The Unbridgeable Divide Between Two Warring Faiths: Socialism and Christianity

by Luke Barbrick*

INTRODUCTION

A British socialist once observed, “Socialism and Christianity. . . [go] hand in hand ….”[1] Some Christians would dub this statement as oxymoronic. How can Socialism, a philosophy which has produced so many hardships, possibly share common ground with Christianity, a faith of justice and liberty? What of the crimes committed by avowed socialists like Hitler and Stalin? Contending socialism is about fairness and harmony, virtues treasured by Christianity, some argue that these statements are based on right-wing propaganda. For them, Hitler is the quintessential anti-socialist and the cruelties committed by socialists like Stalin were misguided. While both sides make persuasive assertions, their arguments betray a shallow view of Christianity and Socialism. Christianity is the faith of justice and liberty, but spiritual justice and liberty, not political. Yes, Christianity addresses harmony and perhaps fairness, but not in the same guise as Socialism.  

In this article, I examine the socialist philosophy, including its various subdivisions and goals. Second, I explore the fundamental doctrines of Christianity. Thirdly, I compare the ideas of both, and their potential for compatibility. Finally, I address the dangers of Traditionalism, an ideological extreme to which some Christians have turned in their opposition to Socialism. Overall, I contend that Christianity and Socialism are incompatible, not because of the political rifts amongst many of their adherents, but because of their opposing views on human nature. For socialists, human nature is flawed, but perfectible. In Biblical Christianity, human nature cannot be perfected. If human nature is perfectible then man can ascend to God, a notion which, according to Christianity, lies at the heart of all mankind’s woes.

Socialism and its Subdivisions

As with all philosophies, not all socialists agree with one another’s goals or practices. Socialism thus contains a wide array of subgroups. This section examines the doctrines of history’s most prominent socialist factions: Communists, Fascists, Fabians, and Progressives.

Communism – International Socialism

When someone mentions “Socialism,” people often picture communist regimes like the Soviet Union and China. Red flags with the hammer and sickle also come to mind. Marxian socialists (Communists) attribute their ideas to two men, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. To understand Marxism, one must start with Marx’s view on the deteriorating state of humanity.

According to Marx, slavery defines life for most human beings. The worker (proletariat) is enslaved to the business owner (bourgeoise), the “wife and children are slaves of the husband” in the family, and the religious are enslaved by religion. Marx dubbed religion as the “sigh of the oppressed creature.”[2] The “more man puts into God, the less he retains in himself.”[3] The fruition of human history will occur only when the oppressed masses unite, casting off their ancient shackles. To this end, there must be a “class struggle” between the slave class, the proletariat, and the ruling class, the bourgeoise. The end result will be the “dictatorship of the proletariat” and the “eventual abolition of classes.”[4] Before these goals can be realized, there must be a liberation of the human spirit amongst the workers and of society from corrupt external influences.[5] For Marx, few things corrupt society like the pursuit of money.[6]

According to Marx, society governed by moneymaking is a society driven by “huckstering,” another word for Capitalism.[7] Despite his own ancestry, Marx notoriously argued that Jewish people were responsible for the introduction of hucksterism into society.  He held this is problematic because “[m]oney is the jealous God of Israel, beside which no other god may exist. [8] His racist contention, was, therefore, that society must abolish “the empirical essence of Judaism.” While Marx does not explicitly advocate for a Holocaust, he does call for an end to corrupt Capitalism. In his mind, this required a racist abolition of the corrupt Jewish influence.  According to Marx, Jewish greed renders Capitalism’s destruction inevitable.[9]

Under this philosophy, capitalism’s inherent greed best displays itself in the degrading competition amongst business owners (capitalists).[10] The only way capitalists can outcompete one another is via an increased “division of labor.” The division of labor gradually devalues the worth of the worker whose work becomes simplified to a few monotonous tasks. Thus, the workers are forced to compete amongst themselves by selling their labor “cheap.” Capitalists also compete through the introduction of machinery, resulting in job loss and hardship for the workers. [11] Eventually, these ever-increasing hardships will create “common interests” for the workers, forming them into a cohesive “class.” In a political revolution, this new class will displace the capitalists and establish the dictatorship of the proletariat.[12] This dictatorship will purge society of all corruptions, including private property and the concept of the individual.[13] According to Marx, the result will be a just and “classless” society.[14]

But what of the primitive nations who are not even capitalist yet? In the mid-1800s, as social revolutions rocked Europe, Engels provided his answer. [15]  

There is no country in Europe which does not have . . . ruined fragments of peoples, . . . that was suppressed . . . by the nation which later became the main vehicle of historical development. These relics of a nation . . . always become fanatical standard-bearers of counter-revolution and remain so until their complete extirpation or loss of their national character, just as their whole existence . . . is itself a protest against a great historical revolution.[16]

These “ruined fragments of peoples” included nations like the Slavs of Austria. Engels claimed, “[F]or a thousand years [the Slavs] have been taken in tow” by Austria’s superior German-Magyar peoples. By Engel’s time, the Slavs sought independence from Austria. For Engels, this movement of “pan-Slavism” prevented Austria’s superior nations from completing their communist revolution. He hoped for a day when the Austrians and Magyars would “wreak a bloody revenge on the Slav barbarians.” The result will be a destruction of these “petty” nations, “down to their very names.” Thus, according to this philosophy, human progress depends, not just on “the disappearance . . . of reactionary classes . . . but also of entire reactionary peoples.”[17]

            In summary, the two founders of Marxism believed that society can only achieve its classless Utopia when certain corrupt influences, including money, private property, individualism, and inferior nationalities are eliminated. This recipe for human progress found real life application in Fascist as well as Communist regimes.

Fascism – National Socialism

Many would denounce me as a inaccurate for including Fascism and its most well-known example, Naziism, in my list of socialist subcategories. I do so, however, not to push a political viewpoint, but to be faithful to history and to the fact that Fascists, including the Nazis, have historically identified as socialists. The term “Nazi” is a simplification of the title, “National Socialist German Workers’ Party.”[18] To be sure, the word “national” is key to understanding Nazi ideology, but so is socialist.

In his infamous work, Mein Kampf, Hitler wrote that “the importance of mankind” can be found “in its basic racial elements.” Simply put, under this racist philosophy, humanity is divided into separate and distinct races, some “better and stronger,” while others remain “inferior.” Of all races, none, for Hitler, are as great or as important as the “Aryan.”  Under this philosophy, if the Aryan race falls or declines, so too will “culture and civilization.” [19] Such decline begins when inferior races expand their influence, corroding the culture of their superiors.[20] Such an outcome can only be averted when government promotes superior races at the expense of the inferior. Under this atrocious racism, of all inferior races, the Jewish people are the worst. According to Hitler, as Marx was Jewish, Marxism is but one of many conspiracies to “hand the world over to the Jews.” [21] He likewise contended that Capitalism is similarly flawed in that it allows Jewish people to exploit society for their own advancement.[22] Pursuant to this racist philosophy, only by removing these “incurable tumors” will Aryan society prosper.[23] Overall, despite his claims to the contrary, Hitler’s racial ideas mirror those of Marxism.

Both Hitler and Marx wrongly employed racism to blame the world’s woes on external influences which supposedly corrupted human nature. For Marx, such corruption was rooted in money, private property, individualism, and Jewish Capitalism. Indeed, when Marx discussed the Jewish people, he spoke of a corrupt culture. [24] Like Marx, Hitler wrongly, and immorally,  viewed Jewish people as a threat, but for Hitler it was a racial threat.[25] Similarly, Engels described the Slavs as corruptions whose culture and existence hindered progress. Hitler likewise called for an end to so called inferior peoples. Overall, Hitler’s Socialism can be described as “National,” given its emphasis on race, while that of Marx and Engels is International.

Although neither Marx nor Engels explicitly called for a Holocaust, they did appallingly called for cultural extermination. According to Marx, to eliminate the Jewish influence, the state must force Jewish people to stop being Jewish. [26] Engels similarly argued that the Slavs must give up their national identity or face a “bloody revenge.”[27] Thus, Marxism and Naziism lead to the same end, genocide. Ironically, in the 1920s, Nazis like Joseph Goebbels, acknowledged the similarities between both ideologies. However, this sentiment proved unpopular with voters. [28] Perhaps this is why Hitler later distanced himself from Marxism in Mein Kampf.[29] Regardless, both ideologies exterminated millions in the name of so-called progress. The Nazis killed millions of Jews while the Soviets killed millions of their own citizens.[30] And today, the Communist Chinese are enacting cultural genocide against the Uyghurs.[31]

            Although Marxists and Fascists distance themselves from one another, their differences remain minimal. Both immorally agreed on the need to cleanse society. They only disagree on whether the so-called impurities should be identified by culture and class or by race. Sadly, the moderate socialists of Britain and America share some ideological ground with their more radical European comrades.

British Socialism and American Progressivism

In the English-speaking world, where liberty and a mistrust of big government define our societies, Fascism and Communism have never achieved widespread acceptance. Still, socialist movements in countries like the United States and the United Kingdom continue to exist.

  1. British Socialism

One of the most important socialists in British society was the eminent British playwright, George Bernard Shaw. In 1884, Shaw founded the Fabian society, which, in turn, established Britain’s present Labour Party. [32] Like the Russian Marxists and German Fascists, the Fabians sought to correct the hardships within human society. Like Marx, Shaw viewed private property as a major injustice. [33] For Shaw, private property was a “legal claim to take a share of the produce of the national industry year by year without working for it.”[34] He claimed that Socialism “challenges individualism” and the ability of free market Capitalism to cure society’s ills. Moreover, he argued that we must not allow notions of human “equality before God” to blind us to “worldly inequality.” We need a society where everyone pulls his or her weight. [35]

Another Fabian, Annie Besant, echoed Shaw’s sentiments when she opined that Socialism demands that people sacrifice their individual interests for those of society.

It is on the devotion . . . to the service of Society, as the development of the social instincts teaches men to identify their interests with those of the community, . . . Socialism relies for progress on human nature as a whole, instead of . . . desire for gain. If human nature should break down, then Socialism will break down . . . But Humanity will not break down.

In other words, Socialism depends on the ability of individuals to sacrifice their own goals for the collective good of society. If human nature cannot rise beyond the shackles of self-interest, Socialism will fail. Interestingly, Besant convinced herself that human nature will succeed in the end.[36]

But what of those who refuse to contribute towards society’s benefit? Fortunately, Shaw may have provided the answer in a chilling interview in 1931.

[Y]ou must all know half a dozen people at least, who are no use in this world . . .. And I think it would be a good thing to make everybody come before a properly appointed board . . . and say, sir or madam, now will you . . . justify your existence? If you can’t justify your existence . . . then, clearly, we cannot use the big organization of our society for the purpose of keeping you alive because your life does not benefit us and it can’t be of very much use to yourself. [37]

Whether Shaw borrowed his ideas directly from Engels or Mein Kampf is debatable. However, it is undisputable that Shaw was influenced by Marx.[38] Later interviews reveal that Shaw initially supported many of Hitler’s policies as well.[39] Fortunately, there is little evidence that all British socialists thought in such extreme terms. However, while Shaw’s ideas were extreme, his vision for a society governed by experts was shared by other Fabians and by American Progressives.[40]

  1. American Progressivism

Unlike our British cousins, Americans have never had a major socialist party to rival the traditional major parties: Republicans and Democrats. Still, by the early twentieth century, many socialist ideals found expression in a powerful, bipartisan political movement, Progressivism.

Like the Marxists, Fascists, and Fabians, American Progressives believed that the key to society’s happiness lay not in the actions of individuals, but in “organized social action.”[41] John Dewy, a Progressive scholar at Columbia University, contended that the American Founders’ obsession with individualism had allowed ambitious persons and a “dominant economic class” to gain and maintain control. Rather, society’s focus must be collective. [42] Other Progressives, like Woodrow Wilson, took this argument further. Despite being a supposedly avowed anti-socialist, Wilson admitted that Socialism and Progressivism were “almost . . . one and the same” in their rejection of individualism. Like Dewy, Wilson disagreed with many of America’s founding ideals. [43]

According to Wilson, the Founders erred in their mechanical view of government. For Wilson, government should not be seen as a machine, limited by specified functions and a system of checks and balances. Rather, government is a “living thing” that must evolve with society. Inevitably, an overly limited government in an ever-advancing society proves an obstruction to progress. [44] In line with Wilson’s narrative, Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) vastly expanded the federal government’s power in American society. For FDR, a modern economy required an army of experts and regulators to oversee its development in accordance with current needs.[45] In addition to denying the Founders’ views on limited government, Progressives also denied certain principles upon which our government was built, including Natural Rights.

John Hopkins University President, Frank Goodnow, contended that the Founders’ faith in Natural Rights was based on an antiquated, unscientific approach to politics.

The rights which man had were believed to come from his Creator. These rights consequently were the same as they once had been and would always remain the same. Natural Rights were in theory thus permanent and immutable. Natural rights being conceived of as eternal and immutable, the theory of natural rights did not permit of their amendment in view of a change in conditions. [46]

Goodnow argued that this static view of natural rights was the product of primitive religious thinking. Like Wilson and FDR, Goodnow viewed society and humanity as evolving constructs. Defining the natural rights of humanity in absolute terms results in static laws that hold society back. For Goodnow, human rights are a product of immediate circumstances, not something absolute or rooted in eternity. Goodnow’s denial of absolute human rights echoed in many controversial Progressive policies, especially eugenics.

For eugenicists, negative human traits, such as crime and mental illness, came from bad genes. Therefore, they immorally sought to alleviate society’s ills via breeding and birth control. [47] Ironically, eugenics enjoyed support amongst many mainline (nonorthodox) Christians. For such believers, eugenicists’ goal to purge society of its so-called vile elements was a noble cause. [48] The eugenics movement also attracted people from various political orientations. In addition to Progressives like Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, eugenics attracted traditionalists like Francis Galton, socialists like Bernard Shaw, and economists like John Maynard Keynes. [49] In the decades preceding World War Two, states like Connecticut made it illegal for people with epilepsy and those considered “feeble-minded” from marrying.[50] Meanwhile, Virginia enacted mandatory sterilization policies on the supposedly mentally defective. Progressive jurists, such as Supreme Court Justice, Oliver Wendell Holmes, stated that “three generations of imbeciles are enough.” Therefore, the good of society demanded the implementation of such laws. [51] Over the next 95 years, Holmes’ controversial opinion progressively empowered officials to mandate additional medical procedures, such as the present Covid-19 vaccinations.[52]

The eugenics programs of Britain and America were closely studied by the Nazis in their own quest for biological perfection. [53] Fortunately, when the extremes to which the Nazis employed eugenics in the Holocaust became evident, Progressives temporarily abandoned the practice.[54] Even so, critics of eugenics, especially fundamentalist Protestants and Catholics, were denounced as primitive bigots. Such resistance led to the current view amongst many Progressives that religious orthodoxy is a “threat to science, reason, and social progress. [55]

Besides eugenics, Progressives employed other policies, such as minimum wages, to cleanse society of supposedly less productive and inferior persons. Knowing that minimum wages inevitably cause job losses, Progressives like Royal Meeker of Princeton University, hoped that supposedly lesser individuals, such as immigrants, would lose their jobs. Such subversive policies were also advocated in Britain at the behest of Fabian socialists like Sidney Webb.[56]

In conclusion, like the Fabians, early Progressives sought to correct flaws in human society through a sophisticated, elastic form of government, ruled by experts in order to meet society’s needs. To cure humanity’s ills, society may have to resort to controversial means to suppress detrimental influences, including certain groups and individuals. Although few Progressives today would admit to having such views, early Progressives were forthright in their contempt for so-called inferior people and in their subversive policies toward them. This view of society as perfectible ultimately remains the one thread uniting all socialists.

While faith in human perfectibility unites Marxists, Nazis, Fabians, and many Progressives, it has proven a great source of friction between the socialist branches and Christianity. According to the Scriptures, the disobedient history of the human race proves that human nature is perpetually flawed. Accordingly, the key to human harmony cannot be found within man, but within Someone who knew neither flaw nor sin.

Christianity and the Gospel of Jesus Christ

According to the Holy Bible, in the beginning was God, who created all things, including man. For the first man, Adam, God created a companion, a woman named Eve. God then made a covenant with Adam and Eve, allowing them to eat of all the trees in the Garden of Eden, except for the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.[57] However, the enemy of God and man, Satan, in the form of a serpent, tempted Eve and both she and Adam ate of the forbidden tree. Subsequently, God banished them from the garden, lest they also eat of the Tree of Life and live forever. Through the first man’s sin, fellowship between God and man was sundered and human nature corrupted. Before banishing Adam and Eve, God promised that, through Eve, He would send a Savior who would defeat Satan and restore what had been lost.[58] Despite God’s merciful promise, Adam and Eve’s descendants continued to sin, causing the Earth to be filled with violence. Thus, God decided to destroy humanity in a worldwide flood. However, God showed mercy to Noah, a faithful man. [59] Through Noah, God replenished humanity and vowed to never again destroy the world in a flood. Unfortunately, mankind persisted in their sinful ways.[60]

Despite humanity’s failings, God once again sought out another man to complete His promise to Adam and Eve, Abraham. God promised Abraham many descendants who would one day possess the land of Canaan (modern day Israel).[61] Over the next 400 years, Abraham’s descendants multiplied greatly after their move into Egypt during a famine. Fearing the immense numbers of Abraham’s descendants, the Israelites, the Egyptians enslaved them.[62] Through Moses, God freed His people, inflicting wondrous acts of devastation upon Egypt, its king, and its people.[63] Eventually, God brought Israel from Egypt to Mount Sinai, where they received His law. At Sinai, God made a covenant with Israel. [64] If they faithfully kept His laws, they would prosper in their new home. If they disobeyed, God would drive them from the land of Canaan.[65]

Despite defeating most of the Canaanites, the Israelites disobeyed God by failing to drive out all these pagan peoples. Consequently, the children of Israel gradually adopted many of the perversions and idolatry of the Canaanites. As punishment, God allowed his people to be conquered by their aggressive neighbors. Yet, whenever the people of Israel begged for deliverance, God delivered them.[66] Still, Israel continued to betray their covenant with God, eventually rejecting His rule altogether for that of a human king.[67] Although Israel enjoyed some virtuous kings, such as David, other kings led Israel astray by encouraging the worship of false gods.[68] After nearly a millennium of disobedience, Israel was subdued and exiled by Assyria and Babylon. [69] However, God eventually allowed a remnant to return to their homeland. From this remnant, God sent the long-awaited Savior, Jesus Christ.[70]  

Jesus, who was both God and man, lived a perfect life of obedience, without sin.[71] However, the Jewish leaders envied Jesus and eventually turned Him over to the Romans for execution on the cross. As the Father turned His back on His Son, Jesus fulfilled the long-awaited promise, paying the ultimate price on behalf of His wayward people. Thus, fellowship between God and man was restored through Jesus’ perfect work.[72] Thus, good works play a vital role for Christians, who rely soly on the perfection of Christ, embodied in His sinless life and death. Good works do not earn salvation, but should be pursued out of gratitude for it. Good works are evidence of the faith within us. Although Christians struggle with sin, they are called to pursue a life of obedience to God.[73]  Unfortunately, from its beginning, Christianity has been plagued by legalists and traditionalists who seek to substitute their own works for those of Christ.

For example, Galatians, Paul wrote to his Christian brethren in Galatia (central Turkey), saying, “O foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you?” Paul was troubled by reports of these new Christians being led astray by false teachers who argued that Christ’s work was not sufficient for salvation. Rather, Christians must also rely on extra Biblical traditions and their own deeds. Ultimately, these false teachers sought to return Christians to the old Covenant of Works, which their predecessors had failed to keep. According to Paul, this old Covenant had ended.[74] In keeping God’s law for us, Christ had replaced the Covenant of Works with a covenant of Faith. Under the new covenant, Christians would strive to keep God’s law in faith and gratitude for Christ’s sacrifice. The rebellious history of God’s people proved that no one but Christ could keep God’s law perfectly. Therefore, the covenant of works leads to death while the Covenant of Faith leads to eternal fellowship with God.[75]

The Christian faith can thus be summarized: God is holy and we are not. Because God loves us, He sent his Son to live a sinless life and die on our behalf so that we might be with Him in paradise. This is the Gospel or good news of Christ and it constitutes the beating heart of Christianity. Our imperfect works do not accomplish salvation. They proceed from it. Regretfully, the Gospel and humanity’s need for it divides the Christian faith from Socialism.  

While Socialism views human nature as improvable, in Christianity, human nature is flawed and set in stone, perfectible only by something other than man.

To understand the core essence of both Socialism and Christianity, we must look to the starting point of both philosophies, the state of human nature. Both agree that human nature, as it now exists, is flawed and in need of fixing.[76] However, they disagree on the antidote. Both consider how human nature can be made right, which would end many of the wrongs in our fallen world. To find the cure, one must first diagnose the cause of the disease. For socialists, the disease lies outside humanity and human nature. In Christianity, the problem is humanity.

            Despite their many differences, Communists, Fascists, Fabians, and Progressives agree that human nature has been corroded over the years by corrupt influences and persons. For Marx, that corruption lay in Capitalism and its Jewish perpetrators, an immoral prejudice shared by Hitler. For certain Fabians, like Shaw, corrupt persons included social parasites.[77] For early American Progressives, many of whom were Christians, the parasites included racial minorities and the so-called mentally defective.[78] Today, the target has shifted to White Christian males.[79] Although the four socialist branches often disagree on who most harms society, they all agree that, to cure society and humanity, such persons must be controlled or silenced.[80] From Christianity’s perspective, in searching for the cause of humanity’s woes, Socialism looks in the wrong direction.

            According to the Bible, mankind’s woes began, not with a perverted ethnicity, culture, or economic system, but with humanity. When Adam and Eve ate of the forbidden tree, they broke God’s law. As a perfect Ruler without flaw or injustice, God cannot tolerate sin.[81] Thus, the fellowship between God and mankind had been sundered, though not forever. Because of Christ’s sacrifice, “whoever believes in Him [shall] not perish but have eternal life.”[82] From a mere logical standpoint, the Christian argument makes perfect sense. It is impossible for something imperfect to make itself perfect, a principle supported by both history and science. To be made perfect, the imperfectible requires something or someone who never knew imperfection. Thus, salvation cannot be achieved by man ascending to God, but by God descending to man.

In other words, Socialism is ultimately about man playing God. Not surprisingly, their incompatible perspectives on human nature have led Socialism and Christianity down radically different paths over key issues, including freedom, government, individualism, and capitalism. 

People must be free to choose.

Unlike Socialism, Christianity does not thrive on the coercive silencing of dissenters, but on persuading people out of respect for their free will. Before ascending into Heaven, Jesus commanded His followers to “[M]ake disciples of all the nations . . .  teaching them to observe” his commands.[83] If we read Jesus’ words literally, Christians are called to bring the Gospel to the world, not at the point of a sword, but with teaching. Whether or not they believe is in God’s hands. This command reveals something of God’s character. Unlike many earthly rulers, God is not a micromanaging tyrant who abuses His power over His subjects or who enjoys punishing the disobedient.[84] Quite the reverse. God is a merciful, long-suffering King, who chastises His people out of love and who allows them freedom of choice.[85] In the Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien gives us a brilliant glimpse of God’s mercy in the fabled tale of the Ainulindale.

In the tale, the Creator, Iluvatar, created the Ainur (angelic beings), of whom Melkor was the greatest. Iluvatar then equipped the Ainur with themes of music, through which He created the world. At Iluvatar’s command, the Ainur sang. However, “it came into the heart of Melkor to interweave matters of his own imagining that were not in accord with the theme of Iluvatar . . . for desire grew hot within him to bring into Being things of his own.”[86] Three times, Melkor’s song clashed with Iluvatar’s, who listened patiently for a time. But, after Melkor’s third disruption, Iluvatar rebuked him, “[T]hou, Melkor, shalt see that no theme may be played that hath not its uttermost source in me.”[87] Although Melkor had thrice committed an abomination, playing God, Iluvatar was merciful. Sadly, Melkor did not obey. Like Lucifer, Melkor persisted in rebellion, eventually becoming “Morgoth, the Dark Enemy of the World.”[88]

Like Melkor, humanity, including God’s people, have rebelled against Him, seeking to be our own gods. Yet, God is slow to anger. When God punishes His people, it is often to return us to the path of righteousness, as with Israel. Likewise, we are called to be patient with our fellow men and women, as Christ was patient with us, and to respect their free will, as He did with us.[89]

By contrast, Socialism cannot tolerate dissention or free will, lest their cure for society should prove ineffective. Because socialists view the cause of the world’s woes as external to man, these causes, whether persons or systems, must be removed or silenced completely. Ultimately, a perfect society cannot tolerate any flaws. This inevitably requires the governing officials and experts to silence all those who disagree with them.[90] As Winston Churchill observed nearly eight decades ago, “[N]o Socialist System can be established without a political police . . .. some form of Gestapo . . . .”[91] To be sure, unlike Communists and Nazis, few Fabians or Progressives, except for Shaw, advocated for such a heavy-handed form of society. However, if the goal is to purge society of corruption (defined by those holding power), coercion cannot be indefinitely avoided.[92] Not surprisingly, socialists have traditionally been very comfortable with the idea of powerful centralized governments, an issue which again puts them at odds with orthodox Christianity.

Government is limited to the defense of the good.

The mistrust of human nature has driven many Christians, particularly in the Anglo-American tradition, to advocate for governments limited by the Rule of Law. In accordance with Romans 13, they have advocated for a government limited to a specified end, the protection of the good and the punishment of the wicked.[93] Now I must tread carefully on this point. Nowhere in the Bible does God explicitly endorse democratic governments. However, God does say that government exists to be a “terror” to “evil,” not to “good.”[94]  Moreover, the Bible is also clear about the inherently flawed state of human nature.[95] Thus, many prominent figures amongst our Founding Fathers, Christian and non-Christian alike, recognized the need for government to be a check on human nature. For example, James Madison called government “the greatest of all reflections on human nature.”[96] To this end, our Founders established a federal government of checks and balances, divided amongst the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial branches, while maintaining a strong system of federalism amongst the federal, state, and local governments.[97] In contrast, socialists view such limited government as a hindrance to the greater good of society.[98]

For socialists, the ideal society is one governed by educated experts and benevolent rulers who will devote themselves to the betterment of humanity.[99] As previously stated, they demean ideas of checks and balances as dangerously old fashioned and as hindrances to social progress.[100] As such, in the 1930s, Progressives like Rexford Tugwell, an author of FDR’s New Deal, praised Fascist Italy and Communist Russia; Fabians like Shaw praised Hitler’s Germany and Communist Russia; and the Nazis studied the eugenics policies pushed by American Progressives and British Fabians. [101] When people protested that a socialist government would undermine personal freedom, they were assured that the system would work because good moral regulators would run the system, a defense still used today.[102] However, this naïve assertion overlooks a simple, unfortunate truth, “All power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely.”[103] The renowned economist, F.A. Hayek, pointed out that when you have an unaccountable centralized government, as the socialists advocate for, you have a system where the “worst get on top.” Within such a government, there exists a political environment where those who carry out the leader’s orders most ruthlessly, without any hesitancy or moral qualms, prove the most successful. [104] It is no coincidence that the most autocratic forms of government, such as Nazi Germany, the U.S.S.R., and China, end up with the worst sort of men running the system. In summary, the end result of erecting an autocratic government is almost always a regime which protects the evil at the expense of the good, contrary to its God-given purpose.[105]

            Moreover, history shows that socialist systems and parties, in an effort to implement their policies on an efficient scale, define people into categories rather than as individuals, a practice which Scripture and common decency reveal to be abhorrent.

All people are uniquely created and must be seen as distinct individuals

As this article has observed, socialists tend to define people into categories, often in terms of race, class, gender, etc. For Hitler, the standard was race; for Engels and Marx, it was nationality and class; for Fabians, it was class and productivity; and for American Progressives, it was a combination of all these. To date, Progressives have maintained their emphasis on race distinction, but in terms of historic oppression.[106] This is ironic given that it was their ideological forebearers who pushed for repression against minorities and so-called imbeciles.[107] Therefore, by their own standards of categorization, Progressives are historic oppressors. Conveniently ignoring their dubious past, Progressives and socialists claim that categorizing people along racial, as well as gender and religious lines, is a necessary step to right past wrongs. In modern Progressivism’s narrow mindset, White Christian men are the worst oppressors.[108] More importantly, categorically defining people again puts Progressives at odds with Christianity.

In keeping God’s law on our behalf, Christ ended the old covenant which was based, if not on race, in part on nationality. God’s people had to keep the law of God perfectly as outlined in detailed books like Leviticus. Anyone who did not abide by God’s law was outside the Covenant with Israel. Under the Covenant of Faith, salvation is open to all God’s people.  As Paul explained to the Galatians, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Therefore, in Christianity, race, class, gender and other categorizations have absolutely no bearing on one’s status. We are all equal in Christ.[109]  While we are members of a unified body, the Church, Christians remain separate individuals, each “fearfully and wonderfully made” by God.[110] Unbelievers too are distinct individuals made in God’s image, deserving of our respect.

In summary, those who define an individual on the basis of a group do so against God’s will. Ultimately, it does not matter whether one categorizes persons into groups in order to subvert or uplift them. To define a person’s worth on the basis of any category is to demean their value as an individual, made in the image of God. Such categorization constitutes the very sin which the Fascists and the American slaveholders were guilty of. In truth, there are no separate races or groups. There is only the human race.

Capitalism and Christianity are compatible.

As for Capitalism, like democratic government, the Bible is silent on whether Christians ought to support or oppose the free market system. For some Christians, Capitalism means corruption and greed, theories which socialists have perpetrated for decades.[111] True, not every business owner or capitalist is moral, nor is the system flawless. However, Capitalism is not about greed, but freedom. In a true capitalist system, people are allowed to work hard and reap the benefits of their labor. Also, people are required to bear responsibility for their actions. Bad business choices mean business failure while good choices mean success. Therefore, Capitalism encourages responsibility for one’s resources. [112] In other words, Capitalism respects people’s God-given right to choose and encourages them to be responsible for the blessings He has bestowed upon them. Contrast this to a Marxist system where private property is forbidden and everything is controlled by a government regime. In such a system, there is no need to be responsible, except at the point of a gun, because no one owns anything.[113] Some socialists have tried to equate Capitalism with Fascism. While Fascism allows people to own businesses, the government has absolute control over the business, telling owners what they can produce and how much. In economic terms, Fascism resembles Progressivism and Fabian Socialism far more than Capitalism.[114] As for greed, Socialism allows society’s vast resources to be controlled by relatively few government experts and elites. As such, the opportunity for corruption and greed remains enormous in a socialist system, where the worst ascend to the top.[115]

In summary, while Capitalism is not perfect, we must remember that perfection will never be attained on this side of eternity. However, this much is clear, Capitalism encourages responsibility and freedom of choice, Biblical values, in a way that Socialism never will.

Christians who pursue socialist like policies towards non-Christians and fellow believers act outside the limits of the faith they claim to cherish.

Given my blunt criticism of the socialists’ numerous abuses of power, some might accuse me of hypocrisy, given past and present abuses committed by Christians. One might point to the persecution of non-Christians during the Middle Ages, such as the Cathars, or the horrific slaughter of Catholics by Protestants and vice versa during Europe’s many religious wars.[116] I regret to say that persecutions by Christians persist today, though not in the same violent conduct of the past. For instance, in the churches of my own community, many Christians feel threatened by the expansion of Progressive ideas which have challenged certain fundamentals of the Faith, including the Gospel itself. This has led a number of Christians and whole congregations to join an anti-Progressive movement, known as Neo-Kuyperianism.

The movement originated with the Dutch theologian, Abraham Kuyper, who argued that Christians need to be more active in engaging the culture. Kuyper’s reasonable assertion has gained widespread support in many Protestant circles. Inspired by Kuyper’s teachings, many have engaged the culture by building Christian schools and universities, writing Christian books, etc.[117] Unfortunately, in reaction to Progressive teachings, some Neo-Kuyperians have misconstrued Kuyper’s ideas into a call for Christian statism. Instead of engaging the culture to spread the Gospel, some advocate for a Christianization of society. Underlying this goal is the viewpoint that Christians must cleanse what Progressivism has corrupted. As my own experience can attest to, these latter assertions can have problematic implications. Because Christian schools are primary instruments for cultural engagement, it is the duty of every Christian to support them via attendance. As a homeschooler, I was often looked down upon by fellow Christians who saw me as an outsider for not studying at a Christian school or for reading pagan authors like Homer and Aristotle. When I asked why they insisted on such things, I got vague, unsupported answers like, “That’s what mom and dad told us” or “the Bible says so.” To this day, such abuses persist towards those who, due to financial constraints, send their children to public and charter schools.

I bring up my experience as a warning against an ominous trend I am seeing, not just with Neo-Kuyperians, but with other Christian denominations as they respond to Progressive and socialist challenges. The trend of which I speak is the slippery slide towards Traditionalism. By Traditionalism, I mean the blind defense of traditions for their own sake. As such, it is a mindset that abhors change and perceives those who question current practices as a threat. On the one hand, it is understandable why many Christians would instinctively shift to this extreme as they see their beliefs being challenged by disruptive ideologies. On the other hand, in their efforts to combat Progressivism and Socialism, traditionalist Christians have adopted many of the practices of those whom they oppose. Many traditionalists, including some Neo-Kuyperians, believe in the need to purge society of what they deem to be defective. So do socialists. Traditionalists demand conformity to a certain mindset and practices. So do socialists. Finally, some traditionalists seek to silence those who dare question their way of thinking. So do socialists. We must remember that, as Paul explained to the Galatians, Traditionalism is not the equal of Biblical orthodoxy.[118]

Do not misunderstand my purpose. I am not suggesting that traditionalists or extreme Neo-Kuyperians are socialists. Rather, I am saying that, in their effort to combat the teachings of their opponents, Christians must take great care not to become like those whom they oppose, lest they surrender the fight. Ultimately, Christians who engage in coercive acts against fellow Christians and non-Christians act outside the faith of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who did not resort to coercion, but valued free will. As the Bible is ultimately silent on the issue of Christian schools, this issue must be left to the discretion of individual believers.

As for literature, we must be ready, as God commanded, to “give a defense to everyone who asks [for] a reason for” our “hope” in Jesus.[119] Ironically, many Progressives have slipped into a type of Traditionalism by clinging to one-sided, archaic arguments which denounce their opponents as racists, old fashioned, and uncaring and which claim Free Market Capitalism to be a system of greed. These traditional arguments have remained largely unchanged for decades, revealing an unhealthy stagnation within socialist thinking. This could indicate an unprecedented opportunity for Christians to return their ideas to the intellectual forefront. However, if we are to provide the world with a compelling answer for our hope in Christ, we must study our own beliefs, those of great thinkers, Christian and pagan, and those of our socialist opponents. Thus, one could argue that Scripture indirectly commands the study of non-Christian literature.

All this being said, Christians’ ultimate goal must be the spreading of the Gospel through the pursuit of Truth, not a transformation of culture. As we all know from our own experiences, the Gospel is a powerful message which can transform even the darkest of hearts and the blindest of souls. Therefore, as the Gospel spreads, the transformation of culture will prove an inevitable consequence of God’s work in the hearts of our neighbors. For example, in China, the Gospel has reached 120-200 million persons, many of whom are advocating for greater personal liberty from an increasingly paranoid and frightened socialist government.[120] In the end, our greatest weapon will always be the blessed Truth of the Gospel.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion, Christianity and Socialism do not go hand in hand because of Socialism’s fundamentally flawed perspective on human nature. At its very core, Socialism entails the transformation of culture through the transformation of human nature. By their own admission, the British Fabians agree that Socialism will fail if human nature breaks down.[121] As the tragic story of Israel and the sorrows of our own day reveal, humanity has broken down time and again, rendering the socialist faith an unattainable, lovely dream which continues to tempt us. Like our first parents with the forbidden fruit, we, with “eager appetite,” naively chase such fantasies, “greedily . . . engorging” ourselves while not knowing that we are, in truth, “eating death.”[122] Stripped of its empty promises, prejudices, and platitudes, Socialism, similar to Traditionalism, is merely the latest of many attempts by man to ascend to God without God. But as Melkor learned, the power to create or recreate lies solely in the power of the Creator, not the creature. Ultimately, all attempts to play God will end in misery and sorrow. This may be Socialism’s final end, but it is only the starting point of Christianity and its message of hope.

For those who acknowledge that they are sinners, perpetually doomed to imperfection, and who put their faith in the One who had no imperfection, but who died so that they might live, there is no reason to fear. God has called you to Himself and, one day, you will join him in paradise. To misuse the words of John Milton, let us ignore foolish pride which tells us that it is “better to reign in Hell, than serve in [Heaven].” Let us not futilely seek “good from ourselves,” but from Him whose way is perfect.[123] For even the best of our works are as filthy rags, unacceptable before a perfect and just Creator. But, when we put on the unblemished work of Christ, we are made worthy by Him and through Him.[124] Our good works are not a means to salvation, but imperfect responses to God’s amazing grace and love for us.

All this does not mean that a socialist cannot become a believer. It is within God’s power to save all sinners. However, as a socialist Christian matures in his or her faith, there are serious theological conflicts that will have to be dealt with sooner or later. No matter how desperately one tries to link socialist principles with those of Christianity, these two faiths cannot agree in the end. Yes, God commands generosity from us, but from our own means, not from others via the redistributive schemes of Socialism. Yes, God commands equality, but spiritual, not material. Finally, God commands obedience, but genuine obedience from the heart, not from the threat of force. Who will we look to for deliverance, God or humanity? This is the key question which will forever define the endless conflict between the warring faiths of Socialism and Christianity.

* Luke Barbrick is an SLG Wilberforce Fellow (2021).  He is currently a law student at Michigan State University 

[1] Daniel Yergin, Commanding Heights: The Battle of Ideas-Episode One (Official Video), YouTube (Jul. 15, 2019), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfRTpoYpHfw.

[2] Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels, The Marx-Engels Reader 53-54, 159 (Robert C. Tucker 2d ed. 1978).

[3] Id. at 72.

[4] Id. at 220.

[5] Id. at 46.

[6] Id. at 50.

[7] Id. at 26, 52.

[8] Id. at 50.

[9] Id. at 52, 200.

[10] Id. at 212.

[11] Id. at 214-15.

[12] Id. at 218-220.

[13] Id. at 65, 163.

[14] Id. at 220.

[15] The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, Revolutions of 1848, Encyclopedia Britannica (March 13, 2022), https://www.britannica.com/event/Revolutions-of-1848.

[16] Friedrich Engels, The Magyar Struggle, MECW Vol. 8, p. 227 https://marxists.architexturez.net/archive/marx/works/1849/01/13.htm (last visited Jul. 9, 2022).

[17] Id.

[18] The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, Nazi Party. Encyclopedia Britannica (Sep. 21, 2021), https://www.britannica.com/topic/Nazi-Party

[19] Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf 382-83 (Ralph Manheim trans., Mariner Books 1st ed. 1999) (1971).

[20] Id. at 134-35.

[21] Id. at 382.

[22] Id. at 318.

[23] Id. at 29, 65.

[24] Id. at 26, 52, 65, 163.

[25] Id. at 135-36, 382.

[26] Marx & Engels, supra note, at 2; Engels, supra note 16.

[27] Engels, supra note 16.

[28] Hitlerite Riot in Berlin, N.Y. Times, Nov. 28, 1925, at 4 (citing Joseph Goebbels, Hitler’s future propaganda minister).

[29] Hitler, supra note 19, at 382

[30] Andrea Graziosi, The Soviet 1931-1933 Famines and the Ukrainian Holodomor: Is a New Interpretation Possible, and What Would Its Consequences Be?, 27 Harvard Ukrainian Studies 97, 102 (2004) (“Out of the six to seven million victims . . . 3.5 to 3.8 million died in Ukraine; 1.3 to 1.5 million in Kazakhstan . . . .”).

[31] “Break Their Lineage, Break Their Roots” China’s Crimes Against Humanity Targeting Uyghurs and Other Turkic Muslims, Human Rights Watch 1 (Apr. 19, 2021), https://www.hrw.org/report/2021/04/19/break-their-lineage-break-their-roots/chinas-crimes-against-humanity-targeting.

[32] The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, Fabian Society. Encyclopedia Britannica (Oct. 14, 2015), https://www.britannica.com/topic/Fabian-Society.

[33] Sidney Olivier, Moral in The Fabian Essays, ¶ 2 (George Bernard Shaw ed., 1891).

[34] George Bernard Shaw, Economic in The Fabian Essays, ¶ 20 (George Bernard Shaw ed., 1891).

[35] Id. at ¶ 21.

[36] Annie Besant, Industry Under Socialism in The Fabian Essays, ¶¶ 33-34 (George Bernard Shaw ed., 1891).

[37] George Bernard Shaw, George Bernard Shaw: There are an extraordinary number of people whom I want to kill, YouTube (June 27, 2020), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ymi3umIo-sM.

[38] See H.M. Geduld, Bernard Shaw and Adolf Hitler, 4 The Shaw Rev. 11, 14 (Jan. 1961).

[39] George Bernard Shaw, George Bernard Shaw Speaks on Hitler and Germany 1935, YouTube (June 27, 2011), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mW-iy-9m9SU.  

[40] See GJ. Baker, Christianity and Eugenics: The Place of Religion in the British Eugenics Education Society and the American Eugenics Societyc.1907-1940, 27 Social History of Medicine. 281-302 (2014).

[41] John Dewey, Liberalism and Social Action in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader 620 (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012).

[42] Id. at 620, 627.

[43] Woodrow Wilson, Socialism and Democracy in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader 646 (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012).

[44] Woodrow Wilson, What is Progress? in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader 640-42 (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012).

[45] Franklin D. Roosevelt, Commonwealth Club Address in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader 726 (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012).

[46] Frank Goodnow, The American Conception of Liberty in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader 629, 632 (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012).

[47] History.com Editors, Eugenics, A&E Television Networks, https://www.history.com/topics/germany/eugenics (last updated Oct. 28, 2019). 

[48] Baker, supra note 40, at 297.

[49] Thomas C. Leonard, Retrospectives: Eugenics and Economics in the Progressive Era, 19 The Journal of Economic Perspectives 207, 216 (2005).

[50] History.com Editors, supra note 47.  

[51] Buck v. Bell, 274 U.S. 200, 206-07 (1927).

[52] Josh Blackman, The Irrepressible Myth of Jacobson v. Massachusetts, 70 Buff. L. Rev. 131, 193 (2022) (cleaned up).

[53] History.com Editors, supra note 47.  

[54] Leonard, supra note 49, at 219.

[55] Jon A. Shields, Framing the Christian Right: How Progressives and Post-War Liberals Constructed the Religious Right, 53 Journal of Church and State 635, 637 (2011).

[56] Id. at 212-13.

[57] ‘Genesis 1-2’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 6, 6-12.

[58] ‘Genesis 3’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 12, 12-15.

[59] ‘Genesis 4-6’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 15, 15-20.

[60] ‘Genesis 9’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 22, 22-25.

[61] ‘Genesis 12’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 29, 29-31.

[62] ‘Exodus 1’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 94, 94.

[63] ‘Exodus 7-12’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 102, 102-111.

[64] ‘Exodus 19-34’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 120, 120-145.

[65] See ‘Leviticus 26’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 186, 186-88.

[66] ‘Judges 2’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 334, 334-36.

[67] ‘I Samuel 8’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 388, 388.

[68] ‘II Samuel 1 – II Kings 25’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 426, 426-559.

[69] ‘II Kings 17 – 25’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 542, 542-559.

[70] ‘Ezra 1-2’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 647, 647-50.

[71] ‘II Corinthians 5:21’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1835, 1835.

[72] ‘Matthew 27’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1552, 1552-55.

[73] ‘Romans 3’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1770, 1770-72.

[74] ‘Galatians 1, 5’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1847, 1847-49, 1855-57.

[75] ‘Romans 8’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1779, 1779-1782.

[76] See Marx & Engels, supra note, at 2; see also Besant, supra note 36, at ¶¶ 33-34; ‘Genesis 3’, supra note 58, at 12, 12-15.

[77] Shaw, supra note 37.

[78] History.com Editors, supra note 47; Buck, 274 U.S. at 206-07.

[79] Jonathan Noyes, Thinking Critically about Critical Race Theory, Stand to Reason (Sept. 8, 2020), https://www.str.org/w/thinking-critically-about-critical-race-theory.

[80] See History.com Editors, supra note 47; see also Engels, supra note 16.

[81] ‘John 1:1’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1658, 1658; ‘2 Samuel 22:31’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 461, 461.

[82] ‘John 3:15’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1665, 1665.

[83] ‘Matthew 28:19-20’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1556, 1556.

[84] ‘Ezekiel 18:23’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1279, 1279.

[85] ‘Hebrews 12:6’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1954, 1954.

[86] J.R.R. Tolkien, The Silmarillion 3-4 (Christopher Tolkien ed., Del Rey Mass Market Ed. 2020).

[87] Id. at 6.

[88] Id. at 23.

[89] ‘Matthew 19:21-22’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1538, 1538.

[90] Laurence Rees, Hitler and Stalin’s Utopian Dreams, BBC History Magazine, Dec. 2020, at 22, 29.

[91] Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, Never Give In! 397-98 (Winston S. Churchill, ed., 2015).

[92] Rees, supra note 90, at 29.

[93] Luke Barbrick, The Obedient Rebel, Salt & Light Global (March 22, 2022), https://www.slgwitness.com/2022/03/the-obedient-rebel/

[94] ‘Romans 13:1-7’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1790, 1790-91.

[95] ‘Romans 3:10-18’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1770, 1770-71.

[96] James Madison, ‘Federalist 51’ in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader: (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012) 287, 288.

[97] ‘The Constitution of the United States of America’ in The U.S. Constitution: A Reader: (Hillsdale College Politics Faculty eds., 5th ed. 2012) 47, 47-56.

[98] Besant, supra note 36, at ¶¶ 33-34.

[99] Roosevelt, supra note 45, at 726.

[100] Wilson, What is Progress?, supra note 44, at 640-42.

[101] Lawrence White, Hayek’s “The Road to Serfdom”- Lawrence H. White, YouTube (Jan. 21, 2017), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NStwnOh9AsU&t=846s; Shaw, supra note 39; History.com Editors, supra note 47.  

[102] Peter Boettke, Blame the Economists?, AIER (August 25, 2019), https://www.aier.org/article/blame-the-economists/

[103] Ben Moreell, Power Corrupts, Acton Institute, www.acton.org/pub/religion-liberty/volume-2-number-6/power-corrupts (last accessed Jul. 20, 2020).

[104] F.A. Hayek, The Road to Serfdom 157, 169 (Bruce Caldwell ed., The Definitive ed. 2007).

[105] ‘Romans 13:1-7’, supra note 94, at 1790, 1790-91.

[106] Benop Editorial Team. A Short History of Critical Theory, The Benedict Option (June 17, 2020), https://thebenedictoption.com/a-short-history-of-critical-theory/.

[107] History.com Editors, supra note 55; Buck, 274 U.S. at 206-07.

[108] Noyes, supra note 79; Luke Barbrick, Critical Theory’s War on the Individual, Salt & Light Global (Fen. 18, 2022), https://www.slgwitness.com/2022/02/critical-theorys-war-on-the-individual/

[109] ‘Galatians 3:28’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1853, 1853.

[110] ‘Psalm 139:13-14’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 910, 910.

[111] See Marx & Engels, supra note, at 26, 52; Hitler, supra note 19, at 318.

[112] C.B. Murphy, Capitalism Encourages More Personal Responsibility, WSJ (Oct. 17, 2008, 12:01 AM), https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB122420450801243221.

[113] ‘1 Peter 4:10’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1975, 1975.

[114] White, supra note 101; Roosevelt, supra note 45, at 726; Olivier, supra note 33, at ¶ 2.

[115] Hayek, supra note 104, at 157, 169.

[116] Joshua J. Mark, Cathars, World History Encyclopedia (Apr. 2, 2019), https://www.worldhistory.org/Cathars/; see History.com Editors, Thirty Years’ War, History.com (Aug. 21, 2018), https://www.history.com/topics/reformation/thirty-years-war.

[117] See David VanDrunen, Living in God’s Two Kingdoms 16, 128 (1st ed.2010).

[118] See ‘Galatians 1-6’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1847, 1847-58.

[119] ‘1 Peter 3:15’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1974, 1974.

[120] Fenggang Yang, Christianity’s Growth in China and its Contributions to Freedom, Berkley Forum (Oct. 31, 2017), https://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/responses/christianity-s-growth-in-china-and-its-contributions-to-freedoms.  

[121] See Besant, supra note 36, at ¶¶ 33-34.

[122] John Milton, Paradise Lost 396-97 (Simon & Schuster ed., 2012) (cleaned up).

[123] Id. at 77 (cleaned up); ‘2 Samuel 22:31,’ supra note 81, at 461, 461.

[124] ‘Zechariah 3’ in R.C. Sproul, et al (eds), The Reformation Study Bible: New King James Version (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1995) 1469-70.