Socialism, Part 1: Big Government and Unbelief

Post date: Dec 07, 2016 5:28:34 PM

Jan 24, 2011 by Lorne Blackman

Socialism is often defined simply as government ownership of capital or the means of production. Lovers of big government resort to this simple definition when defending their programs as non-socialistic. From their perspective, since their policies do not directly endorse confiscation of land and capital (that is, as long as you don’t count inflation, regulation, and burdensome taxation) they are clearly not socialistic, and those who oppose them must be ignorant. But there is much, much more to socialism than government ownership of the means of production.Socialism: An Unbelieving Worldview!

There is a spirit behind socialism, a worldview—even a religion—that drives its growth and development. It may be that America is not practicing true socialism, but the growth of centralized, oppressive, bureaucratic systems in America is driven by the same unbelieving, collectivist faith system that motivated the French socialists and the Soviet communists, as well as Hitler, Marx, and Mao. The spirit of socialism is the love of power and control under the pretense of philanthropy. It is the idolatrous attachment to centralized, humanistic political systems, and disdain and contempt for liberty under God.

Socialism: The state replaces God as sovereign

The rise of Socialism has occurred as Christian ideas have succumbed to rationalism. Man and his reason have dethroned the God of the Bible, and with Him the influence of Biblical thought and the relevance of God-ordained institutions such as the Family and the Church, as well as the ideas of liberty, self-government, and unalienable rights. Man must assume control and responsibility for all things. The state replaces God as supreme Judge, Lawgiver and King. But since God is more than justice, the state must be more than just. It must be philanthropic as well. It must assume the paternalistic role of provider, teacher, parent and savior. Ultimately the state must recreate all things in man’s image, including not only law and justice, education and welfare, but ethics and morality. It makes itself responsible for redefining ever more fundamental aspects of human society including marriage, the family and finally even personhood and gender.

The spirit of socialism is the spirit of presumptuous responsibility. Socialism says without state funding, art and culture will perish; without agricultural subsidies, farms will disappear and we will go hungry; without the federal department of education, learning will decline; and without federal intervention, the economy will collapse and America will become a third-rate power. Ultimately there is no grievance for which the state does not make itself responsible, and every aspect of life becomes politicized, subsidized, and regulated.

Socialism confuses the distinction between society and the state and addresses social issues only through the contrived box of governmental intervention. Socialism neglects, usurps and displaces the natural, organic roles of the individual, the family, the church, the community, charitable institutions, private cooperatives, and every other aspect of God’s moral and social order. As a result of this, the socialist reacts to opposition to his government-centered solution as opposition to any solution: opposition to government welfare is neglect of the poor; opposition to centralized, federalized public education is neglect of the children; and opposition to government redefinition of the marriage covenant is hatred of homosexuals.

The pride of socialism is reflected not in the ability of the people to govern their own lives, the liberty they enjoy, or the minimal external government they require, but in the number of people served by government programs, the equality of their income distribution, the comprehensiveness of the government safety net and the percentage of GDP extracted from the people to support collectivist programs and bureaucracy.

The spirit of socialism manifests itself not only in public ownership of land and capital, not only in Marxism, European socialism, and in schemes for global governance, but in a broad spectrum of “mainstream” policies and programs. In the US it is the driving force not only behind Obamacare, the redefinition of marriage, the entitlement mentality, the national debt, and other forms of legal plunder, but behind long-accepted institutions like Social Security , Medicare, the Fed, government schools, farm subsidies, welfare programs, federal unemployment benefits, the national labor relations act, and a host of other popular big-government programs. In fact, some of our most coveted institutions, including free public schools, centralized banking (the Fed), and progressive income taxation, are actually planks of the Communist Manifesto! Today the vast majority of Americans are, if not confessing socialists, at least to some degree practicing socialists.

A cornerstone of socialism is Marx’s philosophy of economic determinism, which identifies prevailing economic conditions as the motivating force behind all political and social activity. This materialistic worldview, now deeply ingrained in American social, political, and religious philosophy, attributes all human behavior to the economic environment, thus freeing man of personal responsibility for his own behavior. By reducing man to the mere product of his environment, it strips him of his dignity as God’s image bearer, and prepares him for enslavement and subservience to his new master—the state.

Socialists Discard the Biblical Principles of Liberty

The religion of socialism turns Biblical principle on its head. Whereas the Bible teaches that by living moral and honest lives men and nations will enjoy economic blessings, socialism teaches that without economic blessing, men cannot be expected to live moral and honest lives. Instead of crime and immorality leading to a life of poverty, the socialist believes that poverty leads inevitably to a life of crime and immorality (and we wonder how the Israelites could have been so blind!). The improvement of the human condition thus becomes the responsibility of the state, which is obligated to address crime, poverty, poor school performance, and every other social ill through financial subsidies and leveling schemes. The Biblical principles of self- government, personal responsibility, and liberty under God are discarded as relics of darker spiritual times.

Perhaps most importantly, most socialists are evolutionists who apply Darwinism to politics. They reject or ignore God, His moral and social order, and the operation and separate, distinctive jurisdiction of his institutions: Family, Church and State. Though perhaps not confessing atheists, they are certainly practical atheists. God and the Bible have no relevance to their political worldview, other than in justifying government charity. “..they regard not the work of the Lord, neither consider the operation of his hands,” Psalm 28:5.

As the state replaces God as the ultimate arbiter of social justice and human progress, it assumes the Godlike role of guiding and hastening the development of society and the perfection—the evolution—of man. Hitler was guilty of applying this principle more zealously than others. His national socialism viewed the state as the mechanism for hastening the evolution of the Germanic race in a survival-of-the-fittest struggle for land and world domination.

However, the majority of today’s socialists are globalists who downplay nationalism. Instead they envision a global state guiding the progress and evolution of global society. But just as Hitler’s full oppressive force was not unleashed until he had consolidated his power, the full oppressive force of socialism will not be realized until it has consolidated its grip on world power and can freely implement the policies of its global planners, the modern-day builders of Babel. If the federal government is today increasingly expensive, wasteful, unresponsive and intrusive, one can scarcely imagine how much more so would be a global government of socialist planners eager to impose upon global society what they determine to be in its best interests.

Big Government and Socialism: An Unbelieving Worldview

Socialism is an incremental disease with many manifestations representing various degrees of implementation of socialist principles. But the basic motivating beliefs are all the same. From a practical worldview perspective, the spirit of socialism, communism, Marxism and the spirit of American-style big government are forever one and the same: an evolutionary, unbelieving, state-centered worldview that disdains liberty and rejects the authority of God and His word over human affairs.