Doing Gods Work The Devils Way: Kevin H

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31 Responses

  1. Linn says:

    Michael,
    Sunday morning I watched a CBS interview with Alberta on their morning news program. Then, I read the article in “The Atlantic” where the quote about his father’s funeral comes from. After 50+ years as a Christian, I’ve watched it all go down-the patriotic fervor of the bicentennial, the formation of the Moral Majority, the increased political involvement, to the current mess we have today. The minute I hear that someone is running as an evangelical, I flee for the hills. I won’t vote for them, especially because the majority of them back Trump. It talks about a spirit of deceit in the last days (1 Tim 4:1-4), and I am very afraid that we have already arrived. Everything about and around Trump is so unChristian, yet these people still believe the lie that the United States will be saved through him. Every time I see one of those “Jesus is my Savior and Trump is my president”shirts, I want to puke.

    I don’t know what will save Christians from Trump, Barton, and the rest of their ilk. I am afraid that the level of deception is so high, that the only way will be some catastrophic event involving some of these people that would clearly show that they are unfit to lead anything involved with government.

  2. Jean says:

    Kevin,
    You’ve hit the nail on the head. Not only is America rotting from the inside, but Christianity in America is rotting from the inside. Pray it doesn’t spread further.

    The sentence from your article that sums up the matter is this:

    “The first step toward preserving Christian values, it seemed, was to do away with Christian values.”

    That is actually how they feel and act our their religion in the public square. I don’t personally call it Christianity because it is Christ-less.

  3. Michael says:

    Linn,

    Thank you.
    I agree 1000 %.

    I do believe that it’s entirely possible that this phenomenon is part of the end times deceptions the Bible speaks of.
    I greatly appreciate Kevin having the courage to address these matters head on…

  4. Dave Rolph says:

    So good!

  5. Michael says:

    I confess the subject of this piece is difficult for me to write about without using profane language.

    Barton is simply a con, but he is living proof that basic historical literacy in this country is absent from the masses.

    Few things are as dangerous…

  6. Josh says:

    “the only way will be some catastrophic event involving some of these people that would clearly show that they are unfit to lead anything involved with government.”

    Nope, we’ve seen the catastrophic events, and their resolve only grows stronger. It is a mighty delusion.

    Well said Kevin. I don’t see how it can possibly be seen as “God’s work” though. Conservative American work? Sure, but I don’t see how it ever had anything to do with the Lord.

  7. Kevin H says:

    Thanks, Michael, Jean, Dave, & Josh.

  8. Kevin H says:

    Linn,

    I have that same reaction these days when I hear a candidate is an evangelical. I almost automatically write them off since so many politically-minded evangelicals these days are obsessed with Trump and have taken on all kinds of ant-Christian ways in order to advance their politics.

  9. Kevin H says:

    Michael,

    I don’t use profane language in real life, but when writing some of these pieces, the temptation to use such language is stronger than just about any other time.

  10. Michael says:

    Josh,

    Kevin doesn’t do the titles…it was the best I could do this morning… 🙂

  11. Michael says:

    Kevin,

    I’m on my third decade of publicly wondering how these “Christian” con artists get away with it.

    My vocabulary hasn’t grown enough not to use expletives in the pondering…

  12. Pineapple Head says:

    In the early 90s I was a youth pastor. One year, I took a group of high school kids to a very large camp located in the Sierra Nevada mountains. One afternoon, all the youth pastors and camp counselors (about 100 of us) were called into a special meeting in the afternoon (during free time!) to hear a special speaker. His name? David Barton. For one, I wasn’t thrilled about having our free time with the students interrupted. And second, not 5 minutes into Barton’s presentation, I knew it was all bogus. Just a stinky blend of Christianity, politics, and Christian nationalism. But I also knew that some people eat this stuff up. Which made me even more annoyed. Little did I know that David Barton would go on to gain such a large, yet highly odious, platform.

  13. Kevin H says:

    “My vocabulary hasn’t grown enough not to use expletives in the pondering”

    I find a thesaurus handy when writing and in need of a more unadulterated word. 🙂

  14. Kevin H says:

    PH,

    You were quicker than me in picking up on the B.S. If only more pastors had the discernment you employed. With as much as they claim to know and study the Bible, they certainly ought to have it, yet…

  15. Kevin H says:

    Michael,

    I think the title fits as it conveys the same irony as the statement from Alberta about preserving Christian values by doing away with Christian values. In the end, it’s not God’s work at all.

  16. Captain Kevin says:

    The funeral account made me both want to cry and break something. What is wrong with these people? (Rhetorical question)

    Never thought so many evangelical brethren, if that’s truly what they are, could be so blind.

  17. Muff Potter says:

    It’s classical facism, plain and simple.
    The people in that crowd do not want a Democracy.
    They want a dictatorship.
    And guess who they want as dictator for life?

  18. Duane Arnold says:

    “Partisan politics are poison to the soul.”

    I agree. I might also add that among professional historians Barton is a joke. A very bad joke, but a joke nonetheless.

    This does however raise another question. How do we resist what is happening in politics and in the church? Is our resistance that of passive onlookers? Is our resistance active and if so, does that place in the realm of partisan politics? We very soon could face what we might call “the Bonhoeffer dilemma”. I have yet to find an easy answer to these questions. I would be interested in knowing what others think…

  19. Idahoan says:

    Long story here to make the point that this sort of thing affects many or ordinary Christians. A lovely Christian lady hosts midweek church meetings, and on Nov 1 I saw some tapes they had sitting out about the Antichrist, with a scary picture on the cover. I commented, and in her reply she referred to someone using a derogatory term. I asked if this was some zombie in a horror film, since it was just past Halloween…. No, it was the current President, and she was surprised I didn’t get he reference. I’m so out of the loop……

  20. Kevin H says:

    Duane,

    “I might also add that among professional historians Barton is a joke.” – Sadly that only reinforces Barton’s righteousness and legitimacy in many who follow after him. The thinking going, “If the Establishment is against him, then he must be the real deal.”

    “How do we resist what is happening in politics and in the church? Is our resistance that of passive onlookers? Is our resistance active and if so, does that place in the realm of partisan politics?”

    Those are good questions that don’t necessarily have easy answers. I try to do my part by speaking out truth to the situations, demonstrating how many of these actions actually contradict with how God calls us to live, and pointing back to Jesus. My efforts may be largely ineffective, but I do what I believe God leads me to do. While definitely claiming nearly no manner of being the same status, I can be encouraged by looking back on the OT prophets and how they were often rejected, and yet they continued to carry out what God had them to do.

    Taking a position of following God’s ways in all circumstances and not compromising on His commands and principles in order to achieve some other supposed good, while resisting those who don’t follow this path, I guess is partisan in a way, partisan to God that is. Devotion to that type of partisanship is food for the soul, unlike devotion to any kind of earthly partisanship is poison to the soul.

  21. Kevin H says:

    Idahoan,

    “Long story here to make the point that this sort of thing affects many or ordinary Christians.” – Succinctness has never been my strong point. 🙂

  22. Duane Arnold says:

    Kevin H

    As you know, the confessing church was a minority in national socialist Germany. There was little agreement as to how fascism was to be resisted. On the other hand, the German Church, which agreed with the government of the day, made up the vast majority of believers. Being a voice in the wilderness has never been comfortable. Presently, however, we have too few voices of resistance within the body of the church…

  23. Mark says:

    This reminds me of a lot of my ‘christian’ heritage. Maybe check this book out – From Bible Belt to Sunbelt: Plain-folk Religion, Grassroots Politics, and the Rise of Evangelical Conservatism. The Baptist church I grew up in and one of its elders are referred to in it. It’s kind of boring to read; but I think some very accurate details are shared in it about this whole christian politics thing – at least in California. https://www.amazon.com.au/Bible-Belt-Sunbelt-Evangelical-Conservatism/dp/0393066827/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3NHF3C0W1WNAG&keywords=from+bible+belt+to+sunbelt&qid=1701809278&sprefix=from+bible+belt+to+%2Caps%2C298&sr=8-1

  24. Michael says:

    Duane,

    I don’t think there are easy answers…I do have some thoughts that I’ll try to put together for tomorrow.

  25. Linn says:

    Duane,
    I’ve always been a bit of a loner. I don’t talk politics much, except with a few trusted friends, but I act on my beliefs in terms of how i vote, the people I associate with (mostly people of color, especially undocumented and migrants), and things i volunteer to do. I’ve been pilloried a few times, but as I long as I feel safe in a church, I stay on.

    This situation so much reminds me of the Satanic Panic of the 80s/90s. I came home one summer from overseas, and it seemed like everyone/everything in some churches had gone nuts. Cabbage Patch dolls and Furbys were possessed, anything in modern media was suspect, and people were sure that their children were involved in ritual sacrifices. I had one friend call me long distance and talk to me for two hours about how her parents had molested her and participated in rituals at a local park. This came from an uncovered memories session to treat her depression. She cut all ties with her family and didn’t speak to them for years. It also all turned out to be fake.

    I personally think that something drastic will need to happen for people to get a clue. I don’t know what it will be. I’m personally terrified of the GOP winning the next election if Mr T wins again (I actually could vote for some of the other candidates), I think our country may be headed for the worst political crisis of its history.

    The McCarthy years were bad with the House Unamerican Activities Commission, but it finally ran its course. Maybe this is something that will finally run its course-at least I hope so.

  26. JD says:

    As long as Christians keep bagging on other Christians about politics the problem will persist.

  27. The New Victor says:

    CCSJ brought Barton in as a speaker 7 or 8 years ago. It sounded cool at first, but then a little too pat. Maybe later the same year, all of the leaders got up to make 10 minute speeches on how to vote, without explicitly telling us how to vote, but implicitly. Those incidents were the beginning of me being turned off. Covid and lawsuits (still in progress with tithes paying for lawyers) clinched it.

  28. Terry says:

    My only thing to add is that this is not a new or recent phenomenon. Back in the 80s, someone handed me the book “The Light and the Glory” and said it was amazing and I had to read it. Written in 1977, the title alone states the point the authors wanted to make – America was to be a light to the gentiles. Plus the books timing – the authors wanted to restore some of the glory we’d lost via the Vietnam War and Watergate.

  29. Kevin H says:

    Terry,

    You’re right that this problem has been around for a long time in our culture. I believe, however, these past 7-8 years that the phenomenon has been on steroids and all kinds of other performance enhancing stimulants.

  30. bob1 says:

    I remember The Light and the Glory. This kind of rah-rah Xn/American fusion has indeed been around for decades. It was benign until it became weaponized for political gain.

  31. John in AZ says:

    While Terry was right that “this kind of thing “ has always been around, Kevin was also right in stating that the scale was minuscule compared to now. When I was young, I had inlaws who were rabid adherents of something quite similar to today’s MAGA nonsense. For example, an otherwise educated, honorable Christian man telling me that Henry Kissinger should be executed for “treason” for negotiating restoration of diplomatic relations with China.

    When I tried to discuss this with my political science professors, they dismissed the topic as a waste of time, as if the advocates of these sort of views were too small a minority to be concerned with. Such a contrast to the situation we have today!

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