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Kirk Cameron's Growing Circle of Reconstructionist Friends

Posted: 04/25/2012 1:31 pm

At the debut of his film Monumental, Cameron promised that "much more is coming" and he hinted at a strategy to educate and mobilize Christians to save the country. It's now a bit clearer what he meant, and he has added one more major Christian Reconstructionist name to his list of new friends.

Many observers noted that even in the pre-release promotional materials, the "experts" Cameron relied on, came from a Christian Reconstructionist point of view. Once the film was released, there were even more Reconstructionists in prominent places including the co-producer and significant presence: Marshall Foster. Moreover, between Cameron's pre-release promotion and the film itself, there was more and more evidence of his being influenced by Christian Reconstruction including his embrace of the three core features: postmillennialism (an end-times theology emphasizing "dominion" and directly contrary to the view he promoted in the "Left Behind" movies), the idea that there can be no philosophical or religious neutrality and the applicability of biblical law. You can read a detailed account of that here.

Now, Cameron is joining the conference circuit of the Christian Reconstructionist groups with a "Monumental Tour and Equipping Cruise." Each year Reconstructionist groups like American Vision and Vision Forum sponsor conferences and study tours and participate in many such events sponsored by larger groups like tea partiers and home schoolers. I've been to several as part of the research for my forthcoming book.

The seven day, pre-cruise bus tour, promises a "didactic hands-on educational and grassroots training" experience. Just like in the movie, fans will be able to retrace "the steps of our forefathers" and "visit the historical sites, monuments, and locations of the Pilgrims as explored in the ground-breaking film," all with an interpretation framed by Christian Reconstruction, Rushdoony's "Biblical Philosophy of History" and an emphasis on biblical law.

Promoters promise that "every step of the journey will be filled with in-depth teaching, soul-stirring narratives, and unforgettable experiences." But wait, there's more. The bus tour will be followed by a seven-day cruise through New England into Canada with "18 total hours of in-depth teaching and workshops for Patriotic individuals" to "train and equip the next generation of liberty minded Americans." All of it led by Cameron, Marshall Foster and Gary DeMar.

In case you don't recognize those other names, Marshall Foster is president and founder of the World History Institute (formerly the Mayflower Institute). He has been writing on "providential history" and traveling in Reconstructionist circles since the 1980s. As I noted here, Foster was the "David Barton" of Christian Schooling and homeschooling before David Barton, and he told me at a 2009 pre-cruise conference in Ft Lauderdale that Rushdoony had changed his life.

Though he is not in the film, DeMar is the newest addition to the list of Kirk Cameron's Reconstructionist friends. He is president of American Vision, co-sponsor of the tour and one of the most significant explicitly Reconstructionist organizations there is. DeMar wrote early Reconstructionist works on the relationship between Biblical law and government. His "God and Government" series has been used for thirty years as curriculum for church bible studies, home schoolers and Christian schools. He wrote for Gary North (who is now affiliated with American Vision) in the "Biblical Blueprint Series" and the booklist in American Vision's online store is a list of venerable Reconstructionist authors: Bahnsen, Jordan, Leithart, Morecraft, Sutton, Titus and Wilson.

America Vision holds annual Worldview Conferences. Usually small, they meet in churches near the AV headquarters outside Atlanta and draw a crowd already familiar with Rushdoony and biblical law.

This announcement represents access to a broader audience for American Vision and, it seems, a move for Kirk Cameron further from the mainstream conservative evangelical world.

 
 
 

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