One of the principal goals of the W.C.C. is the attempt to establish one world church organization. It indeed professes that it is not the “Church,” but a council of churches which does not “legislate for the churches.” Nevertheless, the aim of one of its “Commissions” is: “to proclaim the essential oneness of the Church of Christ and to keep prominently before the World Council and the churches the obligation to manifest that unity and its urgency for world mission and evangelism.” (Constitution of W.C.C.). That aim to “manifest that unity,” as we saw, resembles remarkably the attempt of the last days to establish the united church of the antichrist. And, of course, with that “one church” we have no part.
But another question arises in, connection with the purpose or goal of the W.C.C. What is its attitude toward the “kingdom of God?” It is the Scriptural injunction to “seek first the kingdom of God and its righteousness . . .” Even as the W.C.C. claims to represent denominations of churches, so too its professed aim must be to seek that “kingdom of God.” It could not do otherwise—and still claim to maintain Scripture. But the very real question is: what is the kingdom which the W.C.C. seeks? Is it the “kingdom” of which Scripture repeatedly speaks, or is it a kingdom of its own devising? If the former is true, then we ought to encourage the W.C.C. in its endeavor. If, the latter is the case, then the Christian has no part or parcel with this organization. With this question in mind, I want to consider some of the statements made by proponents of the W.C.C., and by the W.C.C. itself, to find what its idea of the “kingdom of God” is.
The Scriptural Kingdom of God
The reader is doubtless aware what the kingdom of God is. Very briefly may I state that it is that which must be sought first (Matt. 6:33), it is heavenly (Matt. 5:3), it is realized finally when Christ returns (Rev. 21). It is that which principally is already established within the hearts of Christ’s church, but is not that which will be fully realized on this earth. It is not a kingdom established among men generally, for mankind rejects the kingdom of heaven.
At the same time, we ought to be aware that there is a kingdom to be established at the last days which is an imitation of that true kingdom of God. It is the kingdom of the antichrist which is sensual and devilish. It is a kingdom which will establish a measure of peace and prosperity among men. It will be the culmination of the dreams and aspirations of man throughout the ages. It will be the realization of the desires of Babel. One finds an account of this kingdom in Rev. 13. Read carefully the first eight verses of this chapter describing the beast which arose from the sea. Rev. 17:11-14 further explains this beast: “And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb . . . .”
This latter kingdom is not always so easily recognizable . It will go under the name of Christian, and its aims will appear so “good” in that peace and prosperity will be established. Many will be deceived concerning the true nature of this kingdom.
Yet to distinguish these two kingdoms ought not to be very difficult in the light of the Word. Very plainly, the former is not to be sought on this earth,—for flesh and blood do not inherit the kingdom of God. And the seeking of one glorious kingdom of men on this earth can only culminate in that horrible (for the true church) kingdom of antichrist.
Seeking the Kingdom
As far as the final establishment of the Kingdom of God is concerned, there has been much disagreement within the church. There are the three views of pre-, a-, and post-millennialism. Each is meant to be an interpretation of the time and manner of Christ’s return and His establishment of the Kingdom. Though each of these three views likely has proponents among the membership in the W.C.C., I would conclude that the latter (post-millennialism), in its most modernistic sense, is the generally accepted view. Even as the Jews of Jesus’ day looked for the establishment of an earthly kingdom at Jerusalem its capital, so many, apparently the majority, within the W.C.C. seek to establish an earthly kingdom which supposedly will be built about the principles set forth by Christ while He was on the earth. There is a very definite attempt within that organization to be in the forefront of attempts to unite all men under one government. And the sad part is that there is apparently no difference between what the W.C.C. seeks, and that beast of Rev. 13:1-8. If such is true, and I sincerely believe it is, then it must follow that no faithful Christian can remain in such an organization.
First, I want to show that many (though not all) of the members of the W.C.C., and its proponents, seek an earthly kingdom with earthly goals. There are statements suggesting that unity of mankind and peace on earth are the goals the “church” must seek:
. . . If . . . great changes among men come only as a result of .profound changes in their ways of imagining their life and destiny, it may be that when the evils of division and the insufficiencies of a purely material order have had their full effect, a hunger for unity and brotherhood may really take possession of the human mind. Christians must prepare for such a clay, forwarding now their own reunion and seeing in it their dedication to the ultimate unity of all mankind.¹
Bishop Brent was chairman of the Committee on International Affairs. In presenting its report he made a significant . . . and often-quoted statement: “The Christian Church if it be so minded can, in the name of Christ, rule out war and rule in peace within a generation.²
Many see in the W.C.C. the hope of final establishment of international government, where all mankind will live peaceably with all. The W.C.C. is to lead the way, to provide the moral direction toward world government,—which government, as far as I can see, will be nothing less than the government of antichrist. One writes:
And, God willing, working through people like us and churches like ours it will lead the nations of the world toward a truly international order which in God’s good time will actually become the human family where we will “live peaceably with all.”³
The Goal of the W.C.C.
It is not necessarily the case, of course, that the above supporters accurately represent the official position of the W.C.C. One can not accuse the organization of believing what some of its membership teach. Yet, I think the organization, W.C.C., does indeed as an organization also hold to this “one world” concept. The constitution of the W.C.C., as far as I have been able to determine, does not make any statement concerning their position on world government. But reports of their decisions in the last two world assemblies show rather conclusively what the majority of the membership wants. These same reports do show also, conclusively to my mind, that no faithful Christian can join in the attempts of this organization.
First, it appears from the reports that reference to the “eschatological hope,” that is, the future return of Christ and the new heavens and new earth, has been deliberately omitted from the pronouncements of this organization. I say, this has been deliberately done; that itself ought to be a warning to the Christian.
At the second assembly, Evanston, Ill., a closing statement was not finally adopted, but was forwarded to the member churches for study. Concerning this statement, the reporter of this meeting stated:
A third criticism fell on the tendency to identify the Christian hope with the second coming of our Lord at the end of history. Many delegates wet-c wholly unconvinced of the worth of basing our hope on this.4
Notice, delegates criticize even the “tendency to identify the Christian hope with the second coming . . . .” The same thing happened at the third world assembly of the W.C.C. at New Delhi:
In the discussion of the draft Message (addressed to the member churches of the Council) several suggestions of revision, chiefly of editorial character, were offered, which the Chairman said the Committee would consider. A German Lutheran delegate wanted to see a stronger emphasis on the eschatological hope, especially for the comfort of Christians living in the most difficult situations, but Dr. Bliss hesitated to include anything “which might seem to imply that Christians are not passionately concerned about the present life.”5
But the positive decisions of the W.C.C. are even more revealing. At Evanston the Assembly declared:
1. All power carries responsibility and all nations are trustees of power which should be used for the common good.
2. All nations are subject to moral law, and should strive to abide by the accepted principles of international law to develop this law and to enforce it through common actions.
3. All nations should honor their pledged word and international agreements into which they have entered.
4. No nation in an international, dispute has the right to be sole judge in its own cause or to resort to war to advance its policies, but should seek to settle disputes by direct negotiation or by submitting them to conciliation, arbitration or judicial settlement.
5. All nations have a moral obligation to insure universal security and to this end should support measures designed to deny victory to a declared aggressor.
6. All nations should recognize and safeguard the inherent dignity, worth and essential rights of the human person, without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion.
7. Each nation should recognize the rights of every other nation, which observes such standards, to live by and proclaim its own political and social beliefs, provided that it does not seek by coercion, threat, infiltration or deception to impose these on other nations.
8. All nations should recognize an obligation to share their scientific and technical skills with peoples in less developed regions, and to help the victims of disaster in other lands.
9. All nations should strive to develop cordial relations with their neighbors, encourage friendly and commercial dealings, and join in creative international efforts for human welfare.6
In connection with the above, the reporter stated:
I think I am fair in reporting that the vast majority of the delegates to the Second Assembly of the World Council felt that we are moving away from the idea of separate and sovereign states toward some sort of more powerful United Nations or world federation, or, possibly, world government . . . .7
This tendency toward “world government” was even more, apparent at the last World Assembly of the W.C.C. In a statement on “service” the W.C.C. declared:
But it must be said to new nations as to older ones that the evolution of an international order will require of all a measure of surrender of autonomy and sovereignty for the sake of the world community.8
In discussing the above report, some wanted the statement even stronger.
The Rev. H.N. Riber (Lutheran, U.S.A.) desired (this) to be strengthened because Christians should be ahead of public opinion in requiring the nations to surrender sovereignty in preparation for world government. 9
I quote one more statement from New Delhi:
(Report of the Committee on International Affairs): It must be recognized that in the world of our day the interdependence of nations is a reality. The ideal that the Christian seeks along with all those interested in the promotion of human welfare, is a community of nations wherein each nation can develop its own life only in the context of an active and just international association.10
With that, I conclude. I ask you, what is the W.C.C. seeking? Is it not exactly the healing of the wound of the beast (Rev. 13) and the establishment of one world order where antichrist can reign supreme? True: in that kingdom there will be a “promotion of human welfare,” but the kingdom of Heaven will be denounced, and the citizens of that kingdom will be persecuted. How can any faithful child of God join in this attempt toward “world government” which is exactly opposed to the Kingdom of God?
¹ The Atlantic Monthly,, Barbara Ward, “The Quest for Christian Unity,” Aug. 1962, p. 121
² Paul Griswold Macy, If It Be of God, Bethany Press, p. 53
³ Harold A. Bosley, What Did the World Council Say to You?, Abingdon Press, p. 83
4 ibid., p. 117
5 The New Delhi Report, edited by W.A. Visser ‘t Hooft, Association Press, p. 41 6. Harold A. Bosley, op. cit., pp. 78-79
7 ibid., p. 80
8 New Delhi Report, p.107
9 ibid., p. 115
10 ibid., p. 274