WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO SAY TO THE MICHIGAN DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS
by Pastor James Jester
Re: James Fox v Heidi Washington et al; United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
The above case was heard on the 4th of December, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The issue before the court is whether or not to allow Christian Identity to be approved as an officially recognized religion by the Michigan Department of Corrections so inmates can be allowed to meet for public worship.
Most Christians could well accept Christian Identity since Identity adherents believe in most of basic historic doctrines of the Christian faith, such as: man’s fall into sin and depravity, the atonement of Christ, divine judgment, grace, forgiveness, justification and sanctification, etc. However, what really sets other people off about C. I. is their racial views (the “identity” part). They find their racial doctrine of Separatism offensive and even “racist” (a term that needs definition).
Properly understood, racism is not a bad word. Racism and its sister doctrine Separatism actually helps the various races to remain as distinct species; and aids in the preservation of an orderly society. Need I remind you, that the prison system, as well, believes and practices separatism because it segregates those who have committed violent crimes from the common population?
Like other Christian denominations, each one having its own distinctive trait that sets them apart from others, Christian Identity has its distinct doctrine concerning identity. In every racial group, knowing who we are is an important aspect to their self-esteem. Every race has the interest and right to its history, culture and continued survival. If all races were to blend to the point of interbreeding, it would not take many generations before there would be no distinct races at all. There would only remain one mid-brown race! Would we really want such a drastic change on our planet? The repercussions of this would be devastating.
Christian Identity is the only Christian church that recognizes this biological truth of the extinction of the races. They know it is either elimination or propagation for the races on this planet, and we prefer propagation. If Universalist beliefs were carried out, it would mean the end of mankind, as we have known it for millennia. Christian Identity’s distinctive doctrine of Racial Separatism (as found in the Bible, termed “sanctification”) completely contradicts the doctrine of Universalism, whereas other churches embrace it. C. I. also knows this is a great sin against God because of His law of “kind after kind” (found in Genesis).
Perhaps we should take a quick overview of the doctrine of Sanctification. The following are the original Greek words for “sanctification”:
From G37; properly purification, that is, (the state) purity; concretely (by Hebraism) a purifier: - holiness, sanctification.
From ἅγος hagos; sacred (physically pure, morally blameless or religious, ceremonially consecrated): - (most) holy (one, thing), saint.
‘The noun “sanctification” (ἁγιασμός, hagiasmós) does not occur in the Old Testament and is found but 10 times in the New Testament, but the roots noted above appear in a group of important words which are of very frequent occurrence. These words are “holy,” “hallow,” “hallowed,” “holiness,” “consecrate,” “saint,” “sanctify,” “sanctification.” It must be borne in mind that these words are all translations of the same root, and that therefore no one of them can be treated adequately without reference to the others. All have undergone a certain development. Broadly stated, this has been from the formal, or ritual, to the ethical, and these different meanings must be carefully distinguished.’ – International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
In the formal sense, sanctification is ordinarily meant the hallowing of the Christian believer by which he is freed from sin and enabled to realize the will of God in his life. To sanctify means commonly “to make holy”, i.e., to separate from the world and consecrate to God. In the ethical sense, sanctification in Christian thought is considered as the active deed or process by which the life is made holy.
SANCTIFICA'TION, n. [See Sanctify.]
1. The act of making holy. In an evangelical sense, the act of God's grace by which the affections of men are purified or alienated from sin and the world, and exalted to a supreme love to God. “God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation, through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.” 2 Th 2. 1 Pet 1.
2. The act of consecrating or of setting apart for a sacred purpose; consecration. – Webster
SANC'TIFY, v.t. [Low L. sanctifico; from sanctus, holy, and facio, to make.]
1. In a general sense, to cleanse, purify or make holy.
2. To separate, set apart or appoint to a holy, sacred or religious use. – Webster
In its Hebrew counterpart (O.T.), usually translated “holy” in reference to a person:
H6918 qâdôsh (kaw-doshe')
From H6942; sacred (ceremonially or morally); (as noun) God (by eminence), an angel, a saint, a sanctuary: - holy (One), saint.
In its Hebrew counterpart, usually translated “holy” in reference to a place or thing:
H6944 qôdesh (ko'-desh)
From H6942; a sacred place or thing; rarely abstractly sanctity: - consecrated (thing), dedicated (thing), hallowed (thing), holiness, holy, saint, sanctuary.
Thus we can see from these Greek and Hebrew words the nearly synonymous relationship in sanctification, saint, holiness, and purity; and that the idea of separation is closely tied to these concepts. The following Scriptures demonstrate this principle:
Leviticus 11:44, “For I am the LORD your God: ye shall therefore sanctify [separate] yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy.”
Leviticus 20:26, “And ye shall be holy unto me: for I the LORD am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.”
Deuteronomy 7:6, “For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth.” (also in Deut. 14:2)
This is a very serious issue and the foundational tenant of Christian Identity’s sincerely held belief. They consider this a matter of survival for the White race (and for that matter, all races) and for all of Christian civilization as well. Ezra, the great leader of the Judeans (458 B.C.) abhorred interracial marriages:
“Now when these things were done, the princes drew near unto me, saying, The people of Israel, and the priests and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. For they have taken of their daughters for themselves and for their sons, so that the holy seed have mingled themselves with the peoples [other races] of the lands: yea, the hand of the princes and rulers hath been chief in this trespass. And when I heard this thing, I rent my garment and my robe, and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat down confounded.” – Ezra 9:1-3
It is also clear from the above Scriptures that the concepts of purity and separation extend to a racial level, not just spiritual or moral, and neither ceremonial.
Therefore, the doctrine of Universalism is 100% antithetical to the foremost tenant of Christian Identity. There is no way that C. I. believers could join themselves to any of the judeo-Christian “churches” of popular Christendom. It would be a violation of their conscience and a sin before God. It would be like asking a Catholic to attend a Protestant church – such a person would say, “They are kindling for the fires of Hell!” Or, it would be like asking a Protestant to attend a Catholic church – such a person would say, “The Pope is the Anti-Christ!”
Most of the men under the care of the Department of Corrections may likely never change. However, there are those who are trying to redeem their life from the past mistakes, errors and sins. While incarcerated, their freedom is limited, and rightly so; but do not attempt to stifle their desire to learn from the religion of their choice, which is still retained as a civil right under our Constitution.