IT COULD USE SOME MORE SALT: Trump, the Bible & American Culture. (9 NOV 2016)
The Bible has basically been banned from public life in America…for sure it is banned from the public schools. Trump has stated that he dislikes the way Christians are persecuted in America, and that he wants to re-invigorate our culture with the increased presence of Christianity, its values & the Bible. Right on! As our godliness is like salt; & our culture has lost most of its saltiness, it needs a lot shaken out onto it. This article is a discussion of how the Bible has been one of the foundational influences on Western Civilization and has played a major role in getting our nation to where it is at. By denying our students from learning about the Bible, a critical part of our heritage has been stripped out of their learning.
IN THE ’40’s & ’50’s. We have gone a long ways from my mother’s time. In the first yr. of WW 2, the military distributed 7 million free New Testaments to the troops. After war was declared Bible reading doubled in the U.S., as well as sales of Bibles. People still enjoyed the “negro spirituals” which were some of the most joyful profound wonderful songs ever. (Certainly far better than today’s hits.) I even sang them in public school. After the war, students would use the Bible in public school. My mother, as a high school student in the early ’50s, led her high school in morning prayer over the loud speaker. Today, the closest many students come to exposure to the Bible is to watch movies that use Biblical terms, for instance: devil, heart, hell & apocalypse.
EVERYDAY ITEMS & BIBLICAL ILLITERACY. Because so many people are lacking Biblical illiteracy, the controlled clergy over the years have been able to convince people of the Matrix narrative “we’re the good guys fighting the bad guys.” (The true Biblical narrative is: Blessed are the peacemakers; & we are all sinners. Follow peace with all men.) Hollywood has added their weight to war propaganda.(A) Christmas refers to the story of Christ’s birth (although much of the rest of what is associated with it including the Dec. 25th date is pagan. Christmas is not really a Christian holy day.) Now the fact that Christmas is related to Christ birth… “He’s the reason for the season” as some signs say…”Silent night, holy night” as the carol goes…& yet I am meeting Christians who don’t even know that!! Can you believe it? they don’t know Christ’s connection to Christmas. Next example… The very fabric of our time, the seven-day week comes from the Bible. (The names of the weekdays are pagan though.)
Our culture is a collection of things from all over the globe, so that we often never ask, why is something like it is? When we find the answer, it often goes back to the Bible. Why is a pretzel shaped like it is? Pretzels are designed to resemble the shape of folded arms in prayer. Back even 1,500 yrs. ago, they were originally made as a reward for children who had learned their prayers. Where did the film/book title “Gone with the Wind” come from? It was taken from a piece of writing that in turn was based on the Bible. How is someone Biblically illiterate going to understand an ad: “If it hadn’t been for an apple, where would the clothing business be?”??
SHAKESPEARE. The supreme example of English literature is considered to be Shakespeare, and his plays are full of an estimated 2,000 Biblical references based on the top English Bible of the day, the Geneva Bible. The Bible book that is referred to most in Shakespeare is Psalms. Here is a scene from Macbeth where if the reader is not familiar with Scripture, the allusion will be completely missed: Macbeth: “If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well it were done quickly…(B) Here is the Scripture that it alludes to: “Then said Jesus unto him [Judas], That thou doest, do quickly.” (C) Unless one is versed in the Bible, many (perhaps all) references will go right over the head of the reader.
LINCOLN. The speeches of Abraham Lincoln require knowing the Bible to fully appreciate what they are saying. For instance, in regards to slavery, Lincoln quoted Genesis 3:19 and said slavery denied what God said should happen. Here are his exact words: “To read in the Bible, as the word of God himself, that ‘In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,’ and to preach there-from that, “In the sweat of other men’s faces shalt thou eat bread,” to my mind can scarcely be reconciled with honest sincerity.”(D)
THE HOLY BIBLE HAS A LONG HISTORY WITH THE ENGLISH PEOPLE. A Benedictine monk Augustine arrived in the Kent area of England in 597 A.D. He became known as the Apostle to the English. The King in Kent quickly liked what he heard & became a Christian. Augustine of Canterbury brought 9 Bible based books & a Bible with him, which became the core for a library in England. The Bible was the center of learning back then. And the English natives were given Latin letters to replace runes. (The rune for “th” looks like a “y”, which is how we accidently got “the” turned into “ye”. “Ye” became a popular way to say “the” because of this accident. He translated the complete Bible, using the Vulgate as his start point. Other early Christians who translated the Bible into what was the forerunner of modern English include: Bede (bk of JN), Aldhelm (bk of PS), Alfred (4 gospels), and AElfric (7 O.T. books). Centuries later John Wycliffe (1320-1384) with the help of at least two friends translated the entire Bible into English. The Catholic church tried to suppress Wycliffe’s English Bible, but in spite of their attempts to eradicate it, about 1,500 manuscripts (all handwritten) still survive to this day. The point of this is to help the reader to realize that Biblical values, & the Bible, (which has outsold & outcirculated any other book), has had an influence in English culture that goes way back to Augustine.
FINAL EXAMPLE. My final example may be slightly too long for some readers…but it is a transcript of Lincoln debating with his opponent Stephen Douglas and what is interesting is that all of Lincoln’s arguments are squarely resting upon the Scripture, & his audience loves it. I quote Lincoln: “He [Stephen Douglas] says I have a proneness for quoting scripture. If I should do so now, it occurs that perhaps he places himself somewhat upon the ground of the parable of the lost sheep which went astray upon the mountains, and when the owner of the hundred sheep found the one that was lost, and threw it upon his shoulders, and came home rejoicing, it was said that there was more rejoicing over the one sheep that was lost and had been found, than over the ninety and nine in the fold. [Great cheering, renewed cheering.] The application is made by the Saviour in this parable, thus, “Verily I say unto you, there is more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, than over ninety and nine just persons that need no repentence. [Cheering.] And now, if the Judge claims the benefit of his parable, let him repent. [Vociferous applause.] Let him not come up here and say: I am the only just person; and you are the ninety-nine sinners! Repentence, before forgiveness is a provision of the Christian system, and on that condition alone will the Republicans grant his forgiveness. [Laughter and cheers.]” (E) Wow, I can’t picture politicians today debating each other using Scriptures! If they did, the crowd would surely not track it like theirs did.
FINAL THOUGHTS. Trump’s pledge to help Christians play a larger role in American culture appears sincere to me. And it could make a positive dent in the problem we have with morals. While some theorize his Presidential success was some elaborate Illuminati deception, if such were the case, then George Bush would have voted for him. Bush said at one pt. he was voting for Hillary, and then afterwards claimed he voted for no-one. Like I say, Trump would have gotten help from fellow Republican Bush & other Illuminati within the party, if he had been Illuminati. And the Republican Party apparatus would have supported him also, instead of refusing to help & treating him like a pariah. The Word says, “Teach me thy way Lord.”(F) And then in many places teaches us the multitude of benefits that reading & meditating upon Scripture brings us. I rejoice that our young people and our culture in general may during the coming administration get greater exposure to the salt of the Bible.
(A) An example is the film series “Why We Fight” in WW 2 (B) Hamlet, Scene VII (C) John 13:27 (Geneva Bible) (D) Reply to Delegation of Baptists on May 30, 1864 from CWAL VII:368 (E) Speech at Springfield, Illinois, on July 17, 1858 (CWAL II:510) (F) PS 86:11
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