Based on the essay Power and Purpose of Western Civilization by Dennis Behreandt in The New American
Dennis begins his essay by stating: “The basis of western civilization is based on the Decalogue (i.e. the Ten Commandments). Whether one is religious in the Judeo-Christian faith tradition or not, these remain both legal and moral truisms and the essential means of ordering and limiting authority in society.”
During the last 3,500 years Moses and his stone tablets have been attacked again and again. Today with renewed effort, they are in the crosshairs of secular society. If you put a monument in a city courtYARD, OR MENTION THEM IN LEGISLATION, YOU WILL BE ATTACKED.
Right along with the Decalogue is the one man, one woman family. Here again Dennis is on target:
“Alone in our planet among the cosmic wilderness, the individual human can never live alone, and is never fully self-reliant. From birth, the child, alone, faces a near certainty of quick death. An infant has no physical defense against the myriad terrors it faces. The helpless child has no ability to eat or drink on its own, cannot provide for itself shelter from the heat or cold, from the rain, wind, or snow.
“Family, the mother and father, provide for the needs of the child. Yet for the most robust growth, health, and success, this core family benefits from the extended help and care offered by grandparents, aunts, and uncles. More, cousins add to the increasingly rich and varied life of an experience of the family(Ed. The tribe). And each of these has outward connections, friendships, and ultimately marriages with others beyond the core family, creating a community. In this community grows a commonality of thought, practice, and belief, a rising of modes of living, codes of conduct, and a sharing of knowledge. Taste and preferences are formed. Writ large, a village arises, then a town, a city, a nation, and over this aggregate culture. As this culture carries itself forward, from one generation to the next, it becomes something more: a civilization. Finally, said the great historians, Will and Ariel Durant, ‘It is the civilization that makes the people: circumstances geographical, economic, and political create a culture, and the culture creates a human type.’”
Over the past 3500 years, there has been a religious bond between the one man and one woman family with their children that grow into a tribe and the God-given Decalogue.
In 500 BC, obeying the instruction of Jeremiah 29, the Hebrew families in the Babylonian Empire drew the attention of Emperor Nebuchadnezzar. Here, obeying the Decalogue, they were rewarded with their Sabbath rest and used the day to establish the Synagogue. The Synagogue did not come from the scriptures but from the obedient heart of the Hebrew families and the stone tablets from God.
Three hundred years later, the father of the Maccabees family taught his five sons to honor God’s first commandment to have no other gods before me. The five sons and their families lead a rebellion against the Syrian dictator and freed God’s temple and people. This was a family-lead rebellion based upon the Ten Commandments. We have two non-biblical books written by them, Maccabees 1 and 2. The Hebrews had a constant battle with serving the idol gods of the nations around them. In every case, the staunch defense was the family using the Decalogue.
As the Christian Church began, the chief idolatry opponent was Rome itself declaring that Caesar was a god and to not worship him was blasphemy and treason. In 155 AD, an elder of the church of Smyrna was Polycarp. His holding to the Ten Commandments as a family leader in the church took him to a martyr’s death.
“Roman authorities met him after his arrest and taking him into the chariot, they seated themselves by him endeavoring to persuade him, saying, ‘What harm is there in saying Lord Caesar and sacrificing with the other ceremonies on such occasions and so making sure of your safety.’ Refusing, Polycarp was lead to the stadium, where a crowd had assembled to watch his death. Again, the Roman authorities demanded he renounce Christ in favor of Caesar. To this, Polycarp refused, replying: ‘Eighty and six years have I served Him, and He never did me any injury: how then can I blaspheme my King and my Savior?’ After this he was to be bound and be burned alive, but when he was not consumed by the flames, he was stabbed to death. This, his reward for adhering to Christ and the first commandment against the false gods of government.”
Here we find in history the family, the church made up of Christian families, standing against the idols of the nations such as Baal and the idols of government that presumes itself to take the place of Jehovah God.
Today, we are facing this same attack on the family and the Decalogue. In my studies at Columbia Seminary, studying cultural anthropology, we followed the God-given equivalent to the Decalogue of God-given absolutes to a number of Western societies in North America, South America, and Africa. The Decalogue is found in Exodus 20 and restated in the whole of the New Testament. When our American forefathers were drafting the dreams and documents of America, they leaned heavily on the Hebrew national organization as sided by Moses and the Decalogue that God gave to Moses for His people.
“When Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence, ‘all men are created equal… with certain unalienable rights’ he was acknowledging that no government could usurp the role of God and abridge these rights. This is the first commandment in action.”
In dealing with this attack on the family and Decalogue, we must take our stand on the Word of God just as the Babylonian captives, the Maccabee brothers, and Polycarp and his tribe totally depended on the Word of God. The attack on the family is coming from the universities and the central government in Washington, D.C. over the past 30 years, culminating in the Supreme Court usurping the rights of Congress to declare homosexual marriage a constitutional right. This has thrown the Church into a quandary as to how to deal with the secular, non-biblical family and their children’s education where first graders are being taught from books entitled Susie Has Two Mamas. This is a new battle for the Church family, and there has been a lot of confusion in how to deal with this new national interpretation of the family. First, please note that God did not change His mind. The biblical view of the family is still mama and daddy, their children, and extended tribe. You cannot twist the Bible with any honesty to include male married to a male or a female married to a female; however, it is just another example of sinners living a sinful lifestyle. If we believe and follow Jesus and the Great Commission, these are just ordinary, garden variety sinners, and should be treated with love and concern for their souls. Thus, we have no right to treat them any differently than the murderer, liar, adulterer, or thief. The Decalogue describes their condition, and Christ is the solution to their condition. If we’re faithful to Christ, we will offer the Christ-centered solution. If they reject us, their sin is on their heads. If we do not make Jesus appealing and we reject them, their sin is on our head. Refer to Ezekiel 37.
The attack on the Ten Commandments began 50 years ago in our universities where they replaced absolute truth with moral relativism, where every truth has equal value even when contradictory. This last couple of years, Wells Fargo Bank had to fire their CEO for practicing what he learned in college. In the process, one thousand white collar workers were penalized or fired for the same thing. A few years ago the retired president of the University of New Mexico was arrested for running the largest prostitution ring in the state, again, practicing what he taught in the college classroom.
No matter what the philosophy department teaches, two plus two is four in New York, Tokyo, and Berlin. The statement that all truth is relative is an absolute and must be exempt from its own statement. This is the reason we are experiencing a moral avalanche of women claiming that prominent men in Hollywood, in the news media, and in government have invaded the women’s “bubbles” by aggressively feeling their body, using their authority to force them into bed with them to commit adultery, unfaithfulness to their wives and husbands. There is a double agenda going on here. There are those women who are honestly attacked and fought back, then remain silent for decades to protect their families. If they had been taught the sacredness of the family and the terms of the Decalogue, at first attack they should have screamed rape, physical attack, and if the man did not back off, properly kick him where it will hurt the most. But since they were taught in school that there are no absolutes, they were in quandary as to how to respond.
The other side of the coin is women climbing the executive ladder seeking to bust through the glass ceiling, use the men’s offer of advancement for sexual favors to work their way up to their presently-held corporate position. They were willful participants in the sex act, knowing exactly what they were doing. Their cries today of being mistreated are a lying farce. Of course, there is now no right or wrong about lying.
If we are to continue the Western way based on God’s description of the family and their tribe and holding to the 3500-year-old Decalogue of God, we must return to the Bible as our sole authority. This means reaffirming that the Ten Commandments are the universally-given absolutes of Jehovah God and are not relative or in competition with the ideas and thoughts of men, but are directly from the mind of God.
We must understand that the biblical directive one man and one woman marriage for the purpose of producing a family that will in time produce a tribe is not negotiable. When not a matter of physical inability, the husband and wife, in order to obey God, are to have children. Also, to obey God, we must, for Christian families, reject the idea of homosexual marriage. We must teach our children, no matter what they are being taught in school, that there is a difference between boys and girls. What do I say about Global warming, the population bomb, all attempts to make “Caesar” god again.
This opens the discussion on the latest attack on the biblical family and the Decalogue. We now are offering to allow children to determine if they are male or female, not by their physical construct, but by emotional decision. Jesus interpreted Thou shalt not commit adultery to mean you are not to lust after another human being. When we are told that physically-equipped boys and girls can use the bathroom or shower room of their emotional self, this puts boys with p****** and girls with v****** and breasts showering in the same high school field house. This is promoting adulteress lust in youth, they cannot handle it. As Christians, we can accept this as just another secular sin for the secular world, but as Christians we must protect our families from the transgender bathrooms, shower rooms, and public education. This may mean taking them out of public education and homeschooling to protect our tribe from the total dismantling of the absolutes of God. To protect the Western way, no sacrifice is too great.