Finding Purpose

History, Philosophy, Theology and Classic Wargaming

The Last Roman: Intercivilizational Clash of Cultures and the Hyperreal

1 April 2023

The following is a story that most certainly happened. The dates and events are a matter of historical record. The individual family involved we do not know, there were many such families and “last true Romans” with similar stories. For the purpose of this illustration, we will begin with a fictional Roman family in the first century AD and follow them through the fourth century AD.


The family in question were devotees to Venus in the first century, a faith that will be passed from father to son in this story until the end. Like most Roman citizens they heard the news read by praeco about events in Syria-Palaestina. Footnotes really, something about a small Jewish Cult and client Jewish rulers. The empire was large, and by the coming of Caligula’s reign in 37 AD, the primary job of the praeconium was to talk about the latest gossip in the senate or the next big event at the amphitheater.


Traveling around the empire in the mid-to-late first century it was difficult not to notice something else. A strange cult seemingly popped up in major cities in Greece, Anatolia, and the Levant. Even in Rome, one could find these strange people here and there. It was hard to tell who these strange people really were, a worshiper of Venus had other things to worry about. Being fifteen to twenty years removed from the minor story about a Jewish cult popping up that the family may or may not have heard it is likely that when traveling around Asia Minor and Greece that one might never see the connection between the previous snippet of news and current observation. Historical memory is short, even in the family we are using as an example where solid citizens pass along faith and civics to the next generation. They probably just saw weirdos that refused to visit the temples. In any event, when they heard the news of any of these strange people being executed it was what they deserved, they were lawbreakers and disloyal citizens after all!


Generations passed. Men of this family came into this world and left it but the family remained true to the religion of the state, to Rome, and to Venus. Those strange and bizarre cultists remained, spreading through the empire. To the men of this family, like most civic-minded Romans, this cult was an annoyance, it was a problem but surely it would burn itself out. Over the next two centuries, there were moments when this group became a bigger problem, and as all good Romans saw intermittent attempts by various emperors and governors to quell it was more than justified.


By 250 AD Decius had seen enough and authorized an empire-wide persecution of this cult, giving provincial governors wide authority. Since the middle of the first century the term Christian began to be widely applied to this cult that refused to honor the gods of the empire. After Decius, Valerian and Diocletian waffled during their reigns between trying to appease Christians and stamp them out. By 303 AD Diocletian visited an oracle and was convinced that general persecution was the only answer. Between 303 and 312 AD he issued nine imperial orders against Christianity. But Diocletian’s orders were not followed uniformly within the empire and in some cases not at all. Some governors showed leniency toward and some support for Christian communities under their charge.  In 313 Constantine and Licinius signed the Edict of Milan, effectively ending official persecution and making Christianity legal in the empire.

We can imagine the men of the family central to this story were perplexed by this change. How could a true Roman not worship the empire and her gods? But perhaps they thought “this will be the end of it, those strange people will live as they do and life will go on”. When Christianity became the favored religion of Constantine in 324 this too was probably shocking but true Romans thought “emperors have certainly done strange things in the past, this will pass”.  True Romans that adhered to the old ways may or may not have noticed the Council of Nicaea in 325 and if they did perhaps, they thought it was a way for the emperor to get control of these crazy people.


Our imagined family, along with all true Romans that followed the pagan ways, were likely perplexed by all of this, particularly when neither Theodosius I nor Valentinian II failed to reverse any of the absurdity that Constantine had embraced. But these were ‘dead men walking’ these few true Romans that held to the pagan ways. They perhaps did not know it but they were a member of a culture that was about to be eaten by another. We can imagine that a few knew. Perhaps there was a crazy uncle, or a wingnut at the temple that kept calling it all an existential threat. But see it they should have. Christianity went from being a fringe cult to a threat large enough to require government action. And then the end of one culture, roman paganism, and the ascension of a new, Christendom in the period of two generations. First was the toleration of Christianity and the loss of some temples in 313 AD. Then the legalization of Christianity in 324 and finally outlawing all pagan rites in 380. In two generations the culture that sprung from Greece to become Greco-Roman culture with an emphasis on philosophy, sensuality and the worship of sensual gods came to a practical end – the culture was eaten by another culture that had lived beside it for three hundred years, eaten and killed.


Cool Story, So What?

The astute reader already knows the point that is about to be made and perhaps has a ready-made objection. They would posit that Christianity prospered in the Roman empire, using Roman roads because it is true and it answered fundamental questions that Greek philosophy raised but could not answer. They would point to the words of Paul at the Areopagus as proof and this is indeed evidence that Greek philosophy did raise and frame questions that only Christianity could answer. The objection would proclaim that it was Divine Providence that allowed Christianity to prosper in that land among those people. I would counter this objection by agreeing, the Greeks were primed by common grace, through their philosophy to point to the need for Christianity and there is obvious evidence of Divine Providence in the conversion of so many pagans in the Roman Empire that it became a recurring problem for the empire. I would also point out that we can never really see Divine Providence until after it occurs, we can know that Christianity spread in one place at one time and know the reason but history tells us it does not always spread in the places the Gospel is sent.


What of the legends and myths around Thomas in India? We do know that there are approximately six million people in India that claim to be Saint Thomas Christians.[1] [2] We know, as Oswald Spengler first pointed out, that the Indian culture does not have a sense of history like we westerners. [3][4] But oral traditions in a culture that simply did not write down a lot of history is not a reason to outright dismiss the claims. The fact is, that an ethnoreligious community of Indians that claims Christianity came from somewhere, somebody took the Gospel to them. [5] Western historical records confirm that at least by the eighth century this community did in fact exist. [6] Someone preached the Gospel to them, their oral history says it was Thomas. [7] And yet, there are only six million of them. There are currently about 1.5 billion Indians, 966 million of those are Hindu. Christians account for only 28 million among the Indian population, this includes the Saint Thomas Christians. [8] If we agree that Providence enabled the Gospel to spread with such tenacity in the Roman empire between the first and fourth centuries, how do we explain the fact that Christianity did not spread in India? Might it be that God in his sovereignty exercises his Providence when and where he chooses? Might this quiet any preconceptions that oppose the analogy that is presented in the story about the Roman pagan family above?


Religion is a permanent thing of a culture, and order is the thing that built culture. Order is as Russell Kirk said “belief in an order that is more than human.” [10] That a transcendent God necessarily implies that objective and eternal truths exist and that “human nature is a constant, and moral truths are permanent.” [11] For Kirk, “Real progress consists in the movement of mankind toward the understanding of norms, and toward conformity to norms. Real decadence consists in the movement of mankind away from the understanding of norms, and away from obedience to norms.” [12] So in one sense, the religion of a culture is proportionally related to the decadence of the culture, as in how that institution cherished permanent things and how devoutly the people in the culture follow the tenets of that religion. It logically follows that cultures that naturally do not cherish the permanent things - norms of courage, duty, justice, integrity, charity, and many more – are naturally disinclined to readily receive true religion. It also logically follows that culture inculcated at the start with values that cherish permanent things can and do fall into a love of decadence and thereby abandon both permanent things and the authentic practice of true religion. That we can see a clear indication of Divine Providence among the Greeks and Romans does not disprove the notions that religion and culture are closely married and a decadent culture is more likely to either 1) abandon its foundational true religion or 2) the abandonment by the majority of proselytization attempts by true religion.  Once a culture abandons its foundational religion, accepting another in its place, that culture dies. The framings and trappings of the civilization remain, linguistically and ethnically people may look the same and live in the same cities, but it all has changed. It is not the same culture. Aesthetics change, art and architecture, music and literature.  Laws and forms of government change and more specifically the way the previous forms that are extant are fundamentally changed in form and purpose. The Roman empire was not comprised of the same culture after 380. A new culture was born that would shape Christendom for the next 1500 years when a new culture would take form to oppose it. Civilizations die when their founding culture dies, and the machines and roads may work for a bit longer as usurpers take the positions of power, but we can say that the very moment that one culture kills another the civilization itself has died.


The Greco-Roman civilization lasted from 725 BC until sometime between 380 and 474 AD, 1100-1200 or so years. It took that civilization 105 years to abandon the permanent things which as Kirk said “without which we are as the beasts that perish.” [14] In 630 BC Greece formalized pederasty under the law and social convention. It became “the principal cultural model for free relationships between citizens”. [15] This was just what the Greeks were doing to catamite boys. Herodotus records that girls before marriage were to offer themselves for sex at the temple of Aphrodite before marriage. [16] Long before the zenith of accomplishments by Greek culture their civilization had abandoned key elements of adherence to permanent things. That Greco-Roman culture survived long enough to build a civilization covering a fruited plain and setting the stage for so much of world history up to our current era to be shaped speaks little of the Greeks or Romans, they deserved a Sodom treatment early on. It does however speak volumes about Providence and the designs of God. We can see that His hand worked in history to use decadent people. What we cannot assume is that he always uses decadent people, we have too many examples to the contrary to believe that.


History Rhymes

Many have repeated a quote misapplied to Mark Twain that “history does not repeat itself but it rhymes”, this was likely more accurately attributed to an English language book review of a Russian work in 1845. [9] It is a truism; many historians of the realist school repeat a version of this truism. Ecclesiastes 1:9 tells us: “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.” John in Revelation tells us of the Harlot that seemingly appears and reappears in history seducing men to follow their vice-filled natures. History is indeed comprised of lines, redemptive history and progressive revelation, and cycles of men acting according to their nature. [17]. Occasionally the circles of ideas, innovation, exhilaration, and rebellion take large form and replace an entire culture with a new and alien one in a clash of inter-civilizational cultures. [18]


We have seen this only twice in recorded history. Oswald Spengler, who got much wrong about objective truth, was prescient in identifying eight high cultures throughout history;  Babylonian, Egyptian, Chinese, Indian, Mesoamerican (Mayan/Aztec), Classical (Greek/Roman, "Apollonian"), the non-Babylonian Middle East ("Magian"), and Western or European ("Faustian"). Entire books have been written by academics assaulting his model, but it works. He also describes cultures moving through seasons of development, from spring (heroic) to winter. India and China, by his model, should have collapsed with the arrival of Buddhism and Taoism, what he termed essentially anti-religions in the cultures where it appeared; opposed to Hinduism and Confucius. Spengler described these as “unhistorical” cultures, as mentioned above when speaking of oral history. He theorized that those two cultures could remain in a permanent state of winter, with ebbs and flows of prosperity and decline throughout history without change. He did not predict that China would commit civilizational suicide in the mid-twentieth century and replace its culture through bloody revolution and the adoption of a new secular religion. So, we have only two examples of a civilizational culture replaced by a clash of inter-civilizational cultures, Greco-Rome (Apollonian) and China.


It should be noted, Spengler classifies the West a bit differently than presented here previously and places its starting point six centuries later in the tenth century. For the sake of the general argument here, his perspective is still usable. The primary flaw with Spengler’s work is his rejection of objective truth found in any of his civilizations. He was a relativist.  What he saw as a Faustian bargain made in the tenth century is not a divergence from the Christendom model presented above, it is a perversion of it and notes a turn in seasons.


Seasons and the West

A Christian would immediately recognize that the heroic period, where the soul of the culture was born in the first centuries of the common era, 1st-3rd centuries AD where Christians persevered for the faith and solidified doctrine. Those struggles defined what living as a Christian meant, they also shaped the world and replaced another culture.


In the summer of the West, we can see that in the high to late Middle Ages, the West achieved its most enduring achievements. The scholastics began eviscerating Platonism through the newly found manuscripts of Aristotle. Pre-Westphalian nation-states began to take shape. Mysticism, another holdover from that residue of the last civilization was opposed and a new form of Christian philosophy arose, most notably from the Doctor of the Church Thomas Aquinas. We even see the beginning of the Protestant Reformation in this period with the Waldensians.


The autumn of the West began during the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and the Agricultural, Scientific and Industrial revolutions. This period describes a culture that is a worn-down soul, a soul that has lost its desire to be. Paradoxically, the decline comes hand-in-hand with a tremendous rise in technical culture. Other symptoms of a dying civilization are the rule of money, the overwhelming influence of the mass media, the growth of mega-cities, and imperialism. During the autumn of the Greco-Roman civilization, the Roman empire exhibited all of these symptoms and often tried to alleviate them with conquest and war. In Spengler’s view, the commercialization of everything in life and a continuous quest for infinite knowledge and progress clearly observable in the West during the Industrial revolution and age of empires is precisely why he termed the West a Faustian culture.


The Long Winter and the Hyperreal

One of the hallmarks of the Winter stage of a civilization is the embrace of the hyperreal as a replica of something that never actually existed or an image that is more real than the thing it’s supposed to represent. In civilizations that have entered a winter the creations of the past in art and science and spiritual life are perfected and elaborated, but not fundamentally extended. Technology flourishes rather than new science. Science itself is hyperreal. Consider how social theories of dubious academic merit are included in hard science research. [19] “Environmental humanities” is itself a manifestation of the hyperreal. Daniel J. Boorstin wrote of this unreality:


“In nineteenth-century America, the most extreme modernism held that man was made by his environment. In twentieth-century America, without abandoning belief that we are made by our environment, we also believe our environment can be made almost wholly by us. This is the appealing contradiction in the heart of our passion for pseudo-events: for made news, synthetic heroes, prefabricated tourist attractions, homogenized interchangeable forms of art and literature (where there are no ‘originals,’ but only the shadows we make of other shadows). We believe we can fill our experience with new-fangled content. Almost everything we see and hear and do persuades us that this power is ours. The life in America which I have described is a spectator sport in which we ourselves make the props and are the sole performers.” [20] Spengler calls the winter phase of a culture, “civilization”, but the treatment here dismisses that distinction. Remember culture is intimately related to civilization as are ethic affinity and linguistics. But he succinctly describes this period as the victory of the city over countryside, the intelligencia over tradition, of money over politics.”[21] Twelve southern men of letters wrote on this in 1930 concluding:


“For, in conclusion, this much is clear: If a community, or a section, or a race, or an age, is groaning under industrialism, and well aware that it is an evil dispensation, it must find the way to throw it off. To think that this cannot be done is pusillanimous. And if the whole community, section, race, or age thinks it cannot be done, then it has simply lost its political genius and doomed itself to impotence”[22]


Those twelve learned men, agrarians at heart, wrote to a people about the winter phase of a culture. They wrote about the victory of the city over the countryside and of money over all. Others have spoken about pieces of it for their part. J. Gresham Machen about the hyperrealizing of Christianity in 1923,  Wendell Berry, the “gentlemen from Kentucky”, continues the work of the Twelve Southerners. Russell Kirk, after having written extensively of permanent things wondered in 1980 if our culture was made of the stuff required to alter course and suggested we would know in a few short years. Finally, Francis Shaeffer painted a picture of history that was similar to Spengler, but very different at the same time as Shaeffer tied the success of the West to the core tenets of the Christian religion. Speaking truth about the matter has not made a difference in a culture that has embraced the hyperreal. We are fascinated by the current thing, or by distractions, and often by outright fabrications in almost all aspects of life (social, political, religious, and vocational).[23]


One blogger, summarizing what Spengler predicted for the West wrote: “The 20th century has and will continue to be (remember the 1918 publishing date) a period of imperialism and annihilation wars. Science will stop reaching certainties (although technology continues to accelerate, Spengler notes). The people reject common goals. Art is reduced to fashion, and innovation as a concept is cheapened and trivialized.


Between the 21st and 23rd centuries, Caesarism rises again. The politics of brute force returns to break the stranglehold of money… it seems that tribal strength surges and ‘impersonal’ institutions decay. Weak ties and complex bureaucracies (fueled by “money”) are severed in favor of strong ties and absolutism (fueled by “blood”). Nuance and the essence of the high culture decays gently into the dirt.”[24]


It remains to be seen if a rise in Caesarism requires blood or if money and a hyper-hyperrealism spurred on by technology that enables all thoughts and ideas to be controlled or silenced. We already see the signs in politics that serious choice is an illusion and absurdity reigns, much like the emperors beginning with Nero.


Back to the Story of the Last Romans

A European might be able to identify with the picture painted above of “the last Roman” better than an American. The majority population in Western Europe describe themselves as “Christian”, over 70% in all nations except France which is 64%. Only 15% of that number, averaged across 15 countries attend services monthly or more. Of those that do not attend, 51% say they believe in God, but not necessarily the one described in the Bible. [25] It has been said that you can attend a church service in Europe and only three other people are there, an exaggeration perhaps but not by much. In several European nations, pastors have been investigated for preaching the whole Word. [26][27] Much like the Roman family described above in 313 AD there are some Europeans that look around and still see their churches standing but much wonder if they are also the last of their kind, if a new culture has not already replaced what was.


Americans are different. We see churches on every corner, some are righteous and others of the world but even the churches that preach the full word still draw a sufficient crowd. In our hyperreal reality, we see only the issue that is in front of us, not how that issue came to be in the first place or what comes next. “If we just get CRT out of the seminaries and universities” we will be winning many of us say. J. Gresham Machen wrote in 1923 about the real problem. Removing ideations of new ideas every time they pop up is whack-a-mole and a strategy for defeat. To win the ideology and philosophy behind those ideas must be defeated. The new religion those ideas represent must be identified, called out, opposed, and defeated. And it is a religion, we must face that. Some have popularized a name for it, one that fits as well as any other, gnostic hermeneutics. [28][29] Amidst the hyperreal nature of our existence, we find that the new religion competing with Christianity does not seek to merely close down the temples as happened in Rome, rather it seems to desire to usurp authentic Christianity and replace it with the unreal, a simulacrum of Christianity.[30] There is good reason for this, Christianity is the true religion. Christians in Rome had to merely wait for the civil magistrates to become Christians or influenced by Christianity to see pagan religions disappear. Without the support of the state those institutions failed. Christianity survives even under persecution, it has historically and does today all around the world. You cannot simply make Christianity disappear, rather, you have to make it not authentic Christianity in the eyes of most people. The hold-outs are much easier to deal with if you can accomplish that.


It is not just those we think of as outright heretics, in fact, it is mostly not those sorts that are part of the becoming simulacrum of Christianity. [31] The real effort exists anywhere a man can be moved to alter their interpretation of Scripture according to what the world says. The world now is an apt representation of many of the goals and ideas of the new gnostic hermeneutical religion. It is “Big Eva” where men enjoy invitations to conferences and book sales more than the idea of being controversial. It is the seeker-sensitive megachurch movement, an organization purpose-built to effect social change.[32][33] It is churches that have adopted purpose-driven ideology and now work for the goals of those that would eradicate and replace authentic Christianity. It is in the seminaries, on bookshelves at “Christian” bookstores, and is present at most conferences pastors attend. During the Cold War, the CIA worked with Cardinals to create and promulgate liberation theology. [34] As Spengler described and we know by observing, money controls everything and we know as a fact now that the US intelligence agency threw a lot of money and effort once at religion to change the operational environment. We have no reason to believe that now that the opposing worldview religion is ascendant that this is not occurring again. Things like this never occur directly, but the US is a master at using shell companies, think tanks, and NGOs to move money around. And even if the money is not state-sponsored, there is a lot to go around to pastors and seminaries that align in ways friendly to the enemy or at least not controversial.


We transpose the simulacrum of Christianity onto politics. The last two presidents before Biden surrounded themselves with characters that would rightly fall into the heretic category. Biden seems areligious except when he preaches at black churches. We fall into the trap of supporting unrighteous men because in the hyperreal world we now reside in they market to our souls that they are something that they are not. We fail to realize that politics itself is part of the hyperreal now. The events of late 2020 that got so many in an uproar were clear and observable before November of that year so too were those involved and the purpose of everything that year. [35] The methodology used in 2020 was a testament to the fact that we matter more than anything else. A complex operation with many lines of effort and a whole-of-government approach is not planned and perpetrated on a pusillanimous people, but sadly it could only work on a people deluded and deceived in every way by hyperreality.


We have proven to this point that we cannot even identify what we are fighting or the nature of it. We are unwilling to mark and avoid some of our favorite people that work for it in big or small ways. We have perhaps long passed the point of stopping the culture that rises up to destroy us. These are not merely the words of the author here, as mentioned both Russell Kirk and Francis Schaeffer proclaimed in 1980 that there were but a few years remaining to fight and win. This is not the black pill as many claim, it is realism. In realism, there is hope because you know exactly what you face.


“The fundamental question of our era centers on the nature of our culture going into the future relative to our past. Stated plainly how much of what we once were will we be going into the future? All other matters of political theory, sociology, and geopolitics begin from the answer to that question; if the answer to that question indicates that things fundamentally change. If the transformative change significantly alters culture, how might that affect openly practiced, authentic Christianity? It is just that important of a question. Failure to recognize the question or to frame it properly is common, particularly among those that the answers will affect the most.”[36]


This is the most pressing question. If this ascendant culture seems poised to usurp the old and make a simulacrum of all that will allow it what becomes of authentic Christianity? We know it cannot simply be gotten rid of by decree like the Roman pagans. True Christianity lives where it is and no dictator, prince or king has ever been able to extinguish it from their realms. I wrote a book in 2019, Retrenchment: Christian Defense of Permanent Things, as it became apparent to me that the things I read about so often in my life were about to manifest into a new reality. There are some solid ideas in that book, as poorly written and edited as it is. I remain hopeful that someone more gifted will take up the mantle and write a similar book, better.


Real Christians need to begin thinking about the long game. How will your church survive if tax exemption is someday tied to right speech? How and where will you educate your kids? How will you provide for yourself with basic necessities if you have to make decisions like the first-century Christians? Those sorts of realities are not merely eschatological, these are the daily facts of life for many Christians living in many lands today. We are not assured that life will continue as it is. History tells us about the situation when a culture is fully replaced. The trendlines are ominous.[37][38]


We will address the “what to do” at the end, but first for those that remain unconvinced a bit more reality.


The Shape of Things to Come

Prognosticating is a dangerous business, or at least it ought to be. We believe that it is and when we think of a person doing it, we summon images of Jean Dixon or Nostradamus, crystal balls, and such. However, if we look past all of that, we might find that we likely read ‘prognosticators’ all of our lives. I did, on the bookshelf behind me are books filled with predictions. Let’s establish a few axioms to help shape our understanding of the nature of things.


Axiom 1: power always seeks more power and to retain power; it is an essential part of human nature. In the western system, in nation-states, after the disruption of the enlightenment men have worked, as they always have to bring prestige and power to themselves and their offspring. Sometimes they have conspired together, either because of ideological affinity, social organization, religion, and even secret societies – and often there is cross-pollination and admixture of all those and more.


Axiom 2: In the Western system and particularly in that of the US, centralization has been a theme since the 1790s. It defined the first half of the 19th century and ‘manifested’ in the second. In the 20th century, with the road well-paved, it began to look more like a consolidation. We have many authors prognosticating the effects of what some argued were ‘slippery slopes’ that turned out to be a reality, we find these beginning in the debates about the Constitution and all through the story moving forward. They were correct and predictive. Centralization and consolidation have accelerated to the point that something transformative is about to occur, soon.


Axiom 3: Ideology matters, because it drives culture and from that those that seek to gain or retain power look to it for their talking points and programs of appeasement. Beginning in the 1950s a second, parallel culture, based upon philosophical notions, has existed and grown in the West and in the US. This culture is now ascendant and will be the water from which elites draw the ideas and programs they use to appease the masses while they themselves do what power elites always do. There are now, two separate and opposed cultures in the West/US, matter and antimatter. It is impossible for the old to live beside the new once the new is dominant. One or the other must dominate and kill the other, and only one (the one born in the 1950s) is capable or willing.


Axiom 4: Human nature is a general law of history, and as such it applies, both in what men seek and what men are inclined to hear and believe. Human nature both explains why people can be and are deceived en masse and why others perform acts of deception.


Understanding those axioms should inform us that the power elite will provide panem et circenses to the prevailing and ascendant culture and that programs and policies will be focused on keeping them pacified and compliant. The power elite seeks only control as they always have throughout history. But the worldview culture that opposes us and will soon have full access to the ears of those in power is authoritarian by nature. [39] But it is in some ways simpler than the more complex authoritarianism we will discuss below. At a surface level, the people beholden to this other religion are basic economic men, socialist men whether they self-apply the term or not. The experiment with universal basic income explored in 2020 and much more are on their lists of wants and demands that the power elite will cater to.


But of course, it is much worse than our tax bill. Very soon there will be a push to return to the pederasty of ancient Greece and Rome (pedophilia to those that know better). The plus behind all those letters always meant more, polygamy, pedophilia, and bestiality were always on the board even if often hidden and denied. In our hyperreal post-truth world, there is no civil or legal argument to be made to stop it. [40] We already allow pre-teens to choose medical procedures that mutilate their bodies and condemn them to a lifetime of pharmaceuticals. Those are changes that cannot be reversed, the real has already been lost. A future argument about pedophilia might follow something like this “if a child chooses wrongly and is harmed by it that harm is not permanent, counseling would help”. We already allow children to make life-altering choices, and sometimes punish parents for standing in the way. What argument could possibly stand against the pedophile's argument in this world as it is? Some man that now either tacitly supports what is going on or is too afraid to call it all what it is will recoil in horror when their eight-year-old grandson announces he has decided to become a catamite for a ‘friendly’ man that stopped by the school to read a book. Another might get a visit from the police because he showed up at his ten-year-old granddaughter’s home to stop her from going on a “date” she found on whatever passes as social media by that point.


We could go on. Read the axioms above, think about human nature, and look at what people in the West have done during various cultures that arose and fell. All of that and more is on the menu. Nothing is new under the Sun and gnostic pagans always want to do the same things.



What To Do

First, while we have rights and a voice we use them. We claim our Roman citizenship and rights as Paul did and defend ourselves before Caesar. We demand that Christianity not be defamed and that Debbie in the HR department does not get to decide where we work because “the Christian Hunters” website outed us for attending services. We appeal to Caesar as our rightful, if disgusting, civil magistrate and demand that he does justice. We do not cease doing this until we are no longer heard or until we have assurances that authentic Christianity will continue to be practiced and the whole Word preached and that Christians have a right to live according to their faith, under just laws.


Second, we prepare for the possibility that those efforts eventually fail. We remain flexible, faithful, and strong. If the authoritarians in the other religion gain the ear of Caesar and demand laws that effectively restrict Christians from many avenues of employment we adapt, just like the early Christians did. Those of us that rightly interpret Scripture know what Hebrews chapters 10 and 12 were referring to. We have to be willing to support each other, visit brothers in jail, provide hospitality to each other, and keep the faith together.


We should be at this point a little more like a prepper than a worldly consumer. People capable of fixing things, or knowing a brother that can, growing vegetables so that we become good at it and rebuking the spending ways of the world. People that learn and have a skill that can be useful to themselves and other Christians in need.


In tandem with all that, we have to become discerners. We need to know the language of the enemy and spot it where ever it pops up. We saw that many churches had simply not prepared people with the whole Word before 2020. Many were lost for lack of knowledge.[41] We have no more time for pastors that allow their theology to be shaped by the enemy or postmodern Sunday School teachers that work the ideas of the world into lessons.


We have to evaluate our heroes. Some are like many around us and intent to merely whack at the latest thing, unwilling or incapable of seeing the existential whole threat. Cajole and correct those brothers in love and kindness. Show them the total reality and keep showing them until they get it or demonstrate that they will not see. But do not excuse them. We are too late in the ballgame to fire the entire team, there are some men with big voices that are fighting on the edges, we need to put them in the right position on the field instead of just pushing them away. Try then fire. There are others, men of persuasive and flashy presentations that have clearly picked a team. Correct them, then mark and avoid them and pray they have a change of heart. There is no profit in giving a teacher attention that says a few things you like and a couple that are dangerous.


Likewise with politics. We cannot continue to throw our support to unrighteous men that end up doing a lot of real work for the other religion. Again, ten things you like and two that are dangerous is still dangerous. This may mean we lose elections and it may mean we often have nobody to vote for. But the simple fact is the status quo is not working and never will.


We have to reject winsome as it is currently presented to us by the likes of Rick Warren, David French, and Russell Moore. Jesus was not winsome, neither were his Apostles. One can be candid and kind and loving without being winsome to the point you have no fight in you.


We have to reject the men like R. Scott Clark who has spent a considerable amount of time over the last two years ruining his credibility and reputation by making specious and inane arguments against a boogeyman of reconstructionism. Reconstructionism is simply not possible nor is it on the table. This is an existential crisis and pious men like Clark have spent much digital ink intentionally not noticing and worse, confusing good people that they do not need to really take a stand. There are many pious men like him out there, throwing rocks and doing little good.


Lastly, and most importantly, we have to work on our own sanctification. We need to pray, search our souls, and root out any vestiges within us of world love. We are commanded NOT to love the world. [42] But we ought to pray for it. We ought to pray that God in his Providence might see a way to show we in the West mercy. That he might lift the veil from the eyes of those so confused and filled with hate around us. We should also pray that His will be done and that whatever comes we have the strength and faith to face it as his chosen and loved.




Note I am not an academic or seeking fame, I “cited” myself in several occasions because I previously made a point that I did not want to repeat here.

[1]   Alphonse Mingana, The Early Spread of Christianity in India (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1926), 15-16.

[2] L.W. Brown, The Indian Christians of St. Thomas (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1956), 59-60.

[3] Spengler, Oswald, The Decline of the West (Berlin, 1918, 1922)

[4] Romila Thapar, “Historical Traditions in Early India: c. 1000 B.C. to c. AD 600,” The Oxford History of Historical Writing, ed., Andrew Feldherr and Grant Hardy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), 553-58.

[5] Samuel Hugh Moffett, A History of Christianity in Asia: Beginnings to 1500 (New York: HarperCollins, 1992), 31.

[6] Perczel, István, Peter Bruns; Heinz Otto Luthe (eds.). "Some New Documents on the Struggle of the Saint Thomas Christians to Maintain the Chaldaean Rite and Jurisdiction" (Orientalia Christiana: Festschrift für Hubert Kaufhold zum 70. Geburtstag 2013);416.

[7] Baum, Wilhelm; Winkler, Dietmar W, The Church of the East: A Concise History. London-New York: Routledge-Curzon, 2003. 52.

[8] Pew Research Center, Key findings about the religious composition of India. 2011

[9] Burns, James, The Christian Remembrancer, Volume 10, (Book Review of “A History of the Church in Russia” by A. N. Mouravieff), (Portman Street, London. 1845), p. 264.

[10] Kirk, Russell, A Program for Conservatives, rev. ed. (Chicago: Henry Regnery Co., 1962), p. 41.

[11] Kirk, Russell, The Politics of Prudence (Bryn Mawr, Pa.: Intercollegiate Studies Institute, 1993), p. 17.

[12] Kirk, Russell, Enemies of the Permanent Things: Observations of Abnormality in Literature and Politics (New Rochelle, N.Y.: Arlington House, 1969), p. 20.

[14] Permanent Things, Russel Kirk quote, The Imaginative Conservative

[15] Dawson, Cities of the Gods, p. 193. See also George Boys-Stones, "Eros in Government: Zeno and the Virtuous City," Classical Quarterly 48 (1998), 168–174: p. 169.

[16] Herodotus, History. Rawlinson, G. (trans.), New York: Tudor Publishing Company, 1936

[17] Clark, Barry, The Nature of Our Fight, 2023

[18] Clark, Barry, Fourth Turning Clash of Inter-Civilization Cultures Thesis, DOI:10.13140/RG.2.2.32977.28008, Dec. 2019

[19] Evans, Rebecca, “Fantastic Futures? Cli-Fi, Climate Justice, and Queer Futurity.” Resilience: A Journal of the Environmental Humanities 4, no. 2–3 (2017): pp. 94–110.

[20] Spengler’s Winter, Fogbanking

[21] ibid

[22] Twelve Southerners, I’ll Take My Stand, 1930

[23] Clark, Barry, Manifesto of Old Men and Simple Preachers, 2012

[24] Fogbanking

[25] Pew Research Center, Being Christian in Western Europe, 2018

[26] Churches across Europe "investigated under hate speech laws", 2018

[27] Prosecution of cardinal shows problems with ‘hate speech’ laws, 2016

[28] Lindsey, James, The Gnostic Parasite, 2023

[29] Roach, William, Hermeneutics and Perspectivalism, 2023

[30] O’Fallon, Michael, Mere Simulacrity, 2023

[31] Clark, Barry, Heresy, 2023

[32] Clark, Barry, The Problem With the Megachurch, 2020

[33] Rosebrough, Chris, Resistance is Futile: You Will Be Assimilated Into the Community, 2012

[34] NACLA, Liberation Theology, the CIA, and the Vatican: A New Direction for Latin America, 2013

[35] Clark, Barry, Color Revolution And State Capture, 2020

[36] Clark, Barry, Authentic Christianity and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, 2022

[37] Tweet, 2022

[38] Tweet, 2022

[39] Clark, Barry, From Progressivism to Authoritarianism, 2019

[40] Clark, Barry, Polygamy, Pedophilia, and Bestiality, 2019

[41] Clark, Barry, We are Destroyed for lack of Knowledge, 2023

[42] Baucham, Voddie, Do Not Love the World, 2023

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