Conservatism or Christ

Political Conservatism is often viewed as the political expression for the Orthodox Christian. Many God fearing people are convinced that Christianity and Conservatism are one and the same. Some Christians even call themselves Christian Libertarians, aligning themselves with the Conservative community of Constitutional Liberty, while others equate themselves with the Republican Party.

Many well meaning, Bible believing Christians hold to the belief that the principles of these Political Parties are in direct accordance with the principles of Christ, when it comes to morality, liberty, law and public policy. Yet is this really true?

What is the nature of today’s political Conservatism? Is it rooted in Biblical Law or in tradition? Does it hold to a fundamental Scriptural ideology or does it rely upon a certain humanistic perception of reality in order to formulate its position?

While the official platform of the Conservative Republican Party is a wonderful expression of family values, economic freedom, government limitation, and basic libertarian policy, in practice Conservatism falls far short of the true expression of Christ-centered principles. Since it was these basic Christo-centric precepts that formulated the nation, it should be these principles that maintain the nation. Conservatism should “conserve” those principles, not reinvent or reinterpret them.

But what is the root of modern Conservatism? Does it come from the Scriptures or from something else? According to political expert Paul Henry, “Political Conservatism is a tradition of political thought having its origins in reactions against the libertarianism and individualism of the French Revolution of 1789…”

This reaction was based upon human reason. As Edmund Burke declared, “Government is a matter of practical wisdom stemming from the historical experiences of a given people.”

Thus, Burke’s “wisdom” would be influenced arbitrarily by history, experience, and the passions of men rather than God’s Word. According to this “Enlightenment rationality” and evolutionary ideology, no people could be really secure since law and public policy was always subject to change. The Reverend William O. Einwechter rightly asserts that under this Enlightenment ideal, even liberty itself would be subject to incremental change depending upon the need which history would dictate.

Burke did not suggest that law and public policy would be applied to various changes of societal matters but that the law and policy itself would change depending upon experience and certain historical revelations. This dogma places every individual at risk to either totalitarianism or anarchy.

Burke’s conservatism ideal declared that change must take place according to changing traditions and the “self conscience” practices of a given people. Therefore, according to Burke, conservatism conserves nothing, but rather makes way for any and every kind of change, depending on the whim of the people and their elected official.

According to Russell Kirk, Conservatism never was intended to be a fixed and immutable body of dogmas but rather its essence is the “preservation of the ancient moral traditions of humanity.” For Kirk, the essence of Conservatism is to re-express ancient tradition, thus allowing for change within a set, yet somewhat flexible, perimeter of tradition.

Rather than structuring the societal order according to the set standard of Divine Wisdom found exclusively in God’s Law, the Conservative structures societal order based upon a universal morality and transcendental order of “natural law”. This natural law, while having a form of Divine basis, actually is determined by man’s tradition and past history. Thus modern Conservatism has no standard but the standard of historical, evolutionary and incremental change. This is why it is destined to failure unless the unchangeable standard of Biblical Law is reintroduced as its fundamental policy. Again Einwechter sates it most clearly: “In conservative circles Christ and Biblical Law are out, while Locke, rationality and natural law are in.”

While there are fundamental differences between the Liberal socialist and the Republican Conservative, the lines are often blurred. The modern Conservative is as often as secular in his politics as his liberal counterpart. One need only to look back upon recent history to see that the “Conservative movement” has undoubtedly and progressively shifted toward the left while the Democratic socialist movement has progressively shifted to the far left.

It has been said repeatedly that while the Democrats seek to destroy this country by driving her off the cliff and into the depths of socialism and egalitarianism at 100mph, the Republicans seek to do the same, only at a slower rate. So what’s the difference?

Christian Politics is Christ centered not man centered. It is not conservatism, libertarianism, rationalism or Enlightenment thinking. It is Christian based thinking rooted in Biblical Law. While conservatism places man as king, Christian thought sets Christ as King of kings and Ruler of Nations. Christian thought is Biblically based where the Scriptures reign as the Supreme Standard of Law and Public Policy. Christian politics seeks to bring all men in subjection to His rule as ministers of good and the punishers of evil. Theologian and political analyst, John Fielding observes that today’s conservatives have taken Thomas Jefferson as the king in rejection of the True King of Kings. May we claim what Benjamin Rush declared; “I am neither a democrat nor an aristocrat. I am a Christocrat.”

Soli Deo Gloria

About the author: The Rev. Dr. Paul Michael Raymond pastors the Reformed Bible Church In Central Virginia and is the Chief Director of the Institute for Theonomic Reformation, an online Christ-Centered Educational Resource Center. He can be reached at his website

The Dominion Covenant: An Introduction to the Cultural Mandate

The modern church is merely a shadow of what it once was, and no where near to what it was meant to be. Christianity has suffered an attack of both spiritual epilepsy and historical amnesia.1 It is confused, disoriented and fearful. Today's modernized Christian faith bows to just about every wind of doctrine, resulting in an epistemological basis2 set upon sinking sand. Instead of setting forth righteousness, justice, mercy and faith, they have embraced iniquity and every false way.

In both doctrine and practice, the majority of modern churches, have sought to exonerate themselves from any real cultural confrontation, thus relieving them of any societal obligation and responsibility. Yet, it is precisely this cultural confrontation which distinguishes the True Church from the "country club" church. The mission of the Church has been clouded by the modernists, with a "feel good religion", which is nothing more than humanism dressed in the holy rags of religion.

God expressly calls the Church to be a city set upon a hill.

He calls them to be light and salt, as well as a kingdom of priests, judges, princes and kings. Without righteous cultural confrontation, the Church is unable to fulfill Her Divine calling under God, and therefore cannot be called a True Church.

The initial goal of the Institute for Theonomic Reformation is to clearly define the Scriptural Role of Christ's True Church. Then, in order to equip, exhort, and encourage the community of God's people, the ITR will make available as many tools as necessary in order for the saints to fulfill the Cultural mandate.3

Through the use of articles, sermons, study guides, web-links, books, correspondence and a myriad of Scriptural tools, of both doctrinal and practical application, the ITR hopes to become a networking station for the Church, so that She may once again be called Militant and Triumphant, a Glorious City set upon a Hill. In this way we hope and pray that those who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal will heed Christ's call and lead in the way of righteousness.

The ITR is not merely an informational outlet. While it is in actuality, a Theological/Theonomic think-tank, the Institute is an active, on hands, resource center which can assist in practical strategies and plans of action.4

Through research and analysis the ITR will assist the Righteous Community of God's people in achieving the goal of Godly, Christ-centered Cultural Dominion.

The time for Reformation, by the proper and unceasing application of God's Law-Word to every sphere of life, is now. Both Scripture and history demand it. If the Church is ever to fulfill Her God-given mandate, She needs to understand, embrace and apply the principles of God's Word to the entire culture around them.

Soli Deo Gloria
Originally published in 2003

1 Note: A careful study of history will prove astounding to the student of insight. Never have the Scriptures allowed for the church to remain silent or neutral in the culture in which they were placed into. Never has the historic Christian church succumbed to such an anti-Christian notion of "escapism".

Since God places the church amidst human culture the commission of the historic Christian church is to engage the community with God's precepts. The church is placed upon the earth so as to be actively involved in societal affairs. From the Old Testament accounts through the first eight centuries of the New Testament era, the Church was the guardian of familial, ecclesiastic and civil matters.

What today's modern church practices and preaches is called, "monasticism." This is nothing more than hiding behind the four walls of the church building or behind a barrage of church programs and activities that have little or nothing to do with the Dominion Commission. Like Adam, after the fall hiding in the garden, so too does the church hide behind their religion, professing themselves to be wise, they become fools.
For an excellent discussion on the Dominion Mandate read, Gary North's "The Dominion Covenant", and "Backwards Christian Soldiers". These, and others, are freely available on-line at the Institute for Christian Economics (ICE).

2 Epistemology is the study of "Knowledge".  We get our word for Epistle from the Greek "Episteme". By definition this word simply means, "the study of knowledge, it's nature, origin and theory."  The Christian must have a Biblical "Knowledge Base." i.e. a Biblical Epistemology.

3 NOTE: The Cultural mandate is found in Genesis 1:28 where God commissions Adam to subdue the earth and take Dominion over it. This Commission was rebelled against and Adam could not fulfil it after the fall. Christ reinstates that calling and enables the Christian to fulfil that mandate during the Church age. each Christian is given this commission. 

The word "Culture" is a form of the word "to cultivate". God likens the entire world to a field or a garden that needs righteous cultivation. It is the task of each Christian to perform this deed of cultivation unto the Godly of God, and for the furtherance of His Kingdom. 

4 NOTE: Networking and correspondence is one of the most effective ways to bring about Cultural Change for the Glory of Christ. If you have any questions or need an initial plan of action write to us via our contact form.


The Institute for Theonomic Reformation (ITR) is a Christ-centered, non-profit organization, which seeks to empower the Christian, and the church, so as to fulfill God’s cultural commission of Christian responsibility.

© 2017 Institute for Theonomic Reformation (ITR)