Principles of Christian Nationalism

Principia: Christian Nationalism balances liberty, security, and prosperity. These goods are obtained by checking power with power. This essay presents the axioms underlying Christian Nationalism. These axioms arise from the Bible, reason, and history. This is designed to be short outline of the principles of Christian Nationalism as developed over the last eight years promoting the concept of nationalism while Big Evangelical Elites undermined nationalism and promoted globalism.

Many will adopt the label Christian Nationalism without knowing the principles of Christian Nationalism. This is an opportunity to outline and clarify what Christian Nationalism should look like globally and in an American version. This is an attempt at a simple set of axioms that should guide a political theology of the Christian nation.

Since theology is the study of God, then political theology is the study of God’s ideal political order. While the Bible is not a political handbook, it is filled with lessons that should instruct politics. The Christian statesman will seek to apply the Bible to political questions. However, the statesman will root his policies firmly in reason. For example, it would be absurd to apply Old Testament ceremonial laws on contemporary society. This is a significant tension for the statesman and theologian—what is the right balance?

A guiding principle of Christian Nationalism should be prudence. Prudence in foreign policy to avoid needless wars, and prudence in domestic policy to prevent needless disorders. After all, wisdom dwells with prudence (Prov. 8:12)—and that seems a firm ground for politics.

History and reason teach that too much power in too few hands is inherently dangerous. This must be an organizing principle of Christian Nationalism. Concentration of power in the modern digital age provides greater threats to both the true faith and economic liberty than most can comprehend. The challenges of balancing safety with what Michael O’Fallon likes to call cognitive liberty should be a key feature of any Christian political theology.

For example, Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDG) or a digital dollar provides increased control over the population as we have repeatedly warned. (See: Democrats Hide Secret ‘Digital Dollar’ in Coronavirus Relief Bill, and also, Federal Reserve system prepares US for FedCoin or Digital Dollar.

This will not be an easy task as China and its Social Credit System along with increased geopolitical challenges arising out of automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) provide new challenges to the delicate liberty-security balance.

After all, sinful man needs to be restrained by government from the worst elements of his nature, and yet too much restraint undermines human excellence and the true faith—for example, history shows that no matter how good one’s intentions that power tends to seduce pope, bishop, and prince.

What then can provide a reasonable safeguard for the political realm? Perhaps this is where we should heed the words of Machiavelli in his Discourses on Livy, “If anyone were to blame peoples and princes alike, he might be telling the truth; but he would be deceiving himself by excluding princes, for a people that exercises power and is well organized will be stable, prudent, and grateful no differently from a prince, or better than a prince, and will even be considered wise; and, on the other hand, a prince freed from the restraint of the laws will be even more ungrateful, variable, and imprudent than a people.”

Another important element of Christian Nationalism is the recognition that God ordained nations. The key to why God decided nations were important arises at Babel—where God directly says that a worldwide system of government would be evil. This shows that God intends to use man’s sinful nature for a good purpose—God placed man into competition to prevent anyone man from becoming too powerful.

This is why Christian Nationalism rejects globalist solutions because as Hannah Arendt explained, “The discovery, contained in one sentence, spells out the forgotten principle underlying the whole structure of separated powers: that only ‘power arrests power’, that is, we must add, without destroying it, without putting impotence in the place of power. For power can of course be destroyed by violence; this is what happens in tyrannies, where the violence of one destroys the power of the many, and which therefore, according to Montesquieu, are destroyed from within: they perish because they engender impotence instead of power.”[1]

A proper Christian Nationalism attempts to balance force with force—this is the guiding principle of domestic and international relations for the Christian statesman.

Prologue: Christian Nationalism is applying Christianity to politics

Christian Nationalism is the application of the Bible to politics. It is the attempt to improve society for the benefit of all citizens and subjects through an applied political theology. Fundamental to a proper Christian Nationalism is a solid anthropology and a proper understanding of the state. A proper anthropology will begin through Calvin (or Machiavelli) with a recognition that man is sinful and capable of great evil that government must restrain. A proper view of the state must recognize that the state has a duty given to it from God for a limited purpose.

As the elite maligned work on Christian Nationalism by Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker claim, “The Great Commission means that if you are a Christian you are axiomatically a Christian Nationalist. If you say you are a Christian and you reject ‘Christian Nationalism,’ you are just a disobedient Christian,” (pp. 29-30).”

This appears to be true. After all, what consistent Christian would reject voting according to God’s moral commandments?

Some popular researchers advance the idea that the religious nationalism called Christian Nationalism is unchristian. According to research published by Andrew Whitehead, Joseph Baker, and Samuel Perry, “This brand of religious nationalism appears to be unmoored from traditional Christian ideals and morality, and also tends toward authoritarian figures and righteous indignation.”

Another claim by Perry’s research is that “Christian nationalism is deeply consequentialist.”

So, which is it? It Christian Nationalism unchristian? Is Christian Nationalism consequentialist? Which of these views correctly describes Christian Nationalism?

It really depends on one’s definitions.

Despite the secular Elite hatred for Christian Nationalism—it is gaining popularity. It may even seem that everyone is a Christian Nationalist. Perhaps, because judging by leftist academic definitions, everyone would qualify as one.

Part of this comes from the fact as Yoram Hazony said in his new book Conservatism: A Rediscovery, even President Franklin Delano Roosevelt would qualify as a Christian Nationalist today. Hazony writes, “Today, many avoid the term ‘Christian nationalist’ as if it were in some way dishonorable. But before the Second World War, that is what most Americans still were: Christian nationalists. Nor was such Christian nationalism restricted to the decades of Republican Party political dominance that ended with the Great Depression. The Democratic president Franklin Roosevelt became famous for describing himself politically as ‘a Christian and a democrat,’ and in 1942, FDR was still counting the United States among those ‘nations which still hold to the old ideals of Christianity and democracy,’” (p. 285).

While most of those called Christian Nationalists today would eschew the Big Government policies of FDR, it is at least instructive to see with how broad a brush critics of Christian Nationalism paint.

Some Big Eva Elites are now declaring themselves Christian Nationalists. Though these very same elites were once decidedly against Christian Nationalism—there is a trend reversal. Now people who were condemning nationalism in 2021 are declaring themselves to be Christian Nationalists in 2022. Is this a cynical move where Big Eva sees which way the wind is blowing and then attempts to position themselves as leaders of the fledgling movement? Or, is this a heartfelt conversion? Whatever the cause, it is now more important than ever that certain core principles of Christian Nationalism be expounded so that Big Eva may not pervert a movement they recently rejected.

The problem of consent: Christian Nationalism must appeal to all Americans not only Christians

“The most powerful king and the least scrupulous of all tyrants are helpless if no one obeys them, that is, supports them through obedience; for, in politics, obedience and support are the same.” –Hannah Arendt, On Revolution, p. 220.

“So when all Israel saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people answered the king, saying, What portion have we in David? neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents.” –I Kings 12:16

“That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” –Declaration of Independence

Christian Nationalism as an approach to policy can only work if it wins elections. This is a problem and a benefit of democracy. As the quotes above demonstrate, policy depends on consent—or at least obedience. After all, what is obedience except that one decides (gives consent) to someone or something when they obey? Solomon was secure on his throne because the people obeyed him; however, they refused to give the same obedience to Solomon’s heir and thus the kingdom was partitioned.  

Thus, the limits of Christian Nationalism will be prescribed by the theoretical (theological claims of Christianity) and the practical (what can be achieved.) The wise statesman will understand this. There will not be a state church in the USA; however, Christians must promote biblical morality and enact policies arising out of this morality (overturning Roe v. Wade as an example.)

The wise statesman will also perceive how the possible changes over time. This is one of the biggest problems with the Pro-Life Movement as some pro-life leaders refuse to shift as new possibilities for regulation and restriction become possible.

Principle: Man needs government

When thinking about politics, the Christian should begin at the beginning. This allows us to introduce two critical elements in our political theology: God’s purpose and man’s sinfulness. Whatever one thinks about the Garden of Eden, the age of the earth and the related theological controversies, anyone holding to a biblical worldview affirms: God created the heavens and the earth and all that is and sustains the universe by His will. Man began in a state of innocence, but sinned. Man’s sinfulness runs throughout Genesis, and it is within a short span of text that we see the first murder. Man’s evil covers the earth—everyone does what is right in his own eyes. Man ignores divine commands. The sinful chaos results in God’s intervention via a flood.  After the flood, God ordains human government to punish evil. This serves to restrain the chaotic impulses of man’s sinful nature.

It seems wise again to mention that man is restrained by other men. Thus, the state is subject to the same perversions as the subject unless it is carefully maintained.

Principle: The State is a Divine Instrument

The state is a divine instrument for the good of all people. This means the state punishes evil and rewards good (Romans 13:3, 1 Peter 2:14). This is the commission given to rulers and affirmed by the Apostles. Sometimes, perhaps most of the time, it does this even unaware it is fulfilling a divine mandate. This is part of God’s plan—order is necessary for both man’s prosperity, and order is helpful to the spread of the Gospel.

As the great scholar C.E.B. Cranfield explained, “It is implied that God wills the state as a means to promoting peace and quiet among human beings, and that God desires such peace and quiet because they are in some way conducive to human beings’ salvation. It is God’s purpose that the state should, by restraining chaotic tendencies of human beings’ self-assertion, maintain those outward conditions under which the gospel may be preached to all and sundry without hindrance.”[2]

Government is part of God’s Common Grace granted to all humanity and not only the elect. Norman Geisler teaches, “It is God’s common grace to unsaved persons that makes living in this corrupt world possible. This common grace is provided through His natural revelation (Rom. 1:19–20), through the moral law written on human hearts (Rom. 2:12–15), through His image (Gen. 9:6; James 3:9), through marriage (Heb. 13:4), through the family structure (Eph. 6:1–4), through human government (Rom. 13:1–7), and through many other non-redemptive means.”[3]

This provides us an opportunity to define the state and government.

What is a state?

It is the sovereign power with a limited extent best described as a set of boundaries or borders. Political theorists, at least since the Enlightenment, focus on questions of who and what forms of government have the right to exercise sovereignty. However, for our purposes, we should accept a very clear definition of the state. In this case, Max Weber’s seems handy: monopoly on the use of violence. So, the state is the sovereign power that exerts an exclusive monopoly on the use of violence within its borders.

What is government?

Those people who legitimately exercise the power of the state. In other words, those who can exercise violence to compel action or inaction. This is where a discussion of legitimacy seems relevant. Since the government are the people who wield the sword that compels and executes, then those doing it should have a legitimate claim to it. Historically, legitimacy involved claims based on hereditary descent and popular sovereignty. As shown below, one way that modern thinkers judge the legitimacy of a government is the Rule of Law over arbitrary power.  

The state has borders

The state must have borders. (This limits the power of the state, see below for the principle that states must be limited in power.) A state implies both a land and a people.

If the state has land, then it has fixed borders. The borders limit its jurisdiction. This is a theme seen in both the Old Testament and the New Testament.

God’s providence is in focus in Paul’s Sermon in Athens at Mars’ Hill. Keener explains verse 26 could have an allusion to Adam (most likely) or Noah (possible) as the one man from whom all other men descend. “Whichever approach one takes, however, this passage underlines the common origin of humanity, since in Jewish thought all humanity descended from Noah as it did from Adam.”[4]

And another view, “Paul argues that cities, countries, and empires rise and fall during the course of history, both in terms of their political power and in terms of their political boundaries. The God whom Paul proclaims is the Creator of the world and of the human race, and he is the Lord of the history of the human race. This argument would have been recognized and accepted as valid by the Stoics, who argued that the gods rule the world by their providence (see on v. 24).”[5]

Diving deeper into the text of Paul’s sermon supports this view.

“Probably the first part of the clause addresses the times allotted for various peoples and empires, and the second, the lands they would rule during those periods. Although both of these items are disputed, this is the likeliest interpretation of these points in view of their context… Two major lines of interpretation exist: that Luke refers to historical epochs and national boundaries or that he develops a philosophy of nature. The latter might be relevant if offered in 17:24, but it appears much less likely in a section focused on God’s providence toward humanity (17:25– 27).”[6]

This view finds support in other exegetical commentaries. For example, “The context does not speak of proofs of God from nature; rather, the adjectival passive participle (προστεταγμένους) better fits the meaning ‘times’ in the sense of ‘periods of history,’ and Luke is closer to historians than to philosophers, which means that a historical interpretation of v. 26c-d is more plausible. Thus, the ‘fixed times’ are the various epochs in the history of the nations, and the ‘boundaries of their lands’ are the political boundaries between the places where people live— whether cities, regions, provinces, or continents.”[7]

Also, “Genesis follows the creation of humanity with a dispersion of peoples to various locations (Gen 10:5, 10– 12, 18– 20, 30– 32; 11:9, 31), however, and pre-Christian Jewish tradition also emphasizes God’s ordaining political boundaries among peoples.”[8]

And lest we go too far, Kenner provides this warning. He writes, “In the same biblical perspective, the more ethnocentric, arrogant empires (e.g., Assyria) had always fallen the hardest.”[9]

The State can be national or imperial

The state is the expression of political order during this age. The state can be national or imperial. There are no other options since the state will either contain one unified people or multiple peoples and if it has multiple peoples then it is going to be supranational and supranational is typically just another way of saying imperial—though one might make an exception for multi-ethnic republics (though this depends on how one might view the lessons of Venice and the American Republic.)[10]

Principle: The State while divinely ordained for good is limited.

The Tower of Babel explains why states should be limited—and were limited according to God’s good design. As we previously wrote in  stating the Christian Case for the Nation State, “When humanity flirted with a one-world government, God intervened directly to prevent such a situation. Why? Because of the danger it presented.

“According to Genesis 11:6, ‘And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.’

“In other words, the potential power of such a one-world state would be too dangerous. The abuses, or sin, would be unrestrained.”

Thus, we should take it as God’s plan until Christ’s return that states are best when limited. There is a danger in power aggregating into smaller and smaller circles because as everyone from Machiavelli to the Federalist Papers to Henry Kissinger to Hannah Arendt teaches—only power restrains power. If there were to be only one or a handful of powers then the potential for the erosion of liberty, the promotion of sin, and the persecution of believers rises exponentially.

The state is limited. It is limited in the justified extent of its powers over the church and its subjects.

There are two kingdoms: spiritual (the Church) and temporal (the state). There are areas of overlap; however, each has sovereign power within its ordained area.

The state must preserve life, liberty, and property. This arises from the nature of justice—for it is wrong to deprive someone of their life or property without a good reason. Therefore, societies ban murder and theft even when they are bereft of the benefits of the special revelation given in Scripture.

Principle: The Rule of Law is a limit on the state and its rulers

Non sub homine sed sub Deo et lege
Not under man, but under God and the Law.

The Rule of Law is a concept that places ultimate authority outside the whims of individuals. Political Scientist Francis Fukuyama covers this in detail in the two-volume work on The Origins of Political Order & Political Decline.

Fukuyama writes, “The rule of law in its deepest sense means that there is a social consensus within a society that its laws are just and that they preexist and should constrain the behavior of whoever happens to be the ruler at a given time. The ruler is not sovereign; the law is sovereign, and the ruler gains legitimacy only insofar as he derives his just powers from the law.”[11]

Thus, law limits the power of those in government.

Though what is the ultimate source of law? Why should law grant someone legitimacy? For most, this would arise out of religious belief. The law is a reflection of a natural order—for the Christian we might say a natural law arising out of our reasoned speculations on natural revelation.

Fukuyama traces the origin and development of this concept to the transcendental religions—Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Hinduism. He writes, “In ancient Israel, the Christian West, the Muslim world, and India, law originated in a transcendental religion and was interpreted and implemented by a hierarchy of religious scholars and jurists.”[12]

Samuel P. Huntington in The Clash of Civilizations explains how Christianity shaped the West, “Medieval thinkers elaborated the idea of natural law according to which monarchs were supposed to exercise their power, and a common law tradition developed in England. During the phase of absolutism in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries the rule of law was observed more in the breach than in reality, but the idea persisted of the subordination of human power to some external restraint: “Non sub homine sed sub Deo et lege.” The tradition of the rule of law laid the basis for constitutionalism and the protection of human rights, including property rights, against the exercise of arbitrary power.”[13]

Reason and experience agree that arbitrary power is a bad thing. Law should trump personality.

Yet, can law truly restrain power?

Hannah Arendt noted that law often falls victim to power. She explains, “But power, contrary to what we are inclined to think, cannot be checked, at least not reliably, by laws, for the so-called power of the ruler which is checked in constitutional, limited, lawful government is in fact not power but violence, it is the multiplied strength of the one who has monopolized the power of the many. Laws, on the other hand, are always in danger of being abolished by the power of the many, and in a conflict between law and power it is seldom the law which will emerge as victor.”[14]

Israel as paradigm or warning?

I Samuel 8: 11-18 says, “This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.  And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots.  And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers.  And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants.  And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants.  And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work.  He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants.  And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and the LORD will not hear you in that day.”

When the prophet warned Israel that a king would abuse them, they harkened not to his warnings.

Despite the abuses of the monarchy, God still used the institution to establish Israel within a defined border with significant influence (Solomon married a daughter of Pharoah I Kings 3:1) and wealth.

Thus, for the Christian, ancient Israel serves as both a model and a warning. It would be foolish to ignore the danger of arbitrary power since the prophet warned of it and the history of Israel proved it—in fact, a wicked king inevitably led to a wicked people. This should provide some careful reflections for what a wicked government means for a contemporary nation.

Principle: Nations do not cause wars. Man causes war and history proves that the only constraint on man’s ambition is the limit on his power.

A common objection to nationalism is that nations cause wars. The conflict of national interest causes wars, we are told, and some type of internationalist or global order would be better. Of course, this claim ignores the fact that the first conquests Nimrod came before Babel and extended his domains via coercion and force.

As one Nimrod’s expansion was by conquest or at least coercion. One commentator explains, “The means by which Nimrod achieves his ascendancy suggests that his distinction came by aggressive force rather than the gradual diffusion of peoples as shown elsewhere by the table. Nimrod in that sense was typological of how ancient Near Eastern empires came into existence.”[15]

This objection that nations cause wars ignores the fact that imperial expansion was typically the cause of wars during antiquity—whether the examples arise out of ANE, Hellenic, or Roman. Similarly, imperial systems open the door for civil war as Western Civilization witnessed in Rome and Byzantium. A similar case developed in China where the empire witnessed periods of civil war.

According to Henry Kissinger, “Chinese history featured many periods of civil war, interregnum, and chaos. After each collapse, the Chinese state reconstituted itself as if by some immutable law of nature. At each stage, a new uniting figure emerged, following essentially the precedent of the Yellow Emperor, to subdue his rivals and reunify China (and sometimes enlarge its bounds). The famous opening of The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, a fourteenth-century epic novel treasured by centuries of Chinese (including Mao, who is said to have pored over it almost obsessively in his youth), evokes this continuous rhythm: ‘The empire, long divided, must unite; long united, must divide. Thus it has ever been.’”[16]

Wars, often bloody, mark the internal struggles for imperial power. It is only someone ignorant of history that attributes war as a product of nations or nationalism and ignores that the central cause of war is man—man’s ambition, greed, and desire for power.

In fact, the chaos following the Roman period often saw kings attempting to replicate the empire with a few getting close (Charlemagne and Charles V who united the crowns of the Holy Roman Empire and Spain).

Kissinger points out how close Charles V got to building a massive hegemonic power in Europe. He writes, “In the first half of the sixteenth century, Emperor Charles V revived the imperial authority to a point which raised the prospect of a Central European empire, composed of what is today Germany, Austria, Northern Italy, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Eastern France, Belgium, and the Netherlands—a grouping so potentially dominant as to prevent the emergence of anything resembling the European balance of power.”[17]

The balance of power restrained the ambitions of would-be tyrants. For example, it was through the work of William of Orange, the Dutch Republic, the Holy Roman Empire, Prussia, the United Kingdom, the Duke of Marlborough, and many other principalities that together fought to a standstill the hegemonic ambitions of Louis XIV.

So, in summary, nations are not the cause of wars—man is the cause of war. Man is no different when in an imperial state or a national state. The difference is the scope of power available.

If man is the cause of wars, then man will oppress people or attempt to gain the power to oppress others in a bid for self-aggrandizement. It seems reasonable to limit this power to oppress by limiting sovereign power into national states.

Christian Nationalism pursues realism in foreign policy because of the realization that only power balances power.

Everything needs limits—as Arendt detailed in On Revolution.

Arendt explains, “Montesquieu’s famous insight that even virtue stands in need of limitation and that even an excess of reason is undesirable occurs in his discussion of the nature of power; to him, virtue and reason were powers rather than mere faculties, so that their preservation and increase had to be subject to the same conditions which rule over the preservation and increase of power. Certainly it was not because he wanted less virtue and less reason that Montesquieu demanded their limitation.”[18]

Prudence requires the limitation of power—even when the power is wielded by what appears to be good. Fiction provides us that frame of reference with Galadriel and Gandalf refusing the One Ring because they knew that the power would be too great even if wielded by those both powerful and filled with good intentions.

The challenge of technology to a balance of power

With the rise of AI, the perhaps soon-to-be-realized Quantum computing power, and other technological marvels that make social credit scores (and its attendant control of the population possible) who thinks it a good idea to further centralize power into fewer and fewer hands?

This allows us to say this simple maxim features in our thoughts on politics: larger states have the capacity to generate more powerful external defense and internal controls on its people. The ideal size of a state is one that can defend itself from external threats and preserve internal order without eroding the liberty of its people.

There is a legitimate need for a serious discussion about the ramifications of AI to politics and war and if our current arrangements are fit for the new challenges to arise. However, the conservative thing to do is to tread carefully while working to preserve liberty and autonomy. Christians pushing for globalist solutions are dangerous—they always side with the position that risks liberty.

Principle: Liberty is only good if it can be defended.

Liberty is like a rising and falling tide–it changes based on the circumstances of time and place. Liberty is only good if it can be defended and to defend liberty requires sufficient state power to promote internal order and external peace. The extent of liberty has an absolute minimum, a low tide if you will, (no person deprived of life, liberty, or property without compensation or the due process of law), but the maximum extent will vary based on conditions. Sometimes, the state will have the need to conscript soldiers or raise taxes to support its continued existence. These are certainly impediments to an absolute liberty; however, they can be necessary for the defense of liberty. The conservative attempts to balance these competing demands.

Likewise, the state can regulate or punish vice. It is inherent in the biblical mandate for the government to punish evil and reward good. This means that social evils such as prostitution, drugs, or pornography that cause harm (and weaken both the individual and the state) can and probably should be punished.

It is not Christian, and it is not conservative to consider Drag Queen Story Hour a “Blessing of Liberty.” It is a curse. It is a sign that everyone is doing what is right in his own eyes and rejecting the order necessary for a healthy individual and a healthy society.

Thus, virtue will always be an aim of good policy.

Liberty: The Constitution as Contract (an excursus)

“Proclaim liberty throughout all the land and unto all the inhabitants thereof.” –Leviticus 25:10

Regardless of the origins and sources of government, the US system is a contract between the people and the state. It is a contract that outlines the limited powers granted to government for an expressed purpose (establish Justice, ensure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.)

To argue over the justifications of the American Revolution might make for academic and theological fun; however, at this point it is irrelevant. The people owe their allegiance to the Constitution. Why? Because the Bible seems far more interested in the de facto power—Christians were instructed to submit to powers like Rome even though Rome invaded and conquered other nations including Israel. It would seem safe to infer that as long as the power is orderly and not offending God’s explicit law, then the Christian has a duty to the state regardless of its origins.

At some point a longer discussion of Machiavelli’s view of the state as arising out of some past crime might be worth exploring—it was after all the murder of Remus by Romulus that launched Rome, and other examples both ancient and perhaps even modern can be found to explore here. Fukuyama mentions this in his work Political Order and Political Decay.

“Writing about the beginnings of Rome in Discourses on the First Ten Books of Livy, Machiavelli noted that the great city’s founding was based on a fratricide, the killing of Remus by Romulus. He makes a broader observation that all just enterprises originate in a crime. So too with the founding of democracy in the United States. North America was not a land of ‘new settlement’ as is sometimes asserted. It was a territory thinly occupied by indigenous tribal groups who had to be exterminated, moved, or driven off their lands into reservations to make way for the democratic institutions of the settlers.”[19]

In any case, regardless of the origin of the state, as much as possible the Christian should do their duty to it. This duty will change based on government form, and because the US includes representative democracy among its system, the citizen has significant influence over policy. It is part of that duty to shape the policy of the state toward the good.

For the Christian Nationalist, the preservation of the Constitution and the Republic should be a guiding principle. The Founders wisely understood that power must be checked. No other system appears so excellently designed as to prevent the concentration of power. Yet, even our system is prone to abuses as the weaponization of the legal system into a policy making arm of government (something Fukuyama explores in his work on political decline), and the trend toward Executive orders as the Student Loan Forgiveness fiasco highlights—after all if only Congress can spend money, why can the Executive forgive billions and billions and perhaps even trillions without the involvement of the legislature?

The problem with the US and for that matter even the UK are not the different forms of government. The problem rests with those exercising power in both—in other words, the problem are the elites hold fundamentally different values and priorities to the rest of the nation. Thus, a reform of the US system would necessitate a reform of our elites—forcing their return to Republican virtue.

This reform can only be accomplished via political power. This means that for Christians they must pursue political power for no other purpose than to check the power of the secular elite class. This is the only way to preserve liberty.

Conclusion: Christian Nationalism is about checking power

Woke Jesus is never called a Christian Nationalist. Why? Because Woke Jesus as preached by big ad campaigns and pressure groups (Welcome the illegal immigrant!) serves the interest of the secular oligarchy. Big Business who wants cheap labor. So, the Bible is invoked (even though erroneously) to demand open borders. Woke Jesus as preached by the black church teaches too often that abortion is no big deal (like Sen. Raphael Warnock) so that workers are able to stay focus on their jobs as wage laborers instead of suffering the distractions of a family—a distraction that pushes our minds toward the eternal and long-term interest of our family and people and nation rather than the transitory impulses of the moment as illustrated in consumer consumption.

Most policies promoted by Woke Jesus are viewed as acceptable by the secularists and the secularists in power are happy to use those teachings (even when wrong like on open borders immigration) as an opiate to anesthetize people to their fate.

Contrast how conservative and actual Christian policies are viewed by elites—they hate it.

The source of the hate can arise out of the dislike of contemporary man to be reminded that there are eternal consequences. Also, another source of resentment can arise from the fact that Christian policies tend toward the limitation of power.

In the Western tradition, the Rule of Law, democratic institutions, and even the US Constitution show that balancing power tends to produce the best for man. Prudence would preserve these wherever possible.

Naturally, elites and Big Evangelical Elites attack prudence. The ultimate expression of prudence came when evangelical voters overwhelmingly supported Donald Trump. This could not be Christian, these Elites claimed. However, if one understands the core of Christian political theology in a fallen world to be the limitation of evil by limiting power, then Trump becomes exactly the right Christian response.

Notice here how the doctor analogy works so well with politics for a Christian. Dr. Norman Geisler said this of Donald Trump: “For reluctant conservatives who were looking for someone more to the right of center, we must remember that conservatism does not equal Christianity. Likewise, neither does liberalism equal Christianity. But when I am sick, I choose the most competent doctor who may or may not be the most Christian doctor. Likewise, the most competent political leader may not be the most Christian one.”[20]

In politics the choice in 2016 was the limitation of state power by voting Donald Trump (and the attendant opportunity to eliminate abortion via Roe v. Wade) and the increasing centralization of power in the hands of Leftists. The only Christian response was to vote for Trump—and again, voting Third Party would not do anything to limit the power of Democrats and thus becomes nothing but absurd virtue signaling.

The Bible isn’t a political manual with detailed instructions on erecting the perfect polis (or government). Rather, the Bible is God’s message to us—mostly about redemptive matters, but the canon of Scripture reveals the heart and mind of God. Naturally, some of that revelation touches on matters of politics. Thankfully, we can search the Scriptures and find an outline of how God intends government to work during our time—the time between the Resurrection and Parousia. That outline strongly advises us to limit government because too much power in too few hands results in only greater evil.


[1] Hannah Arendt, On Revolution, p. 142.

[2] C. E. B. Cranfield, “The Christian’s Political Responsibility According to the New Testament”, SJT 15 (1962), pp. 176-192.

[3] Norman L. Geisler, Systematic Theology, Volume Three: Sin, Salvation (Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2004), 130–131.

[4] Keener, Craig S.. Acts: An Exegetical Commentary, Baker Academic, 2014. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=3117495.

[5] Schnabel, Eckhard J.. Acts, edited by Clinton E. Arnold, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, 2012. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=5397861.

[6] Keener, Craig S.. Acts: an Exegetical Commentary, Baker Academic, 2014. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=3117495.

[7] Schnabel, Eckhard J.. Acts, edited by Clinton E. Arnold, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, 2012. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=5397861.

[8] Keener, Craig S.. Acts: an Exegetical Commentary, Baker Academic, 2014. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=3117495.

[9] Keener, Craig S.. Acts: an Exegetical Commentary, Baker Academic, 2014. ProQuest Ebook Central, http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/liberty/detail.action?docID=3117495.

[10] Both the USA and Venice had overseas possessions as part of their trade empires.

[11] Francis Fukuyama, The Origins of Political Order, p. 262.

[12] Fukuyama, Political Order and Political Decay, Kindle edition location 6396.

[13] Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order, p. 70.

[14] Arendt, On Revolution, p. 142.

[15] K. A. Mathews, Genesis 1-11:26, vol. 1A, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1996), 448.

[16] Henry Kissinger, On China, Penguin Publishing Group, pp. 6-7.

[17] Henry Kissinger, Diplomacy, Simon & Schuster, 57.

[18] Arendt, On Revolution, p. 143.

[19] Fukuyama, Political Order and Political Decay, Kindle Loc: 3593.

[20] Christianity Today https://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2016/october/evangelical-views-of-2016-election-follow-up-with-dr-geisle.html