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Cancel-Proof Christianity, the Book!
Stop Complaining and Build Your Own Civilization
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The book is done and off to the printer! Here is a run-down from GateKeepers Press:
Robert Lopez wrote Cancel-Proof Christianity: Stop Complaining and Build Your Own Civilization, to act as a Bible-based blueprint for the movement that Jeff Dornik's team is launching. That movement aims to build an independent life sphere for Christians so that Christian men do not have to choose between living out their faith boldly and supporting their families. While this aim might seem narrow, as Lopez's book shows, it is a massive undertaking for which the vast majority of Christians are woefully unprepared. In six chapters, Lopez explains what the Bible tells us about being self-sufficient rather than depending for survival on cultures that hate God.
Chapter I, "Obedience" brings Jeremiah 29 to the forefront. Current American Christians face a situation similar to Jeremiah's audience in that chapter. Lopez discusses the rise of a powerful antichristian culture, but he also tackles an issue that Christians often avoid: the role of antichrist spirits in the church. Caught between antichristian forces that hate Christianity and antichrist spirits that want to distort and exploit Christianity, true Christians live under danger of cancelation on two fronts. In this chapter Lopez lays out the importance of the four concurrent movements: the movement to launch new Christian schools, the movement to launch New Testament churches, the movement to form new Christian businesses, and the movement to build a new Christian media.
Chapter II, "Love: Cancel-Proofing Family," puts forward a new theory. Lopez suggests that cancel culture began in the homes of middle American Christian families. The family is the focal point of cancel culture because its greatest threat is against the ability of Christian fathers to provide for their families while living out their faith in the public square. A Christian father who loses his job may easily lose his wife and children. With the rise of divorce and ever-changing family structures after the 1960s, relationships in the home were no longer deemed permanent on account of their being based on blood kinship. With the advent of Brady Bunch utopianism, Americans came to believe that children would thrive with the presence of unrelated people in their domestic lives. This really destabilized many people's emotional lives and accustomed them to relationships that were contextual, contractual, and cancelable. The love of 1 Corinthians 13 got lost as people's insecurities and emotional neediness left them feeling too overwhelmed to offer patience, endurance, or forgiveness to others.
Chapter III, "Hope: Cancel-Proofing Education," is the only chapter that delves into Lopez's autobiography. In this chapter Lopez distinguishes between three kinds of education: antichristian education which provides no hope, antichrist education which provides false hope, and Christian education which provides true hope. School problems extend from family problems. Christian attempts to solve the problems with schools without considering the crisis in family life will lead to antichrist education prevailing rather than Christian education. Lopez describes the break between his middle school years, when he was hopeless but nearly came to Christ, and his high school years, when sudden popularity and academic success led him away from God toward vanity.
Chapter IV, "Faith: Cancel-Proofing Churches" deals with the enormous damage inflicted by the antichrist spirits in the church. The chapter opens with Revelation and the vision of the Bride of Christ, as well as the prophecy that many will be kept out of the heavenly city in the Last Judgment. While much of this chapter deals with the Southern Baptist Convention, Lopez makes the case that antichrist spirits in the churches have led to deadlier cancel culture than the antichristians of the pagan world. Looking at the abusive practices of church leaders such as non-disclosure agreements and arbitrary mediation, Lopez asserts that churches cannot be recovered once they have become worldly corporations simply touting a superficial Christian label to avoid legal liabilities, taxes, or ethical standards. The New Testament church is put forward as the antidote and the only way to have cancel-proof churches.
Chapter V, "Provision: Cancel-Proofing Workplaces" opens with 1 Thessalonians and Paul's mandate that Christians should work and avoid being dependent on outsiders to survive. In this chapter Lopez lays out the inherent tension between adult Christians' working lives and their goal of sanctification. Lopez argues that we need new businesses but we should not content ourselves with "Christian" businesses that conduct themselves the same way that antichristian pagans do. The Bible offers plentiful mandates showing how Christians should do business with one another, how workers should conduct themselves, how supervisors should act, and how to address nepotism and intergenerational decline in family-led entities.
Chapter VI, "Truth: Cancel-Proofing the Media," closes the book. It opens with Paul's letter to the Philippians. Here Lopez asserts that the media encompass areas that many Christians do not bother with. The technical side is confusing. The analytical part of the media feels exhausting because Christians have seen so many news and commentary outlets betray them over the years. And to deal with creative media, Christians have to deal with artists, who tend to be temperamental and sensitive and difficult. But Lopez emphasizes that the media will make the difference between an infrastructure and a civilization. He closes the book with a close look at Exodus, contrasting the heightened aesthetics and care expected of the Hebrews in God's instructions about the tabernacle, versus the reckless ugliness of the Golden Calf. Lopez contends that the other three realms, no matter how well they are designed, can all be destroyed if Christians have no means of producing excellent and beautiful truths in the culture at large to counter the blameworthy and ugly lies of pagan and antichrist spirits.