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Guest Appearance

Countering Christian Nationalism on The Chris Spangle Show

Note: around 42:05 Gregory accidentally said Moses when he meant to say “another covenant with NOAH.”

Summary – Countering Christian Nationalism on The Chris Spangle Show

Christian Nationalism, Theonomy, and reactionaryism are on the rise in ex-libertarian circles. The hosts of the Reformed Libertarians Podcast, Kerry Baldwin and Gregory Baus, join Chris Spangle to explain why the Reformed stream of Christianity is compatible with libertarianism, and why it offers a peaceful and superior alternative to Christian Nationalism.

Shownotes: https://www.chrisspangle.com/p/can-reformed-libertarianism-counter

Transcript – https://share.descript.com/view/qaDVvrw7pNo

Chapters:

  • 00:00:00 – Introduction to Reformed Libertarians
  • 00:02:40 – Religious and Political Journey
  • 00:05:51 – Growing up in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church
  • 00:09:22 – Lutherans and the Reformed
  • 00:12:29 – The Failure of Abandoning Doctrine
  • 00:15:31 – Libertarianism from a Christian Perspective
  • 00:19:12 – Christianity and Libertarianism
  • 00:22:29 – The Influence of Religious Commitment on Reality Views
  • 00:26:06 – The push towards authoritarianism
  • 00:29:10 – Christian Libertarianism
  • 00:32:12 – The Cultural Fallout and Impact on Family
  • 00:35:46 – The Connection Between Christian Nationalism and Works-Based Salvation
  • 00:39:14 – Misunderstanding the Relationship
  • 00:42:35 – The Law of Retribution in Genesis 9
  • 00:46:13 – The Failure of the Mosaic Covenant
  • 00:49:34 – Theocracy and Christian Nationalism
  • 00:52:49 – The consequences of the pursuit of political power
  • 00:55:48 – The Importance of Spreading the Gospel
  • 00:59:14 – The Nature of Sinful Human Nature
  • 01:01:59 – Introduction of Christian Podcast Network
  • 01:04:53 – Needing Reviews for the Chris Bangle Show

 

Some material about the Reformed Faith/theology:

  1. Highlights: https://opc.org/WhatIsReformedFaith.html
  2. Our Confession (statement) Of Faith: https://opc.org/confessions.html
  3. A helpful, popular-level book on the Reformed view of salvation: https://www.amazon.com/Putting-Amazing-Back-into-Grace/dp/0801014212
  4. A good book on covenant theology: https://reformedfellowship.net/products/sacred-bond-covenant-theology-explored-second-edition

 

Some Key Points discussed in the episode:

  1. While a common approach to viewing the compatibility of Christianity and libertarianism in terms of
    i. the 6th commandment (do not murder) and the 8th commandment (do not steal), entailing self-ownership and property rights
    ii. Jesus’ moral imperative (treat others as you would be treated), entailing a non-aggressionist and non-vengeance/non-retaliation ethic
    iii. the Bible’s consistent portrayal of centralized power in a negative light
  2. Reformed theology and Reformational (or Neocalvinist) philosophy offer additional important insights for understanding that libertarianism is not only compatible with Christianity, but is the most consistent expression of Christian political thought. Discussed on the show:
    i. the philosophical understanding that “religious neutrality” (or, “non-religiousness”) is a myth (or false idea) since all political theories (as well as every other kind of theory) depend upon (consciously or not) some general philosophical view of reality, which in turn is inevitably directed by some idea of what is self-existent, which is a religious belief (whether it involves belief in any deity or not). For more on that: https://web.archive.org/web/20221024060617/https://www.allofliferedeemed.co.uk/Clouser/Facets%20of%20faith%20and%20Science%20ch%203.PDF
       So, libertarianism (like every other political theory) is ultimately grounded, for everyone, in one sort of religious standpoint or another. The Reformed Libertarians Podcast aims to show how libertarianism can be understood as grounded in a Reformed perspective.
    ii. the theological understanding of “covenantal theology” that helps us recognize that outside the old Mosaic covenant, part of the normal operation of “common grace,” made explicit in Genesis 9 in terms of the “lex talionis,” involves a principle of proportional responsive coercion, which entails the non-aggression principle. To use coercion against what is not an initiation of coercion is disproportionate, aggression, and illegitimate.
       According to the Epistle to the Hebrews, the old Mosaic covenant is made obsolete by the new covenant, established by Jesus Christ. The old covenant was a temporary “typological” symbol pointing to the Final Judgement. When the old covenant was in force, the normal operations of common grace were temporarily suspended and certain non-aggressive immoral acts were punishable by death. However, in Christ’s inauguration of the new covenant, the old covenant arrangement is ended and the normal operations of common grace resume. For more on that: https://reformedlibertarians.com/015
  3. Two more important insights, not discussed in the episode are:
    i. Reformed “political resistance theology” (view of Romans 13). For more on that see: https://reformedlibertarians.com/002 and https://reformedlibertarians.com/006
    ii. Reformational/neocalvinist “societal sphere sovereignty”. For more on that see: https://reformedlibertarians.com/009 and https://reformedlibertarians.com/012

 

The Reformed Libertarians Podcast is a project of the Libertarian Christian Institute  and a member of the Christians for Liberty Network

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