"Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth and over all the creatures that move along the ground." (NIV)
ReligiousTolerance.org goes on to express that most Christians don't interpret the verse in the same way that dominionists do, Dominionists determine that Christian men are to have dominion over everything on earth, including non-Christian men. They state that most Christians interpret this verse as meaning God gave mankind dominion over the animal kingdom.
ReligiousTolerance.org claims that Dominionism was the only religious movement in North America which they "were" aware of that supports the idea of genocide against all people who do not follow their religious beliefs and agenda. They then mention a couple of Christian pastors from Texas who they claim support the killing of all Wiccans, but they do not give the names of these supposedly conservative Texas Pastors and list no reference to back up their claim. I spent a little time trying to find a story on this mysterious case in Texas and could find nothing, not even in a search of the claimants own site.
It continues to strike me as odd that if not for the hand wringing of liberals, Dominionism would get little notice, and in fact the whackos that are interested in subduing the world and all mankind under some theocratic system of government would likely receive little exposure and scant publicity.
Since most Christians do not adhere to Dominionistic belief why is the left treating it as though it is prevalent among conservative Christians, that it is a real threat?
"Ralph Reed, the executive director of the conservative public policy group the Christian Coalition (as having) criticized Reconstructionism as "an authoritarian ideology that threatens the most basic civil liberties of a free and democratic society." ....
According to ReligiousTolerance.org, Dominionists believe that before Christ can come again in the second coming that most of the world will have to be converted to Christianity. While stating that most fundamentalists don't agree with that position and pointing out that most fundamentalists believe that much of the criteria to be met before Christ's return has been met and that the time of the second coming could occur at any time, they don't really give the clear opposing belief regarding the "Great Commission," which they do not mention at all but should be given consideration:
"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age" (Matt. 28:19-20).
Most fundamentalists believe we are to deliver that message the world over but that just as God has given us all a choice to accept Christ or not, man cannot force other men to love God or to accept Christ and only the Holy Spirit can soften the heart of an unbeliever and cause him to want to give their all to Him.
In my humble opinion, ReligiousTolerance.org goes too far when they quote Gary North, a Dominionist, from a Public Eye Magazine article:
"Gary North claims that 'the ideas of the Reconstructionists have penetrated into Protestant circles that for the most part are unaware of the original source of the theological ideas that are beginning to transform them.' North describes the 'three major legs of the Reconstructionist movement [as] the Presbyterian oriented educators, the Baptist school headmasters and pastors, and the charismatic telecommunications system'." 8
The foonote above refers to an article from PublicEye.org - Theocratic Dominionism Gains Influence - Part 3, and continues:
"What this means is that hundreds of thousands of Pentecostals and charismatic Christians, as well as many fundamentalist Baptists, have moved out of the apolitical camp. Many have thrown themselves into political work--not merely as voters, but as ideologically driven activists, bringing a reconstructed "Biblical world view" to bear on their area of activism.
This is probably the lasting contribution of Reconstructionism. Whether it is Operation Rescue activists called to anti-abortion work because of Francis Schaeffer's books, or Pentecostals who responded to the politicizing ministry and electoral ambitions of Pat Robertson during the 1970s and 1980s, the politicization of Pentecostalism is one of the major stories of modern American politics.
Indeed, Robertson has been pivotal in this process, mobilizing Pentecostals and charismatics into politics through his books, TV programs, Regent University, the 1988 presidential campaign, and his political organizations--first the Freedom Council in the 1980s and then the Christian Coalition...."
Yes, this is the same Christian Coalition headed, at the time of their writing by Ralph Reed, which ReligiousTolerance.org reports as having "criticized Reconstructionism as "an authoritarian ideology that threatens the most basic civil liberties of a free and democratic society." ....
The problem I have with the quote of the PublicEye.org article is with the assumption on the part of North (as though his opinion is fact), and apparently PublicEye.org, that because Pentecostals, Charismatics and some fundamentalist Baptists have seen the urgency of letting their voices be heard in politics that it, of necessity, means that those who do so have bought into the theology of Dominionism and/or Reconstructionism, and this has been my complaint all along with the vast over exaggeration of some people, generally liberals, that Dominionism is becoming a real threat in America. In PublicEye.org's "About" section we find:
"While attacks on civil liberties can come from any direction, the political and Christian Right use skillful marketing that exploits the public’s desire for quick solutions and capitalizes on today’s hectic information flow. With clever slogans that oversimplify complex public policy issues, the Right routinely scapegoats others in pursuit of their agenda."
Clearly, they admit that they focus on the political and Christian Right, and clearly, they bring a bias with them. Though they claim:
"PRA responds with fair and accurate analysis, looking beneath the sound-bites and slogans of the Right, exposing the true goals and agendas of specific leaders, organizations and movements. We then present our analysis in ways that can help the media, advocates and educators understand and challenge the Right." (emphasis mine)
How can one consider them to offer "fair and accurate analysis" when their primary goal is to "challenge the Right?" But challenge the right when they need challenged, by all means. This is a necessary thing and an important thing, the challenge of ideas is good or at least it can be good, if it is not used as a tool to try to paint all of the Christian Right who choose to become politically active and have a voice in government as Dominionists and/or Reconstructionists, who would promote the genocide of all people, including Christians who do not agree with and support the Dominionist/Reconstructionist agenda.
I have ignored this issue for a long time. I have considered the source and found that source unworthy of serious attention but to my own detriment and to the detriment of the Body of Christ.
One of the reasons I have begun to see the importance of this issue and the importance of not allowing liberal Americans to continue to slander all conservative Christians with, at least, the suspicion that they follow a Dominionist/Reconstructionist agenda is the article I spotlighted here last: Panelists: Evangelicals can help with their portrayal in news - (BP).
Since when did Christians in America have to go on a Public Relations campaign to get fair treatment in the press!?
As Christians, Christians know that there will be persecution, and we hear of much worse persecution in foreign lands than we do in America. We have been historically blessed with freedom of religion here in this great Nation, not only Christians, but all faiths. We have appreciated it, enjoyed it and unfortunately, we have taken it for granted.
While we have not forced ourselves on anyone, we long enjoyed a majority, we long understood that as a whole our Nation understood Christianity because the majority of Americans were Christians. There was no need of public relations campaigns. Now, Christianity is being divided among itself and a house divided cannot stand.
I have been concerned for some time that progressive Christians and conservative Christians should not be opposing one another but working with one another. We harm the Body of Christ when we let politics divide us. But don't get me wrong, politically progressive Christians, as American citizens, have a right to speak out in the political arena and politically conservative Christians also have a right to speak out in the political arena. I have, in the past, extended an olive branch to progressive Christians, only to have the branch broken and thrown like a rhetorical gauntlet at my feet. This should not be so. We should be able to have respect for one another's opinions, we should be able to disagree politically but agree in spirit, in Christian love for one another.
Am I crying in the wilderness, here, when I see all around me progressive Christians and the secular world uniting against conservative Christians because they disagree politically with us?
Is it not an historic fact that Christians have ALWAYS had a voice in government and is it not a fact today that progressive Christians are trying to rally a consensus voice, a progressive Christian agenda, a consensus of thought in order to become a progressive Christian voting bloc? If you need proof of this fact simply click on this link: Christian Alliance for Progress.
Should I take on the same mean spirited, slanderous language that liberals and some progressive Christians have taken up against their own conservative brothers and sisters in Christ and start propagandizing about those evil progressive Christian Dominionists and Reconstructionists?
I will not, except to make the point that if it is acceptable for progressive Christians to form an alliance and not be considered progressive Christian Dominionists or progressive Christian Reconstructionists then why is it wrong when conservative Christians merely want to have a voice in our government as well? Where are the conservative Christians demonizing progressive Christians as "Dominionists or Reconstructionists simply because they exercise their rights as citizens to play a political role in government?"
If we do not put an end to this misnomer that any conservative or Right-wing Christian who becomes politically active is trying to set up a theocracy, we are headed for much more persecution in the future...and that persecution will not rest solely on the heads of politically conservative Christians. People will begin to be suspicious of ALL those who carry the title of Christian, whether they be politically conservative or politically progressive. Who will progressive Christians blame? Only God can know, but it raises a doubt in my mind when politics trumps all, even one's own brothers and sisters in Christ whom God has commanded you to love:
"And this is his commandment. That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment." 1 John 3:23
At a time when our country is divided over so many things it is vitally important that Christians put God first and unite in the cause of Christ.