What if I told you there is such a thing as having a very strong foundation in Christ without going to church?
Whoa stop right there… yes I hear you, but yes it is entirely possible
Christian Libertarianism is the school of thought where organized religion is a very bad thing (church). The government is not at all the people we run to in order to solve our problems or force our beliefs on others. The christian libertarian maintains institutions, whether religious or governmnet, is Babylonian in nature as illustrated by the bible itself. Statism, is the principal primarily and constantly objected in the bible, it is rather god himself we turn to for our moral guidance and salvation. Not priests, not politics, not theologians. There is a difference, don’t kid yourself.
That would be the primary 2 tenants of the thing. Immediately there’s Christians on the right accuse libertarians as “Lukewarm” or unsound in doctrine. Seldom understood by these is we have already had a overbearing government dictating it’s interpretation of scripture to the pulpit and it was horrible… it was the catholic church.
Yet then there is the Christians on the left… It amazes me there are Christian’s who find it shocking someone would say “We must evangelize to the lost” or “it’s not the government’s responsibility to help the poor it’s every single Christian’s personal duty”. The bible tells us this is a direct order from Christ himself… at no point did Jesus say “get the government to help the poor, and don’t offend the Muslims”.
One of the radical ideas christ had was a few things.
1. Don’t count on the government to be perfect, don’t sit around and wait for them to fix things.
2. Do not turn to a secular court to file suits against your brother, handle all your problems with them amongst yourselves. Infact avoid the courts at all costs – get a mediator to help, or bring it to the attention of the church to help solve the problem.
3. YOU, not the government, are responsible to take care of the sick, evangelize, feed the needy, etc etc.
4. Even the most wise of people can and will distort scripture, and they do so very often.
A great deal of Christ’s message is a concept called “personal responsibility”. Your christian values and morals are for you to uphold yourself. Jesus doesn’t want a changed legal system, he wants changed hearts. We can sign laws in government all day, but as is pointed out by many- criminals often don’t care about the law – neither do Luke warm or self righteous Christians care about Jesus. In fact among both right or left Christians I’ve often found ‘Jesus’ is a red herring or arbitrary argument to them.
So yes christian libertarianism is individualism at its core, no that doesn’t make it anarchism or satanic what so ever. It’s simply doing what your master tells you to do, and not relying on man to interpret that will for you…
Common themes in Christian Libertarians
For starters christian libertarians are very prone to politics. This was as true now as it was for say Michael Angelo. (Yes libertarianism is a very old concept, it began just around the Renaissance) There is a reason, and the reason is simply because Satan is not found only in strip clubs and some third world country. He is also found in every high place and every court room too. The tenant of libertarianism is being free from Satan and not allowing him to trap us – this particularly applies to the government. Libertarians are not politically liberal by any means, I believe the name can mislead people to think so. They are actually very conservative, think ‘tea party’… (that was us btw).
Highly independent theology and very hard to argue with in regards to scripture. What if I told you there is a number of flawed theology with in the church… and you only begin to see just how much and how big it is when you actually read the bible for yourself. The reason organized religion is bad is because of several reasons:
1. Toxicity of ideals spread rapidly within large groups verses many small independent groups.
2. “Church” can become less about god and more of a poor man’s social club.
3. Exchange of ideals is welcomed… to a point. Never mind the fact Jesus turned water into wine, people refuse to hear it because it conflicts with their false narrative in some way shape or form.
3. Verses vs. Verses battles… seriously do many Christians know there is an entire chapter surrounding every single verse in the bible anymore? You can make the bible say what ever you want it to say, simply cut copy and paste things together, then argue it to death until your the last man standing because the other is too blue in the face.
4. “Scripture alone” has its limits. No it isn’t heresy to say such, the bible is the foundation – studying it has the purpose of training a soldier to know what is of god and what is of satan and what you are fighting when you fight it. Jesus himself pointed this out to the Scribes Sadducees and Pharisees whom also held the firm beliefs in ‘scripture alone’…. let me illustrate this point further by saying, no where in the bible does scripture tell us the sky is blue. If you can not discern for yourself the sky is indeed blue without the bible, then I believe you have a problem. Scripture is not meant to be a crutch, rather it’s meant to be the feet you walk on.
“Highly independent theology” may be an understatement for many protestants and particularly baptists, considering some of what I’ve said. I challenge anyone reading thus far to tell me where I’m wrong. 😉
I can see why say a catholic considers this absolute heresy, and a Baptist might scratch their head in mild curiosity. However this is the original church (not the catholic church) and a good deal of the house church movement is littered in modern christian libertarianism. The idea here is to simply study scripture In a small group at people’s houses instead of going to church. It can also include meetings at local pubs, coffee shops, or even public parks….
That is however what it looks like in a 1st world country anyway. It is done by choice. In North Korea today house churches are the only way Christians can meet, they must do so in absolute secrete. If caught being christian they will be executed along with 3 generations of their family. This is to be sure their is not a single christian under the North Korean regime. I remember reading about house churches in west Germany because known Christian’s would be targeted by the communist government for dangerous expiremental drugs and all sorts of Persecution. The advantage of a house church is it is highly mobile and much more dynamic then an evil regime can keep up with. This was how the christian church even survived the persecution of Rome under emperor’s like Nero. We know this because of the Book of Acts and historical records. You are almost certain to find christian libertarians among a house church group 1st world or not.
There are actually people in this world who enjoy reading the Bible, and perhaps a few other things. I have discovered this about myself – and I maintain the bible doesn’t end at the book of Revelation… though revelation has yet to be fulfilled… I LOVE reading about the protestant reformers and their books. Martin Luther is my absolute favorite prophet of god… (that’s right a Prophet much like Isaiah or Jeremiah!!) I enjoy sermons from various pastors or audio books. A good many times I like to challenge my own perspective deliberately hearing out views on scripture I may not even agree with….
As a christian it fills my heart and soul to be ever closer to God in prayer and study. That’s why.
To say a christian libertarian is “lukewarm” because they don’t go to church is a position easily refuted by the right libertarian.
What about gay marriage and abortions
What about gay marriage and abortions? Here’s what christ commands us:
“Let the wicked do according to wickedness but the righteous do according to righteousness”.
When it comes to politics I am pro life, largely because so much of abortion clinic’s are subsidized by the government. I will vote against any subsidy, every time. Yes of course it pains me to think of a mother killing their own baby before it even has a chance – it is what drives me to preach and speak out so loudly against abortions. Christians undermine their freedom of speech, many many abortions have been stopped simply by hearing the truth about abortions from people on the street. You could make a law against it but it is no good if Christians don’t bother reinforcing the public on why the law was put in at the first place… it will simply change later due to apathy. Of course I support such Poole who preach out side abortion clincs, of course I’ve done my part – it seems to me if more christians were vocal about this issue and less worried about the government we might actually get something accomplished… we already have.
Then there is gay marriage… oh boy, don’t even get me started!!! Marriage has no place in the government anyway, why are we even arguing this? If anything I have found gay marriage to be the biggest public distraction where people talk about nothing else happening in our screwed up world. Yet again christians I think undermine the fact their freedom of speech actually has power. NO you don’t have to be like the bigots of west burro Baptist church, but you are free to preach against something.
They don’t listen?
So what you force them to listen by attacking them with lobbyst, court orders, fines, potential jail time, loss of private property and perhaps even 20 year long legal proceedings?
Which bible are you reading because I have the King James Version…
You are called to evangelize to the lost and try to change hearts for christ. Not use the government to blackmail the lost. All that I’ve seen that do is create enormous animosity to the church. One thing some Christian’s do not understand that I have found, people do not necessarily reject god, they reject his representatives tactics. Unfortunately I don’t really see it changing as the way of American culture has turned to depending on lobbyists and special interests groups in government, even if the idea allegedly repulses the majority of us. This is the trap of statism we are caught in, that has polarized the nation far beyond just republicans vs. democrats. Every group must lawyer up to protect themselves, every brother is against his brother – it was the church itself who started this ball rolling least Christian’s think we are innocent of this sin.
So that is what a christian libertarian thinks of gay marriage and abortion. It is a non issue to me as per my political perspective. I vote based on who plans to shrink the monstrosity that is the government, and will fight endlessly every politician who promises to feed the system.
Ultimately it is for Christ to separate the chaff from the wheat, it is my job to ensure they hear what it takes not to be the chaff.
Here’s a pretty good video for more info – it is lengthy, but the first 10 mins is at least worth your while