“The clarity of that faith in the infallible word gives the believer an assurance, strength, and joy in the immediacy of God. Men have lived confidently in darker eras than ours in the confidence and victory of that faith, whereas today the oppression and the fear of evil are very near to men, and the force of God’s word is very remote.”~ R. J. Rushdoony (Systematic Theology, p. 1)
Dear Friend of Chalcedon,
If you were to ask the average person to give a brief overview of 2015, there’s no doubt they would refer to the key events that dominated the news headlines. They would mention war, terror, gay marriage, transsexuals, police violence, rioting, racism, Confederate flags, and so on. Driven by the trending stories on social media, “we the people”routinely absorb an incessant stream of disturbing news that can fill one with fear, frustration, and anxiety unless we are grounded in the Scriptures.
Think about it this way. At any moment of our lives, there are one of two “words”that are near to us: the word of evil, or the Word of God, and the more we regard either one of them, the more remote the other becomes to us.
Have you ever read that brief but powerful passage in Isaiah 26:3, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee”? Is there any greater way to demonstrate trust in our Lord than refusing to consider anything other than Him and His ways? In other words, by bringing God’s Word near to us, we make the word of evil remote from us.
The same is true in reverse. By considering only the things we see with our eyes, we make God’s Word remote from us, and the end result is fear, worry, anxiety, and more.
The Word of Evil vs. The Word of God
Our Lord said in Matthew 6:27, “Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?”In other words, no matter how much we worry, we cannot change our circumstances. Instead, our Lord says in verse 33, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
What does this mean for you and me? It means that instead of spending thought and energy on worrying about the word of evil, we should spend thought and energy on advancing the Kingdom of God. We should occupy our minds with effective Kingdom work in order that His righteousness might drive out the unrighteousness we’re worried about.
Now consider how much time is being spent by ministries, church leaders, bloggers, et al., on highlighting the evil of our times. Whether it’s a television preacher predicting the soon-coming end of the world, or a conservative voice decrying the rise of socialism, the end result is that the word of evil is being brought near to us while the Word of God is made remote.
How God’s Rule Is Underwritten
What if the time and money spent on decrying our political, cultural, and economic conditions were spent directly on establishing alternatives to humanistic statism? Can this be done? Absolutely. That’s precisely what we all accomplished with Christian education. Private Christian schools, and Christian homeschooling, are growing more than ever, and this is the perfect example of how Christians use the power of the tithe to fund works of Christian Reconstruction.
How else do we finance a godly social order unless we utilize God’s way of subsidizing His government in the earth? Is this not the purpose of the Christian tithe? Whether we are tithing to a local church, or using our tithe for other forms of Christian Reconstruction, the power lies with the individual to be faithful to God’s calling for dominion by way of their finances. It is the humanistic state that expands its power through extensive taxation, but it is the tithe that underwrites God’s rule in history.
I feel we are too consumed with controversy when it comes to the tithe that we are neglecting what should be our primary motive in utilizing its power. If we were to understand the impact our tithing could make, I believe the conflict and controversy would dissipate while a new era of Christian government would rise. If the word of godly dominion were made near to our hearts and minds, we would cast off our worry about tomorrow and look for ways to advance His Kingdom. This is why a ministry like Chalcedon is so imperative. As my father once wrote, “The purpose of Chalcedon is to apply God’s word to every area of life and thought and to summon the redeemed of God to their responsibilities in Christ our King”(Roots of Reconstruction, p. xi).
The Two-Fold Purpose of Chalcedon
Chalcedon has a two-fold purpose: to work to apply God’s Word to every area of life by scholarship and publication and with those efforts summon the redeemed to their Kingdom responsibilities. In this way, we are to bring God’s Word nearer to men so they can better cast off the word of evil and awaken to their dominion calling.
What is our challenge in all this? We must compete with the myriad of ministerial voices that are not calling Christian men and women to dominion, but this has always been the case. The difference now is that our political, economic, and social crises are much more advanced and fear is flooding the hearts of believers. No matter how many “blood moons”appear in the sky, no rapture ever comes, and sinful man takes even more ground.
This is advantageous to us, however, because more Christians are willing to consider our message. The crisis is such that more Christians are asking, “What shall we do?”They want answers because they see that there is no salvation in politics. They’re becoming more aware that the political system is essentially two sides of the same coin. In the end, they see that humanistic statism remains entrenched, and no politician—no matter how conservative—can unseat the American Establishment.
Creating Alternative Means of Government
There is only one answer, and that is Christian Reconstruction. We must invest ourselves entirely in creating the alternative means of government by taking power back from the state by way of self-government in terms of God’s law. However, this is nothing but rhetoric without action and social financing. This again is why the tithe is essential to all that we do. In fact, we will win or lose based upon what we do with God’s tithe. Here is how my father once described it:
The tithe has a major social function which needs restoring. It is futile to rail against statism if we have no alternative to the state assumption of social responsibilities. The Christian who tithes, and sees that his tithe goes to godly causes, is engaged in true social reconstruction. By his tithe money and its activity he makes possible the development of Christian churches, schools, colleges, welfare agencies, and other necessary social functions. The negativists, who have merely campaigned against statism, have steadily lost ground since 1950. Those Christians who have concerned themselves with Christian reconstruction have since 1950 established a vast number of Christian schools as well as other agencies. Within fifteen years, almost 30% of America’s grade school children were no longer in the statist schools. (Roots, p. 665)
Can you see how this is precisely where we are right now? Can you see how futile it is to spend so much time, money, and effort railing against political parties, moral depravity, and economic downturns if we do not clearly offer Biblical alternatives? Imagine what we could make possible if our intellectual, spiritual, and financial capital were turned towards creating godly agencies of education, welfare, healthcare, science, the arts, and more!
To do this we must first have ministries dedicated to proclaiming this message and faithful Christians supporting it. This is why I can be bold in writing these things. For 50 years, the Chalcedon Foundation has focused on this single mission, and we will not change that focus. Our purpose remains Christian education for the purpose of Christian Reconstruction.
2015: Celebrating 50 Years of Ministry by Reemphasizing the Vision
Since 1965, Chalcedon has functioned as a think-tank for the self-governing Christian, although in 1981, the secular media labeled us as the “think tank for the Christian Right.”That was never our objective. Although we encourage a Christian involvement in civil government, Chalcedon has centered its focus on God’s primary government: the family.
It is Christian families that serve as the primary stewards of two very important areas of Kingdom work: education and the tithe. It is the family’s stewardship over the education of Christian children that prepares future generations for godly rule, and it’s the tithe that serves as the means to social financing for a godly social order. No other ministry has been so dedicated for so long to this single mission of equipping Christians—especially the family—than Chalcedon.
This year we celebrated our 50th Anniversary by reemphasizing our vision across the country as we held several celebration events in Odenville, Alabama; Saratoga, California; Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania; Mercer Island, Washington; Austin, Texas, and finishing up in Thomson, Illinois. These were refreshing times spent with some of our dearest friends and supporters, and I want to thank all who hosted, attended, and spoke at these events. I want to especially thank our own Andrea Schwartz for coordinating the entire campaign. She did a great job!
It’s Been a Busy Year for All of Us!
Andrea also serves as our in-house education expert, and in 2014, we encouraged her to launch her own website on The Kingdom-Driven Family (TheKingdomDrivenFamily.com). For years, Andrea has developed a loyal following of active Christian families, and we felt it was important that she be empowered to do that more directly. She’s done quite well too. As of today, her Facebook page has grown to over 3,300 followers, and she is currently working on another book which is being compiled from her ever-increasing essays and articles.
Andrea is also developing a children’s storybook using my father’s family history as the basis. She is working closely with my older sister, Rebecca, on this, and she hopes to complete this next year to help honor my father’s 100th birthday. All of this is in addition to the numerous projects and items that Andrea tirelessly works on for Chalcedon. She is a true blessing to this ministry!
Publishing, Publishing, Publishing
Like every year, publishing is central to our work, and in 2015—with the help of our generous supporters—we saw the release of several new volumes including Volume 6 of my father’s A Word in Season: Daily Messages on the Faith for All of Life, and his collection of poems, The Luxury of Words. In addition, we had to do another sizable reprint of his Faith and Obedience: An Introduction to Biblical Law.
Lee Duigon, who serves as one of our editors and columnists, managed to release two new volumes this year to his ever-growing Bell Mountain fiction series with the publishing of The Glass Bridge (Volume 7) and The Temple (Volume 8). What a remarkable job Lee has done with a couple of his books also winning some publishing awards!
There are other books that are soon to go to press, but they won’t be released until next year. Titles include Volume 7 of A Word in Season—which is almost completed—as well as newly designed versions of Christianity and the State and The Philosophy of the Christian Curriculum.
I’m particularly excited about our upcoming Legacy Publications which include a 3-volume set entitled An Informed Faith: The Position Papers of R. J. Rushdoony as well as Faith and Action, a collection of all my father’s articles from the Chalcedon Report. Both 3-volume sets will feature indices and be handsomely designed for your shelf. We’re also putting together a collection of his articles on healthcare, doctors, and medicine entitled Faith and Wellness: Resisting the State Control of Healthcare by Restoring the Priestly Calling of Doctors.
Other forthcoming titles that need your support are my father’s sermons on Zephaniah, Haggai, and Zechariah as well as his commentary on First and Second Corinthians. So much to look forward to!
Working Tirelessly to Bring the Word of God to Men
Our own Jill Rouse has been overseeing the burgeoning collection of ebooks, and in 2015 she released Lee Duigon’s The Glass Bridge and The Temple, as well as several of my father’s books: The Institutes of Biblical Law, Vol. 3, The Nature of the American System, Deuteronomy, A Word in Season Vol. 6, and The Luxury of Words. In 2016, she’ll release Systematic Theology in Two Volumes, The Death of Meaning, To Be as God, and the Legacy Publications.
This demonstrates that in any and every way we are working tirelessly to bring the hope of God’s victorious gospel to men so that we can push forward the single idea of the Kingdom of God and help awaken and equip Christians to the responsibilities of their faith. I need you to help me do that. That’s why I’m writing you. Before the end of this year, I truly need your financial support.
Please take a few moments today to prayerfully consider donating the most generous tax-deductible gift you can to Chalcedon before December 31st (click to contribute). Here’s the fact of the matter: our year-end fundraising determines our next year’s budget, so you can understand the urgency of my request. Chalcedon simply cannot function without your financial support.
Would you do that? Would you take a little time to see how you’d like to contribute? As I mentioned, your financial gifts are tax-deductible, but I know your motive is the same as mine—it’s for the Kingdom of God. That’s why I wanted to sit down to write you. You are an investor and partner in the work of Chalcedon, and I know how much you value that role. Please be as generous as you can and may God bless you richly for it! I look forward to hearing from you before the end of the year. Just click to contribute!
In His Service,
Mark R. Rushdoony
P. S. We live in a time when Christians are running out of solutions to the political, social, and economic crises of our times. Let’s bring them something more than hope. Let’s bring the message of God’s victorious Kingdom and how to advance it. Please help us do that by donating the most generous tax-deductible gift you can before December 31, 2015. Your giving determines our budget for the upcoming year, and we desperately need your support! Click to contribute!
- 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.