10.31.2008

Millennialism and Agrarianism, Part 2

(Go read Part 1 first)

In the first part we took a little time to examine how some people have attempted to occlude the true orthodox belief systems of the church concerning the millennium, and to a greater extent the beliefs of the Baptists more particularly about the millennium.

Today I want to examine what the millennium is biblically, and how some errors concerning the millennium have come about. Then I would like to address the issue of how a millennial viewpoint impacts our philosophy of Agrarianism.

A quick review of chapters 19 and 20 of Revelation is now in order.

It is important to note that Chapter 19 of the Book of Revelation begins with the words “And after these things...”:

And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever” (Rev 19:1-3).

The words “and after these things” show us clearly that the writer, experiencing these events in the spiritual realm, and watching them as they unfold in time, is relating the events to us in chronological order. This order continues until we see some type of “hard” or evident break in the train of thought or relation of events.

In the previous chapter (Chapter 18) we have seen the destruction of “Babylon the Great”. A close study of that chapter shows that the specific characteristic of Babylon the Great that is in view is the political and economic elements of the Beast system. Babylon the Great is condemned for her unfair economic policies, her wicked treatment of workers, her salacious and consumptive lifestyle, and for her fornication with the kings of the earth. Specifically it is the “merchants of the earth” who mourn over the loss of Babylon the Great, because her economic policies and power have made them very, very rich. The overwhelming violence of the destruction of the world economic order is very notable, as it is likened unto a great millstone being cast into the sea. The destruction of the economies and of the trade of the world leads directly into the judgment of the Great Whore and of the Babylonian system on which she thrived. This chapter alone deserves a much better and closer examination, and I hope to do that some time.

What follows in Chapter 19 is an exposition into the judgment of the Great Whore, and of the Babylonian system she has fostered in the world, and of the praises given to the Lord God for all of His righteous judgments and wrath as it is poured out on the ungodly.

In verse 9 we see the words of blessing and congratulation to those who are “called unto the marriage supper of the lamb”, and in verse 11 we see Christ, pictured on a white horse, riding forth to judge and to make war on spiritual Babylon.

We should pause here to note that it was the universal understanding of the Protestant believers and of the Anabaptists that the Great Whore is the Romish religion and the political and economic system she represents. The great Baptist theologian and commentator John Gill here says that this Great Whore is: “Jezebel, Babylon, the Romish antichrist, before spoken of, Rev. 17:1”. Always remember this, because once we have properly identified the characters in the great scene, and once we have properly identified this revelation as the chronological judgments poured out on God's enemies, we are much less likely to fall for later and more unorthodox interpretations.

We must also remember that it was “Babylon the Great”, the economic and political system of the Great Whore that is destroyed in Chapter 18.

Starting with verse 14 and continuing on until the end of the Chapter, we see a great war between Christ and the “armies which were in heaven” and the forces of “the kings of the earth and their armies”. This battle results in a great slaughter of the forces of the kings of the earth and their armies.

In verses 19 and 20, we read: “And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Rev 19:19-20).

Let us point out again just who these characters are.

The true Church has consistently identified the “beast” here as the Antichrist Pope of Rome and his Romish Religion. The two most accepted and most universally used Protestant confessions identify the Antichrist as the Pope of Rome:

London Baptist Confession of Faith of 1689: The Lord Jesus Christ is the Head of the church, in whom, by the appointment of the Father, all power for the calling, institution, order or government of the church, is invested in a supreme and sovereign manner; neither can the Pope of Rome in any sense be head thereof, but is that antichrist, that man of sin, and son of perdition, that exalteth himself in the church against Christ, and all that is called God; whom the Lord shall destroy with the brightness of his coming.

Westminster Confession of Faith: There is no other head of the Church but the Lord Jesus Christ. Nor can the Pope of Rome, in any sense, be head thereof; but is that Antichrist, that man of sin, and son of perdition, that exalts himself, in the Church, against Christ and all that is called God.

The false prophet here is not identified in the Protestant confessions, but he has generally been identified either as the actual Pope of Rome, or as a representation of the apostate church that would follow, or of apostate protestantism as a whole. Our interpretation identifies the false prophet as the latter of these interpretations, but for our study here – an exact identification is not relevant.

Now, our text here in Revelation tells us that at the culmination of this great battle, the Antichrist and the False Prophet will be taken, along with all those who have taken the mark of the beast, and they will be thrown alive into the lake of fire. So it is fair to say that after this war, there is no more Beast or False Prophet.

Chapter 20 continues on with the chronological exposition of events. Immediately after the Beast and the False Prophet are thrown into the lake of fire, in verse 1 and 2 of Chapter 20, an angel comes down from heaven and binds Satan in chains for a thousand years. Now, no matter how someone chooses to understand this “thousand years”, whether it be a literal thousand years, or just a very, very long time, we are forced to interpret this to say that Satan is powerless and immobilized during this millennium. The next verse (verse 3) tells us that during this time the nations of the world will be deceived by him no more until the very end of that millennium.

So I have to pause for a minute and ask you all some questions that I have asked so many of those who have misinterpreted these verses...

  1. Today, as we sit here, are the nations deceived? Is Satan bound? Can anyone with any access to any of their senses (both temporal and spiritual) honestly conclude that Satan is now bound and the nations are not deceived?

  1. Is the Babylonian system of credit and debt, of coinage and paper money, a sysgtem which consumes the poor and makes the wicked rich still around?

  1. Is the Pope of Rome and his Papist religion gone? Have they all been thrown into the lake of fire? Is the Pope of Rome still around and still deceiving and being deceived?

  1. Are the Kings of the earth who deny Christ and whose armies do evil – are they all gone?

As you can see, you would really need to do some spiritual, scriptural, and logical gymnastics in order to conclude that the nations are no longer deceived and that Satan is now bound.

Another question. Do you believe that postmillennialists developed their theory from the Bible alone, after which they applied what they had learned in the Bible to what they saw happening around them? Or is it more likely that they developed their theory as a response to what they called “premillennial pessimism”, after which they developed apologies for all of these verses and realities which do not support their theory? I would have to say that postmillennial apologetics developed because the Bible does NOT support the theory, and because actual world events actually evidence the opposite to what postmillennialists say should be happening.

Now, following this we see that the first resurrection has come to pass, and the resurrected saints rule and reign with Jesus Christ on earth for a thousand years. Again, it matters not if you determine that this thousand years is literal or not. It could be an actual thousand years, or “a really long time” as some interpret it, or it could be a thousand years of years, it does not matter. In any case, there is no Pope of Rome or Papist religion. There is no apostate church. There is no Satan around to deceive the nations until this long period of time is finished. Even if you conclude that Jesus Christ does not bodily return until the end of this long period of time (and again, this interpretation takes a lot of scriptural gymnastics) you must conclude that this millennial period is absolutely one of peace and harmony, where the nations are not deceived by Satan.

I have to ask here:

  1. Was Satan bound during the dark ages, when men's lives had no real value?

  2. Was Satan bound during the inquisition, when God's children were killed by the millions?

  3. Was Satan bound when the armies of the Pope killed 2.5 million Christians in the valleys of the Alps?

  4. Was Satan bound during the religious wars following the Reformation?

  5. Was Satan bound during the age of Revolution, when men murdered one another wholesale on the battlefields of Europe and America?

  6. Was Satan bound during the 20th Century when wars claimed the lives of a large percentage of the world population?

  7. Was Satan bound when Stalin killed 30 million of his own countrymen?

Apparently, to many (not all) modern postmillennialists, the answer would have to be “yes”.

We move on. Ok, so since we know that Babylon still exists, both in the Babylonian mystery religion, and in the Babylonian economic system of the world; and since we know there is still a Pope in Rome; and since we know that Satan surely is not currently bound; and since we know that the Pope of Rome has been re-consolidating his temporal powers over the kings of the earth through the machinations of his Jesuit order and his Opus Dei, and through all of his other tentacles in the halls of world power; and since we know that evil men and seducers continue to wax worse and worse; and since we know that the first resurrection of the dead has not come to pass, then we can know that we are not in the millennial reign of Christ.

All of these facts lead us to believe that the millennium is still future. We avoid the errors of the premillennial dispensationalists by rejecting their numerous and sometimes laughable errors. We avoid the errors of the postmillennialists and their somewhat delusional interpretations of the current state of the Church and of the world.

According to the scriptures, following this millennium is the second resurrection, where the lost are judged out of the books of their works.

Now we will discuss just what all of this has to do with Agrarianism.

I want to bring back to your memory that Postmillennialism developed as an answer to what was perceived as “premillennial pessimism”. I need to address this again, because this false idea is central to the structure on which postmillennialism stands.

True historic premillennialism is not pessimistic. We need to define what we mean by that, and what postmillennialists mean when they make the charge. Historic premillennialism holds that, as the Bible says, Jesus kingdom is not currently of this earth; it is both NOW and NOT YET, and that those who enter into His kingdom while on earth, and who live by His precepts and by His commandments will live separately from the kingdom of this world. We are in the kingdom of God (which is spiritual) and we live by His laws and precepts, and the Bible says we will likely be persecuted greatly for doing so. Yet, He will maintain a remnant of believers in the world as it grows darker and more evil, in order to show forth His great light and His glory to the principalities and powers in the heavenly realms. We believe that just as things seem to be darkest, Christ Himself will destroy the political and economic system of the wicked, and that His remnant will be protected through this, and that He will come to judge the wicked and the evil by destroying the kings of the earth and their armies with the brightness of His coming. Now... there is nothing pessimistic about that.

What the postmillennialist is really saying is that they don't like the fact that this system does not give THEM power on earth until the millennium when Christ reigns. They don't like the fact that they cannot take over the political systems of the world by themselves (meaning without Christ) and rule and reign on earth according to their own interpretation. Since this is the foundation of their system, they must count those who see themselves not as citizens of this world, but as citizens of the Kingdom of God, as pessimists who refuse to engage in political and economic domination (what they call political activism). The postmillennialist generally (not always, of course) is kind of fond of the systems of the world. He would just like to tweak it and put “Christian” clothes on it, with himself (or folks like him) in power. This is why the postmillenialist system breeds so many worldling “christians”. This is why the great conservative “christian” political machine in America has failed grandly in their schemes of world domination. This is why the glee of the so-called “christian right” after the Reagan revolution has turned into sorrow. In the 28 years of political action by dominionist postmillennialists, the “conservative christian” movement hasn't even been able to outlaw abortion! You would think that with Satan bound, banning abortion would be quite easy. Now, even if they had achieved this one victory, we would be a long, long way from seeing what the Bible describes as the millennial reign of Christ on earth. But it is interesting to see how the consistent failures by those who have erroneously interpreted these chapters of the Book of Revelation have been “spun” by those who claim that we are in the millennial reign today.

Also we should note that, just as the postmillennialist calls millions of apostates and false professors “christians” in order to falsely inflate his statistics, he must also unite himself (in many cases) with these apostates and false “christians” in order to try to effect political change according to his philosophy. I am a bit pessimistic about that idea.

But, as I have said, we historic premillennialists are not pessimistic at all. We're not any more pessimistic than the first Christians who fled Jerusalem after the stoning of Stephen. The postmillennialist would have had the Christians stick around and vote. We're not any more pessimistic than the Christians who fled Jerusalem for Pella on the Decapolis before Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans. We are no more pessimistic than the Christians who fled Rome and the environs for the catacombs, or for the valleys of the Alps. We're no more pessimistic than the Waldensians who fled those Alps under the onslaught of the Popish armies, or those who returned and made war and defeated their enemies to retake their land. We're no more pessimistic than the Anabaptists who were drowned, hanged, or burned by so-called “protestants” who were bent on holding political power and who became persecutors and inquisitors themselves. These same Amish and Mennonites (called “pessimistic” by postmillennialists) came to North America and built a society that has continued and thrived unto this day. We're no more pessimistic than the Puritans and the non-conformists who left Europe for the wilderness of North America in order to escape religious men with power. We're no more pessimistic than the reformed Agrarians in the South who were invaded by Industrialists of the North. We're just not pessimistic at all. We know how God works because we have an entire Bible filled with parables, types, and shadows, that teaches us of God and of His plans for this world. We just do not feel that it is our job to rule the world until Christ Himself decides to do what He promises to do to the world in His Word, namely REFINE IT BY FIRE. We're the oldest optimists.

Ok, so Agrarianism really has separatism and this type of realistic optimism as its fundamental foundation. We believe that separatist Christianity is made for Agrarianism and vice versa. Postmillennialism is at home in the modern, colonized, industrial system of today. This is why the Presbyterians have done so well in the biggest cities. Sorry to say it, but it is true. Being reformed has not helped some professing “christians” to see the errors of Industrialism.

We believe that Agrarianism (and Separatism) are God's way of protecting and providing for His elect remnant people. We see in all the types and shadows of the Old Testament, that the cities all became corrupt, and those who ruled over the religious life in those systems all became corrupt as well. We don't desire to rule other men's consciences, but we do desire to be left alone to live according to ours. We are not willing to call antichrists “christians”. We are not willing to call Mormons or those of the modern Charismatic cults “christians”. We believe that God defines what is and what is not a “christian”, so we don't do as the worldlings do by inflating our numbers to push a doubtful position. We do not believe at all that Christianity is taking over this world. We believe JESUS CHRIST will take over this world, and He will do so by His second coming, which will be visible and physical, just as was His first coming, and His ascension into Heaven.

Agrarianism requires that we properly identify the errors of the Babylonian system which rules the earth today, and that we know why industrialism failed, so that we can rightly avoid the errors of those who went before us. Industrialism prevailed because good Christian men spiritualized or explained away the plain teaching of the scriptures about how Christians are to live. The promise of Industrialism was that it would free men up to engage in leisure, and in politics, and in wealth building. It made men slaves to their lusts, and it made them want to exercise power in order to maintain their standard of living. It was the same promise made at the Tower of Babel, that men would be free to build a tower up to heaven and bypass Christ in the doing of it. Men believed they could build a just and moral society by harnessing the intellectual and physical power of mankind. Men came to believe that the society would get better and better, just so long as man didn't do what God commanded, which was to separate themselves and spread out over the earth to subdue the land and gain dominion over it. So by corporate work and corporate thinking, fallen man believed he could build a righteous and just society without the nuisance of a Messiah to rule over it. This was the promise of industrialism, just as it was the promise of the Tower of Babel. But God did not intend for men to work together to create a globalist society without Christ to rule over it. He intended for Christians to separate and build Christian agrarian communities that were more interested in obedience than they were in political power. That's just the way I see it, and I believe I am right.

As I said in my introduction, I do not see postmillennialism as any type of heresy, other than the Preterist version (or the Hymanean heresy) which the Bible itself condemns. I think it is possible for good men to be wrong on their opinion of the millennium. What I do not accept is when deceptive means are used to trick men back into participating in the world's systems, and to keep them from separating from the world as the Bible commands.

I pray that God will give His children protection and peace and that He will lead His elect into all truth according to His Word.

I am your servant in Christ Jesus,

Michael Bunker

** I know some postmillennialists will quibble that there is a fundamental difference between Theonomic postmillennialism and Dominionist postmillennialism, and that my posts only deal with those who believe the millennium has already begun. I think the difference is one of verbiage and not of effect. Some Theonomic postmillennialists believe that Satan is not currently bound, but will be bound when Christians institute a Theocracy which will impose God's law on the masses. Dominionist postmillennialists (primarily pentacostals) believe Satan is bound by Christians taking spiritual authority in the invisible realms and binding Satan and devils, releasing massive amounts of wealth and prosperity for the enjoyment of carnal professors. Both systems hypothesize a Christian golden-age and Christian rule on earth before Christ returns... a belief that for me is as fantastical and unbiblical as anything the futurists have imagined. The futurists have "Left Behind". The Dominionists and Theonomists have "Right Ahead". I think both are Disney-like fantasies.

10.29.2008

Millennialism and Agrarianism

My topic for the day is Millennialism and Agrarianism, Part 1.

I will begin with an explanation of the different millennial positions (such as Premillennialism, Postmillennialism, and Amillennialism.

It is shocking to me how many professing christians are unclear as to the meaning of these terms. Part of the blame may be placed at the foot of ignorance and historical illiteracy on the behalf of professing christians, however, it would be irresponsible not to note the hand the deceiver has had in confusing christians and blinding men to the true history of the Church.

I want to start by making a few points, and within those points I will attempt to define what the several millennial positions are and I will also try to strongly combat the desire of some writers to confuse a millennial position with a position concerning the prophetic condition or position of the current era in time.

A Millennial position is a position on what these verses mean:

"And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection" (Rev 20:1-5).

That's it. A millennial position is based on what someone thinks about the 1000 years mentioned in these verses; when it will happen, and whether the number is literal or not. A millennial position has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with a position on the so-called "tribulation" or the so-called "rapture". Nothing. So any person, any time, in any place - who claims or teaches that a certain position (say premillennialism) automatically means that someone is a dispensationalist, a rapturist, or has some particular position on the so-called "tribulation" is either a liar, or is just plain wrong and doesn't mind being openly and vocally wrong. Unhappily, in my experience, these people are usually liars. I needed to say that up front, because many people (predominantly preterists), but many postmillennialists who may or may not be Preterists, like to immediately infer that anyone who is premillennial is also a member of the modern, charismatic, rapture cult, or a futurist. I don't really mind someone being wrong so much, but I disdain liars - especially when it comes to theology. Ok, any irritation you discern from me is predominantly directed at those who are guilty in this one point. They connect premillennialism and futurism. There is an unorthodox sect of premillennialism called “dispensational premillennialism” and it is fair to identify dispensational premillennialists as “futurists”, but it is wicked to intentionally label a historical premillennialist as a “futurist”.

Ok, so for some definitions:

Postmillennialism - an interpretation of chapter 20 of Revelation which sees Christ's second coming as occurring after the 1000 years (or "millennium") or some undefined era of Christian prosperity and dominance. The term subsumes several similar views of the end times, and it stands in contrast to premillennialism, and to a lesser extent, amillennialism. (adapted from Wikipedia)

Premillennialism - the belief that Christ will literally reign on the earth for 1,000 years (or some long period of time) at his second coming. The doctrine is called premillennialism because it views the current age as prior to Christ's physical kingdom. It is distinct from the other forms of Christian eschatology such as amillennialism or postmillenialism, which view the millennial rule as either figurative and non-temporal, or as occurring prior to the second coming. (adapted from Wikipedia)

Amillennialism - is a view in named for its denial of a future, thousand-year, physical reign of Jesus Christ on the earth, as opposed to the premillennial and some postmillennial views of the Book of Revelation. By contrast, the amillennial view holds that the number of years in Revelation 20 is a symbolic number, not a literal description; that the millennium has already begun and is identical with the church age (or more rarely, that it ended with the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 — which is Preterism); and that while Christ's reign is spiritual in nature during the millennium, at the end of the church age, Christ will return in final judgment and establish permanent physical reign. (adapted from Wikipedia)

Some people will want to haggle over the details and some of the terms, but that is basically it. Those are the three common positions on the millennium.

Next point: A position on the the so-called "rapture" or the so-called "tribulation" is ancillary to this discussion. When someone asks you to assume, then, that a Premillennialist is a futurist, then he is lying to you in order to predispose you to some sort of deception (what other reason is there for lying?). An eschatological position (such as Futurism, Preterism, or Historicism) is a position on how Biblical prophecy applies to us, how the Bible should be read, and where we are on God's timeline.

I have discussed the Jesuit roots of Preterism and Futurism at great length. Here is a quick primer, and here is a Q&A answer I gave on their roots and their foundation in the Roman Catholic Church, particularly among the Jesuits. If you have the time, I would definitely give my Q&A Answer on this issue a close study.

Ok, so to my point. There are good-hearted Christians who disagree on the millennium. There are even good-hearted, honest, Christian Agrarian Separatists who disagree on the millennium. Although we all ought to avoid and reject heresy (like full-Preterism) it is possible to be wrong about the millennium and still be a great and honest Christian. One guy who I think is a good, honest, Christian Agrarain Separatist is Scott Terry over at the HomesteaderLife blog. First let me say that I think Mr. Terry's blog is very worthwhile, and that I have done a disservice to myself and my readers by not linking to his blog sooner. I will remedy that as soon as possible. I have been greatly benefited by many of the things he has to say (and I really like his latest - almost wordless- post on God's Gift of Fermentation). It seems to me that we agree on just about everything to do with Christianity, Agrarianism, Family, Homeschooling, etc. But I did come upon his post entitled Postmillennialism and Agrarianism, and I want to comment on it, and it is for this reason that I am submitting this article for your information. First of all, I respect and support any attempts to inform people about the Kingdom of God, and to encourage people to live obediently in it. The reason I reject the Jesuit concepts of futurism and preterism is because I believe that these views do tremendous harm to people in relation to whether or not they believe they have to obey Christ and His commandments. So I am appreciative of any writing that encourages folks to separate, to obey God and His commandments, to push into His Kingdom, etc.

But I do have some problems with the article by Mr. Terry, because I think there are some errors in it, and I think some people might be deceived by it.

As a life-long Baptist, and as a Baptist historian, student, and preacher, I have to take issue with Mr. Terry's assertion that Baptists were "predominantly" Postmillennial until the 20th Century. This is just not the case. As many of you know, the Baptists were primarily derived out of the many anti-Romanist Anabaptist sects who had rejected the Arminian errors of the most extreme Anabaptist sects, and out of the descendents of other groups who had never been a part of Rome (such as the Waldenses, Paulicians, etc.). The Baptists were, in the beginning, overwhelmingly Calvinist and for the most part they are identified with the London Baptist Confessions of Faith of 1644 and then 1689.

It is important when we say historical "baptists" that we identify about whom we are speaking. Mr. Terry mentions by way of proof of his assertion that Baptists were predominately Postmillenial that the 19th Century Southern Baptist denomination was predominantly postmillennial. The Southern Baptist denomination arrived pretty late in Baptist history, and by the 19th century many if not most Southern Baptists had already apostatized from their Calvinist doctrine and were well on their way to fully embracing Arminianism. Many would conclude (especially now based on the SBC's heresies as it relates to futurism and arminianism) that the formation of the SBC was one of the most critical steps on the road of heresy which unhappily has led many professing Baptists back to Rome (and I say this as a man who was raised a Southern Baptist). There was a whole lot of baptist history before there ever was a Southern Baptist denomination, and the Southern Baptists (although they were nominally "reformed" at the beginning) were very quick to adopt many modern errors.

Now, Mr. Terry makes the assertion that postmillennialism was the “predominant” view of Baptists until the 20th century. As I have said, this is absolutely not the case.

The two most prominent Baptist commentators in history were Historical Premillennialists (John Gill, Charles Spurgeon) as was the great preacher Abraham Booth and the most famous Baptist allegorist John Bunyan. Some of our evidence against the claim that Baptists were "predominantly" postmillennial comes from Mr. Spurgeon. Spurgeon wrote in 1876 that the "standard work" on Prophecy was the Commentary on Revelation written E.B. Elliot (Commentating on Commenataries, Passmore and Alabaster, London, 1876,p. 199). Elliot was a Historical Premillennialist, and Horae Apocalypticae (Elliot's work on Revelation, which I own and have read) is considered THE text on Revelation from the Historical Premillennial position. Spurgeon, at this time, was the most popular and the foremost Baptist preacher in all of the whole world, and he was preaching from the same pulpit as the great premillennial commenter Dr. John Gill, and if he had misspoken on the issue, it would be a matter of public record. In fact there is no instance or historical record of any Baptist teachers or spokesmen anywhere disagreeing with Spurgeon's very public assertion that Horae Apocalypticae was THE standard work on Revelation. You would think that if Baptists were predominantly postmillennial, that many if not all of the Baptist preachers in the Baptist Association at the time would have protested Mr. Spurgeon's mistake, if indeed he had made one. I don't know if anyone would be silly enough to challenge the fact that Dr. John Gill is the most prominent Baptist commentator in history, and it is well known that Gill was a Historical Premillennialist, and again there are no known works from Baptist theologians challenging Gill's position on the millennium - that takes us back to at least 1679. Now, Mr. Spurgeon and particularly Dr. Gill were involved in every major disputation of the day, and Dr. Gill specifically engaged in many polemical debates with other preachers on areas where they disagreed. Yet we have no record of either Mr. Spurgeon or Mr. Gill being confronted or challenged for their assertions regarding the millennium.

In fact, as a Baptist historian, I am having trouble finding even one Baptist commentator worth a nickle (or worth studying and quoting) who was NOT a historical premillennialist. Now, by this I am not saying that there were not postmillennial Baptists - there likely were a few, but saying that there were a few is a far cry from saying that Baptists were predominantly postmillennial. Let's look at some more folks:

The Baptist John Bunyan, world renowned author of The Pilgrim's Progress was a Historical Premillennialist as is evident in the footnotes referred to by the Scottish churchman Horatius Bonar (1808-1889) in his excellent work The Proofs of a Premillennial Advent, Chapter 7 (which I recommend). The Baptist Bunyan takes us back to 1628, and all of these writings were extant and accepted by all except the most extreme and apostate Baptists up and through the adoption of the London Baptist Confession of Faith of 1689, which was the accepted Baptist Confession all the way up until the Arminian splits 50 to 100 years later.

Russel D. Moore in his book The Kingdom of Christ admits that the early church in America was predominately premillennial, and he notes the fact that these churches required acceptance of premillennial confessions for communicants in the church:

"... the insistence on premillennial confessions was quite often, at least in the beginning, less about undue narrowness than about preserving historic Christian orthodoxy, an orthodoxy that was imperiled by an evolutionary postmillennial model of the coming of the Kingdom"

Now, no matter what one thinks of Mr. Moore's book, or of his concept of the Kingdom, one would have to work pretty hard to deny that Mr. Moore's research (along with mine and that of just about any other Baptist historian) shows that the church was predominately premillennial, and that the "evolutionary postmillennial model" is that which came much later, and was that which threatened the earlier orthodoxy.

Beyond Baptists, It is pretty clear that premillennialism was the primary and orthodox millennial position taught in the earliest ages of the whole Church, even by those who were (as teachers) directly connected to the Apostles. Phillip Schaff in his History of the Christian Church claims that one of the most striking points in the eschatology of the earliest church age was their... “belief of a visible reign of Christ in glory on earth with the risen saints for a thousand years, before the general resurrection and judgement.” Schaff goes on to say, “It was indeed not the doctrine of the church embodied in any creed or form of devotion, but a widely current opinion of distinguished teachers, such as Barnabas, Papias, Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Methodius, and Lactantius”.

Later on, the concept of a physical return of Jesus Christ in judgment, and an earthly reign of Christ was embodied in many creeds of the Church.

The 18th century historian E. Gibbons gives us a brief history of premillennialism:

“The assurance of such a Millennium was carefully inculcated by a succession of fathers... who conversed with the immediate disciples of the apostles, down to Lactantius, who was preceptor to the son of Constantine. Though it might not be universally received, it appears to have been the reigning sentiment of the orthodox believers; and it seems so well adapted to the desires and apprehensions of mankind, that it must have contributed in a very considerable degree to the progress of the Christian faith. But when the edifice of the church was almost completed, the temporary support was laid aside. The doctrine of Christ's reign upon earth was at first treated as a profound allegory, was considered by degrees as a doubtful and useless opinion, and was at length rejected as the absurd invention of heresy and fanaticism” (Gibbon E. Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volume I, Chapter XV, Section I. ca. 1776-1788. The Modern Library, NY, pp. 403-404).

I will end this short review of the history of millennial orthodoxy by examining Mr. Terry's comments concerning the beliefs of the Puritans and of Jonathan Edwards. Mr. Terry does not claim (as he did with the Baptists) that postmillennialism was the predominant view of the Puritans, and it is good that he did not. While it is true Mr. Edwards was not a premillennialist, neither can he be considered a model of early postmillennialism. Mr. Edwards taught that a "type of of Millennium would occur 1260 years after 606 C.E.” The year 606 was chosen because this was the year when Rome was recognized as having universal authority. So Mr. Edwards was certainly not a postmillennialist of the modern variety, he did not believe that he was living in the millennium, but was expecting a millennium to begin over 100 years after his lifetime.

The Puritans Increase and Cotton Mather taught of the existence of a literal millennium. Increase Mather wrote, “That which presseth me so, as that I cannot gainsay the Chiliastical opinion, is that I take these things for Principles, and no way doubt but that they are demonstrable. 1. That the thousand apocalyptical years are not passed but future. 2. That the coming of Christ to raise the dead and to judge the earth will be within much less than this thousand years. 3. That the conversion of the Jews will not be till this present state of the world is near unto its end. 4. That, after the Jews conversion there will be a glorious day for the elect upon earth, and that this day shall be a very long continuance.”

Writers should surely be careful as to what inference is being drawn from what they say. Many other Puritans, including John Cotton and Thomas Goodwin wrote as if they expected a future, but imminent millennium where iniquity would be vanquished and Christ would rule.

I want to point out here a major difference from those who might have been Puritan postmillennialists and modern postmillennialists. As you can see from what I have said and from these quotes, these men did not believe that they were living in the millennium. They were much too aware of the power of the Papal Antichrist and of the wickedness and Satanic influence in the world. They would never have made the mistake of blowing off all that chapter's 19 and 20 have to say about the millennium (such as the fact that Satan would be bound, and the Beast and False Prophet would be destroyed) in order to try to prove a questionable theory.

Ok, for now I will leave off of the topic of the historicity of premillennialism. I think it is quite safe to say that historical premillennialism was unequivocally the position of the early church, and that it remained so until very recently. I also think it is quite obvious that the position of the early Baptists was one of historical premillennialism.

So where have all the historical premillennialists gone? We should know from many of our studies that apostasy or grave error generally follows a definite pattern. In my book Swarms of Locusts, we traced the heresy of Arminianism from Pelagianism forward all the way to the modern Arminians. In that book we learned that Pelagius fell into error because of the vice that he saw among the so-called “christians” he met when he first went to Rome. Pelagius' error did not come from his interpretation of the Bible, but it came from his interpretation of others who had wrongly interpreted the Bible. Let me explain. The doctrine of Predestination, which was the belief of the early Church, can certainly be abused when it is in the hands of unregenerate men. The unregenerate Antinomians of Rome had taken the doctrine of Predestination and had used it as a license for sin and iniquity. Pelagius, seeing this licentiousness, and seeing that it was being practiced by those who claimed to be predestinationalists, automatically rejected the doctrine (regardless of its scriptural basis) because he rejected the way it was being practiced by licentious men. The danger here ought to be evident to all. Our doctrines must be derived and proved from scripture, and not from our own experiences or from our own interpretations of what the results of the doctrine might bring. Pelagius rejected total depravity and insisted on human ability because he was not happy with what he saw upon visiting Rome. Thus began a great heresy that continues even unto this day.

Likewise postmillennialism began as a rejection of the prevailing eschatological view of the day. Many who held to the position of premillennialism had fallen pray to the Roman Catholic created view of “dispensational premillennialism”. This view elevated natural Israel above the Church and the Jew above the Gentile. It also led to licentious living since professing “christians” who were beguiled by it came to believe that the Church would be protected or removed from any tribulation that was to come upon the earth, and that Christ's imminent return removed from them any responsibility for right action and moral responsibility to their own family, their Christian community, and their progeny. Rejecting these errors, many men began to imbibe more unorthodox views of the millennium. I should mention here that the earliest writer to reject the premillennial view was the arch-heretic Marcion. H. Brown the Harvard scholar said:

“The first great heretic broke drastically with the faith of the early church in abandoning the doctrine of the imminent, personal return of Christ...Marcion did not believe in a real incarnation, and consequently there was no logical place in his system for a real Second Coming...Marcion expected the majority of mankind to be lost...he denied the validity of the Old Testament and its Law...As the first great heretic, Marcion developed and perfected his heterodox system before orthodoxy had fully defined itself...Marcion represents a movement that so radically transformed the Christian doctrine of God and Christ that it can hardly be said to be Christian.”

So that is to say that people reject orthodoxy for many reasons, and the rejection of premillennialism was based historically on some radically differing grounds.

Many postmillennialists rejected what they saw as premillennial pessimism (I will deal with "premillennial pessimism" more in the next part, but I will address it quickly here). Since premillennialists believed that the Bible clearly taught that things would not get better and better, but that things would grow worse and worse, it increased the pressure on many Christians to separate from the wicked world into Christian communities. The Bible teaches that when Christ comes, he will look (perhaps in vain) to find any faith on the earth (Luke 18:8), and that evil men and seducers would wax worse and worse (2 Tim. 3:13) – which contradicted the postmillennial view of the earthly and carnal victory of the physical Church before the return of Christ. Many postmillennialists were invested in the concept that the world would continue to get better and better, and that the physical Kingdom of God (as they saw it) would continue to increase and improve until it took over governments and authorities and ushered in the golden age of Christ's rule on earth (minus the physical presence Christ, of course).

Postmillennialists saw Christian separatism and a rejection of worldly politics and engagement as “pessimism” or “despair”, when in fact it was neither pessimistic nor did it tend towards despondency. It is common for fanatics and activists to consider people who are not like them to be “pessimistic”, when the fact is that separatists have just rejected the dominionists erroneous worldview. Our hope and our joy lies in Christ, and not in what we think we can do for Christ before He gets here to straighten this world out.

So in my opinion postmillennialism, a late theological innovation, has persevered because of its rightful rejection of dispensationalist error, and its wrongful rejection of what it calls “premillenial pessimism”.

One of the greatest hardships for postmillennialists (other than their inability to prove their historical claims, their birth in the mind of Marcion the heretic, and their continued inability to take over or dominate the kingdoms of this world) is that they must continuously explain away all the obvious evidences that refute their assertions concerning the carnal/physical growth of the Kingdom of God on earth. There are two main arguments posited by postmillennialists to explain away what anyone with eyes and ears can see and hear. It is plain that, as we have said, “evil men and seducers wax worse and worse”. It is clear that the governments of men are not being brought under the influence and authority of Christ and His law, but rather are, as the Bible prophesies in the 2nd Psalm, breaking the bonds of Christ's authority and casting away His cords from themselves. It is obvious that Christianity as the guiding or overriding moral code of the nations is not increasing, but is decreasing. Anyone can see that the number (by way of percentage) of true and practicing Christians is not increasing in the world, rather it is decreasing (rather it is increasing as a real number, but decreasing as a percentage of the population).

So the postmillennialist is stuck trying to be an apologist for a view that is completely and utterly rejected by reality. The postmillennialist knows that thinking people cannot see what he says is happening – and, in fact, can see that the very opposite is happening - so he must develop an apology and an explanation for what everyone evidently sees. Here are his two main tactics:

1. The “Kingdom is actually growing” tactic. This is a classic and falls under the category of statistical manipulation. As you know, there are lies, damned lies, and then there are statistics. Mr. Terry says in his article: “And that ever since, the kingdom has marched forward, so that now, instead of one nation (Israel) of whom a FEW were faithful (a few thousand after Pentecost), now the church covers all the earth, and about one third of the earths 6+ billion people profess to be subjects of Christ. (We are well aware that there are many false professors. Nevertheless, from a few thousand to over 2 billion who profess Christ shows a slow but steady growth in the kingdom of God.)”

Wow. That's some figure. Even if you count the fact that he allows that “many” of these 2 billion are false professors, that would be some huge number. If it were true. Which it isn't. In order to reach this number of two billion souls in the kingdom, you would totally have to discount EVERYTHING Jesus Christ had to say about the kingdom. Jesus said that the kingdom was made up of those who are “poor in spirit”, which we know means those who are meek and humble (Matt. 5:3). He also said it belonged to those who are persecuted for righteousness sake (Matt. 5:10). Well, this discounts most of those who profess to be Christians. Also, you'd also have to disqualify all those whose righteousness did not exceed that of the Pharisees (Matt. 5:20) unless you want to call Jesus a liar, which means you have to discount all those who have not actually received Christ's imputed righteousness. Jesus said we also have to really question this fictional number because “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 7:21). Jesus also said that many would come from the east and from the west, but most of those who consider themselves children of the kingdom, would not enter in, but would be cast into outer darkness (Matt. 8:11). The parables in Matthew 13 (which I covered in my recent Separatism series) teach that only a small portion of those who consider themselves Christians are actually children of the kingdom. Let's add into our consideration that Jesus said that his flock was a “little” one (Luke 12:32), and He said, “strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matt. 7:14).

Let's look even closer. Mr. Terry's numbers have to include the Roman Catholic Church, which every single primitive Protestant confession called ANTICHRIST! Wikipedia claims that that Romanists make up 1/6 of the world's population, which means that there are over 1 billion of them in the world. This means over ½ of the 2 billion that Mr. Terry calls “Christians” are actually children of the Antichrist. He is saying (whether he knows it or not) that Antichrist and his church are part of the kingdom of God. He also has to be including Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses, Arminians, Charismatics and all the other false cults. 1 John 3:10 and many other places calls these people children of the devil. How in the world can children of the devil be accounted as children of the kingdom unless some ad man or some marketing salesman is trying to cook the books? Jesus said the devil had his own kingdom (as a prince) and he had his own children, and they would do the works of their father. These clearly cannot honestly be called children of the kingdom. Elijah despaired that he was the only one left who served the Lord, but the Lord told him that there were 7000 in Israel who had not bowed the knee to Baal. This is really interesting when you figure that there were likely well over 2 million who had left Egypt for the promised land, and by this time the population had grown into the many, many of millions. Yet God said there were about 7000 who had not bowed the knee to Baal. Even if we very conservatively estimate that the population of Israel was around 10 million, that means that .0007 of those 10 million were not servants and citizens of the devil's kingdom of this world.

Frankly, this tactic of the postmillennialist causes us to throw out most of the New Testament, nearly all of what Jesus had to say about the Kingdom, and even our own common sense. And they do all of this in order to make their misunderstanding of the parables of Matthew 13 make sense to themselves.

2. The second tactic is the “climbing a mountain” or the “wave theory” of explaining away what everybody knows naturally and instinctively. Everybody who knows anything about history and has a single spiritual bone in their body knows that things are not getting better and better, but they are clearly getting worse and worse. This is what the Bible promised, and this is what is happening. The Bible says that when it comes to the very end, only the “very elect” would not be deceived. So the postmillennialist has developed the “mountain” or “wave” tactic to explain away the obvious. Ok, so here is how it usually works. They will say, “Sure things look bad. Sure the kingdoms of the world are casting off Christianity and the world looks like it is going down the tubes. But you see, when you are on the ocean and you are amidst the waves, you have to go down a very deep trough before you go up the very biggest waves!”. Right. The problem is that no timeline is long enough to show that true, real, authentic Christianity is taking over the world, or that the wicked and lost world is being “christianized”. In fact, anybody who studies history knows that the opposite is true. Our psuedo-christian institutions are being dismantled. God is being thrown out of the public square, and relegated to the backlots and alleys. Only the false religion of the Papal Antichrist and the Pope's children (Arminian free-willers and Charismatics) are seeing any real spectacular growth, and in fact the governments and institutions of the world are embracing secular humanism more and more every day. This is just a fact, and not one postmillennialist can deny it. This is why they have to come up with these totally ridiculous word pictures. Mr. Terry uses the “mountain” tactic: “as one climbs to the peak of a mountain, every step is not upward. There are many downward steps, but the climb is still up overall”. This is like being on a plane that has lost both wings and plummeting to earth and having the captain say, "nothing to worry about folks, we're merely diving to pick up speed".

I don't mean to be disrespectful to Mr. Terry (and I hope I am not), who I respect greatly. He didn't make this stuff up. Someone taught it to him. It is ludicrous and it just isn't true. The “mountain” and “wave” tactic is used in order to make another assertion that isn't true, and that is (as Mr. Terry asserts), that premillennialism was concocted only lately out of despair because Christians were disappointed that Christ had not come to set up His kingdom. I have already shown that true premillennialism (historical premillennialism) was the original eschatological belief system of the Church. Historical premillennialism teaches that Christ established the Kingdom while here on earth, and in fact it has blossomed and has grown. Mr. Terry has fallen for the Jesuits favorite trick. It is the Jesuits who created dispensational premillennialism, and Mr. Terry has fallen for the idea that those who reject postmillenialism are naturally dispensational. Well, we are not. Neither was the Baptist John Bunyan. Neither was the Baptist John Gill. Neither was the Baptist Charles Spurgeon. Historical premillennialists believe what Christ said when He said, “My kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36). We certainly believe that a segment or dominion of the kingdom is in this world, but it is certainly not of this world. We agree with many other millenialist when we say that the regenerate Christian, when he is converted, enters into the Kingdom of God, and he ought to begin to operate by kingdom principles, and by the commandments and ordinances of the King Jesus Christ. As such, he passes from the authority of the king of this world, the devil, and from his bondage to sin, and he becomes a child of the kingdom. The kingdom, in this way, is very real and it is very NOW. When we separate from the world and separate as the Bible commands into Christian community, we are leaving the kingdom of this world and entering into the kingdom of God. This kingdom will have its next and fullest expression when Christ Himself comes to defeat and overthrow the nations and kingdoms of this world (Rev. 19).

At the root of it, postmillennialism sells the potion that Christians are supposed to be activists in the world, and are supposed to compete in the marketplace of ideas, and are supposed to be political, and are supposed to be about the business of taking over the world and doing the work that the Bible says Christ alone will do. Rather than being good Christians, living peaceably with all men, working with their hands, and raising up their families in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, many postmillennialist would rather live in a townhome and run for city council so they can “take over the world for Christ”. Unhappily, this is all because they have made some glaring errors in their understanding of prophecy and eschatology, and they have abandoned the historic teaching of the Church, and of the greatest minds in the history of the Church.

In the end, the philosophy of postmillennialism has failed generation after generation, and it is the postmillennialist who is subject to despair and depression because, like the futurist, his prognostications never come to past, and his prophecies of a better and brighter world (without Christ in it) continue to fail.

To the historical premillennialist, the kingdom is here, and it is still not yet. It is both. It is here in that we are exhorted to push into it, to receive it as a child, and to operate according to its principles. Yet the Bible is clear that the kingdom is also “not yet”. We are instructed to pray, "Thy kingdom come" (Mat.6:10), and the Kingdom of Jesus Christ in its fullest display is always shown to be at His second coming (Matt. 25:34; Luke 19:11-15, etc.). A Kingdom does not cease to exist just because its King has gone to a far country because we know He will return at the day appointed. His true subjects obey Him and maintain the Kingdom even while the King rules from afar. We look to the day that we see Him “coming in His Kingdom” (Matt. 16:28), and at the same time we confess that we have been “called unto His kingdom and glory” (1 Th. 2:12).

We are not so carnal that we throw out the words of Christ... “My kingdom is not of this world”, yet we are not so mystical that we allow ourselves be ruled by our own wishes or emotions.

I have gone long, and I have more to say on the subject. In the next part, we'll examine Revelation Chapter 19 and 20 very closely and see how the timeline that God has given us reinforces the premillennial view of the historic Church, and then we'll discuss just what this all has to do with Agrarianism today.

I am your servant in Christ Jesus,

Michael Bunker

Scattershooting after Ranchfest

10/29/08 - 4th Day - After Breakfast. Howdy Y'all. Well, the last of our Ranchfestish guests left yesterday. So, unofficially, Ranchfest for us lasted 18 days or so, because our friends, the Pecks from Canada, arrived on the last day of Ranchfest and visited until yesterday. We had a great time, and it was good to spend time with folks we've known online for quite some time.

The weather has been quite nice here, with some uncommonly cold mornings. Yesterday morning was our coldest yet at almost 33 degrees, which is about a month early for those types of temps. We got the fall garden covered up with plastic, just in case a freeze was to happen. The prognosticators are calling for it to warm up though, back to more seasonable temps over the next week or so.

Canning, Canning, Canning...

As some of your regular readers know, last Thursday we picked up a huge sow and a small steer from the butcher (Yes we can and do some of our own butchering, but the temperatures were still way to warm around here when we needed to butcher). Anyway, Danielle, Tracy, the children, and some of Danielle's lady helpers have been canning meat just as fast as they can work. She finally finished the big pig yesterday (not counting the lard, which she still has to do), and she started on the steer. I know it must seem like an endless task, but since I have been the one hauling cases of canned meat down to the root cellar, I can assure her that all the work will pay off in fast cooked and easy prepared meals for the next many months. Yesterday for supper Tracy ran down to the root cellar and grabbed a jar of spaghetti sauce I made earlier in the month when we were canning tomatoes. She browned up some of our longhorn steer hamburger (not canned yet... if this had been a month from now, she would have just added a can of already browned and tender hamburger directly to the sauce), and basically had some instant gourmet spaghetti.

Hopefully someday soon we will have a large smoker, and we will not be forced to can almost 100% of the meat.

Anyway, I told Danielle that I would try not to start butchering goats or other farm animals for several weeks to try to give her a canning break. We'll see. This is the way a traditional agrarian farm family would have done it. Fall would be for butchering and processing meat.

Our garden is still doing well, and I'll probably go harvest some more greens today. I also hope to get another raised garden bed started today. We'll see about that too.

Ok, so I promised that I would begin posting my short series on millennialism this week. So, expect to have two blogposts up today. I'll finish editing the first part and get it posted here as soon as I am able.

Peace,

Michael Bunker

10.24.2008

Hey Y'all!

10/24/08 - 6th Day - After Breakfast. I have tried to post twice in the past two days and the internet (or blogger) has not worked well for me. Here goes again...

We had our first light frost yesterday morning. After regularly having days in the 80's, we got way down to 34 yesterday morning. It is 36 this morning as I write. In this first pic, you can see our sow (Bitty) and 8 of her 10 piggies. I went to look for the other two piggies and I found them sleeping and staying warm burrowed into the hay in the pig pen.

In this next pic you can see the raised beds we are still working on. The far right bed is our fall garden of greens, walking onions, cauliflower, and broccoli. The middle bed is planted in gourmet garlic, and the left bed is still being finished. It is currently planted completely in gourmet garlic as well. Lord willing, there will be a fourth bed finished next week, and it will be planted in gourmet garlic as well.


This next pic shows the fall garden bed yesterday morning, covered in frost. I hope it doesn't do too much damage, but I don't expect much. You can see the new Egyptian Walking Onions in the far end of the bed. Thanks to Judy at Tabletophomestead for the onion bulbs and for her kind comments about Ranchfest.


I should be harvesting sweet potatoes sometime next week. We harvested a boat load of collard and mustard greens before the frost, and we canned them for the root cellar. Yesterday, we picked up Pedro (the steer) and Mimi (the huge gilt pig) from the butcher. Mimi weighed in at 494 hanging weight! Which means she was well over 600 lbs. on the hoof! Pedro was much smaller. His hanging weight was 262 lbs. Danielle, the family, and Mrs. Peck (Mr. and Mrs. Peck are visiting friends) began the canning process of all that meat yesterday, and will be continuing for the foreseeable future. We also ate T-Bone steaks last night from Pedro. I have to say, it was bittersweet to take a steer that I bottle fed to the butcher, but it was nothing but sweet to eat T-Bone steaks from an animal born and raised here on the land.

Well, things move along here. We got some things moved down to the office, and I have actually gotten to spend a little time down there.

I hope to post some important articles next week, including the first in a small series on "millennialism" and agrarianism.

I hope all is well with you all.

Peace,

Michael Bunker

10.21.2008

Update from Ranchfest and harvesting beef...

10/21/08 - 3rd Day - After Breakfast. I haven't posted in awhile so I will throw up some pics from Super Ranchfest which ended on Friday. This was definitely one of the best Ranchfests we have ever had. The fellowship was great, the participation was awesome, and we really got a lot done. Our great hope was that in stage 2 of our office construction we would get the office completely dried-in. I didn't really expect it to get done since money was so tight, but in the end, at the last minute on the last day, we completed the drying-in of the office, including the soffit and facia. Anyway, here are some pics...






So, as of now the office is officially closed up from the weather, and is partially usable, even if it is just for storage right now. As of yet, according to my estimates (which are always wrong) we are about 50% done with the main structure of the office. We still will need siding, trim, interior flooring, wall material, ceiling, bookshelves, etc. The third phase of the project will involve putting a large deck on two sides of the office for spring and summer meeting space for the fellowship, and we will be extending the "shop" part of the office 12 more feet to the east as well. That phase will likely take place at Spring Ranchfest 2009. I want to thank everyone who came for Ranchfest and who made it such a blessed and joyful experience. We all had a great time and it was good to meet so many of you and spend some time with you all.

On Wednesday before Super Ranchfest we took our steer Pedro into the butcher. As many of you know Pedro (David calls him "Baby-P") was our first pureblood longhorn born here at the ranch. We had to start Pedro with a bottle since he was born several weeks premature. Here is a picture of me feeding Pedro in the cabin after he was born...


Since it is a "Process Driven Life", and so you can see the beginning and end of the process, here is Pedro all loaded up to head to the processor...



Baby-P was still fairly small, and always was a bit of a midget. But he was two years old and it was time for him to go. We will miss him, but as Agrarians, we know his purpose, and why God gave him to us, and we look forward to picking up the meat on Thursday and starting the process of preserving it for our use throughout the winter and spring. We picked up his horns last thursday and are starting the process of preserving and mounting them. My aunt from upstate New York wants them, so we will be sending them to her.

God is good, and we continually praise Him.

Your servant in Christ Jesus,

Michael Bunker

10.17.2008

You make the caption...

10/017/08 - 6th - After Breakfast. Preparation of the Sabbath. Here's a fun game. You make the caption of this photo! Post your captions in the comments. I have made up a few to start you off...

Here are my top 5...

5. It's a cardinal/president sandwich!
4. Hey Cardinal, you're the only one of the three of us born in the U.S.A.!
3. Rock, Paper, Scissors for the Altar Boy.
2. Really Barry, let him lay hands on you. It's spiritual.
1.
Hey, my cup of iniquity isn't full!

Michael Bunker

10.08.2008

Rants-fest, Part 2

10/08/08 - 4th Day - Late Afternoon. I am a conspiracy theorist who, strangely enough, cannot usually stand the company of other conspiracy theorists. Really, they're quite nutty, and usually (and this is my big problem) they have no real love of the truth - in that they will believe any theory that takes responsibilty away from them, and they will reject any theory that is true, but hurts.

So why am I a conspiracy theorist? Because I could not possibly accept the alternative. You see the only alternative to being a conspiracy theorist is to be a.... Coincidence Theorist

The Bible does not allow for a world where earth-changing events happen coincidentally. I mean sure, if you take the word "coincidence" and apply it's true and actual definition, then things happen coincidentally all the time. The word "coincidence" literally means "when two or more events happen at the same time". Right now I am writing this, and I am also drinking water - literally a coincidence. So, if we actually spoke good and true English, coincidences happen all the time. However, due to the prevalence of free-will anarchic thinking (predominantly from pseudo-"christians" in the "church") the word "coincidence" has come to mean "when two or more events which are not likely or naturally likely to happen at the same time, DO happen at the same time as if by chance, fate, or by some unknown or unknowable power". So, since I cannot be a Coincidence Theorist, I am stuck with being a Conspiracy Theorist.

I do believe our world has been shaped by grand conspiracies. The Bible teaches it from cover to cover. Some conspiracies were purely good, for example "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth" (Gen. 1:26). Here we have a conspiracy within the Godhead, where our triune God conspires to elevate man to a position of power, authority, and dominion over the whole world (insert conspiratorial cackle here). Other conspiracies were purely bad, for example "The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision" (Psa 2:2-4). Here the kings of the earth and all of the rulers conspire to gather together against the Lord and against Jesus Christ and His anointed in order to break the bands of God's rightful authority and to live out from under the rule of God's commandments. Of course, again, we here the conspiratorial cackle as God directs derision at these plans.

Some conspiracies are mixed. God (who is perfectly and eternally good) empowers and permits Pharaoh (who is wicked) to come to power, to hold Israel in bondage and to treat them contemptuously, and to do so for many hundreds of years. Why? So that God would get honor on Pharaoh: "And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the LORD. And they did so" (Ex. 14:4). Then God conspired to make things hard on the Israelites because of their murmuring, so that they would turn against Him, and that all but a few would perish in the desert having not received the promises. Then God conspired to bring the offspring of Israel into the promised land to make war with the people of Canaan and to utterly destroy them. God conspired with the enemies of Israel and Judah, time after time, to bring them with a sword to chastise and rebuke His people.

It gets more interesting.

God allowed Satan to conspire with Judas and with the Pharisees to betray and kill the Lord of Glory; and all of this was part of God's plan. Would anybody dare contend that Jesus wasn't killed by a conspiracy? Do coincidence theorists really deny the conspiracy to kill Jesus Christ? Would they deny that the Jews conspired together, brought forth false witnesses, broke their own laws and ordinances, and paid money to Judas Iscariot to betray Christ? When someone says "I don't believe in conspiracies" what they are saying is "I don't believe the Bible, because I believe everything happens coincidentally".

Oh, I am a conspiracy theorist. I don't deny it. Our world is shaped by conspiracy. I even wrote a book about the Jesuit order of the Roman Catholic Church and their conspiracy to overthrow, twist, and catholicize Protestant doctrine. I believe that the current economic meltdown goes back many centuries (even further than that) to the machinations of wicked men who desired world power and domination. I don't believe that it was just a coincidence that George Bush, Sr. talked about a New World Order, nor do I believe it is coincidental that modern socialist/liberal spokesmen and conservo-fasicst commentators refuse to talk about it. I believe that the conspiratorial intent today is to crash the world economy in order to bring about chaos and fear. I believe it is very likely that a huge world war will soon be fought between the Communists (communism started by the Jews) with the Muslims on their side (Islam started by Jews and Catholics) and the fascists and capitalists (fascism started by the Catholic Church via Hitler and Mussolini) on the other. I am not promising it will happen, but I believe it will. And I believe all of this is designed to redraw the world map after the order of Medieval Europe (with dozens or hundreds of vassal monarchies) all controlled by the temporal power of the Pope of Rome.

Hey, I even believe that the whole two-party system in Amerika is a conspiracy to keep people dumb and addicted to comfort, and to steal power and authority from the people. I think the "vote but do not do" mentality in Amerika is a conspiracy of dunces to stop men from separating from the world.

So, I think I am a qualified conspiracy theorist.

But I tell you that I cannot stand the modern conspiracy movement. Not one bit. To some people, that makes me part of the conspiracy.

You see, modern conspiracy adherents have no love for the truth. They refuse to recognize their own responsibility. They don't want to DO anything, they just want to talk and fret. They want to get people in a tizzy, and get them to spend money, but they don't dare give them any advice or counsel that doesn't make people dependent on whomever the conpiratorialist is. They will mobilize (such as in the patriot/militia movement) but only if mobilization means the sharing of any ramifications of that mobilization. In other words, they love this world the way it is. They rhapsodize eloquently about their love of "the old days" and "the old ways", but they will not do anything to actually improve the lives and lot of their families or their progeny, or anyone that listens to them. They generally refuse to identify what it is that turned things bad in the first place, and they, for the most part, just want the freedom to do whatever they want to do without any responsibility (xtian anarchy). I have long been astounded at the scope and the grandeur of the conspiracies they imagine or that they teach - all without any actual proof at all. I mean, I think these globalist conspiracies and the people who engage in them are bad enough, but do they really need to be reptillian half/people who drink blood and eat flesh? I mean aren't George Bush and the Clintons wicked enough without having them shape-shift and rape babies? (Please do not email me and ask me to read a book of stories written by "people in the know" who have seen Hillary Clinton eat a baby, or Barbara Bush turn into a reptile)

Here is the problem. The conspiracy/militia/patriot movement is completely overrun with agitprops and agents provocateur, liars and propaganda mouthpieces. Their job is to take a whole lot of truth, mix in a dollop or a truckload of untruth, stir it into a frenzy shake, and pour it down the throats and into the ears of a bunch of fat, dumb, lazy victims who will believe anything they hear without any sane or logical examination of the facts. And let me tell you, there are great profits to be made in conspiracy. I had everyone and their dog trying to co-opt and con me into their conspiracy camp... and the promise of endless amounts of dollars came with it. The loudest and most idiotic conspiracy theorists are generally in it for the loot.

Take the Jesuit short-robe and government agitprop Alex Jones... please. There's too much information out there exposing Alex Jones for me to go into it in this blog, and I've written about it plenty. But I still get inundated with emails from people pushing Alex and his junk. Why? Because it is easier to curse the darkness than to light a match. It is easier to blame Roosevelt or the Creature from Jekyll Island than it is to separate from this modern industrial toilet and go to work producing food and a society and culture for our children. Alex Jones gets paid when you do nothing but buy his junk. He doesn't dare tell you to move out of the cities and live off the land. He doesn't dare tell you anything that will help your family and your people in the long term. People like Alex Jones, or even Ron Paul have a vision for Amerika. They have a vision where we all zoom back to 1959 where we can all own guns and come home to a wife who wears high heels to cook supper. Their ideal world is the HEIGHT of industrial success. Their world is the epitome of Amerikan industrial might and power, where every man can have a 1/4 acre of heaven with a white picket fence. Sounds great, unless you realize that this is what poisoned our people in the first place. Sounds great, unless you realize that this fake world of success in advertising was built on the smoking ruins of our Agrarian heritage.

Oh, and by the way, they will be glad to sell you some program or plan that will guarantee you that you can live in wicked Amerika with all it's industrial largesse... you can use the roads and highways, the bridges and stores, etc., and all without a social security number! Just send $400 to Alex or some other agitprop goon and he will teach you how you can have it all without planting a single potato! Viva-Industrialism!

I could go on and on... but I won't.

So, write me down as a conspiracy theorist who generally cannot stand conspiracy theorists.

And that's my rant for today,

Michael Bunker

10.07.2008

October Rants (or "Rants-fest") Part 1

10/07/08 - 4th Day - After Breakfast. Separation is more than just a philosophy. It is a natural result that is inevitable when certain things occur. When you speak a different language, operate on fundamentally different principles, reject the worldview and foundational basis of the world around you, and are determined to live contra-mundum (against the world), then you will naturally be a separatist. I will give you an example. If you were translated into a strange and foreign country, where you did not speak the language of the people, and where the practices and actions of the people were not just foreign to you - but were offensive, and where the people operated on principles that were fundamentally opposite to yours, but where, for a time, the people were willing to let you live somewhat peacably and according to your own principles, you would be a separatist would you not? This is the problem with the modern "christian". Modern "Xtianity" has concluded that syncretism is acceptable despite the fact that the Bible says these things:

1. That we are not citizens or "nationals" of this world, but we are citizens and ambassadors of another Kingdom.
2. We are not to be conformed to this world.
3. If we come to love this foreign land, then the love of our true King is not in us.
4. Our true country is not of this country at all, and we are to live separated in it, and are to be obedient to our true sovereign, and are not to become entangled or burdened with the cares of this foreign country.

Now, with those marching orders, modern "xtians" still argue - endlessly - that they are supposed to live just like the world in order to convert it, and that they do not love this present world, even while they are telling everyone around them that Jesus did.

Ok, so here we are in the midst of this foreign land and an economic disaster (or at least severe hardship) is upon the land. The people are crying out to their "god" (government) for help, and they want you to cry out to him too. Our God has, so long as there has been Bibles written in the language of the people, been calling His people to live separately from the wicked of the world, and to operate on different principles, and to not live in dependence on the world. We have been called to live off of the land, off of the world grid, away from the system of urbanization and separation that has so crippled the sons of Adam. We are called to be a testimony to this wicked generation, and to give God's Gospel to it, but we were never called to join it, live with it, or fornicate with it. It is very likely (although not automatic) that we will feel the trepidation and fears from pending economic collapse in direct relation to how much we have sinned with this present world.

Preparedness

Now, once again, people are talking about preparedness. They are talking about storing up dehydrated foods and fuel supplies and generators, etc. I want to talk about that.

First of all, we are a preparedness people. All true Christians ought to be. We all ought to be relying on God's providence today, and trusting in Him to provide for us tomorrow. We all ought to "forseeth evil" and hide ourselves, lest we pass on (as the simple do) and get punished (Prov. 22:3). We all ought to "prepare our meat in summer" (Prov. 30:26). Preparedness is not an event, it is a lifestyle and a worldview.

One of the problems, though, with the preparedness folk, is that they do not see beyond the fundamental errors of the people. Whereas the ignorant folk say "I have no need of storing up any goods when there is a nice, shiny, clean store just down the road", the preparedness folk say, "Yes, and I will go to that store and buy up enough food for X years", as if they know that X years supply of food will be sufficient. In both cases, the people are relying on the store. The ignorant folk say, "the government will take care of me if I run out of food, water, or shelter", and the preparedness folk say, "Well, I would rather rely on myself and chance". By this I mean that neither desires to make a wholesale change in the very principles and worldview that inform their decisions. Neither desires TODAY to be dependent on God and His Word. Neither wants to give up modern comfort and modern security in order to throw themselves on a Holy and Righteous God. I've seen it for years.

Many of you may not know that I was a preparedness teacher many years before the Y2K scare of a decade ago. In fact, I was teaching preparedness before I had even heard of Y2K. I finally gave up when I realized that people will prepare for events, and they will prepare for hardships - but only so long as their fundamental principles are not challenged. They will not accept the idea that the very fundamentals of their industrial/commercial society is Anti-christ, and mentally and spiritually crippling. They will not accept that the way they have chosen to live is why the system is evil and must eventually collapse. They will not accept that their perpetual 72 degree lives are designed to ease them into hell. They will prepare, so long as the preparations guarantee a certain standard of living, and say to them that they will not die hungry or thirsty, or from some horrendous calamity, and that some day... things will return to "normal", which is to say that they will one day get to return to their lives of colonized leisure and comfort.

So... we can see that some will not leave Sodom at all because they are Sodomites,and some will leave, but will turn back hoping it is not utterly destroyed.

Preparedness for events is a recipe for eternal and spiritual failure.

I am not saying you should not buy food from stores, especially when it is on sale and you have not yet developed a system of food production for yourself and your family. I am saying that you should not rely on a band-aid when you have a potentially fatal bullet wound.

Remember, the pied-pipers of event preparedness are generally in it for the money. Not all of them are - some are true believers (in industrial preparedness), but most of them are trying to make a buck. Only someone who truly cares about your soul will tell you to separate from the world and begin a life of true preparedness, where you will be relying on God's provision and His daily bread, rather than on the wicked system of commerce which currently runs the world. If you want to be prepared, plant a garden - or at least plan now for your spring garden - and this year, plan for a garden big enough to feed your family. Make plans to preserve the bounty from your garden, and make those plans right now. Plant trees this fall.... trees that will produce fruit and nuts for your family in the future.

Simplify, Simplify, Simplify... sell almost everything and attempt to pay off your debts. Cut off your cable and sell your TV. Sell, sell, sell... right now is the time to liquidate. While the world is selling stocks, you should be selling bonds (the things that keep you in bondage). Buy only those things that will guarantee you something in the future.

Anyway, I've covered all of this in my Off-Grid Living series... Go read it...

Oh, and don't fall for the Preterist lie that all prophecy has been fulfilled, and that this is just a bump in the road on the way to a worldly Christian Kingdom. And don't fall for the futurist lie that it doesn't matter what you do, because this is the end of it all, and either the rapture is going to happen, or you will only have to make it for 7 years through the tribulation. Both of those lies are crippling heresies and will never lead you to obedience and true submission.

Later,

Michael Bunker




10.06.2008

The Rain

10/06/08 - 2nd Day - After Breakfast. Things had gotten pretty dry around here again, so thank the Lord that we received a good amount of rain last night. Nothing severe, and the wind didn't blow as hard as had been expected, but we probably received near a half an inch of rain, which is really nice for the fall garden and the pastures.

Speaking of rain... I see this morning that the stock market is down another 500 and sits at 9800... about where it was on my birthday in January of 1999 on its way up. I wonder if tonight a bunch of stock brokers are going to party like it's 1999? I think that after this economic crash is over, a whole lot of you are going to be living like it's 1799.

That's one big frog... and you wouldn't like him when he's angry.

Rant coming.... maybe later, so check back!

Michael

10.03.2008

More Scattershooting

10/03/08 - 6th Day - After Breakfast. Preparation of the Sabbath. So it turns out that we had 12 piglets and not 11 from Bitty the wonder sow. One of them is still not likely to make it, though she (or he) seems to be hanging on pretty well. Last year, out of the 7 piglets we had, one of them was pretty brutally injured - probably by being stepped on by the sow. We took the piglet away from the momma last year, but it died within a day or so. This year, the injured piglet had a wound that was much, much worse than the one last year, but we decided to just leave the piglet with the momma and pray that it works out the way God would have it work out. So, as of now (2:30 PM on the 6th Day) we still have 12 piglets.

Things have dried up here again, and it has been very hot in the afternoons and dry. Today it is about 92 degrees, and it was near 95 yesterday. It has been very nice and cool in the mornings. The prognosticators are calling for maybe some rain on Monday and Tuesday before Super Ranchfest, and cooler weather starting on Tuesday. This far out, here is the weather report for Ranchfest:

Starting Friday and Saturday with very nice and warm temps (80's and 90's) in the day, but cool temperatures at night (50's and high 40's). Sunday through Tuesday they have cool days (mid to high 60's) and 40's at night. Wednesday through Friday has 70's during the day, and 50's at night.

We could really use a good inch or two of rain before Ranchfest starts.

Ok, so we were all told that the 700 Bubbillion dollar bailout was necessary in order to save the world from anarchy and the people from having to go without flush toilets. When the original bill failed, we were told the stock market panicked and fell 777 points (this wasn't true, the market was already down well over 300 on the anticipation that the bill would pass!). When the bill failed, we were told the market fell another 432 points because of the imminent invasion of soul eating worms caused by the failure to rescue the bankers. But then the market went UP over 500 points while the politicians were dickering over exactly how bad the armeggedon was going to be if we failed to give million dollar lollipops to rich securities thieves. Then, when the Senate voted to approve the new 700 Bubbillion dollar bailout, the market fell almost 400 points (yesterday). Then the market went up over 300 points today, until the House approved the measure, and now it has fallen over 300 and sits again in the negative (while writing this, the market closed down over 150, meaning that it dropped almost 500 AFTER the house approved the bailout bill).

Does anyone else out there think that maybe the 30 Dow Industrial stocks have absolutely nothing to do with what is going on? And does anyone else think that this whole thing is just a huge scam and that rich fat-cats are laughing their butts off all the while? I mean, are there really millions of investors who are waking up every morning and listening to CSPAN and then deciding whether to sell or buy stocks today? I mean, are there people who get up, eat their store bought pasty white eggs and toxic toast, then drive to their job where they call their broker and say, "I heard they might or might not pass a 700 bubbillion dollar bank bailout bill today... SELL EVERYTHING! Sell my Wal-Mart stock! Sell my Payless Shoe Store stock! Sell my Ipod stock!" Then, the next day, they do the same thing again, get to work, call their broker and say.. ."Forget what I said yesterday! Buy everything you can get! Buy Dollar General! Buy Chuck-E-Cheese! Spend thousands that I don't have! Put my retirement account in Cheetos!"

Does that really happen?

Around here, it is much more subtle and laid back. The Antes come over and say, "Yep... bought a milk cow today". And I say, "Oh... the livestock market is up". Except that means that Homer sold a cow in order for the Antes to buy one, so maybe the market is still neutral. Which it should always be. I get confused.

I read that when Wachovia bank was collapsing, apparently there was a "silent" run on the bank. By silent I guess they mean that people were going to the ATM and pulling out all their money, which just makes good sense. I guess a non-silent run on the bank would be like that scene in It's a Wonderful Life, where everyone goes down to the Bailey Savings and Loan and tries to get George Bailey to give them their money - and he tells them "Shucks, I don't actually keep your money here, it's all a sham! It's a shell game, and the only way we all lose is if you all wake up at the same time and see that the emperor has no clothes and you all demand your money back." Ok, so this time it is George Bush instead of George Bailey, and he isn't getting the 700 Bubbillion from his honeymoon fund.

The headline of the Brownwood Bulletin (the local paper) today:

Pope pleads guilty to child molestation charges

If only.

Ok, now things have gone too far. California wants to get bailed out!

Now I'm getting on the list. Here is my official announcement...

Attention federal government. I may need a billion dollars because of the failure of the federal government to do something or other that they could have done, but obviously did not. Had the government done its job (whatever that is) and did the something or other they they clearly did not do, I would not be in the position of needing this billion dollar bailout. Evidently, someone in the federal government should have been watching out for me. In fact, there should be one federal government employee for each of us out here who might someday need bailing out. Bailing out is a fundamental right, and, of course, my fundamental right to be bailed out has been overlooked to the tune of a billion bucks.

Make the check out to Michael. Thank you.

Michael

10.02.2008

Scattershooting: Piggies Born!, etc.

10/02/08 - 5th Day - After Breakfast.


Well, Bitty finally gave birth last night. Here you have 11 beautiful piggies. One you cant see in the picture because she is under the others, and the 11th one you will see if you look by momma pigs face. One of the piggies is injured and probably will not make it, but we'll see. We are very excited about having such a big litter, and we pray that God will protect and grow as many as he deems necessary for us. The biggest litter I have had before was the 7 born last year (Bitty was in that litter), of which 6 survived, and two remain. We were very disappointed that it seems that Mimi is not pregnant, but the large litter from Bitty makes up for the loss.

We have arranged for Pedro (our steer born here two years ago) to go to the Butcher next Wednesday. So we are also excited about having some fresh, grass raised, pure Longhorn beef in the near future.

As the economy tanks and as your elected representatives make plans to steal hundreds of billions of dollars from you to give to their fat-cat banker masters, it seems more and more people are getting into "survivalism" and event based preparedness. The problem with event based preparedness is that it is not real and it does not last if the government or some other entity is able to temporarily mitigate the crisis. I believe events can be used to teach people about the proper LIFESTYLE of preparedness and God-sufficiency, but to prepare for events as if we can avoid God's judgment, protect ourselves from chastisement, or insulate ourselves from an event-based crisis or emergency, is just a bad policy that will yield disasterous results when a real, long-lasting, or permanent calamity (or reality change) happens. I was stopped in the store the other day by a guy who asked if I was Amish. When I told him no, he seemed terribly upset. Then he told me he needed someone to talk to about emergency preparedness and food storage. I was amused.

Three present and former presidents, and two current presidential candidates believe that your entire world will crash around you, all commerce will cease, and America will be plunged into an economic nightmare worse than the Great Depression... IF you aren't willing to allow $700 billion dollars to be stolen and given to their fat-cat banker friends. So, do you still believe your economy is based on Godly principles? On a free-market? On honest work and trade? Do you still believe your life is built on solid ground, and that the foundations of your so-called "republic" are sound? Do you still believe that the money you have in your pocket is based on anything at all other than the whim and wish of gamblers in New York and around the world?

Just Kidding....

Here is a portion of an article on the economic situation written by Chris Laird in 2008:

What would be the outcomes if the USD world financial / economic system fell apart?

Supposing the USD devalued by over 50 to 70% in a year’s time, after endless attempts to save a collapsing world consumer credit economy, we may see:

  • First of all, the savings of the US would drop drastically in value. That means everything from savings accounts to pensions would lose much purchasing power, and prices of every necessity would skyrocket.

  • Second, our major trade partner’s economies would have to do massive readjustments. They are not in a good position to do that. We can take the present rapidly spreading economic weakness of the EU zone as an example. Asia will not escape either. They will desperately try to keep their currencies from strengthening too much at first as the USD falls. This is why the USD seems to have 9 lives. These attempts to debase along with the USD allow the USD to stay higher than it would.

  • World inflation will spiral out of control, lowering standards of living. Other major currencies such as the Euro and Yen will be heavily pressured as well. Until the world figures out how to actually delink from an imploding US economy, they will suffer along with the US’s fate. So far, the delink theory has been shown to be completely wrong. Why? Because the world economy is tied at the hip to the USD (The delink theory is that other strong economies of Asia or the EU will be able to carry the world economy even if the US economy falls apart. So far, that has been completely discredited in this latest world economic slowdown).

  • Big geopolitical turmoil as regimes combat out of control food and fuel prices.

  • A war in the Middle East over oil. The Iran / Israel situation might also be called a proxy war/struggle over Mid East influence for China, the US, Russia, the EU, and Asia because energy is so expensive.

  • A very possible period of insurrection, riots, shortages, and chaos in large US cities. I also believe that the EU and China and India are at risk for this too.

  • A 10 year world economic depression, that China in particular cannot tolerate, as the world economy readjusts out of necessity into a totally new form, one that is less global and probably more warlike.

  • Debt deflation where a rapidly dropping USD effectively wipes out outstanding debts, while the population struggles merely to exist.

  • Vast bank failures in the US and major Western economies, and likely China as well.

  • Efforts of world central banks to ‘bail out’ ‘everything’ resulting in their currencies falling drastically in value while inflation skyrockets, until either they learn better, or have hyperinflation and their own currency collapses after the USD falls apart. In effect they will have to either ‘let go’ of the USD or suffer the same fate.

  • Stock markets at 10% of where they are now in 3 or 4 years if the USD actually lets go by 50% or more in 09 (nominal stock prices might actually stay higher but the devaluation of the currencies would effectively cut the purchasing power in half anyway.)

  • Prices of most essentials effectively 4 times higher, worldwide.

  • Big increases in energy and food prices causes many other sectors of world economies to fall apart, as all ‘money’ is used merely to survive.

  • Gold at $3000to $5000 plus and oil at $300 plus putting a further huge crimp on world economic growth. Obviously if the USD did a real collapse, say to 10% of its purchasing power now over several years, gold is over $10,000 and in some areas you will buy a decent house for one ounce of gold. Oil will be traded/priced in other currencies, and probably rationed in the US at a cost of $20 or more a gallon. In this case, the present world economy that depends on cheap transportation totally devolves. Globalization becomes de-Globalization, and China either figures out how to migrate to its own domestic demand or faces a huge collapse of their export economy.

  • Severe world currency restrictions and foreign exchange controls. You won’t be able to move your money out of your country. Likely restrictions of withdrawals to monthly limits from bank accounts as governments attempt to deal with currency chaos.

  • Rationing of necessities as the world economy enters paralysis and governments have no choice.

  • One bright spot for all, the return of employment to local instead of outsourcing. Production and consumption returns to local economies, as it should have been all along. That is a long 20 year process and involves a severe deep economic depression until the world economies/economy is rebuilt from scratch compared to what it is now. Debt repudiation on a massive scale as the world emerges from the ashes (hopefully not real ashes…)

  • Many new governments worldwide after revolutions during economic collapses and or wars. Democracies falter worldwide, and more authoritarian governments appear to deal with the chaos as the democracies enter paralysis.

In case you think these outcomes are exaggerated, these are the things that happened after the French Revolution, the fall of the Roman Empire, The fall of the Spanish Empire, the Fall of Byzantium, the fall of the British Empire… etc. The fall of the US economic system, the world USD system, and the US as a superpower won’t be any different. Also, a lot of these outcomes happened during and after the Great Depression of the 1930’s. That all happened commensurate with the decline and fall of the British Empire and Pound that dominated world economies for 200 years, and eventually led to the USD system taking prominence after WW2 and the USD was used to stabilize the European currencies during the war.

Ok, enough fun for today.

Y'all be cool...

Your servant in Christ Jesus,

Michael Bunker