Q.1: What is "Vine & Fig Tree"?
A. A movement of Christians dedicated to fulfilling Micah's Prophecy and the promises of Christmas. The Gospel is the "Good News" of "peace on earth"; the "Good News" that all Empires which oppose the Kingdom of Christ will be destroyed, and all the families of the earth will be blessed.
On the destruction of the Empires, see Daniel 2:34-35,44 and V&FT webpages here. On the Blessing of Families, see Galatians 3:8 and V&FT webpages here.
For a full Scriptural discussion of the overthrow of political systems and a return to Biblical Patriarchy, see 95 Theses on Patriarchy.
Q.2: Excuse me . . . Did you say "Patriarchy"?
A. Sorry. We know how offensive that term is. The Marketing Department at Vine & Fig Tree world headquarters strenuously objected to our using that word. But how else would you describe a Biblical Society? A society not dominated by either church or state, but one where human beings reproduce in a one-man/one-woman relationship which we call a "family."
Think about the Gospel as described in Galatians 3:8.
And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, "In you all the nations shall be blessed."
What does this mean? Go back to Genesis 12, which is quoted by the Apostle.
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.
This is a wonderful promise, and it's too bad that it's not "politically correct" to speak of "Patriarchy." Those who attack "patriarchy" defend military socialism, relativism, and -- ultimately -- all the things we put at the top of our home page:
Don't read the Bible through 20th century eyes; look at the 20th century through the eyes of the Patriarch Abraham. The 20th century will not go down in history as a particularly great century.
We propose living consistently in terms of the whole of Hebrew-Christian Scripture, which means that by the Blood of Christ we have been restored to our original mandate in the Garden of Eden. In the Garden there was no State, and no "church." There was a Family in the Presence of God. Not politics, not religion: the Family is the most important institution in society.
The Second Adam has rejected the Tempter's slogans: "You can be as gods!" "Your vote is your voice!" "The vote of the People is the Voice of God!" (Genesis 3:5) We are the "seed of the woman," and we smash the seed of the serpent, pulling down their political myths (2 Corinthians 10:2-5).
Q.3: How do you propose to eliminate the State?
A. Demythologize it. The Myth of State Legitimacy must be destroyed. People everywhere believe that they are so incompetent -- or even evil -- that other people have the right to make decisions for them, take their money from them and spend it the "best" way. Others are more conniving, thinking they can use the State to keep from experiencing harmful consequences to their stupidity or evil, or even to get rich by confiscating the wealth of others. Both groups believe that other people have the right to call themselves "the State" and kill, steal, or kidnap. There are thus two strategies to the Vine & Fig Tree "revolution":
"I'm running for political office. Please give me your permission to steal from your neighbor and give some to you. Give me your permission to kill in your name. Give me your permission to impose my moral (or immoral) views on others (at others' expense)."
People must be taught to react to this "campaigning" with the same disgust that they would have for someone who says, "Give me some money and I will have adulterous sex with you."
Obviously this is an uphill battle.
Q.4: Do you plan on engaging in illegal or unconstitutional acts?
A. In all likelihood, yes. It is apparently illegal and unconstitutional to be a Christian or to hold non-conforming views. Waco and Ruby Ridge indicate that these "crimes" are punishable by death.
Q.5: Do you plan on storing or selling arms like those at Waco and Ruby
A. No. Information is posted elsewhere describing a civil action now being decided by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Depositions and Interrogatories from the Federal District Court show that Vine & Fig Tree members reject violence. It is hoped that this will ultimately spare Vine & Fig Tree "conspirators" from the sentence of death: Psychologically, agents of the FBI and ATF probably react in fear to those who practice their 2nd Amendment rights to bear arms. This was the stated purpose of the Amendment: to keep the government in check by threat of violent revolution. Members of Vine & Fig Tree reject the Communist and Americanist strategy of violent revolution.
UPDATE -- The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals refused to take jurisdiction of our appeal, as did the U.S. Supreme Court. There are no more courts to which we can turn. We believe a future litigation, avoiding the mistakes we have made, can succeed. But as of now, it is unconstitutional for a Christian to become an attorney, or even an American citizen.
Q.6: In your writings, you emphasize the phrase "Vine
& Fig Tree." What does this mean?
A. Our name, "Vine & Fig Tree," comes from the Old Testament Prophet Micah. Below is the prophecy, from the 4th chapter. Click on the word or phrase that interests you.
And it will come about in the last days
That the mountain of the House of the LORD
Will be established as the chief of the mountains
And it will be raised above the hills
And the peoples will stream to it.
And many nations will come and say,
"Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD
And to the House of the God of Jacob,
That He may teach us about His ways
And that we may walk in His paths."
For from Zion will go forth the Law
Even the Word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
And He will judge between many peoples
And render decisions for mighty, distant nations.
Then they will hammer their swords into plowshares
And their spears into pruning hooks;
Nation will not lift up sword against nation
And never again will they train for war.
And each of them will sit under his
Vine and under his fig tree,
With no one to make them afraid.
For the LORD of hosts has spoken.
Though all the peoples walk
Each in the name of his god,
As for us, we will walk
In the Name of the LORD our God
forever and ever.
In that day, saith the LORD, will I assemble her that halteth,
and I will gather her that is driven out,
and her that I have afflicted;
And I will make her that halted a remnant,
and her that was cast far off a strong nation:
and the LORD shall reign over them in mount Zion
from henceforth, even for ever.
bother with the Bible? Why bother trying to understand the Bible and some
peasant religious nut who lived three thousand years ago? I am
"modern" and "scientific" and I have no interest in church
or religion. Please don't give me the Bible. What do I need with the
A. Vine & Fig Tree is not about religion. The author of this FAQ does not "go to church" and hasn't been a member of any church for over 10 years. The New Testament is the record of Jesus' war on "religion." "Religion" enlisted the service of "the modern world" to execute Jesus. "Modern Science" has been destroying hope and humanity ever since. Vine & Fig Tree opposes "modern science." "Modern science" means nuclear destruction, mass death, and cultural fragmentation. Jump to What do I need with the Bible? and find out more.
Q.8: Do you believe in Predestination?
A. Predestination is an inescapable concept. Everyone believes in it. God predestines everything, and everyone has a god; either himself, the State, impersonal evolutionary forces, or the God of the Bible.
You did not create yourself, so you must ask yourself, What is the nature of that external force which brought me into being? Is it a cold, impersonal "time+chance," or is it a loving and personal God such as described in the Bible?
The central issue of life is Sovereignty. Who is God? Is reality determined by what the God of the Bible decrees, or by blind impersonal force? (Of course, only the "experts" of the State -- its universities, its military, its priesthood -- are able to guide the "family of nations" through the impersonal forces of "nature." If we put our faith in their theories, we should be prepared to put our tax dollars in their pockets.)
Q.9: Yeah, OK, conspiracy stuff aside: doesn't predestination by the God
of Moses violate man's free will?
A. Let me ask you a question: What do you mean by "free will"?
All of these things are things human beings engage in, and animals do not. This is because we human beings are created in the Image of God, as the Bible says.
The evolutionist says we are no different from animals; that we are a randomly-mutated conglomeration of chemicals, brought about by the cold, impersonal forces of time + chance.
If evolution is true, neither you, nor a cockroach, nor a rock have what you
think of as "free will."
The plant has "chlorophyll," you have "free will." Big Deal. There's no difference between the two.
The whole concept of a "will" is an illusion.
But . . . If you were created by the Loving, Sovereign
Lord God of the Bible, and bear His Image, then you do have what you call
"free will." The fact that this God predestines all that comes to pass
does not "violate" your pre-existing "free will," it creates
all meaningful human attributes.
I choose to believe the Bible, not Darwin and Hitler.
And yet I confess with Christ, "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit."
Q.10: Predestination is so controversial. Why make a big deal out of it?
A. Evolution teaches that man is not qualitatively different from a snail darter or other "endangered species," and evolutionists like Hitler will exterminate any species they feel is a threat to their "national security." Denying Biblical Predestination results in genocide.
Everybody who believes in God believes in predestination. Christians who deny predestination still seem to believe that the world is predestined to get "worse and worse" until Jesus comes. "Vine & Fig Tree" is the Bible's vision of a loving, saving predestination.
If the vision of "Vine & Fig Tree" is not God's plan, all of our efforts will not bring it about. If it is God's plan, we can work for it with the calm repose of faith. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.11: I've looked at some of the pages on your site and you never once say
"we are in the last days," and "Jesus is coming soon." Why
are you unclear on this?
A. Let me be perfectly clear: Jesus is not coming soon. We are not in "the last days."
Q.12: But doesn't the Bible say we are in "the last days?"
A. The Apostles were living in the last days of the Old Covenant and the first days of the New Covenant. That's why they wrote "We (the Apostles and their readers) are in the last days." But we in the 21st century are not in "the last days."
Q.13: But didn't Jesus say He was coming soon?
A. Yes, He did. He did not say that there would be a 2000 year wait for His coming. In fact, He said "Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom." (Matthew 16:28) What does He mean by that?
Q.14: I'm asking the questions here.
Q.15: What did He mean by that?
A. I think He meant that "this wicked generation" -- or as one popular writer phrased it, "the terminal generation" -- was about to be terminated. They oppressed the poor, they misled people, they were unloving hypocrites, and they executed the Messiah. Jesus said they were the most unGodly generation in history (Matthew 23), and for this they would be destroyed by Roman armies (Luke 21:20). They saw the Son of Man exercising His Kingdom Sovereignty, and then they tasted death.
|Q.16: So you don't believe in "the premillennial return of Christ."||
Click here if you don't know the difference between "pre-millennial" and "post-millennial"
A. The Old Testament Prophets were "pre-millennial." They
said the Messiah must come before ("pre") the world could
experience radical "shalom" (called "the millennium" because
of a symbolic reference to a "thousand years" in the Book of
Revelation). The New Testament is clear: Jesus is the Messiah, and at His
Resurrection and Ascension He was seated on the "throne of David" at
the Right Hand of God. As priests and kings in His Kingdom, our task is to
extend His Kingdom.
For this reason, a growing number of Christians are "post-millennial," and anticipate the return of Christ after ("post") this "millennial" age.
Jesus came two centuries ago to inaugurate a New Covenant. Micah is talking about the "last days" of the Old Covenant. The Apostles unmistakably and repeatedly assert that they were then living in the "last days" of the Old Covenant. What was necessary to begin fulfilling Micah's Vine & Fig Tree vision was not a 2,000-year wait for nuclear war and the "great tribulation," but the end of Old Covenant blood sacrifices and the pouring out of the Holy Spirit. It happened in the "last days" of the Old Covenant and the beginning of the New. Progress is possible.
Q.17: Don't the majority of theologians believe that the Bible teaches
that Jesus can come at any moment?
A. In the last century there were two theological movements which are still important. One was German liberalism. Liberal scholars said that the Apostles taught that Jesus would return at any moment and set up a hierarchical kingdom in Jerusalem, militarily overthrowing the Roman Empire. Clearly (the liberals taught), the Apostles were wrong, Jesus did not come again, and the Bible cannot be trusted.
Another movement was the so-called Darbyites, who popularized the "premillennial" return preceded by the "pretribulational rapture of the church." This view gained widespread acceptance through The Scofield Bible.
Both the liberals and the pre-mills are mistaken. The Bible does not teach the imminent coming of a physical, military, hierarchical kingdom. (At one time the Apostles may have believed that Christ was to be a military king, not a Suffering Servant, but they also at one time believed that the execution of Christ was a disruption of God's plan. They simply didn't get it.) The Bible as a whole sets before us the vision of a decentralized Kingdom in which government stems from self-sacrificing service, not a police state, and the Messiah-King rules not with a physical rod of iron, but through the Holy Spirit, Who changes people's hearts.
Q.18: But if Jesus is isn't coming "any moment now," what
incentive is there for holy living?
A. Millions of "Christians" believe that we are in "the last days" of planetary history, that things are prophesied (predestined?) in the Book of Revelation to get worse and worse, until Jesus returns again (after a nuclear war) to rule the world for a thousand years from a throne in Jerusalem. Has this belief made Christians more holy?
Not even close. It makes them lazy. Everyone is waiting, not working. This belief strips the salt of its savor (Mt. 5:13). These Christians believe He could come "at any moment," and they are culturally and socially useless. Why work for peace or justice if war and "tribulation" are the keys to bringing Jesus back? Such a belief should be "thrown out and trodden under foot by men." [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.19: Micah speaks of "the Mountain of the Lord." What does that
A. The Book of Genesis states that the Garden of Eden was on a mountain, and "the Mountain of the Lord" is a symbol for the Garden. It is used throughout the Bible to refer to God's blessings in the Garden, and calls us to work for the global restoration of Edenic conditions, not to wait for a "Rapture." Vine & Fig Tree is about a decentralized world restored to its original Edenic beauty and growing in harmony.
Q.20: You're wildly post-millennial aren't you?
A. Got that right. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.21: Is the Mountain related to "the House of the Lord?"
A. Exactly. The Temple (which was a symbolic re-creation of the Garden of Eden) was centrally-located in Jerusalem. The goal of Micah and the Prophets was for true worship to be decentralized and world-wide (John 4:21,23).
Q.22: So you are against churches?
A. Many wonderful people attend churches. But the world would be a better place if all churches were eliminated and Christians turned their homes into community centers. Ecclesiocentrism is unBiblical: Christ's execution was the last liturgy (Heb. 10); we are all priests in the bloodless liturgy of life-reconstruction (1 Peter 2:9) [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.23: So we are already in "the millennium"? We're already in
A. Jesus was the Messiah foretold by the Prophets, including Micah. In A.D. 70 He destroyed the temple in Jerusalem and created a New Temple in His Body. This marks the establishment of His Kingdom. We shouldn't be waiting for a "Second Coming."
Q.24: I always thought "the millennium" would be a sinless
paradise, like on the cover of the little magazine the Jehovah's Witness gave me
the other day.
A. Paradise, yes. Sinless, no.
The "paradise" described in the Bible is not sinless. The "New Heavens and the New Earth" described by Isaiah (65:17-25) still has sin and death in it, just less sin and longer lifespans before death. The key to successful living and victory over sin is not to have all challenges removed from life, but to experience Christ's victory over them.
But as Milton wrote, "Better to rule in hell than to serve in
heaven." We have the choice to live in Eden or live in hell, and we always
choose hell. We have the choice to love our enemy or to destroy him. We could
spend a billion dollars on food, medical supplies, and Bibles, and ship it to
our enemy with "Made in the USA -- Believe in Jesus" on the box.
Instead, we spend a billion dollars on land mines and fuel bombs and leave half
a million Iraqi peasants crippled and
We have the choice to live in Edenic conditions, or to destroy ourselves and the creation.
Most Christians would rather be raptured than work for paradise. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.25: What are the "hills" Micah describes?
A. In Biblical prophecy, pagan governments are described as rival hills or mountains, and Biblical history reveals that pagan empires had always imitated the true Kingdom by building their own temples and their own gardens on hills. These were places where the creation (rather than the Creator) was worshipped, often through ritual sexual lawlessness (rather than obedient service). "Baalism" is the religion of the modern world. We call it "Secular Humanism." [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.26: Are you part of the "Identity" movement?
A. The "Identity" movement seems to have raised an important point. It seems that most people who call themselves Jews are neither genetically nor spiritually related to the Patriarch Abraham. It turns out that most of the charges of "anti-Semitism" are really charges of "anti-liberal Secular Humanism." This means that hate-crimes against Jews are particularly repugnant. Not just because all acts of violence are wrong, but because the objects of the crimes are not usually descendants of Abraham anyway.
The Bible says all races will become Christians. Even people from Africa will
be a part of the New Israel (Psalm 87).
Christianity is not a strictly Anglo-Saxon religion. The Patriarch Abraham was Semitic, but his religion was not limited to his physical descendants. The Bible is an Oriental, not Occidental, text, but all the different kinds of human beings will one day become Christians, followers of the Word. Vine & Fig Tree is a universalist (or "Catholic") perspective.
If the "Identity" movement teaches acts of violence against non-caucasian races, the movement is an ignorant pawn of the Old World Order, not a faithful servant of the New. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.27: Nobody seems to be "streaming" to the Gospel these days. Are
you sure things aren't getting worse and worse?
A. Name one person you know who has rejected the Gospel described by Micah: solidarity with "the least of these," swords into plowshares, Edenic restoration of the earth. Most people have not heard this "good news." The "gospel" you hear on television is a gospel of self-centered mediocrity and escape. When the ideas of "Vine & Fig Tree" are preached, people will "stream" to it.
God is sovereign over the hearts and minds of human beings. Micah says people from every background will delight in God's Word from the heart, and will move with radical dedication and fervor toward the things of God, and away from the things of secular humanist empires. The work of the Holy Spirit is people who are not "normal" and lukewarm. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.28: You claim to be anarchist, but Micah speaks of "nations."
Jesus said we are to "make disciples of all nations." Aren't
you missing something?
A. The word translated by the King James Version as "nation" is the word from which the English word "ethnic" is derived. All human beings are descended from the original 70 families, or nations, recorded in Genesis 10. People of different languages and cultures are often coercively collectivized by the State into political units called "nations," or "nation-states." Although the Bible does not recognize the moral legitimacy of these arbitrary political divisions, it can certainly be said that these political forces will not deter the Holy Spirit from converting every ethnic group in the world and bringing all people under a New Authority.
Q.29: Oh, so you're one of those United Nations types?
A. Hardly. The UN is a collection of Harvard-educated dictators and torturers. They exploit the concept of the nation-state as a tool to Global Dictatorship. They talk about a "New World Order," but the Bush/Clinton regime is really the "Old World Order," from which we are to remain "unspotted" (James 1:27; 4:4) 
The Old World Order lies to us. The words of Micah's prophecy concerning "swords into plowshares" is carved into the concrete of the United Nations building in New York. That organization ordered the carpet bombing of Iraq and the murder of over 250,000 men, women, and children. Many voices pay lipservice to the Prophets, and to the Messiah they foretold. But "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven." (Matthew 7:21) [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.30: You claim to be anarchist, but you defend "God's Law." Didn't
Jesus take us out from under the law?
A. "Law" (Authority) is a tremendously important concept. As human beings created in the Image of God, the very structures of law are impressed in the fabric of our being, and then in the fabric of our society. But like man himself, man's law is fallen. If our society is to be redeemed, man's law must be "put to death," and Christ's Law allowed to live. Micah expresses the importance of hearing God's Law and patterning our own law (behavior, social structures) after His. Micah speaks of law as
"Ways" -- patterns which should become habits in our lives;
"Paths" -- which show us the direction in which we must move;
"Law" -- which is holistic and personalist, not like that of the lawyers and the Pharisees who executed Jesus.
"Word" -- every Word spoken by our Creator is Law for us.
Jesus came to put God's Law into force (Matthew 5:17-20). Man's law leads to death; God's Law brings salvation and life. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.31: "Judge" seems like such an unloving, Old Testamentish
concept. Didn't the New Testament do away with all this?
A. The New Testament commands us to judge. Millions of people who say we are not supposed to judge stand silently by while Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and Bush commit genocide against the "enemy." We must speak out. We must judge. Before God does.
Violation of God's Law is not only an offensive assault on the legitimate Authority of God, illegitimate (Lawless) human authority destroys life and the creation. The Creator will step in to judge these abuses and instruct the humble in the Ways of Life. Jesus returned to destroy those who killed Him and to put an end to their religious hypocrisy. His saints apply His Word to their lives and societies as priests and kings. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.32: Are you anti-technology?
A. Not in theory. We are thankful to God for the creative engineering and inventions which make our lives safer and more efficient. But in practice, this industrialism has been financed by debased currency and other abominable practices which oppress the poor.
Q.33: Do you advocate agrarianism?
A. The dependence of human beings upon the land is inescapable; agriculture unites people of all nations. God has promised to provide for us, as with the sparrows, but Humanistic Man seeks the provisions of life through autonomous violence, rather than obedient work. The City vs. The Country represents the struggle between lazy paper-pushing covetousness and contented manual labor.
Q.34: Don't "plowshares"
groups advocate violent civil disobedience?
A. Some "plowshares" groups pour blood on nuclear warheads. This seems like a silly Jewish ritual. Other plowshares groups disarm nuclear weapons so that they cannot kill and main innocent people. They are thus opposed to violence.
As for civil disobedience, if all the guards at a Nazi Concentration Camp suddenly fell asleep, would you sneak in and let the prisoners free? Even if there were a sign saying, "No Trespassing -- Authorized Personnel Only"?
Jesus and Micah agree: the meek will convert instruments of death and lawless authority into tools of productivity and service. By so doing, they will inherit an Edenic earth. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.35: You claim to be pacifist. Didn't God ordain the Sword (Romans 13)?
A. God predestines the use of the Sword, as well as other evils. Use of the Sword is evil. God predestines evil.
God, the Potter, commands man, the clay, not to kill. Man asserts his own divinity by taking life. War, capital punishment, and population planning are euphemisms for murder. We think they will make us more "secure." Use of "the sword" brings the judgment of God (Matthew 26:52). [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.36. Don't we need to train for national defense?
A. Education reflects our hopes -- or our fears. It expresses our vision for a just society; or it expresses Man's aspiration to "be as god." Militarism educates in terms of conflict, implicitly declaring that God is not abundant in mercy and goodness, and that we must fight and kill to obtain the necessities of life. Militaristic education is a self-fulfilling prophecy: we are taught that existence is meaningless unless we forcefully impose our own meaning upon it. War is the result. We must visualize an Edenic society built upon God's Law and train in terms of that hope. Micah might say today, "Read my lips: No more war." [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.37: I thought anarchists were against private property.
A. "Thou shalt not steal" is the foundation of peace. It establishes private property as a Godly stewardship. The French anarchist Pierre-Joseph Proudhon is often quoted as saying "Property is Theft." But Proudhon also believed in patriarchy, and saw that much of what passes as "private property" is really State-defended property. It is property backed by violence. God's Law is personalist. Biblical Property does not mean, (1) "I will elect politicians to kill you if you step foot on my land." It means, (2) "I will obey God, conquer covetousness, and respect your stewardship and your efforts at dominion." A society dominated by the first kind of "property" is a warlord society. Those in the second kind of society are willing to follow Jesus to the Cross, to lose all their property rather than resort to violence, and they possess more property as a result (Mark 10:30; Genesis 13:2). Property is more secure in a Godly anarchist society than in a Secular Humanist military dictatorship. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.38: You say you don't advocate agrarianism, but
doesn't "Vine & Fig Tree" lead to something like that?
A. Would you rather live in well-watered garden, or die of thirst in a parched desert? The Garden of Vine & Fig Tree is a human archetype. But Vine & Fig Tree cannot be legislated by Congress or Parliament. Each of us must "put to death" the old autonomous man and be resurrected to obedience in Christ, each day, in every area of life. God is merciful and abundant in goodness, and the earth will pour out its fruit if we will obey God's Law, dismantle our Military-Industrial Complex, and live lives of contentment and service. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.39: What do you mean by "patriarchy."
A. Human society without Church or State. Human beings are created in families; we are patriarchal beings, not political beings. Institutions such as "church" and State are rebellious rejections of patriarchal responsibilities, according to the Bible. Biblical property is patriarchal property. Modern Humanistic economics is political, granting all property to the State -- that is, to the powerful -- and embodies theft and violence as legitimate policy. Every form of politics is a form of socialist dictatorship and a denial of true property.
Q.40: When you say "Patriarchy," do you mean polygamy?
Q.41: Do you mean men can beat their wives?
A. Don't you get it? Men who beat up Iraqi peasants and put pathetic, depressed drug addicts in prison for 25 years might beat their wives, but "Vine & Fig Tree" anarcho-pacifists who follow Christ to the Cross do nothing of the kind. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.42: Shouldn't we have a healthy fear of the Russians, or terrorists? Don't
we need a State, at least a small one, to protect us from criminals?
A. No. God is bigger than the Russians, bigger than terrorists, bigger than criminals. My security is in God. If you cannot trust God like this, I'm sorry, but the Bible nowhere gives you the right to confiscate money from me to fund your own personal body guards.
-- National Security:
Because our allegiance is to a nation-state rather than the transnational Kingdom of God, we take up arms against our "enemies," those of rival nation-states, even though they might profess the same Christianity we do. Trillions of dollars have been spent in this century in order to kill hundreds of millions of people. Western arms manufacturers have been paid by western governments to put billions of dollars of arms in the hands of pagans of low moral character in the interests of "detente" or "western interests" or "national security." Yet we still feel radically insecure. Duh.
-- Crime in the Streets
Because our allegiance is to ourselves rather than to other members of the Body of Christ, we board ourselves up in our homes to keep safe from those who, like us, are loyal to no one but themselves. The U.S. Supreme Court, committed to a philosophy of human autonomy, has declared it "unconstitutional" to teach children the Ten Commandments, including commands against stealing, raping, and killing. We demand prisons, not preachers. We harvest the bitter fruit.
A "little state" is like a "little murder," and a "little theft." The overwhelming majority of murders in this century have been committed by "governments." The overwhelming majority of theft has occurred when a "government" "nationalized" private property at gunpoint. No "organized crime syndicate" commits as much evil as the "government." And all criminals -- from the time they are children -- learn a valuable lesson from the State: If your goals are frustrated, resort to violence. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.43: You sound like the Amish. Are you withdrawing from society?
A. The Humanistic structures in "the modern world" make it more difficult to live peacefully and righteously. We are surrounded by propaganda which tells us it is not "sensible," "practical," or "businesslike" to follow Jesus. We must not be "radical," "idealistic," or "fanatic," we are told. Micah says the more our society obeys God's Law, the easier it becomes to obey even more. Peter Maurin spoke of a society where it is "easier to be good." [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.44: Do you believe in "family values?"
A. Yes and no. The vision of "Vine & Fig Tree" is essentially conservative, but also radical. Micah's vision of "family" is that of the Patriarch Abraham, who adopted into his household literally hundreds of the dispossessed victims of the Autonomous Humanistic Empires around him. The vision of "family" espoused by the Christian Coalition and the "Religious Right" is that of Ozzie and Harriet. V&FT goes back to the roots; the "Religious Right" is "modern" in comparison.
Modernists want the poor and imperfect to be taken care of by the State: out of sight, out of mind. They do not want to be burdened by them. They do not want to take up the Cross. They are "rugged individualists" who want to be left alone to pursue "personal peace and affluence." The "nuclear family is spiritually and culturally sub-Biblical.
"Patriarchy" means social government is provided by families. Adoption and domestic apprenticeship are God's answers to statist "welfare." "God sets the solitary in families" (Psalm 68:6). If we believe God's Word, open our homes, and train our households to follow Biblical Law, we find our lives are enriched and have meaning. We serve and we are served. Faith is a product of community. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.45: Why do you call yourselves "anarchist" and still bring in all
this religious and Biblical stuff?
A. We are anarchists because Jesus commanded us not to be "archists." (Mark 10:42-45.) We deny the moral legitimacy of the State and similar human institutions.
Christians reflect the Name of Christ, the Prince of Peace. Secular Humanists carry the name of man, the autonomous rebel.
Authority creates direction, purpose, and meaning in life. Theonomy directs us toward life, love, and harmony. Autonomy creates class war, mass death, and nihilism. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.46: You seem to downplay "heaven" and "eternal life."
A. The Bible does not speak of "heaven" one-tenth as much as modern evangelists. The Bible devotes far more space to discuss the evils of kings and princes. And even where "heaven" is mentioned, the focus is on the glory of God and not the eternal self-indulgence of the "saved." The modern focus on "heaven" is actually quite selfish and individualistic. It is "ME-centered." It also tends toward pessimism and retreatism in this life. We must develop a God-centered eternal perspective, which transcends the temporal and selfish agenda of Hollywood, New York, and Washington, D.C. Jesus says we must seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness -- in this life. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.47: Why do you emphasize Houses of Hospitality rather than political
A. Because James 1:27 says,
Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this,
To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and
to keep himself unspotted from the world.
I desire with my whole heart to be a person of "pure religion." I want to be the kind of person who spontaneously, and from the heart, has the compassion of Jesus, and visits the weak and afflicted. For this reason, it is absolutely vital that I remain "unspotted" by the agenda, mythology, and weltšnschauŁng of the world. The world-and-life view of our culture is summed up in the phrases "survival of the fittest," "looking out for number one," "Iím not going to let him get away with that," and "take this job and shove it." It is an impure religion of the worship of self, and the denial of God. It is the refusal to love even our enemy, and to follow Jesus to the Cross. It is the religion of Secular Humanism. I must get these ideas out of my head if I am to live a life characterized by the "works of mercy" which Jesus said are necessary if I wanted to be at Christís right hand (Matthew 25:34). The emphasis in Scripture is on our relationship with the weak and abandoned, the crippled and those who cannot repay us. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.48: That's fine; I'm all for helping the poor. But why do you help illegal
aliens and those in prison?
A. It appears to be God's way to resist the State: render aid to its enemies. American Nazism begins when it rejects Biblical Creationism and sees the weak as threats to its "National Security." "Peace through Strength" means "Peace through the elimination of the weak." "Survival of the Fittest" means national survival through genocide of the undesirable. Yet Christ died for the weak and undesirable, not for those who think they have no need of The Physician. When the practice of the "works of mercy" (Matthew 25:35-36) is legally defined as "rendering aid to the enemies of the State," then being a Christian is defined as "treason," and is punishable by death.
The Bible says we who were once aliens should treat foreigners with grace and an open hand. Our nation's zenophobic scapegoating is reflected in laws which are polar opposites of God's Law. Repeatedly, God commands us to treat aliens as we would our own countrymen: "You shall have the same law for the stranger and for one from your own country; for I am the LORD your God." (Leviticus 24:22) But we deny aid to aliens by law. Further, our judicial system lets mass murderers and drug dealers (a.k.a. "politicians") go free, while pathetic, depressed, penny-ante addicts are given 25 years in prison. The spiritual roots of America's "naked nomads" is ignored. Enemies of the State need to hear God's "Good News" as much as the political butchers who mete out the punishments. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.49: Don't you believe evil-doers should be punished?
A. There is no way you can read the Bible and fail to see that God punishes evil. Many people refuse to accept that, but the Bible clearly teaches it.
But the Bible also teaches that we (human beings) are not to punish. "'Vengeance is MINE; I will repay,' saith the LORD." (Romans 12:19). Example: A Libyan terrorist sets off a bomb in Washington D.C. Do we leave vengeance to God? No, we bomb Tripoli and kill Khadaffi's son.
It seems that those who are willing to believe that God punishes are not willing to believe that God reserves that right for Himself and withholds it from us. Vine & Fig Tree seeks as much as possible to minister to the weak, the illegal, and the chastised. While the majority are satisfied with their political power, their MTV, and their personal peace and affluence, there is a remnant which is open to the alternative vision of Micah. [Back to Micah 4.]
Q.50: Your own passage shows that you are wrong. You are against strong
nations, but someday -- maybe soon, maybe in a long time -- God is going to give
Christians a homeland, their own State, with the political power they need to
execute God's enemies under God's Law.
A. The Bible does not say "someday" we will be a strong nation, it says we are a strong nation:
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
I Peter 2:9
But the weapons of our "national defense" are not built by Rockwell:
 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
2 Corinthians 10:4-5
Why do so many Christians believe that the power to reform and reconstruct lies in guns and gas chambers, rather than the powerful two-edged sword of Scripture? The desire for a Christian police state is a movement away from light and a return to darkness. [Back to Micah 4.]
These concepts, repeated throughout the Bible, can be grouped into seven Archetypes. These themes are the foundation for Vine & Fig Tree publications:
The Bible says man was created in a Garden. If we would worship God, He would provide for us. But we chose to "be as gods" (Gen. 3:5), and substituted a wilderness of scarcity and disease for the beauty and abundance of God's Garden. Contentment and a harmonious relationship with the land was replaced with dog-eat-dog militaristic industrialism. In our poverty and fear, we called out to the demonic slave-traders of the Polis for protection, and became their slaves.
Jesus paid the price necessary to "redeem" us (buy us back) from the slave-traders of the Polis. By destroying this slavery, Christ established His Kingdom at His First Advent. He is not "coming soon." In history, the slave-traders, not the Christians, are "raptured."
Christ promises victory: that His Kingdom will spread across the globe, and will include all nations, all peoples, all races. Humanistic divisions along lines of class, politics, or genetics are destroyed.
This growth will be in terms of obedience to Biblical Law, which is Christ's Standard of Love, Justice, and Holiness. All authority and power are God's.
The Law of God requires attitudes of virtue and service; when mature, these qualities beat "swords into plowshares."
The root and center of this growth will be the Family -- not the violence of the State, nor the sycophancy of ecclesiasticism. Vine & Fig Tree means a return to Biblical Patriarchy -- and then new growth in terms of this paradigm.
"God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land." (Psalm 68:6) The Patriarch Abraham extended his family to include hundreds of homeless. Christians live in extended families of community, resisting the myths of the pre-Christian "principalities and powers."
This is the Gospel which the Scripture preaches from cover to cover (Galatians 3:8). "Vine & Fig Tree" is a vision of trust and obedience to God and His Law; a return to the peaceful, agrarian Patriarchal society of the Bible. God promises to bless this repentance with a restoration of Edenic conditions. It is a vision which is "unrealistic," "utopian," "impractical," and "idealistic," and therefore can only be accomplished through the power of the Holy Spirit, and thus God, not man, and not the United Nations, will get all the glory.
Q.51: So how many people are members of "Vine & Fig Tree?"
A. I sometimes speak of Vine & Fig Tree as a "movement." We may laugh at this presumption -- at least for now. No viewpoint is more of a minority viewpoint that this one; it is certainly not the dominant world-and-life-view. But I believe that the vision of Vine & Fig Tree will become a world-wide, culture-shaping mass movement, although possibly not until the generation of my great-grandchildren (or beyond). But in God's time, the Vine & Fig Tree vision as I have set it out here, presently an overwhelmingly isolated and fringe viewpoint, will become the dominant cultural perspective. Sometime thereafter, the weaknesses, shortsightedness, and egotism of these writings (or an apostasy from this vision) will become evident to people who will be a tiny minority. They will then begin, as I am now, to critique the dominant culture. We must not "despise the day of small beginnings" (Zechariah 4:10) The prophet Micah says that Vine & Fig Tree is the winning side.
Q.52: You're a cult of one, aren't you.
A. Sure seems like it. (1 Kings 19:14,18)
Q.53: So what is your goal?
A. The goal of Vine & Fig Tree is to publish writings which will motivate people to follow the Hebrew-Christian Bible and make its vision a reality. Our projects are described at our home page.
If I have not answered your question, please write to me and I will include it in a future update. Kevin4VFT@VFTOnline.org
(1) Not quite true; I often believe the "left-right" dichotomy is false and misleading. I am uncomfortable with both "left" and "right." But since everyone else identifies themselves in these terms, you will find me associated with both. [Back to text.]
(2) Shades of Stanley Vishniewski! [Back to text.]
(3) Hebrews 1:2; 9:26; 1 Peter 1:20; 4:7; 1 John 2:18; Acts 2:16-17. [Back to text.]
(5) Along with churches which buttress the power of Empire, and simultaneously provide "escape" through non-Biblical theological and liturgical amusements. [Back to text.]
(7) The Westminster Shorter Catechism says "Man's chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever." To the extent man seeks to "be as god" (Gen. 3:5), life is unenjoyable. [Back to text.]
(9) Just as our nation has apostatized from the theology and cultural vision of the Puritans. [Back to text.]