Newsletters

January/February 2007

GOSPEL DEFENCE LEAGUE

P O Box 587, Sea Point 8060, RSA; Tel 021-510-6854; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

                                                                                                         January/February 2007

 

Dear Friends,

In South Africa the moral question is now the 'Big Question' and was discussed on the Sunday night SATV programme of the same name. (14.1.2007) The decline of morality has led to a crime rate which is presumed to be the highest in the world. In April 2002 therefore the Government launched a Moral Regeneration Movement (MRM) to counter what amounts to a civil war. This was preceded by the 1998 'Moral Summit' held in Johannesburg under former President Nelson Mandela's leadership, at which a 'Code of Conduct for Persons in Position of Responsibility' was laid down. Moral Regeneration is so high on the Governments agenda that no less a person than the Deputy State President was chosen to lead the movement.

"The Marketing of Evil"
South Africa is not the only nation which is battling with immorality and crime. The whole Western world is likewise afflicted and is standing helpless in the face of spiralling depravity. The Armenian-American theologian David Kupelian has studied the causes of this and comes to the conclusion that the Western world, and the USA in particular, has fallen victim to a negative marketing campaign of the most sophisticated and advanced kind. In his book "The Marketing of Evil" he writes: "As Americans, we've come to tolerate, embrace, and even champion many things that would have horrified our parents' generation. Things like abortion-on-demand virtually up to the moment of birth, judges banning the Ten Commandments from public places, a national explosion of middle-school sex, the slow starvation of the disabled, thousands of homosexuals openly flouting the law and getting 'married,' and online porn creating late-night sex addicts in millions of middle-class homes... What's going on?... We have been taken in - big-time - by some of the boldest and most brilliant maketing campaigns in modern history." (p. 11) 1) He continues: "The plain truth is, within the space of our lifetimes, much of what Americans once almost universally abhorred has been packaged, perfumed, gift-wrapped, and sold to us as though it had great value. By skillfully playing on our deeply felt national values of fairness, generosity, and tolerance, these marketers have persuaded us to embrace as enlightened and noble that which all previous generations since America's founding regarded as grossly self-destructive - in a word, evil."


The marketing of evil consists of a three stage strategy: desensitization, jamming, and conversion. At first people are desensitized. Something immoral, e.g. the gay lifestyle, is presented to them in a positive and inoffensive way - so often and so much that at last they become tired of arguing and resign themselves to it. Secondly the people who expose the evil and defend Christian morality are jammed. Jamming is a kind of psychological terror. Those who dare stand for truth are targeted, discredited, and falsely accused of wrongdoing. The third stage is conversion, "a planned psychological attack on the average American's emotions, mind, and will in the form of propaganda be fed to the nation via the media." The men who devised this method, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen, say: "We mean 'subverting' the mechanism of prejudice to our own ends - using the very processes that made America hate us to turn their hatred into warm regard - whether they like it or not." 2)

This sort of thing does not only happen in America. A similar development has overtaken South Africa. More and more people have become desensitized against immorality. And here, too, the conservative Christian voice has been jammed, so that the masses could more easily be converted to Secular Humanism. South Africa, too, has fallen victim to the 'marketing of evil', for many people now believe that true 'liberation' can only be attained if Christianity is abolished. But they have lost sight of the fact that it was Christ and the Christian Gospel that have made this country great, and that the fruits we are still reaping are thanks to Him. God says: "Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear: Should you not fear me? declares the LORD. Should you not tremble in my presence?" (Jeremiah 5:21-22)

As soon as Secular Humanism asserted itself in South Africa, this nation's covenants were overturned. The 'fear of the LORD' is no longer recognised as 'the beginning of knowledge'. Instead, schoolchildren are taught multicultural atheism. As a result, South African schools, which are so foundational to a civilized society, have become a "disaster area." 2) Dr Erich Leistner, former director of the Africa Institute, writes: "Believing that education under apartheid was worthless, the ANC squashed a functioning system. The foreign and rather demanding teaching methods introducted instead, with utterly inadequate preparation, severely overtaxed especially black teachers and pupils. White teachers were encouraged to leave; 183 teacher colleges were closed. Today, according to the government-appointed Institute for Justice and Reconciliation, most schools are incapable of conveying the mind-set and intellectual abilities needed to build a modern state. Reading and writing abilities are 'extremely underdeveloped.' A well-qualified observer describes as 'alarming, even horrifying' the extent to which the system is failing black pupils and students. The attitudes of teachers are probably the greatest obstacle to remedying the situation. Many are poorly trained; large numbers, appallingly motivated and undisciplined, are alcoholics, abuse schoolgirls, and so forth. At least 21% of teachers aged 25 to 34 years are HIV-positive while AIDS killed 4000 in 2004. Far more leave than enter the profession - 21 000 against ±5000 in 2004. By 2008, a shortage of 15 000 is expected. 80% of black schools have no libraries, many no electricity and water, often not even toilets. Violence, assaults, vandalism and drug abuse are rife. Many parents therefore send their children to formerly white schools. In Soweto, for example, that leads to schools being closed. This inflow of pupils affects the quality of the receiving schools by raising costs and reducing the number of extra teachers they can afford to engage. The 414 top schools produced 66% of the matric passes in higher-grade maths as against 15% from 4877 poorly performing schools that represented 79% of all highschools." 3)

Learners who come out of such a system often turn to crime. At present, South Africa is said to have the highest crime rate in the world. Every 26 seconds a woman is raped. In one year (2005-2006) 55 000 rapes were reported. Experts estimate that close on 1 million sexual assaults are committed per annum. Every day 4 women are killed by their so-called 'life partners', and 500 000 children are presumed molested per year - one every 8 minutes, and one raped every 24 Minutes. 4)

Focussing on children David Kupelian describes the fearful exploitation teen-agers by international big business. "They want to be cool," he quotes from a documentary, "they are impressionable, and they have the cash. They are corporate America's $150 billion dream... Major corporations study America's children like laboratory rats in order to sell them billions of dollars in merchandise by tempting, degrading, and corrupting them... Today five enormous companies are responsible for selling nearly all of youth culture. These are the true merchants of cool: Rupert Murdoch's Newscorp, Disney, Viacom, Universal, Vivendi, and AOL/Time Warner." (p. 65) - Well, that is America, but what about the RSA? In South Africa we also have music, media, and adverts aplenty which show how "cool" it is to be sexy and rebellious. E.g. we are told by LoveLife, that young girls who desire 'designer label' clothes often prostitute themselves to get them.

"Abandonment Theology"
But what about the Churches? Are not the Churches resisting the 'marketing of evil'? Yes, many do. But the Church of Jesus Christ is divided. Firstly, there are the 'ecumenical churches' which are associated with National Councils of Churches (e.g. the SACC) and the World Council of Churches (WCC). These are incapable of resistance because they promote the very Humanism they should be fighting. Secondly there are the evangelical churches, but they too, do not offer great resistance. Many of them have adoped what Kupelian calls an "Abandonment Theology". - He says: "They observed the horrible, deteriorating conditions..., determined that (the country) was headed into rubble just like pagan Rome and that we must be living in the prophesied 'last days' and 'end times'. Therefore, with the end and the 'rapture of the church' so apparently near, why fight? 'After all,' these clergymen said, 'We are in this world, not of it, so to heck with it,' and 'compared to eternity we're here only for an instant.' They told us that all that really counts is that we 'lead as many people as possible to salvation and let our corrupted country continue on its death course... The Abandonment Clergy and their followers have been teaching, preaching and saturating the media and their church members with the doctrine of surrender and political non-involvement. They are not teaching us to surrender to Christ through obedience to the commandments of God. Rather they tell us that (our country) is finished, that the collapse of our heritage and our freedoms has been predetermined within a definable near-future time frame and is therefore beyond our control." 5) Kupelian is talking about America, but are we not in the same situation?


Even Francis A Schaeffer, the great theologian, agrees. He also complains saying: "Most of the evangelical world has not been active in the battle, or even been able to see that we are in a battle. And when it comes to the issues of the day the evangelical world most often has said nothing; or worse, has said nothing different from what the world would say. Here," he continued, "is the great evangelical disaster - the failure of the evangelical world to stand for truth as truth. There is only one word for this - namely accommodation: the evangelical church has accommodated to the world spirit of the age... It is my firm belief that when we stand before Jesus Christ, we will find that it has been the weakness and accommodation of the evangelical group on the issues of the day that has been largely responsible for the loss of the Christian ethos which has taken place in the area of culture in our country over the last forty to sixty years." (Kupelian p. 226)

Much of this applies to our South African churches as well. Many who 'fight the good fight of faith' stand alone. Some fight through para-church movements outside the official church. The Davids who are standing up against the marketing Goliaths and take the brunt of the enemy's 'jamming' are sometimes so reviled that they lose favour even with their evangelical friends. And the Government's Moral Regeneration Movement is also not effective. It is non-religious and multi-cultural, and as such wants to establish ethics without roots. But there is no such thing as morals without religion or virtue without God.

Christians need to revive their vision and again make the Church what it is meant to be, the Church militant on earth and triumphant in heaven. They need to sing "Fight the good fight with all thy might; Christ is thy strength, and Christ thy right." They need to remember the great deeds of the Apostles and the Reformers. They need to adopt the Reformation doctrines, teach the Westminster Confession, and pray with the Book of Common Prayer. We need to be proud that "our fathers were high-minded men who firmly kept the faith," and pledge ourselves to likewise follow the Lord into battle, "till for the good old cause of truth the victory shall be won." (Congregational Praise No.516)

"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge and wisdom." Without it there can be no morality, no social peace, and no civilization. Apart from the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, all moral regeneration is still-born. Therefore let us earnestly pray: "Will you not revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you? Show us your unfailing love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation." (Psalm 85)

May God bless you richly,

D. Scarborough.

Footnotes:
1. David Kupelian, The Marketing of Evil - How Radicals, Elitists, and Pseudo-Experts sell us Corruption disguised as Freedom, WNC Books, Cumberland House Publishing Inc., Nashville Tennessee, 2005. 2. Op. cit., p. 23. Kirk was a Harvard-educated researcher in neuropsychiatry who worked with the Johns Hopkins Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth and designed aptitude tests for adults with 200± IQs. Madsen had a doctorate in politics from Harvard and was an expert on public persuasion tactics and social marketing. Together they wrote 'After the Ball: How America will Conquer its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the '90s.' 3. Dr Erich Leistner, South Africa Review 2006. 4. Die Afrikaner, Gru misdade in SA hoogste in die wêreld, 1-7 Desember 2006. 5. Op. cit., p. 224, David Kupelian quoted from John W. Chalfant's book 'Abandonment Theology'.


The Biblical Solution to Crime

'Biblical Principles for Africa' - by Dr Peter Hammond (Chapter 5)

What Causes Crime?
I have heard university professors and other so called experts speaking about how very complicated it is to analyse the sociological and economic factors that led to the phenomenon of crime! Yet, if we turn to the Bible, we will find a very straightforward answer:


"Why do people commit crimes to readily? Because crime is not punished quickly enough." (Ecclesiastes 8:11)

Surely that is the common sense answer. It is so obvious. Crime is increasing in our society because our courts seem to be more interested in the 'rights' of the criminal, but not as concerned about the rights of the victim, or the policemen for that matter. Murderers have been released while policemen have been prosecuted. Rapists have been set free on amnesties and presidential pardons, while victims have been imprisoned for defending themselves. Right has become wrong and wrong has become right!

"Woe to those who call evil good and good evil,... who acquit the guilty for a bribe, but deny justice to the innocent." (Isaiah 5:20-23)

The Role of Government
The Bible is very clear that God has instituted civil government as "an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer." (Romans 13:4) The civil goernment is called to be a minister of God's justice, "to punish those who do wrong." (1 Peter 2:14)


The primary duties and responsibilities of civil government are the protection of law-abiding citizens and the punishment of law-breaking criminals. Psalm 101 reminds us that the duty of God-honouring rulers is to destroy the wicked, to root out evil and to protect the law-abiding - all to the glory of God.

"Every authority instituted among men... who are sent by Him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right." (1 Peter 2:13-14)

"For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong... for he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer." (Romans 13:3-4)

Capital Punishment
For those who hold the Word of God as authoritative, capital punishment is not a matter of choice or opinion poll, or even of court or parliamentary decree. It is God's clear command:


"Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man." (Genesis 9:6)

"If anyone takes the life of a human being, he must be put to death... whoever kills a man must be put to death...

I am the Lord your God." (Leviticus 24:17-22)

"Bloodshed pollutes the land and atonement cannot be made for the land on which blood has been shed, except by the blood of the one who shed it." (Numbers 35:33)

God's Law remains in force after Calvary. As our Lord Jesus Christ taught: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfil them. I tell you the truth, until heaven an earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law." (Matthew 5:17-18)

The government "does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer." (Romans 13:4).

Governors "are sent by Him to punish those who do wrong." (1 Peter 2:14)

"Anyone who kills with a sword, must himself be killed by the sword." (Revelation 13:10)

By obeying God's Law and punishing murderers with the death penalty, a nation can cleanse itself from the guilt of innocent blood. On the other hand, a nation that refuses to avenge the taking of innocent human life, must share the guilt of the murderer (Deuteronomy 21:1-9) - The opposition of certain 'human rights' groups to the death penalty is selective. As capital punishment is only applied to murderers, one is given to wonder why these groups are so concerned for the 'rights' of murderers? Should we not provide compassion and justice for the many thousands of victims and families of victims of violent crimes?

Since the South African Government unilaterally suspended the death penalty for murder (in 1989), criminals have inflicted the death penalty on well over 250 000 innocent victims in South Africa. Who is campaigning for their rights... or the 250 000 who could be murdered in the coming decade?

Restitution
In cases of theft, arson, or malicious damage to property, the Bible decrees restitution... God's Law is clear: the criminal is held accountable and is responsible to pay for his crime. He is to work and earn, in money or kind, that which is required for the reparation of what he stole, damaged or destroyed:


"... he should make full restitution; if he has nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft. If the theft is certainly found alive in his hand, whether it is an ox or a donkey or sheep, he shall restore double. If a man causes a field or vineyard to be grazed and lets loose his animal, and it feeds in another man's field, he shall make restitution from the best of his own field and the best of his own vineyard. If fire breaks out and catches in thorns, so that stacked grain, standing grain or the field is consumed, he who kindled the fire shall surely make restitution." (Exodus 22:3-6)

The punishment is to fit the crime. The more serious the crime, the more severe the punishment.

"A matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses. If a malicious witness takes the stand... if the witness proves to be a liar... then do to him as he intended to do to his brother. You must purge the evil from among you. The rest of the people will hear of this and be afraid, and never again will such an evil thing be done among you. Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth..." (Deuteronomy 19:15-21)

Under God's Law, there would be fewer criminals, fewer victims and much less burden on the tax payer. Under our present humanistic system, our prisons have become a higher institute of learning for criminals, where they cross-train one another and work out how not to get caught - next time. Instead of the victim and his relatives receiving restitution, under our present system the victims are forced to pay taxes which provide food, accommodation and entertainment for the criminals while they languish in prison. The solution to this intolerable situation includes a return to the Biblical pattern of restitution.

Making Sure Crime does not Pay
There are also some practical, common sense measures which could ensure that crime does not pay in Africa.


1. Repeat offenders should be made to complete the rest of their sentence before beginning their second sentence.

2. No bail should be available for repeat offenders.

3. All violent criminals should bear the full responsibility for their actions, whether or not they were deemed mentally competent, drunk, or of diminished capacity, or under the influence of drugs.

"If a man strikes someone with an iron object so that he dies... or if anyone has a stone in his hand that could kill, and he strikes someone so that he dies... or if anyone has a wooden object in his hand that could kill, and he hits someone so that he dies... If anyone with malice aforethought pushes another or throws something at him intentionally so that he dies or if in hostility he hits him with his fist so that he dies, that person shall be put to death; he is a murderer." (Numbers 35:16-21)

4. Penalties for violent youths should be the same as for adults. Those who commit adult crimes, such as rape and murder, should suffer adult consequences.

"Suppose (a man) has a violent son, who sheds blood or does any of these other things (though the father has done none of them): He eats at the mountain shrines. He defiles his neighbour's wife. He oppresses the poor and needy. He commits robbery. He does not return what he took in pledge. He looks to the idols. He does detestable things. He lends at usury and takes excessive interest. Will such a man live?" (Ezekiel 18:10-13)

5. One needs to return to the Biblical principle of execution for all first degree murder, rape, and kidnapping, and restitution for all theft of, or damage to, property (Exodus 21 and 22).

6. As it is impossible for any police force to guarantee the safety of every citizen, no hindrance should be placed upon the right of law-abiding citizens to obtain and use firearms for self-defence. As the vast majority of violent crimes are committed by criminals using unlicensed weapons, it is clear that restricting the rights of citizens to own, carry and use licensed firearms, cannot prevent violent crime. Disarming the potential victims of crime can only serve the purposes of the criminal. We therefore must reaffirm the Biblical rights and responsibilities of citizens to obtain, own, carry and use firearms for personal or family defence.

"If a thief is caught breaking in and is struck so that he dies, the defender is not guilty of bloodshed, but if it happens after sunrise, he is guilty of bloodshed." Exodus 22:2)

"I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, 'Don't be afraid of them. Remember the LORD, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.'" (Nehemiah 4:14)

"If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever." (1 Timothy 5:8)

It is time for the civil authorities to take consistent, strong and resolute action to protect law-abiding citizens and to punish law-breaking criminals.

"Administer justice every morning, rescue from the hand of his oppressor the one who has been robbed, or my wrath will break out and burn like fire because of the evil you have done - burn with no-one to quench it." (Jeremiah 21:12)



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