Lesson 13: Conclusion

Rev. William Barber IILet me conclude this series by referring to an article Don sent me: The New Apostolic Reformation drove the January 6 riots, so why was it overlooked by the House Select Committee? by Rick Pidcock. It traces in great detail how Christian Nationalists were deeply involved in the insurrection and wonders why the select committee only mentioned them once and then very briefly.

Pidcock shows that for two months after the election different independent charismatic groups participated in efforts to overturn the defeat of Donald Trump. Using militant language, they called for the ouster of anyone who opposed Trump remaining as president.

Eight days before the insurrection, fifteen of their leaders met with officials in the White House but refused to reveal what was discussed. On the 6th of January, four of the six permits for demonstrating on the mall were given to these groups. During the invasion of the Capitol, they encouraged the rioters by playing Christian music and prayers over loudspeakers from their stages. As anyone could see, all sorts of Christin flags and symbols were carried by the insurrectionists.

I was especially upset at the words and actions of those who broke into the Senate chambers. One immediately cried out, “Jesus Christ, we invoke your name. Amen.” The fellow dressed as an animal with horns who called himself a shaman asked everyone to stop while he prayed. The dozen or so in the room all assumed positions of prayer. Some raised their arms, some bowed their heads as he thanked God for helping them get rid of the tyrants, communists, and globalists in our government. He described the insurrectionists as patriots who loved Christ. In the midst of his prayer, someone shouted, “Yes, Lord”. It was evident that these guys were comfortable praying and felt they were acting for God. I, at least, thought of Islamic terrorists invoking Allah before setting off the bomb.

I recommend you read the article as it reveals how Christian Nationalists see their relationship with the government. They interpret Matthew’s great commission literally as a call to make disciples of all nations, rather than the conversion of individuals.

There is no separation of church and state. The spiritual and natural are brought together as religious leaders work with politicians to bring Christian control of the government. This involves spiritual warfare in which the church plays two functions. First, she is to provide a message that inspires the troops, whipping them up emotionally. Second, she defeats the demons presently controlling the leaders of our society.

I was fascinated that this second function was often described as sonic warfare that uses worship, prayer, and especially Christian music as weapons to overcome demons. The Christian Nationalists on the mall were embattling the demons with music and prayer as the insurrectionists stormed the capital building.

I imagine the select committee chose to ignore this involvement because to do so would appear to be an attack on religion. They did not want to get entangled in a church-state debate. Instead, they wanted to focus on President Trump’s involvement.

The article questions this by suggesting Donald Trump didn’t use the Christian Nationalists to do his will so much as they used him to bolster their power. The seeds of their program were sown over fifty years ago and they see Trump as the person God provided to bring it to success.

I came away pretty much agreeing with this assessment. As I mentioned in former lessons, when I studied charismatics again about half a century ago, I found a lot of goofy practices. I could dismiss them as harmless because they were confined to an individual’s private life. I also found advocates feeling they were unimportant and wishing they had more power.

Now I still see a lot of nutty ideas such as climbing Mount Everest to play Christian music that defeats the Ice Queen directing demons afflicting the earth from that peak. But things have turned much more dangerous as spiritual warfare is now taking place to gain power in the public sector. Militant words are more and more accompanied by violent actions.

I leave this series somewhat reluctantly as it has led to many interesting conversations. I have also learned a lot about this group with which I had no direct contact. Thankfully, the media has begun to write extensively about their activities. Hopefully, this exposure will lead to their demise. They are certainly, as my wife says, the Christian Wrong.

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