Mr. Kalsbeek is a teacher in Covenant Christian High School and a member of Hope Protestant Reformed Church, Walker, Michigan.
“And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do; the heads of them were two hundred; and all their brethren were at their commandment.”
Death is dead!
Well, at least almost dead!
If you question the veracity of that statement because scripture and experience have conditioned you to think otherwise, be enlightened by secular humanist S. Matthew D’Agostino:
I believe that death is neither necessary nor “sacred.” It’s only the path that evolution appears to have taken to date. Human intelligence may be able to force evolution into a different direction. Eventually, I am convinced, science will overcome death.
What’s perhaps a more annoying possibility—these remarks may surprise you—is that death would probably already have been overcome, long ago, had we not endured two thousand years of myths and mumbling priests. Christianity turned its back on “the glory that was Greece.” The early church father Tertullian (c. 155-220) explained that turn succinctly: “If you have Jerusalem, you don’t need Athens.” Having turned its back on rationality and loosed twenty centuries of anti-science hysteria and persecutions, which continue even today, Christianity will deserve the “credit” for putting at least our grandparent’s generation, and our parent’s—and our own—in their graves. How many more will be lost before the conquest of death?1
Although some may place these ideas of D’Agostino on the fringe of secular humanism, closer examination of their worldview would suggest that he is very much in the mainstream. (For our purposes in this and future articles, we will use the following definition for the term worldview: “A world view is a set of presuppositions [or
assumptions] which we hold [consciously or subconsciously] about the basic makeup of our world.”2 )
As present-day children of Issachar, we and our children are assaulted with the current Caananitish thinking of our Western society every day. A brief reminder of what this assault entails and how we should react to it will be the burden of the rest of this article.
At the outset we ought to understand that it will be impossible in this brief article to describe completely the Secular Humanist Worldview. We ought also to understand that all Secular Humanists will not agree on every point. Nevertheless, for the most part they do agree on the main tenets of the Humanist Manifesto. This manifesto is an evolutionary document. That is clearly expressed in the preamble to the latest edition of their manifesto, in which they write: “Although we who endorse this document share common principles and values, we are prepared to modify our views in light of new knowledge, altered circumstances, and unforeseen problems that may arise. It is not possible to create a permanent Manifesto, but it is useful and wise to devise a working document, open to revision.”3 Further evidence of the evolutionary nature of the Manifesto is the fact that this is the third one they have produced since 1933, and when these manifestos are compared, it becomes clear that they have changed and expanded their beliefs over the years.
What are those beliefs? The following quotes from their godless Manifesto will allow them to speak for themselves:
—Many current visions of the future are pessimistic, even apocalyptic. But we object for we believe that it is possible to create a better world. The results of the global society are such that only a new Planetary Humanism can provide meaningful directions for the future.
—Darwin’s nineteenth-century theory of natural selection has enabled us to understand how life evolved. The discoveries of DNA and molecular biology continue to reveal the mechanisms of evolution and of life itself.
—… if our problems are to be solved, it will be only by marshaling reason, science, and human endeavor.
—Scientific naturalism enables human beings to construct a coherent worldview disentangled from metaphysics or theology and based on the sciences.
—Humanists maintain that we need to extend the methods of science to other fields of human endeavor and that there should be no restrictions on scientific research, unless the research infringes on the rights of persons.
—Neither the standard modern cosmology nor evolutionary process provides sufficient evidence for intelligent design, which is a leap in faith beyond empirical evidence. We think it time for humanity to embrace its own adulthood—to leave behind the magical thinking and myth making that are substitutes for tested knowledge of nature.
—… humanists recommend that we use reason in framing our ethical judgments.
—There is a growing need for an explicit Planetary Bill of Rights and Responsibilities that applies to all members of the human species.
—Although parental moral guidance is vital, parents should not simply impose their own religious outlook or moral values on their children or indoctrinate them.
—We need to develop a new human identity—membership in the planetary community. This identity must have priority over all others and can serve as the basis for eradicating discrimination.
—Adults should be allowed to marry whomever they wish…. Same-sex couples should have the same rights as heterosexual couples.
—There is need to support measures that will directly benefit the health and well being of the poorest, and especially of women and girls. This must include some efforts to stabilize and then decrease population-growth rates.
—We urge all industrialized nations to accept as a first step the guidelines set out by the United Nations for overseas development assistance, namely to contribute (or be taxed) 0.7% of their GDP each year….
—… we must develop an effective World Court and an International Judiciary with sufficient power to enforce its rulings. It is essential that those states that do not as yet recognize its authority be persuaded to do so.
—The planetary community is our own, and each of us can help make it flourish. The future is open. The choices are for us to make. Together we can realize the noblest ends and ideals of mankind.4
Sons of Issachar, beware! The list of dignitaries from around the world that have signed this document make it clear that this is not the thinking of a lunatic fringe-group, but rather the convictions of a large consensus of world “movers and shakers.”
As seen in their godless manifesto, from Secular Humanism’s theology of atheism to its ethics of moral relativism, their worldview is completely antithetical to that of the Scriptures.
And while their manifesto speaks of tolerance, coercion is the controlling spirit. Yes, their manifesto says, “Individuals should have the right to join voluntary organizations in order to share common interests and activities,” but this is followed immediately by,“The right of free association, so long as it is peaceful and nonviolent, must be respected.” Note the qualifier, “so long as it is peaceful and nonviolent.” Who decides what is peaceful and nonviolent? Also, reread the above quotes from the Humanist Manifesto and notice that coercion is implied or explicitly stated in at least four instances (not to mention all the other examples in their manifesto which are not quoted here).
Examples of Secular Human-ism’s intolerance of Christianity abound. Listen to a few apologists of this worldview:
—The classroom must and will become an arena of conflict between the old and the new—the rotting corpse of Christianity, together with its adjacent evils and misery, and the new faith of Humanism, resplendent in its promise of a world in which the never realized Christian idea of “Love thy Neighbor” will finally be achieved.5
—… if Heaven is filled with the same pious nincompoops we are familiar with from the present day, it might not be such an appealing venue. They have a point; I’m not at all sure that spending eternity with Pat Robertson, the pope, Tim LaHaye, et al., is truly preferable to obliteration.6
—You are free to preserve or create any religious creed you wish, so long as it does not become a public nuisance…. Those who will not accommodate, who will not temper, who insist on keeping only the purest and wildest strains of their heritage alive, we shall be obliged, reluctantly, to cage or disarm.7
Those words of Darwinist David Dennett and similar expressions of many others leave no doubt that the disciples of Secular Humanism have not departed from the thinking of one of their spiritual fathers, Friedrich Nietzsche, who wrote in 1888 under the title The Antichrist: “I call Christianity the one great curse, the one enormous and innermost perversion, the one great instinct of revenge, for which no means are too venomous, too underhand, too underground and too petty. I call it the one immortal blemish of mankind.”
Present-day children of Issachar must realize that these are not mere idle, Canaanitish threats. Rather, even as we write, these vile ideas and tactics are being promoted by the Secular Humanists of our day, some of whom exercise considerable power in very high places. Since 1981 the United Nations General Assembly has had in place its “Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief.” As this declaration is implemented in our world, the family of God will more and more experience what it means to be the prodigal son of the family of nations.
No doubt the prodigal church will be welcomed back into the family of nations, but only on the terms of the world’s definition of tolerance. It will not be enough for God’s people
to assert another person’s right to believe or say what he thinks is right. It is not enough to allow another person to disagree with what you believe or do.
In order to be truly tolerant (according to new tolerance), you must agree that another person’s position is just as valid as your own. In order to be tolerant (they say), you must give your approval, your endorsement, your sincere support to their beliefs and behaviors.8
There will come a day when the world will try to force its beliefs and behaviors on the church. Currently, however (in the West, at least), Satan is rapidly achieving his goals by other means. Issachar be warned, he’s after your children! He’s making war with the remnant of your seed (Rev. 12:17)!
This is nothing new, of course. Satan has always known that if he can seduce the children of the church, he can cut the church off in her generations. He also knows that the young are especially vulnerable to the flesh-attracting music and dramas of the day, which are the primary means he uses to lead them to adopt the world’s beliefs and behaviors. Space constraints make it impossible for us to expand on this at this time. For now the words of rock star David Crosby will suffice to give Issachar warning. In the following quote, a devilish Mr. Crosby brazenly informs us what he seeks to accomplish with his rock music:
I figured the only thing to do was to swipe their kids. I still think it’s the only thing to do. By saying that, I’m not talking about kidnapping them, I’m just talking about changing their value systems, which removes them from their parent’s world very effectively.9
Issachar be warned! The inspired apostle was not exaggerating when he wrote: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (I Pet. 5:8).
Sons of Issachar, understand the times and live!
1.S. Matthew D’Agostino, “A Challenge for Naturalism,” Free Inquiry, Volume 22, Number 1.
2.James W. Sire, The Universe Next Door (Downers Grove, IL: Inter Varsity Press, 1997) 17.
3.Paul Kurtz, “Humanist Manifesto 2000,” Free Inquiry, Fall 1999: 4.
5.John J. Dunphy, “A Religion for a New Age,” The Humanist, January/Feb. 1983, 26.
7.Patrick J. Buchanan, The Death of the West (New York: Thomas Dunne Books/St Martin’s Press, 2002) 64.
8.Josh McDowell and Bob Hostetler, The New Tolerance (Wheaton, Illinois: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. 1998) 22.
9.Ray Allen, They’re Out to Steal Your Children (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA: American Research Press, 1979) 1.