and Divine governance of all things is also not “natural law,” but wholly personal.

Understanding this truth makes prayer more relevant. It also explains how the Bible can promise a change in weather, long life, change in animals’ eating habits, etc. There are no “natural laws” governing these things, only God’s flexible administration of His world.

The association of angels with stars solves a number of problems which vex some people. It tells us when the angels were created (Gen. 1:16). It tells us where they live, and why it is that they have to traverse space to get to the earth (Dan. 10:13). It tells us why Satan can be called the “prince of the powers of the atmosphere” (Eph. 2:2). It indicates why the universe is so vast in size, when man has only been given the earth to take dominion over. It helps to explain the Biblical association of angels with wind and fire (Heb. 1:7). The angels were busy during the Flood year, rearranging the world.

It may be objected by some that this exhaustively personalistic view of the universe eliminates science altogether, and makes science part of theology. Well, so what? As a matter of fact, the Christian view does eliminate modern science’s presuppositions. This does not mean that there is no place for men to investigate how God is governing His universe. Such an investigation may properly be called science, but of a Christian sort. But when we do science, let us realize we are studying how God runs His world, not some impersonal “natural law.”

The Biblical Structure of History: Preface

Gary North – October 23, 2021

A. Benefits of Reading This Book

I wrote this book so that a hard core of Christian leaders and prospective leaders will read it and then will act on what they have read. Leaders act representatively. Action is crucial to all forms of leadership: in households, churches, and everywhere else. Knowledge alone is insufficient for meaningful change, either personally or institutionally. We must act in terms of what we believe. But, before we act, we had better count the cost. Jesus said: “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish” (Luke 14:28–30).

Maybe you do not want to be a leader. You are a leader anyway. If you are a parent, you are a leader. Parents teach their children. If you make decisions on behalf of others, you are a leader. Basic to all forms of leadership is the knowledge of history. Every organization has a history. Successful leaders must know something about the past of the organizations in which they possess God-given responsibility. They need to know how they got into the positions they occupy. They need to know something about the successes and failures of previous leaders.

Why should you start reading this book? Why should you finish reading it? Because you are the heir to a great gift: Christian civilization. It began on the day Adam was created (Genesis 1:26). It will not end on the day of judgment (Matthew 25). It will extend into eternity (Revelation 21, 22). You owe God thanks. The more you know about the history of Christian civilization, the more thanks you will owe. He who has received more from God owes more to God. “There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged” (Luke 7:41–43).

This debt includes your present knowledge of God’s dealings with His people through the ages. The Bible is filled mostly with stories of God’s dealings with His people. You know some of them. You know about God and Adam, Cain and Abel, Noah and the flood. You know about David and Solomon. You may not be able to identify when they lived, but you know that historical time is linear. It had a beginning, and it will have an end: the final judgment. This structure gives meaning to Bible stories.

You also know stories about Jesus. These stories are central to your faith. You know about His resurrection from the dead. Paul put this event at the center of Christian faith. “And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain” (1 Corinthians 15:14). Then he said it again: “And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins” (v. 17). If you are wise, you know about the men of faith described in Hebrews 11. They are role models for Christians in every era.

More than any other religion except Judaism, Christianity is a religion based on history. Yet Christians are remarkably ignorant about the history of the church. They are even more ignorant about the culture-transforming effects of the church. Even if they know a little about a few key figures in the history of the church, they cannot explain exactly why these people were important in the history of Western civilization. They cannot tell you what difference these people made outside of the institutional church. They have no understanding of the relationship between the church’s teachings and historical progress.

One of the reasons for this ignorance is that humanistic historians ever since the Renaissance have dominated the profession of historical storytellers. They have written stories about the history of the church prior to 1500. These stories have been almost universally negative. There has been some recent improvement in the accuracy of the humanists’ accounts of the history of Christianity, but not enough. Humanists have written the history textbooks. Textbooks on the history of Western civilization have focused on the historical impact of the rediscovery of Greek and Roman historical documents and sculpture that took place after about 1350, and especially after the Turks captured Constantinople in 1453, when Greek refugees came west with copies of ancient Greek documents and the ability to teach. Humanist historians labeled the early history of the church “the dark ages.” They also labeled the history of the West up to about 1350 as “the Middle Ages.” The middle of what? The middle of civilization between the fall of Rome in 476 A.D. and the advent of the Renaissance.

In this book, I explain the nature of the intellectual warfare between two irreconcilable theories of history and two traditions of writing about history. The first is the Christian concept of history. The second is humanism’s concept of history. Both groups have adopted similar organizational categories for understanding history, but their presuppositions are radically opposed. I discuss this conflict of visions in terms of the rivalry between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of man. I show why you and generations of Christians before you have been deliberately misinformed about the history of Western civilization.

This book will take time to read. You will have to pay attention to some of the details. I have done my best to structure the book to make it readable, but there is no substitute for paying attention. We tell this to our children when they are young. Our children tend not to pay much attention to the warning. I hope you do.B. The Origin of This Book

In 1975, I persuaded R. J. Rushdoony to use funds raised by his nonprofit foundation, Chalcedon, to publish a scholarly book honoring Christian philosopher Cornelius Van Til, who taught apologetics—the philosophical defense of the faith—at Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia. Rushdoony had been an intellectual disciple of Van Til’s ever since 1947, when he read The New Modernism (1947), Van Til’s critique of Karl Barth and Emil Brunner, the European neo-orthodox theologians who denied the historical accuracy of the Bible’s narratives. I had taken an introductory apologetics course from Van Til in the fall of 1963. Rushdoony agreed to the project. I then recruited authors who were followers of Van Til intellectually. Each wrote at least one article about a specific academic discipline.

I wrote the article on sociology and the article on economics. Yet my Ph.D. was in history. I decided that the best person to write the article on history was professor C. Gregg Singer of Catawba College. His 1964 book, A Theological Interpretation of American History, was unique. In 1975, Arlington House published his history of the National Council of Churches: The Unholy Alliance. In 1979, his next major book appeared: From Rationalism to Irrationality: The Decline of the Western Mind from the Renaissance to the Present (1979).

Singer was not a well-known historian in secular academic circles, but he was a superior historian. Catawba College was a small Christian college in a small town in rural North Carolina. He did not have ready access to a major research library. But he had a worldview that enabled him to write cogent books on major topics. That was why I invited him to contribute an article. He agreed. The book appeared in 1976: Foundations of Christian Scholarship: Essays in the Van Til Perspective. It was published by Rushdoony’s book publishing company, Ross House Books.

Singer’s essay was titled “The Problem of Historical Interpretation.” He began his essay with this paragraph:

Some five years ago at an annual meeting of the American Historical Association the writer had the occasion to meet informally with a group of the more famous historians in attendance at that conference. The subject under discussion was the meaning and purpose of history. These half-dozen scholars were of the opinion that history lacks any decisive meaning and any discernible purpose. The writer then posed to this group of distinguished scholars one question: If this be the case, then why do we teach history? The scholars looked at him with surprise and even disgust, but no answer was forthcoming from any of them. The group broke up as each went to his own particular luncheon group and discussion of various phases of a subject which they could not really justify as part of a college curriculum and yet which they continue to teach as if the knowledge of it had some inherent value.

In the second paragraph, he drew a conclusion regarding the world of humanist academia:

This incident is by no means unique. The professional historians in this country and in Europe have come to the place where they have little faith in the subject to which they have devoted their lives. Historians with increasing and distressing frequency are openly admitting that history has no meaning and shows little or no purpose or goals. But neither is this anti-intellectual attitude peculiar to the professional historians. The existentialist and positive philosophies have entered into the thinking of most areas of human thought and activity with devastating results. In conjunction with the Freudian school in psychology, they have made irrationalism and anti-intellectualism fashionable and have virtually removed the concepts of purpose and meaning from the thinking of many historians and those who proclaim themselves to be “social scientists.”

His assessment was correct. Leading historians in 1970 no longer had faith that history reveals any authoritative meaning or purpose. This lack of faith is far more widespread today. It had been building for half a century before Singer wrote his essay. Yet this pessimism regarding the relevancy of historical research and publication has in no way slowed the publication of arcane articles in professional historical journals. Historians continue to write these articles, despite the fact that the articles are rarely quoted by other historians or even read by them. Then why write? They do it to keep their jobs in major universities if they do not have tenure, and to get job offers if they are stuck in colleges with poor academic reputations and low pay. In 1970, publishing journal articles was the way that untenured assistant professors became tenured associate professors and full professors—in every field in the humanities and social sciences.

When the acknowledged leaders in any profession begin to doubt its legitimacy, that profession borders on the fringes of irrelevancy. In the case of the academic discipline known as history, the number of students willing to major in the field has steadily declined. There are so few high school teaching opportunities available to graduates with B.A. degrees in history that the number of students willing to take two years of upper division courses has declined. In 2017, 15 million students attended American colleges. In that year, fewer than 25,000 history degrees were awarded, down from over 36,000 in 2008. The number of history majors declined by two-thirds from 1969 to 1985. (Colleen Flaherty, “The Vanishing History Major,” Inside Higher Education [November 27, 2018]. https://bit.ly/HistoryMajors)

There was a time in American history when history courses were part of the core curriculum in both high schools and colleges. In high school in the late 1950’s, I took a one-year course in world history and one-year course in American history. At the University of California, Riverside in the 1960’s, a one-year course in Western civilization was required for graduation. That academic world is long gone. In 2020, an article was published by Forbes, a business site: “Who’s Afraid of Western Civ?” Here are the numbers: “By 2011, none of the 50 top U.S. universities required Western Civilization, and 34 didn’t even offer the course. Nationwide, only 17% of colleges require Western Civ, and only 18% require American history or government.” The turning point came on January 15, 1987 at Stanford University, when 500 students and a visiting celebrity, Rev. Jesse Jackson, demonstrated against a required course in Western culture. Their chant received national publicity by the media: “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Western civ has got to go!” The faculty took the hint. It dropped the course in 1989. (A long, carefully documented article on the rise and fall of the Western Civilization curriculum was published in 2020 by the National Association of Scholars: “The Lost History of Western Civilization,” by Stanley Kurtz. https://bit.ly/LostHistory2020)

Singer made it clear in 1976 that the academic discipline of history was in a state of crisis. He blamed the presuppositions of secular humanism. Unfortunately, he never wrote a book on the purpose and meaning of history. His article offered no insights regarding an explicitly Christian way of interpreting and writing history. He was therefore in the distressing position of trying to beat something with nothing. Nevertheless, his essay serves as an introduction to Van Til’s writings on history and historiography. This book fills in the details.C. The Nature of the Crisis

In Part 2 of this book, I go into the details of the crisis in modern historiography. I became aware of this crisis in my senior year of college, 1962–63. I took a course in historiography in the second semester. The history department required history majors to take this course. Had it not been required, it is doubtful that many students would have enrolled. I was an exception. I was interested in questions regarding epistemology, the philosophical study of what people can know and how they can know it. I had been reading the works of economist Ludwig von Mises for two years. Also, beginning in the fall of 1962, Rushdoony began sending me spiral-bound syllabi written by Van Til for his students. What I did not know was this: in 1962, Van Til had written a multi-volume mimeographed syllabus, Christianity in Conflict. It was a history of Christian apologetics from the second century onward. His contention was this: the early church began a tradition which undermined the testimony of the church, namely, the use of Greek philosophy as a way to defend the teachings of the church and the legitimacy of the gospel. In Part I of that syllabus, Van Til devoted six pages to an analysis of a book by R. G. Collingwood, The Idea of History. Van Til had correctly identified the scholar who was arguably the major humanist philosopher of history in the mid-twentieth century. Singer relied on Van Til’s critique to write his article.

In that course, I read two anthologies of essays on the philosophy of history and the writing of history. Two of the essayists, Carl Becker and Charles Beard, had delivered presidential addresses to the American Historical Association in the early 1930’s. These articles were included in one of the anthologies. I discuss them in Chapters 8 and 9. In most of the materials on the meaning of history written after 1920, historians presented some version of historical relativism. They were in reaction against the ideal of late-nineteenth century historians: the objective interpretation of history. This had been called scientific history. Any claim of scientific precision and authority was not taken seriously by leading historians after 1920.

A neglected cause of this loss of faith in objective history was the rise of the Copenhagen school of physics in the 1920’s: quantum physics. That movement had declared that the realm of subatomic physics is not governed by the same Newtonian laws of cause and effect that govern the realm of atoms, where you and I live. This change of view began to affect the social sciences. One influential scholar who understood the impact of quantum physics outside of physics departments was Roscoe Pound, who was Dean of the Harvard Law School from 1916 to 1937. After this, he became a University Professor at Harvard. In 1940, he wrote this in his book, Contemporary Juristic Theory: “Nothing has been so upsetting to political and juristic thinking as the growth of the idea of contingency in physics. It has taken away the analogy from which philosophers had reached the very idea of law. It has deprived political and juristic thought of the pattern to which they had conceived of government and law as set up. Physics had been the rock on which they had built” (p. 34). Physics was no longer a reliable rock in 1930. I discussed this reconstruction of Newtonian physics in Chapter 1 of my book, Is The World Running Down? Crisis in the Christian Worldview (1988).

. . . God created the world, and then He created man to exercise dominion over it (Gen. 1:26–28). Man’s mind comprehends his environment—not perfectly, but adequately for a creature responsible before God to exercise dominion in God’s name. It is only because mankind has this interpretive ability that science can exist. Even more crucial, it is only because God created and actively, providentially sustains this universe that science can exist.

Few Christians have been told that without three key doctrines that stem directly from Christian theology, modern science could not have been developed: first, the creation of the universe by a totally transcendent God out of nothing; second, the sustaining providence of God; third, linear (straight line) history. The pagan world, including Greece and Rome, did not believe these doctrines, and it did not develop theoretical science. Similarly, both Chinese and Islamic science failed to carry through on their hopeful beginnings in science because they rejected a Christian worldview. Because the West believed in these three doctrines, modern science became possible.

Because modern man has abandoned all three of these doctrines, modern science has become increasingly irrational, despite its tremendous advancement. As the experiments become more precise, physicists have lost faith in the coherence of the universe. The twentieth century has abandoned the stable, rational worldview of late-nineteenth-century physical science (pp. 13–14).

What I wrote about modern natural science in 1988, I am writing about modern historiography in this book. The problem is the same—skepticism—because the cause is the same: the abandonment of a worldview that affirms the possibility of objective knowledge. The twenty-first century is increasingly an era of subjectivism. This started in the late-nineteenth century, and it accelerated after World War I. In his book, Twilight of Authority (1975), Robert Nisbet observed:

Twilight periods are rich in manifestations of subjectivity, and our own is no exception. The retreat to inner consciousness that began in literature at the very beginning of the century, but which was offset for a long time by still-powerful currents of objectivity, has become a major phenomenon in the cultural setting of the present, and may be seen not only in literature and the fine arts, but in substantial areas of the social sciences, philosophy, and, variously, in the wide range of popular therapeutic explorations of self. This subjectivity would be less significant if it were not associated with what has become an enlarging distrust of reason and science in some of the areas of inquiry which only recently have become accepted in the terms of rationalism (pp. 139–40).

As I explain in Part 2, the spread of subjectivism has steadily undermined humanistic historians’ trust in the meaningfulness of their research and the research of their peers. This subjectivism is an inescapable result of the academic world’s rejection of biblical creationism. It assumes a rival view of origins: impersonal, purposeless, meaningless cosmic evolution.Conclusion

I have learned after six decades of experience in teaching, primarily on the printed page and the computer screen, that it is more effective to start with a presentation of what is correct before launching into detailed criticisms of what is incorrect. The old saying is true: you can’t beat something with nothing. It is best to begin with something, and especially something true. This is why I devote Part 1 to a presentation of the biblical foundations of history and also historiography. These five covenantal categories are foundational to the study of society: sovereignty, authority, law, sanctions, and succession. The Bible identifies the content of these five categories in the realm of history: creationism, the image of God in man, biblical law, God’s imputation of meaning, and cultural inheritance over time.

In Part 2, I survey humanism’s rival construct. Humanist historians rely on the same five categories in their pursuit of an understanding of the past—sovereignty, authority, law, sanctions, and succession—but they substitute different content in four of the five: evolution, autonomy, relativism, and nominalism. On the fifth point, succession, they remain silent. It is too depressing: entropy—the heat death of the again purposeless universe. (See Chapter 10.)

In Part 3, I discuss how and why Christian historians must reconstruct the epistemological foundations of their field from the bottom up, and then begin to produce historical studies that are consistent with the Christian worldview regarding the structure of history. There is such a worldview. The fact that Christian historians have ignored it for so long has undermined their understanding of historical development. They have adopted too much of the humanists’ covenant model, which is implicit in the history profession’s university screening system that certifies professional competence. But there is no formal university course in presuppositions in any academic discipline. At most, there are courses in methodology, which never mention the presuppositions that undergird the professors’ worldview. But the humanists’ presuppositions exist, and they shape the thinking of most professional historians.

An Educational Commentary on the Bible

AN EDUCATIONAL COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE

19th October, 2021 By Rodney N. Kirby, (circa 1980)

“And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him…And the rib, which: the LORD God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man…Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” (Genesis 2:18-24)

In this [20th] century, under the influence of John Dewey, a primary function of the school has been seen to be “socialization.” The children must learn to become “socialized,” to “get along with others,” to function properly in a “democratic” society.

Early childhood education (kindergarten and nursery school) has thus become all-important. Children must learn how to play together, how to share, and how to co-operate. It is thought that if children are not sent to school at the earliest conceivable age, they, will grow up to be social outcasts.

The same reasoning applies to teaching older children at home, rather than sending them to an ungodly school. These children are seen as somehow being “deprived”—deprived of the chance to interact with their peers. To many Christian parents, this concern is so strong that they succumb and send their children to schools they know to be anti-Christian, simply for the “socialization”. (All these children are “deprived” of is being taught in the ways of Hell.)

Our passage for this lesson shows us something different. God saw that it was not good for Adam to be alone (vs. 18), just like people today say it is not good for children to be alone. But notice that God did not give Adam a “peer group” with which he was to “socialize.” (Neither did God make “Adam and Steve,” gay lib notwithstanding.) To solve Adam’s problem of aloneness, God made a wife—Eve. Thus began the first human institution—the family.

Broadly speaking, this shows the centrality of the family in society. God did not make for Adam a church, complete with elders, deacons, committees, and choirs (the “War Department”). Neither did God make a civil government, including legislators, judges, and bureaucrats (certainly FDA would have required a label, “Caution: Eating this fruit may be hazardous to your health!”). God instituted the family first of all. The family is central to man in carrying out the cultural mandate—note the context (vs. 15). Before Adam could effectively subdue the earth, he needed a helper suited for him. God gave him a wife to assist him in exercising dominion.

This centrality of the family has definite implications for our schools. In Social Studies (or History), we must not neglect the family. As we study a given society, we must study the family structure which dominates that society. Does the father take the lead? Is the family governed by the mother? Does the family unit frequently include grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. (cf. Gen. 2:24)? Are two homosexuals considered a “family”? Is the family weakened through the use of ungodly laws (e.g., inheritance taxes)?

We must examine such questions as these, and note their implications in the rest of society. For example, the imposition of inheritance taxes results in the loss of the family farm, and the increase in corporately-owned farms; a disregard for the importance of the family has definite economic implications. Taking a covenantal view of history, we examine societies in the light of God’s commands, and one of these commands is the cultural mandate. Since the family is central to this task, we would be missing the point entirely in our study of history if we neglect the family.

Getting back to the original topic (the “socialization” of the child), we may take a fresh look at the problem. Concern for such “socialization” has only arisen in recent years. Twenty, thirty, or forty years ago, no such concern was prevalent. Was it because people then were somehow less enlightened concerning the social needs of the children?

No, the problem is that these same years have witnessed a breakdown in the Biblical concept of the family. Divorces are more frequent; government economic policies of monetary inflation force many mothers out of the home to find a job; gay rights, kiddie lib, and extramarital sex have all sprung up. The family is disintegrating.

God’s solution for Adam’s “aloneness” was to provide for him a family. This is the same solution we must give for the social development of the children. In the family, children learn how to get along with other people—how to converse, how to show loving concern, how to cooperate, and how to settle disagreements. The family is the main instrument for the “socialization” of the child. (Granted, it was easier in the days when a family consisted of eight or ten children—a family was practically a community in itself!)

The godly family teaches the child how to do these things in a Biblical way. The corrupt family of the present day also teaches the child how to behave—it teaches him to run away from problems (divorce), to seek for instant self-gratification (extra-marital sex), and to assert his own “rights” without regard to anyone else (woman’s, children’s, gay lib).

Parents have told me, when I told them I had a problem with their child fighting, “He picks that up from all the kids at his church; they are always picking on him.” However, I have noted that these family members are constantly fighting among themselves—husband and wife, brother and sister, parents and children. The problem is at home, not at church. Fighting families produce fighting children.

Hand in hand with the centrality of the family in “socialization” goes the family’s role in discipline. Discipline in the school is only effective if it is reinforced at home. The old rule of, “If you get a whooping at school, you’ll get another one when you get home” is valid. If the parents are lax regarding discipline, then no amount of strict discipline at school will (humanly speaking) really change the child’s life.

The importance of the family in fulfilling the cultural mandate must be emphasized in high school, as students consider their life’s calling. In “career counseling,” the student must be made to see that establishing a godly family is the most important thing he must do to prepare for work. Men must see that, except in rare cases (cf. Matt. 19:10-12), they are to marry, and that a wife will be a vital asset in the exercise of their calling. Likewise, women must understand that their calling is generally to marry and be supportive of their husband in his work. This would all necessitate teaching the biblical view of the family to high school students in some formal way—perhaps in an ethics class.

God has created the family and given it a key role in His world. This must be carried out in our schools, in order that the children might effectively carry out the dominion mandate. Let the world have “liberated” women and children—they will only lose dominion, and we Christians can take over that much quicker!

EPISTEMOLOGICAL SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS (2): Our Future and our Foes

12th October, 2021, by Kevin Craig (circa 1980)

As the government escalates its war on independent Christian schools, wearied soldiers of the Cross may often find themselves asking, Is it all worth it? Is there any chance that such a tattered minority can triumph over the gargantuan State and its institutions? The concept of “Epistemological Self-Consciousness,” explained in a previous article, not only shows us who the ultimate victor will be, but how we as Christians should deal with our enemy.

Matt. 13:24-29 records the parable of the Wheat and the Tares. The parable indicates that believers and unbelievers both are left in the world until they mature. Then the tares are taken out of the world, followed by the wheat. In this historical process, the wheat becomes more like wheat, and the tares more like tares. The Christian, equipped with God’s Word, sets out to exercise dominion under God, and through the Word is given power (Acts 1:8; Eph. 1:19; I Cor. 4:20; 2 Tim. 1:7; II Cor. 10:5; Rom. 16:20). The unbeliever is propelled by his own rebellion against God into a headlong dash toward death (Prov. 8:36). Fortunately, the Word of God acts to restrain his lawlessness (I Tim. 1:8-10) and he does not destroy himself. The man who acts consistent with his avowed unbelief will be a very ugly, powerless person; something like a punk rocker. Or worse.

For some unbelievers, however, the law of God does more than simply restrain lawlessness. It is used by them to become great scientists, teachers, and scholars. Even if they don’t read the Bible, they have the work of the law written on their hearts (Rom. 2:14-15). Their consciences tell them they should obey the law of God. The more they do, the better teachers they will be. They would never admit that they are following the Word of God, but they are, and God, who guides the universe by the Word of His Power (Heb. 1:3), promises that those who obey his law will be prospered in this life Deut. 8 and 28).

Gary North therefore points out that unbelievers have two choices. First, they can conform themselves to Biblical law, or at least to the work of the law written on their hearts. Or second, they can abandon God’s law, and thereby abandon power. They can succeed in whatever they do only if they do it on God’s terms: by acknowledging and conforming themselves to God’s Word. There is no other way. Remember, any turning away from the Word brings impotence, fragmentation, and despair.

This leads us to our future and our foes. If God is the source of all good gifts (Jas. 1:17), then the future belongs to those who are blessed by God, and overtaken by his gifts. According to Deut. 28 and Lev. 26, this means that only those who turn to God and His Word can expect victory and success. The maturing of the wheat and the tares does not lead to the cultural impotence or defeat of the wheat. Christians who are committed to God’s Word are in the driver’s seat. The atheist punk rock star cannot compete with the genius of a Christian like Bach. He will destroy himself while Bach goes on to glorify God in victory. The unrighteous can gain access to God’s blessings only by accepting God’s moral universe as it is, not by inventing an evolutionary fable, and imagining a universe of chaos and meaninglessness.

The future has meaning for the Christian, because it is in the future that the Christian will triumph. Proverbs 13:22 promises that “the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.” Just as Canaanites inhabited the Land and kept it from going wild so that the Hebrew children could inherit cities they did not build (Ex. 23:29-30) so the Lord allows Humanists to devise wonderful music, physics, chemistry, and even teaching methods, so that when we inherit the Promised Land, we can burn the idols and keep that which conforms to God’s Word. Cornelius Van Til describes it like this: “Sinful men will continue to produce a marvelous culture. But all of the products of their culture will be taken from them and brought into the great display chambers of the Kingdom of Christ. When sinners repent then their culture is saved with them. If they do not repent then their culture will still be saved, but for others who do repent, and these will enter in upon the inheritance of it. The meek shall inherit the earth” (Essays on Christian Education, pp. 8, 15).

Matthew 13 also tells us something about our foes; that we sometimes can cooperate with them. Until the unbeliever matures, and strikes out against God and His creation, he may look and act much – like a Christian. Some Satanists respond to the knowledge of God’ law written in their hearts. They have a large degree of knowledge about God’s creation. We must keep in mind that the fall of man was not a decrease in knowledge or intellect. The unbeliever can still have knowledge. It can be applied to God’s creation and produce beneficial results. The rebellion of the unregenerate lies beneath the surface, smouldering, ready to flare up in wrath, but restrained by God and His Word. The atheistic scientist says that there is no order in the universe, but knows in his heart that there is order — God’s order. And for him to continue working, he assents to God’s order.

The successful unbeliever (i.e., one who resembles a Christian more than a punk rocker) is like a cattle rustler who steals his neighbor’s cows, raises them, and produces a really great steak. Without his neighbor’s cows, or his neighbor’s knowledge of raising cows, he would be lost. He says that there is no order or meaning in the universe; that it would make just as much sense to feed the cattle lye or poison, but he knows this isn’t true, and he feeds them according to God’s Word and succeeds. As long as the unbeliever is willing to abide by the Word of God, we can work with him.

Every gift he has has been stolen from God, but as long as what he does is inconsistent with what he says he believes, he can be a great economist, a great scientist, or even a great teacher. Our standard is the Word of God. We judge all things according to the law of God. The Biblical Educator is observing even humanistic teachers and is constantly finding Biblical approaches to education that Christians can employ. Just because a person is not a Christian does not mean that that person can arrive at no true knowledge.

By the grace of God, they can. And they do. Next time the BibEd cites an atheistic or humanistic publication, or praises a non-Christian teacher, remember this sad fact: For decades now, professing Christians have neglected the Bible as God’s instruction book for all time. They have dropped the torch in one area after another. Our current economic, political, and educational problems are the result of this retreat. But even many humanists recognize that their children aren’t learning, and their conscience tells them that what they are (or are not) doing is wrong.

They have searched for solutions and have found the answers in the law written in their hearts. Thus they may be working in terms of God’s Word even though they deny God all the while. Ironically, many Christians claim to believe God’s word, yet deny it by failing to practice it. Our standard is not what men may say, but what God has said.

The Origin of Humanism

By Rodney Kirby (around 1980)

For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil (Genesis 3:5).

In the recent state meetings of the White House Conference on Families, one word has been brought to the forefront of attention —the word “humanism”. The conservative, pro-family groups accuse the “opposition” of being humanists. The term is also brought up often in court cases involving Christian ministries (schools, boys’ homes, etc.). Humanism is not a new concept, however. It has its origins here in our text for this month. Satan here tempts Adam and Eve to become like God,” knowing good and evil.

What does it mean here, to “know” good and evil? The word “know” in Hebrew (yada) often merely refers to an intellectual apprehension — as in, “I know Columbus discovered America,” However, that could not be the case here. Adam and Eve already knew good and evil this way — they knew that “good” was obedience to God, and evil was eating the forbidden fruit (disobedience). ‘Obviously, this would be no temptation.

The key phrase for an understanding of this is “like God.” How does God know anything? Does He look at an already existing universe and then learn about it, as man does? God’s knowing is on a different plane than man’s knowing. God knows all things (omniscience) because He created all things and determined all things. God’s knowledge thus has the force of determining. God does not know Columbus discovered America because He watched him do it, but because He planned for him to do it. See, in this regard, Gen. 18:19, Exo. 3:19 (cf. 4:21); Exo. 4:14 (cf. vs. 11); II Sam. 7:20 (cf. vs. 18); II Kings 19:27 (cf. vs. 25); Jer. 1:5; and Amos 3:2 (cf. vs. 1).

And so here Adam and Eve were tempted to know good and evil like God knows good and evil — determining it. They desired to make their own laws, to set themselves up as the lawgivers over creation. This is the essence of Humanism — man is his own god. There is no God above man who defines good and evil. Man defines right and wrong according to his own desires.

Also in Humanism is an emphasis on human experience. All things are to be judged by experience (e.g., “You can’t condemn homosexuality unless you’ve tried it”). This thought underlies Satan’s temptation — “God has his hypothesis, and I have mine; you try it and see who is right.”

Let us look briefly at how Humanism works itself out in the classroom. By looking at the Humanistic approach, we may be better able to develop a Christian educational alternative.

Content

In every subject area, Humanism shows itself in the idea that there are no pre-established rules to follow. Any rules must be those which the student himself has formulated.

In reading, this is seen in many of the non-phonics programs used today. Phonics is usually not discarded completely; it is merely used as one of many methods for learning how to read (along with sight words, configuration clues, contextual clues, and, if all else fails, “looking at the pictures”). When phonics is taught in such a program, it is not taught as a series of rules, such as “M says mmm as in milk,” or, “igh says i as in night.” Rather, the children are expected to generalize for themselves such rules. The child is expected to think, “Every time I see this letter with two Mumps in it, I hear the sound mmm. I wonder if there is some connection?” See Rudolf Flesch’s classic Why Johnny Can’t Read, chapter 6, for more information.

In Mathematics, Humanism does the same thing as in reading. Bare facts are presented to the children, who are expected to formulate their own rules (such as the associative property). Another way Humanism is seen in mathematics is in seeing mathematical laws as man-made laws, and thus as having no relation to reality. Mathematics is thus seen as a sort of game — not as a way of exercising dominion over God’s creation by discovering laws created by God. (See Larry Zimmerman’s article, “Mathematics: Is God Silent?” in the (January, February and March 1980 issue of this periodical.)

In music and art, Humanism would say again that rules about “good” music are merely man’s conventions; beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What I think is good music (Bach, etc.) is merely my personal taste. I have no grounds for recommending it as “better” than John Cage, Elvis Presley, or even Dolly Parton.

Methods

As mentioned above, Humanism places experience in a central position; this has implications for classroom methods. Modern educators (including Christian ones — pick up almost any issue of Christian Home and School) have little good to say about a strictly scheduled class day. To set up a tight schedule is to say that the teacher knows more than the student what he should be studying (say, Phonics from 8:30 until 9:10). According to Humanist educators, the only effective learning is that which arises out of the child’s experience. The teacher is to structure education around experiences the children may have (a visit to a dairy farm, a tornado, a new pet, or a car wreck). The teacher is to use these experiences as the basis of art projects, reading assignments, and creative writing projects.

Now, there is an element of truth to this approach — note the “situational” teaching in Deut. 6. — but the Humanist makes it the center of his teaching method, not one among many useful tools. The Humanist says, “You must experience something to truly understand it,” and thus does not really take education beyond the realm of the child’s experience.

Discipline

The serpent-inspired Humanist rejects the imposition of classroom rules from without (by the teacher, administrator, or school board). Students must have an equal voice in establishing codes of conduct4ted This is seen in the establishment of classroom and playground rules and the proper punishments (“What do you think is fair?”). It has been seen in the last decade on college campuses, with student organizations setting up codes of conduct (dorm visitation rules, alcohol use, etc.) and throwing down those given by the administration.

Again, there is a proper way of using this technique — giving and explaining the relevant Biblical data, and then asking the students to help find ways to implement that. But this is not how the Humanist goes about it. Biblical norms are offered as one among several options (if they are considered at all), which are to be evaluated by the autonomous (“self-law”) student.

Humanistic educational theories have swept American education, including much Christian education. Of course, since we as Christians are not yet perfected in holiness, we all lapse into one form or another of Humanism. Let us seek diligently to root it out wherever it appears, that our schools may not reflect the Tempter’s wiles, but may show forth the glories of our sovereign Lord.

AN EDUCATIONAL COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE

By Rodney N. Kirby

“And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him…And the rib, which: the LORD God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man…Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” (Genesis 2:18-24)

In this [20th] century, under the influence of John Dewey, a primary function of the school has been seen to be “socialization.” The children must learn to become “socialized,” to “get along with others,” to function properly in a “democratic” society.

Early childhood education (kindergarten and nursery school) has thus become all-important. Children must learn how to play together, how to share, and how to co-operate. It is thought that if children are not sent to school at the earliest conceivable age, they, will grow up to be social outcasts.

The same reasoning applies to teaching older children at home, rather than sending them to an ungodly school. These children are seen as somehow being “deprived”—deprived of the chance to interact with their peers. To many Christian parents, this concern is so strong that they succumb and send their children to schools they know to be anti-Christian, simply for the “socialization”. (All these children are “deprived” of is being taught in the ways of Hell.)

Our passage for this lesson shows us something different. God saw that it was not good for Adam to be alone (vs. 18), just like people today say it is not good for children to be alone. But notice that God did not give Adam a “peer group” with which he was to “socialize.” (Neither did God make “Adam and Steve,” gay lib notwithstanding.) To solve Adam’s problem of aloneness, God made a wife—Eve. Thus began the first human institution—the family.

Broadly speaking, this shows the centrality of the family in society. God did not make for Adam a church, complete with elders, deacons, committees, and choirs (the “War Department”). Neither did God make a civil government, including legislators, judges, and bureaucrats (certainly FDA would have required a label, “Caution: Eating this fruit may be hazardous to your health!”). God instituted the family first of all. The family is central to man in carrying out the cultural mandate—note the context (vs. 15). Before Adam could effectively subdue the earth, he needed a helper suited for him. God gave him a wife to assist him in exercising dominion.

This centrality of the family has definite implications for our schools. In Social Studies (or History), we must not neglect the family. As we study a given society, we must study the family structure which dominates that society. Does the father take the lead? Is the family governed by the mother? Does the family unit frequently include grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. (cf. Gen. 2:24)? Are two homosexuals considered a “family”? Is the family weakened through the use of ungodly laws (e.g., inheritance taxes)?

We must examine such questions as these, and note their implications in the rest of society. For example, the imposition of inheritance taxes results in the loss of the family farm, and the increase in corporately-owned farms; a disregard for the importance of the family has definite economic implications. Taking a covenantal view of history, we examine societies in the light of God’s commands, and one of these commands is the cultural mandate. Since the family is central to this task, we would be missing the point entirely in our study of history if we neglect the family.

Getting back to the original topic (the “socialization” of the child), we may take a fresh look at the problem. Concern for such “socialization” has only arisen in recent years. Twenty, thirty, or forty years ago, no such concern was prevalent. Was it because people then were somehow less enlightened concerning the social needs of the children?

No, the problem is that these same years have witnessed a breakdown in the Biblical concept of the family. Divorces are more frequent; government economic policies of monetary inflation force many mothers out of the home to find a job; gay rights, kiddie lib, and extramarital sex have all sprung up. The family is disintegrating.

God’s solution for Adam’s “aloneness” was to provide for him a family. This is the same solution we must give for the social development of the children. In the family, children learn how to get along with other people—how to converse, how to show loving concern, how to cooperate, and how to settle disagreements. The family is the main instrument for the “socialization” of the child. (Granted, it was easier in the days when a family consisted of eight or ten children—a family was practically a community in itself!)

The godly family teaches the child how to do these things in a Biblical way. The corrupt family of the present day also teaches the child how to behave—it teaches him to run away from problems (divorce), to seek for instant self-gratification (extra-marital sex), and to assert his own “rights” without regard to anyone else (woman’s, children’s, gay lib).

Parents have told me, when I told them I had a problem with their child fighting, “He picks that up from all the kids at his church; they are always picking on him.” However, I have noted that these family members are constantly fighting among themselves—husband and wife, brother and sister, parents and children. The problem is at home, not at church. Fighting families produce fighting children.

Hand in hand with the centrality of the family in “socialization” goes the family’s role in discipline. Discipline in the school is only effective if it is reinforced at home. The old rule of, “If you get a whooping at school, you’ll get another one when you get home” is valid. If the parents are lax regarding discipline, then no amount of strict discipline at school will (humanly speaking) really change the child’s life.

The importance of the family in fulfilling the cultural mandate must be emphasized in high school, as students consider their life’s calling. In “career counseling,” the student must be made to see that establishing a godly family is the most important thing he must do to prepare for work. Men must see that, except in rare cases (cf. Matt. 29:10-12), they are to marry, and that a wife will be a vital asset in the exercise of their calling. Likewise, women must understand that their calling is generally to marry and be supportive of their husband in his work. This would all necessitate teaching the biblical view of the family to high school students in some formal way—perhaps in an ethics class.

God has created the family and given it a key role in His world. This must be carried out in our schools, in order that the children might effectively carry out the dominion mandate. Let the world have “liberated” women and children—they will only lose dominion, and we Christians can take over that much quicker!

Delta Variant + CRT =Exodus

By Gary North (www.garynorth.com), 30/8/2021

Here is a heart-warming report.

Despite their efforts, [Colorado’s Adams District 14] started school with 5% fewer students, adding to a decline made worse by the coronavirus pandemic.

At Dallas Independent School District in Texas, about 12,000 students failed to show up for the first day of school. Administrators there, like in Colorado, have been working overtime to track them down.

H.I. Holland Elementary Principal Shanieka Christmas-McDonald said educators were calling families to say, “Hey, where’s my baby?”

“We’re really connecting with them in our conversations, letting them know we miss the student, we want to see them here and that we’re going to take care of them as much as we can,” she told the Dallas Morning News.

But working against them were three sloppy back-to-school rollouts and families who feared sending their children to school amid a surge of COVID-19 cases driven by the fast-moving delta variant.

This year, district officials project they’ll have about 146,000 students, down from previous years.

On Aug. 2, only 270 children showed up at Holland Elementary. About 360 were expected.

In the weeks since, the school has slowly been able to build its attendance and said an official enrollment count was still weeks away.

Even with a billion-dollar federal government lifeline, public schools across the country are headed toward a financial cliff.

This is good news for liberty.

School officials have said that federal COVID-19-relief funds aren’t enough to make up for the blows to state and local budgets, or the cost of remote learning, as well as the attempts to get children back into classrooms. State and local funding make up about 90% of school district revenue. In many states, local funding contributions flow through the state treasury before making their way to school districts. States use enrollment numbers to calculate money on a per-student basis. If a student leaves a school district, the money goes with them.

Preliminary enrollment numbers for Oregon’s largest school district show a 3.1% decline. The numbers follow a 2020-21 school year enrollment drop, not only in Portland but the state as a whole.

In North Carolina, enrollment dropped 5% last year. For kindergarteners, the decrease was 15%.

Lindsay Wagner of the state public school forum said there was some concern that students may not come back following the COVID-19 crisis.

“A lot of districts, especially rural ones, don’t have the local funding to absorb [the] losses,” she said. “They really rely on state funding to fund their school budgets.”

In Buncombe County, every student that leaves takes $4,592.46 with them.

The lockdowns have backfired against what is operationally the only established church in America. The public school systems around the country are experiencing net losses on a scale not seen before. This is historically unprecedented.

AND THE WINNER IS. . . .

The big winner is home schooling.

Cutting into enrollment is the rise of home-schooling.

Home-schooling has shown its staying power after starting as a temporary approach to education during the lockdown.

Typically, a little more than 3% of the nation’s school-age children are home-schooled in a given year, according to federal data. However, a significant surge has been confirmed by the U.S. Census Bureau, which reported that in March, the rate of home-schooling rose to 11% by September 2020.

In Wisconsin, public schools saw their largest single-year decrease in enrollment last fall. Private school enrollment also dropped 1.5%, about half as much as public schools, according to a Wisconsin Policy Forum report released in August. The decrease brought private school enrollment down to 118,862 — its lowest point in at least a decade. Home-schooling, on the other hand, shot up by 47% over the preceding year, its largest increase since 1984.

In Texas, the number of parents choosing to home-school nearly tripled, going from 4.5% in 2019 to 12.3% in 2020, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

In New Mexico, 6.4% of households chose to home-school at the beginning of the 2020-21 school year. That number jumped to 14.3% by the middle of the fall semester.

The percentage of families that homeschool their children will not go back to what it was in February 2020. Those days are gone. A majority of the parents who have shifted to homeschooling have seen see that their children perform better in a homeschool environment than they do in a public school classroom environment. They could see this in the virtual education experiment.

So far this month, which is when new enrollments begin, the Ron Paul Curriculum has experienced a decline of about 2% from the peak a month ago. Yet it experienced an increase of over 75% in 2020/21 as a result of the lockdowns. So, while there have been some families that are sending their children back into the public schools, most of them are being replaced by new families that are pulling their children out of the public schools. With the Delta variant spreading, I do not expect most of the parents who signed up since March 2020 to abandon the RPC program.

Meanwhile, establishment pressure in the public schools to adopt critical race theory will continue. The promoters of CRT are dedicated. The pressure will be relentless. No matter how much parents protest, they really have no say in this matter. They can take it or leave it. I predict that a relatively small minority of parents will leave it. I do not expect that there will be a mass exodus from the public schools based on CRT. Most parents are submissive. They grin and bear it.

Public education really is the only agreed-upon religion in America. The public schools are seen as agencies of social salvation. But, at the margin, the defections have begun. There really has been an exodus from the public schools. It is not a mass exodus, but it is an exodus.

At some point, public schools will reach critical mass. The system will implode. Middle-class parents who want their children to go to college will view local public schools as inner-city schools: holding tanks for lower-class students who will not graduate from high school. White parents want white privilege. Black parents want black privilege. Hispanic parents want Hispanic privilege. But privilege is only going to be available in a handful of tax-funded charter schools, magnet schools, and lily-white school districts. Everybody else will have to find a scholastic port in the storm. The only affordable port in the storm will be homeschooling. “Y’all come!”

Dennis Prager’s Secret to Counter the Left

By Kevin Swanson, 5th August, 2021

Conservative radio host Dennis Prager nails it. He says, “The single best thing Americans can do to counter the left-wing attack on America is to take their children out of America’s schools.”

Dennis Prager, conservative talk show host,
urged parents to take their kids out of America’s schools.

Wow!

Not voting for the most conservative presidential candidate. Not Christians running for elective office. While those are both great goals and would demonstrably benefit America, Prager insists that the single best thing Americans can do is to pull their children out of America’s schools.

Prager writes that government schools “prematurely sexualize them, thereby robbing them of their innocence; and harm them intellectually and morally.”

That’s why I dedicated my June 14th Generations program to his insightful commentary.

Public school’s Russian Roulette:
Drag Queens & Anti-American propaganda

To fully communicate the odds that your child will be harmed in the typical public school, he offers a disturbing word picture. He writes, “Sending your child(ren) to most American schools is playing Russian roulette with their values—but unlike the gun in Russian roulette, which has a bullet in only one of its six chambers, the schools’ guns hold four or five bullets.” That’s a scary statement!

Why are the public schools so dangerous? The talk show host says, “In many elementary schools, your child is taught that gender is chosen and that there is no difference between boys and girls; … and many children from first grade on attend “Drag Queen Story Hour,” wherein an obvious man — wearing women’s clothing, garish makeup, and a wig — entertains them.”

And it’s not just a rejection of God’s design for sexuality and marriage. Today’s American schools indoctrinate the children with many ideals contrary to the Christian foundations upon which America was built.

The denial of public school parents

Prager doesn’t pull any punches, noting that, sadly, most parents are in downright denial. Their delusion manifests itself in two ways:

  1. “Many parents do not want to know what their children are being taught and the consequent damage done to them.”
  2. “They don’t really believe school will ruin their child, let alone their child’s relationship with them.”

Perhaps parents are in denial because they incorrectly conclude that today’s public school curriculum is no different than when they attended a generation ago. Nothing could be further from the truth. Tragically, it’s downright hostile to a biblical worldview in every way.

Indeed, Prager writes, “You are fooling yourself if you think the odds are that after attending American schools from kindergarten through college, your child will turn out well-educated, intellectually alive, rational, kind, happy, well-adjusted, grateful to be American, and respectful of you and your values.”

That’s quite an indictment. To his credit, Prager acknowledges that most private schools are equally guilty before God of pushing a hostile worldview. And, for that matter, he writes, that parents “cannot necessarily even rely on Christian or Jewish schools. Most of them are as ‘woke’ as most secular schools. And if they do find a school that teaches, rather than poisons, they may not be able to afford the tuition.”

Enter home education.

Prager: A modern-day Gamaliel

In my June 14th Generations program, I called Dennis Prager, an orthodox Jew, a modern-day Gamaliel, like the one found in Acts 5:24, who took a stand for the Christians of his day. To be frank, it’s wonderfully encouraging to see someone with his stature and platform unapologetically articulate what I’ve been saying in homeschool conferences since 1986. As a homeschool graduate myself, and as the father of five homeschool graduates, I’ve traveled to 48 states and 16 countries passionately advocating for home education.

Dennis Prager and A.A. Hodge share concern
about nihilistic destruction of America
By way of back story, Prager says the question that he most often gets which led to his column was this: “What can we do to fight back against the nihilistic anti-American destruction of virtually all the country’s major institutions?”

Frankly, the question and the talk show host’s answer echo the thoughts of A.A. Hodge (1823-1886), the God-honoring Presbyterian leader, and former Princeton Seminary president.

A.A. Hodge, former Princeton Seminary president,
warned against a centralized education system
which would propagate anti-Christian and atheistic unbelief.

He wrote, “I am as sure as I am of Christ’s reign that a comprehensive and centralized system of national education, separated from religion, as is now commonly proposed, will prove the most appalling enginery for the propagation of anti-Christian and atheistic unbelief, and of anti-social nihilistic ethics, individual, social and political, which this sin-rent world has never seen.” (I cited that powerful quote in my new book Epoch: The Rise and Fall of the West.)

To put a fine point on it, nihilism is the outright rejection of all religious and moral principles in the belief that life is meaningless. Prager and Hodge both insist that this nihilistic worldview in America’s centralized education system is not just a bad ideology; it’s destructive! It’s a hand grenade. It’s dynamite under the foundations of the American family, of the American culture, of the American political system, and of the American nation. Indeed, this is destroying our very civilization.

Adam McManus, my co-host on that June 14th Generations program, quoted directly from the American Humanist Association. Make no mistake. The humanists want to capture our children. Listen to this. “In order to capture this nation, one has to totally remove moral and spiritual values and absolutes from the thinking of the child. The child has to think that there is no standard of right and wrong, that truth is relative, and that diversity is the only absolute to be gained.”

Public schoolers were 2.5 times more likely
to be destroyed spiritually vs. homeschoolers

In our 2015 Gen2 Survey, we surveyed 10,000 Christian kids raised in Christian homes including those who were public schooled, private schooled and home schooled. Guess what? If a child was public schooled, they were 2.5-3 times more likely to be destroyed spiritually. No wonder 88% of Christian high school graduates walk away from their faith!

Prager assumes that some parents hesitate to homeschool because they feel ill-equipped. Frankly, in my view, even the most “incompetent” parent will accidentally do dramatically better than the public schools.

After forty-plus years of experience in the homeschooling arena, I can confidently say that a parent dedicating just an hour a day of one-on-one time with a child is extraordinarily efficient, influential, and helpful in a child’s life. In fact, the average home schooler scores at the 84th percentile compared to the 50 percentile-mark for the average public schooler.

But, to be honest, it’s less about whether the child is learning academically, as important as that it. The primary concern is this: What values are your children being taught and how is it going to shape the rest of their lives and our culture overall?

My two primary concerns
even if you homeschool your kids

One final thought.

Even if you make the commendable decision to homeschool your children, I have two primary concerns. 1. We need to prepare our children to face opposition to their faith. Bible-based Christian worldview curriculum is a vital tool to equip your students with the knowledge and convictions needed to stand for the truth. That’s why we have invested over fifteen years in writing our Generations Curriculum – now available this year for all 12 grades. Not only will your children be adequately prepared for the attacks at college, but in their lives ahead in the “real world.”

2. We need to be pro-active in limiting the exposure of our children to the toxic pop culture.

  • Primarily, I would strongly advise against putting a smartphone in your junior high or high school student’s hands. Between the likely exposure to pornography and the insidious content on social media websites, it’s absolutely poisonous. (If you want your high schooler to have a phone for emergency purposes, I recommend you consider an alternative option like Gabb wireless which doesn’t have the Internet, social media, or games.)
  • If you have a television in your home, don’t make the mistake of putting it in your child’s room.
  • Make sure that you install the best internet filter on all of your computers/iPads. Without it, the precious innocence of your child can be lost with the click of the mouse, even while doing a legitimate search online for a paper.
  • Read my book The Tattooed Jesus: What Would the Real Jesus do with Pop Culture?

love how Dennis Prager concluded his column last month.

He said, “The single best thing Americans can do to fight the left-wing destruction of the country is to withdraw from the ‘educational’ system that is actively, deliberately miseducating them by the tens of millions. If millions of American parents did so, the country would turn around as fast as you could say ‘teachers unions.’ If they don’t, their children will continue being used as guinea pigs in the Left’s sick and dystopian experiment.”

How are you discipling your kids before they move out?

Besides, God says the primary obligation to educate and disciple your children is not with the state. It lays at the feet of the parents.

Deuteronomy 6:5-7 is as true today as the moment Moses wrote it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. From the day of your child’s birth, the sands have been flowing quickly through the hourglass of time. God has given you a limited window during which you have been tasked to pass the baton of faith to the next generation. Don’t let it pass you by! It will be your greatest regret if you do.

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Kevin Swanson
Director
Generations
mail@generations.org
www.generations.org