Our Threatened Freedom

Is A Thing Good Because Its New? (03:18)

R.J. Rushdoony


R.J. Rushdoony: 00:00 Is a thing good because it is new? This is R.J. Rushdoony, with a report on our threatened freedom.

R.J. Rushdoony: 00:12 A few years ago, someone observed in Europe, they say, “It’s good because it’s old.” In America, it’s good be it’s new. To a great degree, this is true. In fashions, the key is not what is most becoming to us, but what is new and current in the world of styles. We waddle around in baggy pants, or skin tight pants, in long dresses, or miniskirts, depending on what is new and therefore, stylish. In fact, we have equated the stylish with the new and the faddish, not with good taste.

R.J. Rushdoony: 00:49 The basic motivation in being current with the world of style is a follow the sheep mentality. For all too many people it does not matter how monstrous they look, provided it is the latest look, and one that draws attention. In all of this, what we have forgotten is that we’re a people are so sensitive to current fads, we are also mindless and prone to be a mob. To be so concerned with being current with the styles and fads of the world, is to be not only mindless, but very susceptible to totalitarianism.

R.J. Rushdoony: 01:27 One of the ugliest facts about adolescents in our day, is that the teenager sees it as almost a matter of life and death to do what everyone else is doing. To be different from the crowd is traumatic to the teenager. It is difficult to imagine a worse preparation for adulthood and maturity than such a perspective.

R.J. Rushdoony: 01:49 Lately of course, we have had a craving for something besides the new in some areas. Nostalgia has led to a desire for collectibles and antiques. Antiques however, like new things, are not necessarily better nor necessarily worse. Neither being old nor new makes the thing necessarily good. In fact, nothing would be a more heartening sign of maturity than an emphasis on what is good, rather than on the old or the new.

R.J. Rushdoony: 02:21 Quality, not age nor youth, counts. And quality should be our concern in people and things. I find it distressing to hear people hark back to the past, as though only then were things good. The good old days were often far from good. It is equally unpleasant to hear others talk as though everything good came into the world only yesterday, or this morning. It is not time, age, or youth that gives quality to anything or anyone, but character itself. Long ago, the prophet Zephaniah said, “Seek righteousness or justice.” And Solomon declared, “The heart of him that hath understanding, seeketh knowledge.” And their words stand forever true.

R.J. Rushdoony: 03:12 This has been R.J. Rushdoony with a report on our threatened freedom.

Rev. R.J. Rushdoony (1916–2001), was a leading theologian, church/state expert, and author of numerous works on the application of Biblical law to society. He started the Chalcedon Foundation in 1965.  His Institutes of Biblical Law (1973) began the contemporary theonomy movement which posits the validity of Biblical law as God’s standard of obedience for all. He therefore saw God’s law as the basis of the modern Christian response to the cultural decline, one he attributed to the church’s false view of God’s law being opposed to His grace. This broad Christian response he described as “Christian Reconstruction.”  He is credited with igniting the modern Christian school and homeschooling movements in the mid to late 20th century. He also traveled extensively lecturing and serving as an expert witness in numerous court cases regarding religious liberty. Many ministry and educational efforts that continue today, took their philosophical and Biblical roots from his lectures and books.

Learn more about R.J. Rushdoony by visiting: https://chalcedon.edu/founder