Genuine patriotism is not surprised or derailed by flaws, sins or wickedness in the object of our love. Sentimental patriotism, by contrast, treats love of country the same way a maudlin Hallmark card writer would treat, after three beers, love of mother. Mothers Day becomes a high, holy, and sacred thing — a sanctifying thing, rather than what it is, something needing to be sanctified, like everything else we do.
So real love understands grace, and the need for it. Real love understands gratitude, and the need for it. The need for grace does not eradicate the need for gratitude. The need for gratitude does not mean that grace has become unnecessary and superfluous. Leftists sneer at the need for gratitude, and the sentimental right sneers at the need for grace, revealing both sides to be idolatrous.
And so this brings us to the 4th of July, 2013 — the good, the bad, and the ugly. But lest we become hardened in cynicism, we will return to the top again. We will focus on the good, the bad, the ugly, and the good again.
Freedom to worship God. A long, legal tradition of liberty. Staggering affluence. Abundant food. Protection from the elements. Technology. Amazing cars and trucks. Electronic connectivity. A bed to sleep in. A lawn to mow. Meat on the grill. Fireworks for the grandkids.
Abortion mills. Stupid wars. Homosexual marriage. Statist idolatry. Oceanic debt. Pillaging tax collectors. Which slides nicely into . . .
Seedy politicians. Corrupt lobbyists. Idiotic reporters. Inane entertainments. A tattooed and lost generation. Dysfunctional schools. Local, sustainable farming that is both intentional and purposive. E-fads. A preening president, a lunatic legislature, and a jub jub judiciary.
A recoverable tradition. A constitutional foundation. A faithful remnant. An admirable contempt of the ruling elites. A glorious opportunity.
A chance to be faithful in our generation.
//”Abortion mills… Homosexual marriage…”//
Apparently you think minding one’s own business is un-American.
//”Statist idolatry . . .”//
Why is statist idolatry a bad thing but your presuppositionalist idolatry is a good thing?
You sure you want to call our rulers “elites”? I think “bureaucrats” would do. Or “bureaucratists.” Or self-anointed messiahs. “Elite” sounds better than they deserve.
The “ugly” section, as well as the closing, reminds me of Shelley’s “England in 1819,” though your optimism is post-millennial rather than Romantic.
Why is “Local, sustainable farming that is both intentional and purposive” an ugly thing?
Because it is a premier example of Christians tagging along behind the latest cool thing, while pretending they are engaged in cultural leadership. But it is slavish following, not leading.
I’m perplexed by your reference to “genuine patriotism.” To what country, precisely, is it that you are patriotic?
I am curious as to what makes the Court a jub hub judiciary? Why do we expect the Court to do anything but what they did? They aren’t interpreting scripture, but the Constitution and their prior precedent. Is your expectation that they would be interpreting the scriptures?
And even more, why does it matter? Do we really think that a 5-4 decision by nine people in Washington changes people’s heart? Does the law change people?
If only the word “stupid” actually covered what’s wrong with our wars. I’m still confused on the “local, sustainable farming” thing. Does it bother you that a Christian would care to know where their food is sourced without it being a moral issue? What are you actually calling ugly? Because in the Bible, farming (especially of the sustainable variety) is a pretty big beautiful deal. So you can’t be attacking the farming itself. Are you blowing your customary raspberries because Christians didn’t think of it? Are we slaves that seek out and purchase from a CSA because we don’t trust… Read more »
Poor Doug. If only America were more similar to the halcyon days of the Antebellum South. In that glorious era, whites sang church hymns alongside the “Negro” slaves who were picking their cotton, women dressed modestly and kept their yaps shut while supposed witches, “queers” and other people he dislikes had more than their warts burned off in the town square for the entertainment of God’s “Elect”.
Someone, please get this guy a time machine.
Z4RQUON said: “Apparently you think minding one’s own business is un-American.”
Dear sir: Perhaps instead of commenting, you should mind your own business.
Thanks, Doug, for your response! I believe I understand your point, though I welcome further clarification if it is required.
If a son were to kiss his father only because he admires a flatterer who does the same, it would be an ugly kiss.
Bradshaw continues to blast away at the helpless strawmen of his own construction. How sporting of him, though it’s much less of a challenge than engaging with what Doug has actually said.
I’m pretty sure that most of the major players in promoting ““Local, sustainable farming that is both intentional and purposive” from the beginning have been devout Christians looking to take care of themselves, their neighbors, and God’s creation. Lots of smaller Christian groups have been practicing it for centuries, and the current wave has been pushed by major Christian figures like Wendell Berry, who are certainly cultural “leaders”, not followers.
I’d also like more explanation on the ‘local sustainable farming’. Are we referring to produce? Tree farming? There seems to be some background information that I’m missing. I’m not sure if this is a local issue (meaning Doug’s local area of Idaho…) or what, My in-laws have had a local sustainable farm for the last 30+ years. They are a God-fearing family who hire over 100 local high schoolers and college kids every year to start working at 6 a.m. (not 6.05 a.m… that’s too late… but 6:00 a.m.) to pick the corn, as well as green beans, strawberries, watermelon,… Read more »
Can I get a time machine too? That sounds awesome!
“modern, hippie farming communes”
Tony, as far as the hippies, I think they got it from Helen and Scott Nearing. Helen’s religious affiliation, as far as I can tell from their Wikipedia page, would seem to be theosophist! However, I’m sure there are lots of local farmers who never even heard of the Nearings.
That’s why I’d like clarification from Pastor Wilson. I’m not usually offended by his words, but his response to Clinton “Because it is a premier example of Christians tagging along behind the latest cool thing, while pretending they are engaged in cultural leadership. But it is slavish following, not leading.” doesn’t resemble what I know of as ‘local sustainable farming’. I would like a clear definition of what he means by the term… and the berate him accordingly!!
Alternate universe travel would be far cooler than time travel, cuz we can keep our tech and we don’t have to concern ourselves with the grandfather paradox. Just a little fun, folks.
On a serious note, it is the By What Standard argument that determines if you can mind your own business or not.
Katecho writes: “Bradshaw continues to blast away at the helpless strawmen ” I’m not misrepresenting anything he’s said. I’m merely condensing a bit and removing the theological fluff he uses to get people to swallow his propaganda. So I’ll just quote him, instead. “.. slavery produced in the South a genuine affection between the races that we believe we can say has never existed in any nation before the War or since” “[T]he sexual act cannot be made into an egalitarian pleasuring party. A man penetrates, conquers, colonizes, plants. A woman receives, surrenders, accepts .. True authority and true submission… Read more »
James, That “theological fluff” is called context. con·text noun \ˈkän-ˌtekst\ Definition of CONTEXT 1 : the parts of a discourse that surround a word or passage and can throw light on its meaning To claim that we have to remove all the context and qualifiers of these particular scare quotes in order to properly understand them is to say, “Boy I really want to beat up Mike Tyson, but he hits back. Maybe if I stuff some old clothes with straw and stick a picture of Mike Tyson’s face on it, it will be a lot easier to win the… Read more »
Bradshaw leaves his strawmen long enough to cherry pick some juicy quotations from Wilson (void of any context), but then he completely misses any opportunity to interact with them. Let’s take this one: “.. slavery produced in the South a genuine affection between the races that we believe we can say has never existed in any nation before the War or since” Now some (like Jonathan and Bradshaw) will jump all over this to claim that Wilson is “insensitive”, or that he must want a return to southern slavery. Wilson has repudiated such an absurd notion in the same book… Read more »
“A song like this one undermines their agenda”
Katecho, I love songs, too. There’s an even better one, ‘Massa’s in the Cold Ground.’ Do you know that one?
“The song speaks of genuine love and even a longing by certain slaves to be reunited with their master’s family in the afterlife.”
Katecho, that’s so, “Massa and Missis have long gone before me,
Soon we will meet on that bright and golden shore,
There we’ll be happy and free from all sorrow,
There’s where we’ll meet and we’ll never part no more.” (James Bland).
Do you understand these lyrics to suggest the narrator is numbered among the people of God? If so, then surely he is certainly no heathen, nor foreign to God’s commonwealth?
Fredericka, I wasn’t aware of that one. Thank you for mentioning it. Although both songs capture a sentiment that was widespread, I like the example of Carry Me Back to Old Virginny because it was actually composed by a black man and came to represent the people of Virginia as their state song (until the PC police expelled it). Songs like these remind us of the power of friendship and forgiveness to overcome in real adversity. This is the sort of ground-level reconciliation and personal relationship that Paul preached as cultures move away from slavery. Paul was not ignorant of… Read more »
Excellent post Katecho.
Hi Katecho, thank you for your response. But I was actually kind of hoping you would answer my question: “Do you understand these lyrics to suggest the narrator is numbered among the people of God? If so, then surely he is certainly no heathen, nor foreign to God’s commonwealth?” The reason I’m wondering is because if, ex concessio, the narrator and the slave master and mistress are all covenant people, then would not the verse apply, “If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing.” (Hebrew 21:2)?… Read more »
Hi Katecho, thank you for your response. But I was actually kind of hoping you would answer my question: “Do you understand these lyrics to suggest the narrator is numbered among the people of God? If so, then surely he is certainly no heathen, nor foreign to God’s commonwealth?” The reason I’m wondering is because if, ex concessio, the narrator and the slave master and mistress are all covenant people, then would not the verse apply, “If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing.” (Exodus 21:2)?… Read more »
The typical Wilsonian tactic, and those of his apologists, when faced with the (obvious) charges of racism, sexism, and homophobia is to plead that Wilson has decried these sins elsewhere and to insist that context matters (never mind the fact that no one has bothered to clarify Wilson’s claims in context). Well, a fly in the soup is still a fly, no matter how much Wilson pretends otherwise.
Fredericka, if we apply Biblical standards to Southern slavery, it never should have begun in the first place, so I don’t think we need to search for an angle to apply special Jubilee laws. According to Scripture, kidnapping is one of the very serious offenses which comes with a death penalty. And the whole racist thing is contrary to our common parentage at Genesis. Slave holders in the South had no justification for propagating the institution, and this was becoming more apparent in the South with the rise of many anti-slavery movements. So there is no question of who was… Read more »
James Bradshaw on Thursday, July 4, 2013 at 4:38 pm said:
“…while supposed witches, “queers” and other people he dislikes had more than their warts burned off in the town square for the entertainment of God’s “Elect”.”
Burning people as witches was a European thing. Here in America, we hanged people or crushed them with stones. If you are going to make outlandish accusations, at least get your facts straight.
“Fredericka, if we apply Biblical standards to Southern slavery, it never should have begun in the first place” Hi Katecho. I agree wholeheartedly, and I’m delighted to learn we are on the same page vis-a-vis Southern slavery. I also agree that aggression and bloodshed are evils to be avoided. I was puzzled earlier about Douglas Wilson’s comments on ‘genuine patriotism,’ because he seemed to place himself within the charmed circle of genuine patriots; if he understood he was talking about Other People, he did not make this clear. May we agree, it causes pain to patriot hearts to watch as… Read more »
Aggression and bloodshed against my neighbor are regrettable too, but if he insists on squatting in my backyard with a pile of guns it may have to come to that, mightn’t it?
Hi Iohannes. I would think even children of this world could agree, it is best not to start wars you can’t win.
How were we supposed to know until we gave it a shot? We were doing a pretty good job until we lost Jackson and Lee got turned back in Pennsylvania. If we’d flown the black flag like that brigand Sherman did in Georgia we just might’ve made it.