In the second point Davies gives claiming the irreconcilability between Christianity and anarchism, he complains that God demands our worship. But our worship is not needed by God. Read the Bible. You will see God as a self-confident Being. He has no insecurities. He is complete in Himself and does not need any to fall on their knees in worship of Him. That being said, it seems to be that deep within man, innate to him, is a tendency to worship.
How regrettable that Davies replaces the worship of God with the worship of man, for here is where the state steps in and takes advantage. It creates its own alleged center to reality—focused on presidents, kings, and other leaders in centralized involuntary authority structures. Think of all the mischief that has arisen over the centuries, not because of what the Bible says, but because of coercive authority structures set up by men who, in the final analysis, worship men. And yes, sometimes by religious authorities, only let’s be clear—their authority is not sustained as being God’s will in Scripture.
Davies asks if I can imagine the proud John Galt bowing before God. Knowing Ayn Rand was the author, no. However, Davies is being a bit quick off the line even here. Galt is portrayed as enough of a free spirit and eclectic that there is no reason whatsoever to think that if he came to conviction that mankind was the product of a personal, creator God, that he would refuse to bow down to Him. There is a great difference between bowing before finite man and infinite Creator, and no shame in bowing in awe before our Maker.
Davies third argument is that anarchism is based on reason but Christianity based on faith. He sees no reconciliation between these positions.
Alas, he suffers from a false dichotomy. Both, secular anarchism and Christian anarchism use reason and faith. First, let’s think about reason and Christianity. As Davies notes, Christianity works from a standpoint of accepting the validity of the phenomenon of revelation. The Christian anarchist understands via Scripture that when created, the earth testified of God’s goodness. It was entirely the handiwork of God.
When humans sinned, the creation was impacted. Some plants grew thorns or became poisonous, and animals were subdivided between predator and prey. Death had entered the creation. The graffiti of sin now defaced the divined handiwork; creation now gave mixed testimony. What’s more, man’s very nature was impacted. His capacity to reason, to use emotion, to exercise his capacity to choose rationally, was affected. Because of this, God gave direct revelation to help man better understand His situation and the divine plan to restore it.
Thus, the Christian sees the testimony of nature as unreliable in part. It is only reasonable for him then to look to revelation as given in the Bible. As for faith, its exercise is not a question of proof as much as of evidence and trust. Has God given sufficient pertinent evidence to support a system of belief? The Christian anarchist says yes.
The unbelieving anarchist looks at the natural world that surrounds him and does not anticipate revelation; his conclusions are based solely on his use of reason. He, too, deals not so much with proofs as with evidences. He trusts, exercises faith, in his own reason. Looking around him, he does not anticipate that the creation tells a mixed story; he does not operate from the assumption that his own capacity to reason may be diminished. Like the drunk who gets into his automobile uttering that he is perfectly able to drive it safely home, he takes his journey alone. He is unaware that he is weaving back and forth across the road. Unfortunately for him, he has no compelling answer for why the world is the way that it is.
The unbelieving anarchist operates in terms of his own theories and presuppositions. They are just different. Remember, our contention is not that the Christian anarchist holds the same beliefs as the non-Christian anarchist; only that the ideas of anarchism and Christianity are sufficiently compatible that they can comfortably fit together. I am not asking Davies to think or to believe just as I do. I am only hoping that he and others like him will be willing to take those seriously who believe in at least some respects as he does.
And so, Davies is mistaken. Both Christian anarchists and non-Christian anarchists use reason and both use faith. So, if there is a “flimsy foundation” as Davies charges, both groups are guilty.
Next: Part 6, considering Davies’ argument that these groups have opposing ethical standards.