Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Their Kingdom Come: Dominionism’s Quest for Political Capital in the Emergent World Order

In John 18:33, Pilate asked Jesus, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” In John 18:36, Jesus replied, “My kingdom is not of this world.” The original Greek word for “world” is kosmos, which connotes an arrangement, system, order, or government. Jesus was not expressing derision for the physical world, but with the usurious political systems that had come to dominate it. Some Christians have construed this response as a rationale for indolence and have embraced an apathetic brand of political abdication theology. However, Christian proponents of political abdication fail to consider the transliteration of kosmos and the historical background against which the term was invoked. Jesus was not condemning political activism. Instead, He was condemning the world’s political systems of that time, specifically the oligarchical model of the Roman Empire and its surrogate, the theocracy of the Pharisees.

That being said, there is another variety of so-called “Christians” that constitutes an equally extreme polar opponent to abdication theologians. This other polar extreme is known as “Dominionism.” While abdication theologians construe the Scriptures as a rationale for complete political abdication, Dominionists distort Genesis 1:28 to legitimize a purely political agenda. Dominionists totally politicize the Gospel, thus marrying Christianity to secular institutions. Once it is wedded to secularism, Christianity adopts the same anthropocentric premises of secularism. One of the anthropocentric premises that tend to pervade secularized Christianity is the notion that man must save himself. This was a core contention of communism, fascism, and other forms of anti-theistic sociopolitical Utopianism. In the context of Dominionism, this contention is given a marginally theistic interpretation: Man fully embodies and facilitates the march of God on earth. However, there is very little difference between the anti-theistic and theistic iterations of this contention. In both instances, the adherent’s gaze is firmly fixed on the ontological confines of this world.

As is the case with all Hegelian dialectics, the dialectic extremes of abdication theology and Dominionist theology produce the same outcome: totalitarianism. The abdication theologian surrenders to totalitarianism, whereas the Dominionist actively creates totalitarianism. Basically, Dominionism is a cult of neo-Gnostic jihadists committed to goals that almost mirror the objectives of earlier sociopolitical Utopians.  (more...)

The Jesus conspiracy?

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