The basic distinction, which really is too basic and needs clarification, is that Christ reigns over the church through the conscience and sacraments while the magistrate orders society in accordance with external matters—in light of nature and (ideally) Scriptural revelation.
Such a view prevents one from minmizing the reign of Christ, as if Christ only reigns in the church and not society since not everyone is yet converted. But if Christ only reigns over the converts and not creation, he is not the Lord of Creation.
But Scripture says God reigns over Babylon, Assyria, Egypt, and the world. To minimize his reign by arguing that Christ only reigns when a society as a whole converts to Christianity in effect undercuts the present universal reign of Christ.
But in fact, he does reign and when we returns all will recognize that reign visibly and publically when every knee will bow.
Mark Matthias says
In fact, Wyatt, these historical documents constitute good thinking but the Scripture already said as such…repeatedly — but they seemed to miss John 6:63…among many others…for example: (Many Disciples Turn Back)
“…The Spirit gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. However, there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray Him.) Then Jesus said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to Me unless the Father has granted it to him…”
In the arena of mankind — spiritually and naturally in the curse, sacraments are just as not as powerful as the Spirit, which is quickly affirmed by the mouth but the actions do the speaking. There has been quite a bit of biblical reconstruction putting mankind right in the driver’s seat that only God deserves… Who needs the Father when we have the fallen church? Yet why are churches failing?
In an article:
Story Highlights: U.S. Church Membership Falls Below Majority for First Time
BY JEFFREY M. JONES In 2020, 47% of U.S. adults belonged to a church, synagogue or mosque
Down more than 20 points from the turn of the century
Change primarily due to rise in Americans with no religious preference…”
Why? Did God destroy His ‘faithful’ churches? Could this phenomenon occur apart from God’s will? Absolutely not — in Acts 4 containing the story of Ananias and Sapphira, God didn’t destroy His Ekklesia, He Vanquished the evil influence lest it spread and corrupt believers. Since true believers inside had the Spirit but Ananias…didn’t, by discernment, the spiritual difference would have been recognized by discerning believers.
2 Thessalonians 2:9-10: “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.”
And here he comes — Rev. 13:7-8: “And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and there was given to him authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation. And all that dwell on the earth shall worship him, everyone whose name hath not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb that hath been slain.” If verses 15-17 don’t reflect life today nothing will. The only entity faithful to God is the Remnant Church which always existed from the beinning, such as Abraham.
Hence, good government too ought to recognize the correcting, perfecting, and revealing nature of Holy Scripture — Look at Biden who literally celebrated homosexuality and abortion – Obama called homosexuality “…a good thing”.
“…the general rules of the word, which are always to be observed” (WCF 1.6).”
But that will never come close to happening in this world, which is why only a Few will enter the kingdom of heaven.
Such a view prevents one from minimizing the reign of Christ, as if Christ only reigns in the church (I don’t see how Christ reigns in the ‘church’); and not society since not everyone is yet converted. But if Christ only reigns over the converts and not creation, he is not the Lord of Creation. Actually yes He does if only humans will discern Him.
Mark Matthias says
You know something, Wyatt — I see what mimics the church nothing more than a manmade entity that passes for what Jesus once left here to somehow further His perfect design. He’s looking for individuals…
I see the State blatantly promoting homosexuality as well as the modern church (even if no one talks about indulgences and liberties…), yet we are expected to uphold this as representing “the church” while using Hebrews 10:25 as if it applies to what passes for the true church — verse 26 should be looked at by those who try to use this sort of indoctrination.