Category Archives: Social Gospel

Socialism: The Devil’s Gospel

Socialism: The Devil’s Gospel- “Our society seems to be going the way of all the earth—in a hand-basket…”

by Bill Lockwood

Genuine biblical principles of Christianity are frequently corrupted when the ill-informed blend deviant concepts with them. The resulting combination usually is more fatal than bald error because people are more willing, perhaps innocently, to adopt the hybrid. They cannot see the underlying fallacy. For example, the simple biblical teaching of creation is soiled by those who wish to mix with it the general theory of evolution. The result? Theistic Evolution. In the same vein, naturalistic theories of mankind have spoiled the pure sterling fundamentals of giving resulting in socialism. Consider both of these dangerous hybrids, emphasizing the latter.

Evolution

Charles Darwin, the popularizer of the theory of evolution, wrote to his evangelist, T.H. Huxley, on August 8, 1860. Referring to the general theory of evolution he said, “My good and kind agent for the propagation of the Gospel—i.e., the devil’s gospel” (Francis Darwin, Editor, Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, 1898, II, p. 124). As a scientist Darwin thought he knew, through the theory of evolution, all about life’s forms and particularly its origins. For the philosophy of evolution endeavors to explain the universe, our solar system, life’s origin and its manifold forms, the past, the present, the future, morality, and society in terms of natural processes. Consistent evolutionism erases the supernatural and explains all in terms of the natural.

As Bert Loewenberg put it: “Once a man was swept into the evolutionary orbit, the logic of science became applicable to all forms of human activity. The logic of science applied not only to rocks but to animals, not only to animals but to man. Hence the logic of science and the dynamics of evolution applied to mind, to morals, and to society. This was the Darwinian revolution. It was not a revolution in science alone; it was a revolution in man’s conception of himself and his works” (Darwinism: Reaction or Reform?)

Due to the influence of evolution, even the biblical teaching of mankind, as made in the image of God, was re-created into the humanistic model of a mere matter-machine that reacts, not to ideas and doctrines, but to mere physical pressures. “The Devil’s Gospel.” Medicate the man with chemicals, but certainly do not hold persons accountable for their actions.

Socialism

The political left is all about “Social Justice.” What exactly is Social Justice? Putting it most succinctly, the National Association of Scholars says the term is understood to mean the “advocacy of egalitarian access to income through state-sponsored redistribution.” Egalitarianism means that all outcomes will be equal. The wealthy need be less so. Families in poverty need to share in the former’s wealth. This is to be accomplished through the all-powerful state. After all, property is not to be privately acquired or owned but should be the commonwealth of all.

Now we know why the Al Sharpton’s of the world blame “the system” for the deaths of people like Michael Brown, the thug who was the catalyst for the Ferguson, MO riots. This he did at the Brown funeral. Sharpton is preaching the Devil’s Gospel of Socialism.

Socialism is constructed upon two main pillars. One, the collective ownership of goods and properties; and Two, that human behavior is solely determined by what one owns or is able to “access” in a society. Improvement of society therefore is tied to material possessions and the “collective ownership” concept justifies the strong arm of government making this happen.

How is this in reality “The Devil’s Gospel” of materialism? Because it causes man to look outside of himself and to blame others (or society) for his problems and ignore personal sin. Materialists and socialists therefore love to harangue the “injustices” of the system. However, the root cause, the heart of man out of which are determined the issues of life, is left unnoticed.

This is like a drug addict who blames the drug dealer for his problem or blames the system that has not removed drugs from society. The missing ingredient in this diagnosis is the all-important one: Personal Responsibility or Personal Behavior. Our society seems to be going the way of all the earth—in a hand-basket—and the Al Sharpton’s of the world are pleased to dither in false diagnoses.

But he is not alone. Even the National Council of Churches majors in the “devil’s diagnosis” of materialism by demanding a re-distribution of goods and services all across the spectrum of America. That the purity of God-inspired free-will giving has been confused with socialism of the first order by the National Council of Churches as well as other religious institutions and individuals who name the name of Jesus Christ, it does not speak well of our understanding of biblical principles.

Government re-distribution of America’s resources, even to non-citizens of America, is in reality The Devil’s Gospel of Socialism. Government thievery with the veneer of Christianity. Nothing to do with the Bible. At least Donald Trump sees this much.

Socialism in the Churches

Socialism in the Churches

by Bill Lockwood

One would have supposed that of all groups of people holding the line against ungodly socialism which enshrines government theft and redistribution, the churches of America would lead the way. Following Christ does not call for empowerment of government confiscation and re-label it “giving.” But apparently such is not the case.

The National Council of Churches (NCC) website boasts that it has never stopped waging LBJ’s “historic war on poverty” and that this marks “an unprecedented commitment by government to claim justice for the poor.”
William H. Young, in a National Association of Scholars (NAS) article explains social justice: “Its core concept … is the redistribution of resources and advantages to the disadvantaged to achieve social and economic equality.” Rather than emphasizing individual opportunity and responsibility, socialists stress “equality” and the achievement of “social outcomes” “by expanding the scope of government.”

That followers of Karl Marx would be gratified to have these concepts grafted into government goes without saying. That would-be disciples of Jesus Christ would mimic this is appalling. But that is exactly the position of the NCC which supposedly represents most mainline Protestant denominations in America and claims leadership of over 45 million American Christians and over 100,000 local congregations. The NCC, however, has really been, since its inception, a front group for socialistic and communistic change. This in turns helps to explain why it is so difficult to enlist many churches for real American causes today.

Historical Roots of NCC

Everyone needs a cause.  Even those without God become ardent evangelists in behalf of their message.  As the leadership in the churches of America, therefore, became doctrinally flabby throughout the past century, they proportionally became ripe for propagation of another gospel. Socialism. Thus was founded the Federal Council of Churches in 1908—later to become the National Council of Churches. Collectivist propaganda had penetrated Protestant Churches in America prior to the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia. The Communist Party in America was not officially organized until 1919.  However, a cursory examination of the National Council of Churches reveals that it has always sided with Marxist and Communist causes, and its leaders have consistently consorted with policy-makers of the Communist Party, prior to its official birthday in 1908.

One of the early leading lights of the Federal Council, Dr. Harry Ward, strikingly demonstrates the above.  Dr. Ward worked in Chicago before becoming a teacher in the Boston University School of Theology and later Union Theological Seminary.  Introductory material, signed by Dr. Ward in 1917 included the call to churches concerning “the social service movement in the churches.”  One of Dr. Ward’s theses insists that the religion of the Bible mandates an “equal distribution of land” between Israelite tribes but this was corrupted by “individualism.”  The Kingdom of God, says Ward, is a “collective conception involving the whole life of man.”  “Jesus was not a mere social reformer. He has been called the first Socialist.”  Jesus was not, per Ward, interested in “theology” but in the “social needs of mankind.”  Ward was later identified under oath by many witnesses before United States Congressional committees as a member of the Communist Party.

Dr. Walter Rauschenbusch, who graduated the University of Rochester in 1885, had initially planned to go to India as a missionary for the American Baptist Mission Society, but was rejected because of his liberal views.  Among those views was a solid commitment to the philosophy of socialism.  Rauschenbusch, knowing that American Christians would revolt at his teaching of straightforward socialism in the pulpits, gave his theories window dressing.  He became the primary promoter of “The Social Gospel,” by which social change in the order of Karl Marx’s materialism and economic redistribution was the primary goal. The emphasis becomes reworking the material conditions of the world.   Biblical terminology, words, and phrases now are “converted” to this service.  The National and World Council of Churches today reflect these commitments.

The Social Gospel?

What is wrong with “The Social Gospel?”  Besides the fact that promoters of the social gospel traditionally reject the fundamentals of Christianity, why oppose their scheme?

First, The Social Gospel  begins with deception.  Charitable giving per biblical injunction always involves individual free-will choices.  Idealistic theories, on the other hand, that preach a “redistribution of wealth,” demand a power that actually takes from some and gives to others.  This powerful machinery—read “government”—therefore engages in theft.

To “Christianize” theft requires no little deceptive manipulation of historical fact as well as the English language.   Biblical principles always influenced mankind’s condition from the bottom up. Slavery, for example, was eliminated as the principles of Jesus permeated society throughout.   However, the social gospel requires power from the top to control those below.  Force becomes the method.  The current NCC website is marinated in statements such as “sustainable” development (socialistic redistribution) of the resources of the earth; “abatement of hunger” by the “enactment of policies benefiting the most vulnerable;” “affordable and accessible healthcare” on the backs of taxpayers. To achieve these ends “binding covenants” are recommended.

Second, individual salvation is rejected by The Social Gospel in favor of salvation of the “collective.”  The function of the church, which was authorized to preach salvation from personal sin, is recast as an enforcement of “civic or social justice” and the gospel merely becomes a channel that exists for the service of man—not God.  Individual rights are seldom heard.  Instead, church workers become firebrands for “group rights” and collective change.  Political activism, after a communistic fashion, is encouraged.

The crying sin of society becomes the “unequal redistribution” of wealth; evangelism is more about “saving the environment” than saving man from sin; the mission of the churches is just as much about restructuring society along Marxist lines than offering the gospel to souls.  Achieving Socialism in America is the goal. Transforming “Christianity” into an instrument to accomplish this end is the means.   As one advocate of The Social Gospel put it, we seek “an overthrow of the present capitalistic system.”  This was penned by Ivan Lee Holt, one-time president of the Federal Council of Churches.  He went on to denounce the “profit motive” insisting that there was no happiness for mankind until the “present economic system gives way to some cooperative scheme…it might mean revolution.”

Third, enforcement of the social gospel program requires the uniting of church and state. This explains why the NCC calls for not only the growth and strengthening of the United States government, but also for World “governance” operated via the United Nations.  Only in this manner might trade become more “equitable” on a “global scale,” and “peacemaking through multilateral diplomacy” by “strengthening” the “United Nations” and the “rule of international law.”

So, while the disingenuous claim is made by the NCC that they do not favor “unilateral force” to gain their goals, the program laid out calls for nothing but the usage of governmental force to redistribute wealth. Tax policies are recommended to “reduce” the “disparities between rich and poor” and “provide” for greater opportunity for “everyone within the common good.”

If we are to stop the socialistic onslaught now facing America, patriots must appeal to the common sense of average Americans in the “Christian community,” by-passing the leadership of large denominational churches which have become purveyors of soft-shell pabulum at best, and aggressive socialistic change at worst.  We would to God that the pulpits of America would aflame once more with righteousness, rejecting the gospel of Karl Marx.

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