Jesus made multiple references to His Kingdom as “not of this world.” Here’s a partial list: John 8:21-25; 14:28-30; and 18:34-38. His disciples filled the New Testament letters with even more such references. His true Kingdom has always been rooted outside the human sphere.
Before Christ, there was a human kingdom that God claimed, but that kingdom serves still as a prime example of how futile it was to try keeping a human government on course. All the most awe inspiring miracles were not enough to keep Israel’s minds focused on the task of keeping human government consciously under God’s authority. In other words, they could not maintain a human kingdom as a direct manifestation of a mystical divine Kingdom. There were always too many folks in the human kingdom who refused to be a part of the divine. A critical part of what Christ did was to point out how insane it was, and to end the charade. It had served its purpose and His life was the culmination.
One of the most pernicious lies among humans today is the notion that Christ did not end it, but that He made Himself the head of a new human kingdom. In a desperate scramble to avoid having to work with a mystical Kingdom of Heaven in human souls, we have a history of liars insisting that their actions represented obedience to Christ in raising up a human government that could somehow be better, a more valid manifestation of the divine. Thus, we have people today still taking seriously the idea of “Christendom” as somehow God’s only hope of keeping His message alive on the earth today.
In times past, God has exhibited incomparable wisdom in handling human pretense. We look back over the history of human warfare and see how God has intervened in wholly unexpected ways, matched by how He sometimes allowed things to take a rather natural course. (We can say such things as characterizations based on what little we can perceive.) Today “Christendom” (AKA, the West) is stumbling and falling apart because the enemy refuses to cede the field of battle to the plotting of generals and politicians.
The West shares something with the Hittites: quite expert at conquering, but unable to rule even themselves once established. The Hittites capitalized on the discovery of iron as a material for weapons, and it gave them quite the edge as they developed tactics for using them. But the lacked a necessary element of cohesion that we don’t really understand. The West is also quite good with weapons, but their only cohesion is keeping a sense of being under attack.
One of the most despicable weapons of Western warfare has been the espionage, writ large and small, as the means to destroy social stability in places Western governments want to conquer. Keep in mind that social stability is some part of what Biblical Law is supposed to provide. We can certainly go about it wrong, but social stability is itself a primary moral value in Scripture. Every society has weaknesses, and anyone with sufficient knowledge can exploit them, but such is the work of Satan himself. That the West carries out that kind of warfare deserves the ultimate level of wrath.
We are familiar with the multilevel attacks. Agents of Western governments will provoke any discontented element that is amenable to such leading by the nose, and creating discontent where it does not exist by encouraging the official government to be oppressive. Western agents work both sides at the same time, driving them apart. Meanwhile, the West dangles the lure of material excess, decadence and dissipation to tempt governments into unwise trade deals. This entangles those governments in dependencies that make them slaves of the worst Western plundering abuses. This, after having corrupted all of the various societies in the world by coaxing them into Western forms of government, as if no government can be taken seriously if it does not surrender everything that made those non-Western societies unique.
You cannot use the weapons of Satan to defeat him. When the West acts on the perception that non-Western countries are evil, the choice to use social disruption is an open invitation, a clarion call to point the same weapon back. Most non-Western societies were inherently more cohesive than the West, long before they adopted the veneer of Western-style government. Their societies are inherently stronger than any part of the West. The last chance the West had for any kind of cohesion was the pitiful grounds of simple racism, but it has surrendered even that. Western success demands a pretense of being cosmopolitan. Such cheap racism has not simply gone away, but it cannot work to unify if it is publicly denied. Western social stability rests entirely on material comfort, something other societies often place as a lesser value against something more important.
That “something more important” is any number of transcendent moral ideals. The whole point is the “transcendent” part. All the supposed transcendent values in the West are fake; they never existed except in mythology. Without a perception of threat, there is virtually nothing in Western society left to die for. Such imaginary virtues die on the battlefield, where soldiers keep fighting only because they manage to recreate some kind of tribal loyalty of us-versus-them. I note wryly that the cheap racism tends to manifest strongly among troops in the field. But more broadly, they keep fighting for creature comforts they are frequently denied, except in measured doses that seem like their greatest treasure. It’s the Cult of Fake Odin, a cheap modern version of the Beowulf ethic wearing fancy modern uniforms and bearing modern weapons.
With a practiced eye, one can see that, while non-Western societies can be corrupted somewhat by such creature comforts, those comforts cannot fully spoil a society with deep roots, which roots are lacking in the West. There remains a core identity that, once provoked with threats, will become the basis for conquest. But instead of letting Western militaries choose the field of battle where they hold the advantage, the non-Western invaders instinctively — and yet quite consciously — understand how the Western style of espionage works. Instead of sending a few agents to stir things up, non-Western invaders send themselves as a mass wave of spies. They don’t bring the obvious weapons, but use their cohesive presence as weapons. It’s their tribal loyalty beyond mere creature comforts that the Western governments can’t break because the West doesn’t comprehend how God actively supports that cohesion through how reality itself is designed.
The West is being overrun and will disappear quite soon. We can all see it coming; the seeds of destruction were present at the birth of the West. Material success is ultimate failure.
If Christians don’t turn away from the false ideals of kingdoms among men, they cannot hope to bear the treasures of God’s truth in earthen vessels. The gift of God’s revelation in His Son is more powerful than all invading armies together, regardless of how they are armed or what tactics they use. Our mere presence is part of God’s Presence and Creation itself responds favorably to us more than any other human presence. Our cohesion transcends everything human, because it’s cohesion with Creation itself. What remains is for each individual believer to surrender the pretense of any particular human kingdom or society as their true identity, and rebuild a self-awareness that is rooted in Christ Himself, whose Kingdom is not of this world.