Most of you are probably aware that my brother-in-law, Dr. Gary North, passed away on February 24th at the age of 80. He was the last of the first-generation leaders of Christian Reconstruction. My father, R.J. Rushdoony (d. 2001), coined the term and at onetime employed Gary, Greg Bahnsen (d. 1995), and David Chilton (d. 1997).
Many have said Christian Reconstruction died years ago, but they are unaware of the widespread influence of the writings and lectures of these men. We wrongly see a movement as necessitating a powerful leader, but from the beginning my father saw Christian Reconstruction as an idea, that of the responsibilities of the citizens of the Kingdom of our Lord in an age of humanism in church and state. He was specifically advised that Chalcedon (est. 1965) could not survive based upon ideas alone, that a program was needed in order to raise funds. He was told that the real money was in fighting communism, but my father was not content to have a negative ministry opposing evil. Christian Reconstruction was about a groundwork to further righteousness.
Greg Bahnsen’s works have been organized by his heirs. Gary North put all his works online. David Chilton’s material is still available, and Chalcedon is making my father’s works available not only in print, but also digitally in numerous formats.
Christian Reconstruction is very much alive, and the chaos of our time is symptomatic of the collapse of modern humanism. The rise of Christian conversions (in most of the world, if not in Europe and North America), and the collapse of humanism, (a scary but necessary development), is setting the stage for major changes in the world. We should pray that the Holy Spirit would make this the occasion for a tremendous growth-spurt of the Kingdom.
There is a massive archive of material represented by Greg Bahnsen, Gary North, David Chilton, and my father, but it is now up to us to move those ideas forward for the glory of God and His Christ.
- Mark R. Rushdoony
Mark R. Rushdoony graduated from Los Angeles Baptist College (now The Master’s College) with a B.A. in history in 1975 and was ordained to the ministry in 1995.
He taught junior and senior high classes in history, Bible, civics and economics at a Christian school in Virginia for three years before joining the staff of Chalcedon in 1978. He was the Director of Chalcedon Christian School for 14 years while teaching full time. He also helped tutor all of his children through high school.
In 1998, he became the President of Chalcedon and Ross House Books, and, more recently another publishing arm, Storehouse Press. Chalcedon and its subsidiaries publish many titles plus CDs, mp3s, and an extensive online archive at www.chalcedon.edu.
He has written scores of articles for Chalcedon’s publications, both the Chalcedon Report and Faith for all of Life. He was a contributing author to The Great Christian Revolution (1991). He has spoken at numerous conferences and churches in the U.S. and abroad.
Mark Rushdoony lives in Vallecito, California, his home of 43 years with his wife of 45 years and his youngest son. He has three married children and nine grandchildren.