Archive for July 3rd, 2022

In my editorial in Bible Student’s Notebook 756 I mentioned the John Birch Society in reference to my past activism, being caught up in endless causes. This resonated personally with a few of our readers, causing me a bit more pondering over my past.

I was never a member of the JBS, but they did have a chapter in the Hampton Roads (VA) area where I lived, conducting regular seminars with outside speakers on conservative, anti-communist, anti-UN, limited government, conspiracy themes (such as the Council on Foreign Relations and Trilateral Commission). I often attended these lectures. Their “Get US out of the United Nations” billboards were also a familiar sight.

I read and distributed their literature: books from their Western Islands press, as well as periodicals American Opinion and The New American. Robert W. Welch and Larry McDonald were the JBS leaders during my time of association.

I had an “attachment” to John Birch himself, the namesake. He was in the same denomination that I was raised in: Independent Fundamental Baptist. He was a graduate of the Fundamental Baptist Bible Institute in Fort Worth, Texas, a school founded by a prominent founder of our denomination, J. Frank Norris. Birch was sent to China by the World Fundamental Baptist Missionary Fellowship. He participated in WWII as a US captain and was killed in China.

During the time of my activism I was also associated with Liberty Lobby, distributing its weekly newspaper The Spotlight. I was never a member of the Democrat or Republican parties, instead being an active member of the American Party and its VA state youth chairman as a teenager. I was active in the AP presidential bids of Thomas J. Anderson in 1976 (who was a Bircher), Gov. Meldrim Thomson and then Percy L. Greaves in 1980, followed by the Libertarian Party candidates David Bergland in 1984 and Ron Paul in 1988.

In the early 90s I was drawn toward the state militia movements (e.g. Militia of Montana), reactionary activism related to the government’s mishandling of Ruby Ridge and Waco, but I was never a part of them, as another mindset had already begun to emerge which would eventually produce in me a complete about-face (understanding and position laid forth in World Affairs and National Politics, available at StudyShelf.com, or see our order form).

From my own narrow perspective, these groups (mentioned above) have been demonized as supposedly having done things that I did not personally witness. It consistently appeared to me that they were attempting to bring attention to true corruption, while perhaps at times tilting at Don-Quixote windmills. Regardless, from my perspective now, I see them as an elaborate distraction from a grander reality. It may be that I needed these as a contrast to what I know today.

As a result, I can say with Paul,

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung (Philippians 3:7-8).

But things which were gain to me, these I have deemed a forfeit because of Christ. But, to be sure, I am also deeming all to be a forfeit because of the superiority of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord, because of Whom I forfeited all, and am deeming it to be refuse (CV).


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