A Biblical Worldview & Socialism – With Alex McFarland: Is the Jesus the pulpit shares today the true Jesus of the Gospels? How should the Church navigate what is happening around us in the culture? Is socialism Biblical? Are pastors helping their congregations understand how the Bible applies to cultural issues? Tune in to hear Alex McFarland discuss how God’s Word applies to EVERY area of life.
Air Date: 05/11/2021
Guest: Alex McFarland
On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton
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Faith and the Culture
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. Thanks for joining us today on WallBuilders Live where we look at everything from a biblical, historical, and constitutional perspective. You can learn more at our website wallbuilderslive.com.
We’re here with David Barton. He’s America’s premier historian and our founder here at WallBuilders, Tim Barton’s national speaker and pastor and president of WallBuilders, and I’m Rick Green, I’m a former Texas legislator and America’s constitution coach. David, Tim, later in the program, we got Alex McFarland coming on to talk about biblical worldview.
Let’s just kind of address that whole concept for a second. Because most of the time in the church, we don’t think about what we think about, we don’t actually talk about what our view of the world is, we just kind of respond to whatever’s popular in the culture. And man, that is missing the foundational element of being able to have a plumb line to know what truth is, as those things that are happening so fast in the culture are coming at us. So this is a vital topic for us to cover today.
It really is. One of the things that’s become a very common topic in the church really revolves much more about how we feel than it is how we respond or behave and how we live our life. One of the things that I think sometimes when you watch a pendulum and it swings from one side to the other, sometimes you can go from one ditch of the highway to the other ditch of the highway. And you see a lot of churches trying to find the balance.
And obviously, we’re not trying to be overly critical of churches, we have acknowledged many times we have a lot of good friends who are pastors who are doing great things. But we also know statistically that that’s not the case for all churches, and all pastors. Statistically, pastors who believe and teach the Bible are a very small minority of pastors that are out there.
First of all, not every pastor believes the truth, the inerrancy, the accuracy of Scripture. And secondly, there are some pastors who believe in the truth, inerrancy, and accuracy of Scripture, but they don’t teach the fullness of Scripture.
Are Pastors Teaching the Application of God’s Word?
And so you do have a very limited group of pastors who are actually teaching this is what the Bible says: this is how it applies to our life, this is how it applies to culture.
Here’s how we need to live our life in response. Instead, a lot of times, churches are much more seeker-friendly. They want to help people feel good about service, or they have certain objectives they’re trying to accomplish.
And it’s not always really one of the things the Apostle Paul said, is the operation of the church is to equip the saints for the work of the ministry. And part of how we work the ministry is we live a godly life through Christ Jesus and all that God has called us to live. Well, to do that we need to know how do we navigate what’s happening in culture around us?
How do we navigate as we’ve talked about on the show. And, we’ll probably continue to talk about on the show with some educational things, with right now in schools the critical race theory is being promoted in schools, with the 1619 project curriculum being taught in schools.
Well, how do we navigate education or when it comes to school boards or our city council, when it comes to economics and the spending that’s happening right now from our federal government?
There’s so many topics that is very clear with solutions from the Bible. Unfortunately, a lot of pastors are afraid of touching what they view to be, “political issues”, things that they don’t want to offend people because somehow we’ve come to believe that kind of the mark of Christianity is not offending people, which of course, is utterly ridiculous. If you look at the gospel…
Also, of course, it’s the American way, right, life, liberty, and to never be offended, isn’t that what the Declaration says?
The True Jesus
Well, you know, I feel like somebody is taught that. I don’t remember reading that in the original documents. But this is what we are largely seeing, is that we have so many Christians who don’t want to be offensive, and therefore, we are not saying what is actually true.
And Jesus, so often the gospel said things that were offensive, but they were things that were said that were true. And of course, Jesus is loving as he’s doing this, nonetheless, he’s not afraid to buck the system. He’s not afraid to confront people when they’re wrong.
We’ve just made the gospel and we’ve made Jesus a very different person, a very different idea than what Scripture actually teaches. And that’s why we’re seeing some of these challenges even with Christians thinking biblically, or having a biblical worldview. And this is more relevant in our culture now than then maybe in our nation’s entire history.
Is relevant, and we’ve got to talk more about. In fact, we got a special guest today to talk specifically about it. Alex McFarland will be with us when we come back from the break. Stay with us, folks, you’re listening to WallBuilders Live.
A Moment from AMERICAN HISTORY
This is David Barton with another moment from America’s history. America has a history of great patriots who loved and sacrificed much for their country. One of these was John Witherspoon, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. While president of Princeton, he personally trained many who became important leaders in American government, including James Madison.
How could John Witherspoon tell if someone really loved America? He explained, “He is the best friend to American liberty, who is most sincere and active in promoting true and undefiled religion, and who sits himself with the greatest firmness to bear down profanity and immorality of every kind. Whoever is an avowed enemy of God, I hesitate not to call him an enemy to his country.” Founding Father, John Witherspoon believed that a true American patriot opposed profanity and immorality, and promoted true and undefiled religion.
For more information on God’s hand in American history, contact wall builders at 1808REBUILD.
Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us today. Alex McFarland is with us, you can find him at Alexmcfarland.com. Alex, good to have you, man. Thanks for coming on today.
Oh, thank you. It’s great to be with you guys.
Well, very important topic today. You know, biblical worldview is not thought of enough, parents are starting to think about what they’re teaching their kids. But you’ve been doing this for quite a while, speaking truth, and giving people that perspective of applying the Bible to everything in life and defending those timeless truths of Christianity. Do you think that more people are paying attention and more willing to listen and understand as they see the culture beginning to decay more and more?
Welcome Alex McFarland
I actually do. I think more and more, especially in the church are getting concerned about the worldview of our country, and maybe even if they can’t articulate, okay, what we need is a biblically informed view of life. People are beginning to get concerned and beginning to realize that we need to get back to our founding principles. And I want to say this.
One of the reasons that I revere the work of WallBuilders, and of course, you David Barton, and now, Tim, and all of your staff, I mean, you guys were out there before any of the rest of us. A lot of us are coming late to the party.
But David Barton and WallBuilders were talking about the foundational principles of our nation two and a half, three decades ago. And I think the way that the church is embracing worldview finally, it surely must validate what you guys have known all along, and I just applaud the visionary work that you have done and are doing.
Well, it’s one of the areas that is a hot topic today. Well, two areas of hot topic is obviously race relations and socialism. And some would say, you know, those are just political issues, that’s not a biblical issue. And we’re saying, wait a minute, no, the Bible actually applies to everything.
Oh, absolutely, the Bible does apply to everything. You know, I’ve been working in recent months, as I’m sure you all know with Andrew Womack of Charis Bible College. He’s renowned Bible teacher and an amazing man of God. And through Charis, we are trying to increase the level of biblical literacy in our country. Because yes, I mean, the Bible speaks to salvation and how we can know Christ and be born again. But the Bible speaks to human government. The Bible speaks to the boundaries of society: morals, marriage, family, economic, education, even the art and what is wholesome and good and edifying for the soul.
Charis Bible College
Now, with Charis Bible College, one of the things that we’re doing we created a unit of what is the biblical worldview of human sexuality? What is the word of God and God our Creator? You know, as Billy Graham once said, God made us, he knows what’s best for us. We in the Charis Bible worldview series on human sexuality, Charis Bible College, we talk about what does God’s word say about sexuality? How do we present, how do we defend it?
And that’s out, I mean, people are going to find that now if they Google, Charis Bible College, Woodland Park, Colorado, just one of the most exciting Christian universities in the world. But we’ve got the next unit about biblical worldview that’s coming out; is what we’ve done.
And Tim, you and David graciously participated in Bishop E. W. Jackson and Bill Federer and myself and just a number of great presenters, Abraham Hamilton, the attorney with the American Family Association. But we’ve got a unit coming out on a biblical response to socialism, and many other units as well that are in the works.
But guys, our prayer over this, and the reason that we’re urging people to check out Charis, check out the biblical worldview series, it will equip you, it will inspire you. You will be able to share your faith confidently in any situation, and you’ll be a part of the solution of helping spread God’s truth in our presently prodigal nation.
Yeah, Alex, and first of all, it was really fun being able to be part of such a really dynamic team with so many great thinkers when it comes to biblical understanding and also cultural application. And Alex, I know you speak at a lot of universities throughout the year, you speak to a lot of church groups and political groups and high school groups and obviously at WallBuilders, we do a lot of that as well. And so you have been navigating these waters, helping people learn to think biblically and have practical application from the Bible.
And it’s been really interesting over the last several years to see, as we’ve watched there be heightened tensions with racism, as we have watched more Christians embrace socialistic ideas. And, actually even many pastors that promote socialism in the name of Jesus claiming that Jesus was a socialist. Which of course is not biblically sound, we’ve had to navigate these waters.
Was Jesus a Socialist?
And so then it was so fun when you said, hey, let’s have a group of guys come together and let’s all have kind of our piece of this pie, so to speak, that we’re going to dive into this and let’s address some of the context with this, from both an American history perspective and a biblical perspective. And let’s unfold this a little bit.
In the midst of all that we’ve been able to do with you and all that you’ve been doing for so many years, let’s start with socialism, how are you helping people navigate this question of socialism? Because we are seeing a lot of Christians embracing this very unbiblical idea of socialism, so how are you helping them navigate back to biblical truth?
Well, great question, Tim. And, you know, there are, sadly, some of the younger pastors, let’s say, pastors that maybe have gone to seminary in the last decade, that sadly, they’re becoming enamored with socialism. One of the things that we’re trying to do, not only in my own traveling and writing and speaking, but with the course content that we’re creating with Andrew Wommack, we’re trying to dispel and receive the lies that people have been told.
And let me give you guys some of the lies that have really misled some Christians into becoming enamored with socialism. The lie that socialism is taught in the Bible, that is absolutely false. In Acts chapter 4, it is not, just because people voluntarily gave and they would bring goods, and even sometimes money to the apostles to distribute to those who had needs, it was not coerced.
It was voluntary. And it was not the state, it was the church. But the idea that socialism is taught in the Bible is false. The idea that socialism helps people, that is a lie. The idea that socialism is actually compassionate, that is a lie, the idea that socialism will bring to a culture prosperity.
And by the way, let me just say this, and I talked about this, in my book, “The Assault on America”, the idea that socialism hasn’t been tried and abandoned already in the United States, a lot of people are unaware of this, a lot of Christians don’t make this, that by the turn of the 20th century, by 1900, experiments in communal living and socialism had been tried and abandoned in more than 50 communities.
Some of them still, just as a historical curiosity, some of them still exist. And this really ought to seal the deal for any Christian who’s even thinking about socialism, socialism is inherently anti God, anti-Christian. Karl Marx hated Christianity.
Is Socialism Loving?
And so, the idea that somehow to love my neighbor, I should advocate for socialism. And, we talked about this in depth with Charis, we created more than 20 hours of content, where, of course, we are, unpack and receive all of these assertions and more.
But the idea that the Lord’s mandate to love my neighbor means that we should dabble in socialism, that is just a toxic cocktail that will not only harm our nation over the long term, it will help extinguish the church in America, if we go down the road of Marxism, socialism.
So our prayer, not only are we trying to educate people, we’re actually praying to God that for religious freedom, and for the long term preservation of our Constitution and our nation that we will wake up immediately and run the other direction away from this horrible philosophy of socialism.
Yeah, it’s not just a preference of economics or that sort of thing, it’s literally destructive. It cannot abide with the freedoms that we love as Christians.
Yeah, you’re absolutely right. I mean, socialism is a parasite that has to have a host. You know, Margaret Thatcher, the Iron Lady who served as Prime Minister of Great Britain during the Reagan years, she famously said socialism is great until you run out of other people’s money.
And see, one of the beautiful things about the United States of America, obviously, our Judeo-Christian moorings on which this nation was built, but principle of capitalism. Now I know because K-12 I went public school, and I was in a public university in North Carolina when I became a believer at age 21.
And guys, it is 30 years ago, but I remember sitting under professors that were atheists, I, myself, remember sitting under professors that denigrated the United States. And they really were critical of capitalism.
Now, one of the beautiful things about principal capitalism, which is what we have had an America based on God’s moral truth, out of our capitalistic society, which, as you all know, William Bradford in the pilgrim colony, I mean, they’ve survived and succeeded because he introduced things like personal property ownership, and people had the incentive to work, and they were able to create wealth.
And I mean, tell me, where else in the world, where else in history can someone come here, they can migrate here as indigents and poor and within a very short amount of years, they can become not only self-sufficient, maybe even wealthy. And guys, I’ve got to say this, I had to chuckle.
I’m in Texas right now even as we record this, and I had the privilege Sunday afternoon after speaking and a couple of places, I went to visit a cattle ranch. And my wife and I were out here in beautiful West Texas and visited a cattle ranch. And we rode with a rancher who was feeding his cows.
And he said, I have to be judicious, now listen to this. He said, you know, when there’s a dry spell, and there’s not enough grass, I’ll go in and I’ll feed them some cattle feed, but we don’t want to get them accustomed to eating, feed off of the truck.
We want them to go and goes to the far reaches of the pasture and feed themselves with grass. And so there were several cows, and they were the worst looking cows of the bunch that puddle right around the road when there were hundreds of acres of pasture.
The rancher said to me, said these are welfare cattle. I said, what does that means? He said, well, they won’t go out and feed themselves. They just wait for the truck comes hoping to get a tidbit off the back of the truck. And I thought, wow, even animals need to get out there and show proactivity and initiative. And let me say something to those that feel like a welfare state is the answer.
Having been to all 50 states, hundreds of locations, rural, urban, big city New York, LA, I mean, I’ve been there, welfare is dehumanizing. Some of the most or lone broken people, and I mean, broken in spirit are people who’ve been told by the Left, that you can’t make it, you have to have big brother, you have to have the government. You’re not capable of surviving on your own.
And look, I believe in helping people when they have needs. That’s what the church does. In our ministry, we’ve raised thousands of pounds of food for people that truly have needs. But our pseudo-socialist welfare state, it is ungodly, how it has dehumanized people and coached people into believing that they can’t survive without government. I thank God that we are part of a nation by rugged individuals that cross the ocean in a leaky boat. And they said, you know what, I may die, but I’m going to try to trust in God and work hard and live right.
Why Would We Follow the Path to Destruction?
And guys, I want to say this and forgive me for being up on a bit of a soapbox. In the Charis Biblical Worldview Series, we do give God’s truth. We equip people to defend the Christian faith and confidently share their faith in any situation.
But we talk about we’ve got issues coming out racism, and we’re talking about the Bible and defending the gospel. But in the unit on socialism, yourselves, all of our presenters, we spent hundreds of hours preparing this because one of the beautiful unique things about our country hangs in the balance.
And I would beg anyone’s who hear this, pray for our nation, and for goodness sakes, may America not go down a path the whole rest of the world is trying to escape from. I mean, nations throughout the Western Hemisphere that have tried socialism, they’re bending over backwards to extricate themselves from it.
And God forbid that we pampered Americans because we’re being lied to by academics and journalists so-called. May God forbid that we fall prey to the poison that so much of the world is trying to get away from, Marxism/socialism. So we’re trying to educate and inspire people to embrace one of the things that has made our nation great, which is not socialism, but capitalism.
Hey, man, there’s so much that we need to educate ourselves about on these issues. You know, we have a failing education system in America, so most people have not been taught these basics. So what a great opportunity.
Alexmcfarland.com for more information, specifically about Alex. And then Alex to take the Charis Bible courses, where would we go to get those?
Well, you know, if you Google, Charis and it’s spelt C-H-A-R-I-S, Charis Bible college, or you can go to AWMI.net, that stands for Andrew Wommack Ministries International. All of us around this table are adjunct faculty for Harris Bible College.
And if you Google it, you’ll find it. And let me just say this, and I’m leading the biblical worldview component for Andrews. But I’ve been adjunct faculty at a number of wonderful universities, some of the largest Christian universities in the world, actually.
At Charis, there’s a third year concentration on business, there’s a third year concentration on missions, there’s a school of practical government. You can learn how to prepare and run for office and successfully take your biblical worldview into the public square. There’s worship and missions, and there’s so many things and it honestly, is the most unique, most innovative, I would say, most exciting Christian university out there. It is growing in leaps and bounds.
And so if you’re looking to further your knowledge of the Bible or your Christian education, or you have a young person in your life that’s pondering college, but one thing if you go to Woodland Park, Colorado and see this incredible world class campus, one visit to Charis and you’ll be sold.
But let me just encourage you folks, pray and consider Charis Bible College. You will not be disappointed, I assure you.
But we’ll have some good links today at wallbuilderslive.com. Alex, we look forward to getting you back on the program. Man, thanks so much for your time today.
God bless you and God bless America.
Stay with us; you’re listening to WallBuilders Live.
The AMERICAN STORY
Hey, guys, we want to let you know about a new resource we have here at WallBuilders called The American Story. For years, people have been asking us to do a history book, and we finally done it. We start with Christopher Columbus and go roughly through Abraham Lincoln. And one of the things that that so often we hear today are about the imperfections of America, or how so many people in America that used to be celebrated or honored really aren’t good or honorable people.
One of the things we acknowledge quickly in the book is that the entire world is full of people who are sinful and need a savior, because the Bible even tells us that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. And yet what we see through history, and certainly is evident in America is how a perfect God uses imperfect people and does great things through them. The story of America is not the story of perfect people.
But you see time and time again how God got involved in the process and use these imperfect people to do great things that impacted the entire world from America. To find out more, go to wallbuilders.com and check out The American Story.
Well, David, Tim, I mean, he laid it out exactly right, that it is anti-biblical to move towards socialism and to judge each other based on race. And if we really are Christians, if we’re Bible believing Christians, we want to follow the Bible way of doing things, not whatever feels good in the culture.
Welfare cattle was a great analogy. That was really good. But a couple statements he made that think are really worth kind of looking at a bit. One of the things he said was that socialism will extinguish Christianity in America. That’s hyperbole. No.
There’s actually a great study that came out of Yale University a few years ago that looked at more than 30 countries across the world. And to the same degree that they raised government welfare, church attendance went down in the country. If government welfare increased by 4%, church attendance went down for whatever it was.
So if you get into socialism, that is 100% government welfare, you rely on the government for what you get, and that’s a great way to extinguish Christianity. That’s not just hyperbola that there’s good stats behind that. And then I thought the other thing he was saying that was really kind of a cool statement was principled capitalism.
A Biblical Worldview & Socialism – With Alex McFarland
And in thinking about principled capitalism, I was reminded of Adam Smith. And a lot of time today, economist that teach at university will talk about Adam Smith, and he’s the father of capitalism, and the father of free market economics is that, which is not accurate. I mean, capitalism was there a long time before Adam Smith wrote about in 1776. America was practicing it a century before he wrote about it.
But nonetheless, Adam Smith, they look at him as a great economist. And they fail to look at the book he wrote before he wrote “The Wealth of Nations” because “The Wealth of Nations” is what they point to. And here’s the basis of capitalism. Okay, that’s fine. But the book he brought before that was called “The Theory of Moral Sentiments”.
The foundation is religion, morality, this is where we start. Now that I’ve done that book and lay that down, now let’s talk about the wealth of nations and the economy.
And so it is principled with capitalism. Capitalism, apart from those principles of religion and morality that even Adam Smith acknowledged, it just doesn’t work right. It gets into greed. It gets into all the things that are wrong. And that’s just not what we need. And Alex laid it out really well.
And by the way, the stuff that’s coming out of Charis will be really good on this. A lot of great national speakers with great thoughts and great inputs, it’s going to be a great series of lessons that will be out and there’ll be great stuff for people learn from.
We’ll have links today at wallbuilderslive.com, so you can get to all of that great content. Thanks so much for listening today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live!
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