I first came across the writings of the late Greg Bahnsen in 2002. Since then I have had a theological fascination with the application of Biblical ethics to all of society. God’s unchanging character, as Bahnsen asserted, meant that His laws were unchanging to all peoples and all nations. In the years that followed I became aware of the vast mis-representation of the theonomic view. The first failed attempt by Westminster Seminary in 1990 and the constant failures of Kline’s disciples to do away with the Reformed view of the law while embracing Lutheran distinctions quieted opponents of Biblical law for some time. However, since the death of Bahnsen and Rushdoony, theonomy has been consistently attacked. Reformed scholars seeking the approval of the masses have enjoyed mocking the writings of the dead (Bahnsen, Chilton, etc.) because it brings about an implicit applause from academia, which deplores the idea of an ethical system being built around God’s inerrant law-word. One wonders if these scholars would make the same voracious accusations if Bahnsen and Rushdoony were still alive.
One recent example of this is found in the Reformation 21 blog where Rodney Trotter ( a friend informs me this is Carl Trueman) seeking to find some humor in the true story of a Muslim who is married to 86 wives, prefaces the link to the story with the following observation:
Well, I always thought that having 85 wives was OK, but 86???? Come on, mate, that’s pushing the envelope too far! When does he ever get time to watch the footie??? And, no, he’s not a theonomist or a Mormon, he doesn’t live on the Utah/Arizona border, and he probably doesn’t lie awake at night worrying about the federal government putting mind-changing drugs into the water system.
I always enjoy the insightful commentary and links from Ref21, but the author of the blog far from making a humorous observation is actually making an explicit accusation and erroneous association between polygamy and theonomy. Further, he places Theonomy and Mormonism in the same line as if the two bore certain commonalities. I must inform the author that his association lacks class and only serves to perpetuate the pagan and in many situations the evangelical aversion to all things Old Testament. Perhaps this is the time to remind readers that theonomists are some of the most godly and wise parents, husbands, wives and children that I have ever met. This is not because of their inherent ability to be wise and godly, rather it is because they have sought to find true wisdom in God’s revelation in the Older Covenant. And further, theonomists see polygamy as an abomination in the eyes of God. So why on earth would any informed reformed brother use theonomy as an attempt to humor blog readers?