John Mark Reynolds asks: “Why Republican?”

Dr. John Mark Reynold’s has an important essay at

Some noteworthy graphs:

Nobody needs feel shame to be a Republican, because when it came time to confront the original sin of the nation—slavery—the Republican Party was on the Lord’s side. In the great battle of my time, the war against communist tyranny, the Republican Party led in the defense of free markets and freedom of thought.

The Republican Party has always been the party of Evangelicals. Lincoln was elected by appealing to our beliefs and this has not changed in one hundred and fifty years.

No Christian puts his trust in princes. We remember that no earthly party is God’s party, because He is never a Republican or Democrat, being a committed monarchist. No Christian votes simply for party, but is open to good men and women where ever they may be found. We are, at all times, first subjects of Christendom and only secondarily citizens of this Republic.

But King Jesus has not yet come to rule and reign on the Earth and so we must go on living in anticipation of His coming. We live this side of Paradise and so have to spend centuries developing a political philosophy.

The philosophy we develop might be wrong, so we hold it more loosely than doctrine. We know other Christians have not yet given up on socialism or a bigger government than we are willing to tolerate. It is not so much their goals we attack, but their means. We long to help the poor and believe in universal health care, but believe that bigger government will do neither well and will hurt our freedoms.

We would give all our money in taxes if we thought it would end poverty, but have seen that it only enriches the state at the cost of liberty. We create statist masters and the poor are with us always.

John Mark Reynolds is the founder and director of the Torrey Honors Institute, and Professor of Philosophy at Biola University. In 1996 he received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Rochester. John Mark Reynolds can be found blogging regularly atScriptorium Daily.

6 Replies to “John Mark Reynolds asks: “Why Republican?””

  1. Of all the bogus claims promulgated by evangelicals (and John Mark Reynolds is particularly good at promulgating bogus claims about evolution), one of the most pernicious surely has to be the implication that Republicans are morally superior.

    Yes, in the 19th century the Republicans were against slavery – and at a time when many evangelicals were for it (something conveniently omitted by Reynolds — see, for example, Daly’s book, “When Slavery was Called Freedom”). Yet it is hardly possible to maintain that the Republican party of the 21st century is the same party. Heck, the Republicans abandoned black people only 11 years after the Civil War ended, with the Compromise of 1876. Seventy years later, we were treated to the spectacle of the Republican Eisenhower testifying against integrating the military.

    The Republicans are now for “freedom of thought”? Hardly possible to maintain with a straight face – read The Republican War on Science. Republicans are, in general, far more censorious than Democrats – although the Demos have their problems, too.

    Republicans are “are hesitant to make any person do good by the force of law”? Truly laughable. Republicans are at the forefront of those wanting to prevent gays from adopting and teaching in schools.

    By all means, vote Republicans if you think they’re going to do a better job. But don’t pretend moral superiority that doesn’t exist. Reynolds’ essay is a bad joke.

  2. Jeffery

    As a on and off follower of the comments on this blog, I came to it once again and observed your input and wonder; What are you in favor of? Seems to be a great amount of distaste in your demeanor.

    However, I do appreciate your endorsement of of the underling principle of the depravity of all men myself and you included. Indeed there is none righteous, no not one in all of human kind thus illuminating the need for a Savior.

    You have done my heart good to once again visit this great doctrine and have refreshed the blessing of what has been provided for me, and you alike in the everlasting words “Father, forgive them…”

    As with Mr Columbus and all those that both preceded and proceeded him we share the commonality of the non escapable truth of the rhetorical question;~~~~ ” to whom shall we go”?

    If this question is ever resolved in your person, you shall have the lens transplant some on this blog have experienced.

    Thanks ever so mush, once again!~~~~ I still stand amazed at the presence.

    don sivyer

  3. What am I in favor of?

    A free society – where one can take issue with the dogmas of the day without fear of repercussion. And freedom to be different.

    Honesty – particularly intellectual honesty – a willingness to do research before spouting off and a willingness to admit it when you are wrong.

    Hard work – both individually, and as members of society, to understand more about the world and how to structure a society that increases happiness.

    I’m happy to join Christians or anyone else in support of these goals. Too bad that so many theists are on the wrong side, these days. But many are enslaved by ancient dogmas.

  4. Ahh, noble. But who would carry on the discourse in the absence of these objections?

    A free society; … like the one Juan Williams lives in?

    Honesty; as in “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”

    Hard work; agreed … ; “how to structure a society that increases happiness” That has already been figured out. Just look and be intellectually honest and see who are the most content and happiest.

    Admit when you are wrong… on the wrong side… What’s the measuring stick?

    Admittedly, many on both sides are weighed and found wanting, but then again…so was I. Like the Chilean miners, I was in a dark and hopeless place until I followed the tunnel provided. So I danced with glee as did they upon finding freedom!!!!!

    Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty I’m free at last.

    Those you disdain may provide the society you seek.

    “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed”
    And indeed I am….”

    Naught have I gotten but what I’ve received, Grace hath bestowed it, since I have believed… Boasting excluded, Pride I abase, I’m only a sinner, saved by Grace”

    My hope is that you find success on your quest.


  5. You seem very confused.

    “A free society; … like the one Juan Williams lives in?” – a free society doesn’t mean that employment is guaranteed – something I would have thought conservatives understood all too well.

    “Honesty; as in “I did not have sexual relations with that woman” – what do you want me to say? We agree: Clinton was dishonest and unfaithful.

    ““how to structure a society that increases happiness” That has already been figured out. Just look and be intellectually honest and see who are the most content and happiest.” Yes, I agree, let’s be intellectually honest. As Forbes has reported, the happiest countries are the European social democracies, such as Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, are the happiest.

    What – not the answer you expected? Let’s talk about intellectual honesty some more.

  6. My hope for your search solution remains.

    Your reply was anticipated.
    I was under the assumption that this discussion was originated in and about the American society.
    In the event this Republic does not changes its collective opinion, those countries you mention would indeed offer more of what you seek.
    As for Mr Williams:
    Yes I do understand that as much as I appreciate it . Perhaps the many unions of this nation should listen to your dissertation. That very principle you argue for is what is at stake here. This American privilege to move on and recreate is a large portion of exceptional ism ~~~~ Thats one of many rights I love about my country.
    Interesting however, that it was the conservatives that rallied to his right first.

    True social freedom includes the “thoughts” of all it’s body.

    I will concede the final participation to you.


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