This ongoing refutation of Brian Schwertley’s sermon series “The Kinist Heresy” continues to critique his coverage of the New Testament, amid a few other points he makes. Schwertley continues to engage in spurious exegesis and theological reasoning, as we will see below.
False Accusations of Paganism and Nazism
On several occasions, Schwertley accuses Kinists of promoting paganism. This began with his analysis of the Tower of Babel earlier in his series. He quotes a portion of the Kinist Manifesto that speaks of the achievements of the white people of Europe being established “through the confluence of pagan and Christian traditions.” Schwertley concludes that Kinists promote pagan beliefs and practices, repeating this accusations several times. To clear this up, it must be stated again that no Kinist promotes pagan beliefs or religious practices. We approve of our Christian ancestors’ adoption of pagan symbols and customs and giving them a Christian meaning. An example of this, mentioned previously, was the Celtic cross, adapted from the pre-Christian sun wheel. Other examples of Christian Europeans adapting the pre-Christian traditions of their ancestors include the use of representative government, a practice derived from the Roman Senate which is not based upon a particular Christian precedent or command. Another example is the use of the Gregorian calendar, based upon the pre-Christian Julian calendar which includes pagan names for the days of the week and the months of the year. Many pagan temples were converted into churches, and many pagan traditions were reformulated with explicitly Christian meanings. Schwertley might denounce all of this as satanic syncretism, but there is no question that this is the historic practice of Christendom. This is what Kinists mean when we speak of “the confluence of pagan and Christian traditions” as forming a vital cultural role for our people.
Therefore, it is entirely slanderous for Schwertley to accuse Kinists of believing “that we should honor our people’s pagan past and that we should continue to follow the heathen sacred days or reverence the old sacred pagan sites.” Schwertley likewise also accuses Kinists of believing that Christian unity is “less significant than some stupid pagan traditions handed down through time by unbelievers who hate God and worship idols.” He suggests that the Kinist seeks to downplay “the impact of the Gospel on the nations” and denies “the victory of the gospel as he externalizes pagan world views and thinking.” Schwertley maintains, “Kinism cannot lead to a Christian culture because it absolutizes race at the expense of God’s law and the church’s vital unity. It ultimately leads to a humanistic culture by divinizing the white race.” Schwertley alleges that Kinism exalts “paganism and syncretism in the name of Christianity” and “embraces Celtic and Aryan pagan barbarianism as [an] antidote to one-worldism and socialism” because we do not “understand the fact that there can be no neutrality.”
Finally, Schwertley states that Kinists offer a kingdom “built on . . . pagan quicksand”; “like the mystics and Nazis,” Kinists “fantasize about our ancient pagan Aryan past.” All of these accusations amount to sheer dishonesty. No Kinist advocates for celebrating “heathen sacred days” or reverencing “old sacred pagan sites.” A Celtic Christian who proudly displays a Celtic cross is not seeking to revive pagan beliefs or practices, but is rather showcasing Christ’s victory over pagan false gods and their symbols. Kinists do not believe that loyalty to the white race should ever come at the expense of fidelity to God’s law, and there isn’t a word in anything that Kinists have written indicate that we divinize our people.
Next, Schwertley proposes several scenarios in which he asks where people of mixed racial background should worship. None of these scenarios are particularly bothersome to Kinists. We do not believe that Christians of different races cannot worship together. The Bible teaches that racial homogeneity is God’s design for mankind, which does and should apply to the local church. This does not exclude Christians worshiping with Christians of other races, but it does mean that homogeneous churches should be normative, which is precisely the case when we look at the history of Christendom. French churches were filled with French people, and German churches were filled with Germans. In America, Christians have always worshiped with people of their own racial and ethnic background, and this trend continues today even at a time when integration is lauded by secular society. The most ethnically integrated congregations are most often megachurches that dilute the truth in order to attract large crowds of people.
Schwertley appeals to the example of Paul and his work with Timothy and Titus as though this somehow disproves Kinism. He notes that Timothy is said to have a Greek father and a Hebrew mother (Acts 16:1), as though this suggests that Timothy was of a mixed ethnic or racial background. It is more likely that Timothy may have been from a mixed religious background. Sometimes apostate Israelites who had become Hellenized were identified as Greeks. This would mean that Timothy’s father was likely an unbeliever. This contention is supported by the fact that Paul specifically points out that Timothy’s mother was a believer (Acts 16:1), and that Timothy’s father had not had him circumcised as an infant (Acts 16:3). Likewise, Paul praised the faith of Timothy’s grandmother Lois, and his mother Eunice, but omits any mention of being raised in the faith by his father (2 Tim. 1:5). This is likely because Timothy’s father was not a believer in the God of Israel. Even if Timothy’s father was an ethnic Greek, Paul’s use of Timothy for the ministry does not mean Paul approved of interracial marriage any more than this would mean that Paul approved of interreligious marriage. Furthermore, Paul’s cooperation with Titus, a Gentile, in his ministry need not imply the insignificance of ethnicity and nationhood; on the contrary, it was fitting for him, on ethnonationalist grounds, to have a Gentile assist him in his peculiar ministry to the Gentiles.
Earlier, Schwertley had suggested that most blacks in America are mixed “due to the sexual escapades of white slaveholders.” While it is true that most blacks in America have an admixture of some white and American Indian ancestry, their ancestry is still predominantly from sub-Saharan Africa. Furthermore, blacks are often the least mixed in areas of the Deep South where slavery was practiced the longest, and most mixed in areas where the stigma against race-mixing was the weakest. The idea that Southern plantations functioned as harems for white slave owners is largely a northern abolitionist myth invented to malign the South. That Schwertley passes this myth off to his congregation and readers without critical investigation of the veracity of this claim says a great deal about his lack of scholarship on important areas of disagreement. Perhaps Schwertley could have avoided his frivolous slanders of Kinists and the South if he had done proper research. Oddly enough, Schwertley asks about a man who is “only one-third African and two-thirds Aryan” while being oblivious to the fact that this proportion makes no sense in terms of heredity. Schwertley’s examples might pose some dilemmas, but difficult questions don’t require easy answers in order for the concept of race to have objective meaning. The reality is that the races aren’t as mixed as cultural Marxists would have us believe.1
No denunciation of Kinism would be complete without fulfilling Godwin’s Law and comparing Kinists to Nazis. All of these accusations are simply an emotional appeal based upon a false caricature of what Kinists believe and promote. Calling Kinists Nazis is an act of intellectual and rhetorical cowardice. Incidentally, Schwertley attempts to showcase his knowledge of German National Socialism by arguing that race realism is essentially an extension of Nazism. He writes, “The Nazis in Germany in the 1930s tried to answer these kinds of questions [regarding race and identity] ‘scientifically’ and produced a maze of absurd, arbitrary laws and regulations.” Schwertley poses several hypothetical questions about how people with various mixed racial backgrounds would fit into the Kinist paradigm. Schwertley believes the typical alienist canard that the concept of race is unscientific and Darwinistic when he writes, “It is simply impossible to divide people up according to race and segregate them without being totally arbitrary and inconsistent.” Schwertley suggests that trying to determine racial differences based upon morphological differences in skull structure is “absurd,” but the study of such morphological differences was pioneered not by the Germans in the 1930s, but rather by an American physician named Samuel Morton in the nineteenth century.2 It seems that Schwertley is simply repeating politically correct canards rather than presenting a well-researched overview of history. The truth is that race is an objective reality with a firm basis in science.3
Furthermore, laws that restricted interracial immigration and miscegenation did not take their origin from National Socialist Germany, since many of these laws originated in America as a way of respecting ethnic boundaries among multiracial populations. Prime examples of these types of laws were anti-miscegenation laws and the Naturalization Act of 1790, which restricted American citizenship to whites. These laws reflected American policy and practice and were revoked only during the liberal upheaval of the 1960s.
Perhaps Schwertley’s most ridiculous comment with regards to race and history is a comment that he makes in his audio sermon between 7:30 and 8:00. He states that he has studied the history of the Second World War “quite extensively,” and proceeds to tell us this story:
There’s a scene where Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS, was doing a tour of the death squads in the east, [where they] were killing people, and the death squad brought . . . a Jewish girl to him, who had blonde hair and blue eyes and looked Swedish, and he tried to get her to say that she was an Aryan, and she said, “Well, I’m a Jew,” and he said, “Well, I’m sorry, but we have to kill you,” and they killed her.
Schwertley introduces his narrative that is supposed to showcase his “extensive” knowledge of the history of World War II by saying, “there’s a scene,” and by doing so he demonstrates that he probably saw something in a movie or a propagandistic documentary. The case in question isn’t documented for the listener, and no source is provided for the purposes of verification. If Schwertley wants to argue that actual crimes necessarily result from race realism, then he needs to provide concrete examples. Simply remarking that “there’s a scene” isn’t good enough.
One of the worst aspects of Schwertley’s critique of Kinism is his blatant hypocrisy. Schwertley accuses Kinists of substituting “slogans and ad hominem attacks” for exegesis. He complains that Kinism is too “general and non-specific in particular applications” while accusing Kinists of being “bigots” who are guilty of “blatant racism” – even though these are both general and non-specific accusations which he has failed to define. Schwertley himself would undoubtedly be accused of racism by many in mainstream society since Christianity is said to be a racist religion, and he is just as likely as Kinists to be accused of bigotry for similar sins against political correctness, like sexism and homophobia. Racism and bigotry can mean virtually anything in today’s discourse, so it is hypocritical of Schwertley to accuse Kinists of being non-specific while hurling undefined accusations.
Perhaps the worst example of Schwertley’s hypocrisy is how he refers to Kinists as “crackers” on multiple occasions. Schwertley states that Kinists are guilty of taking a “southern-cracker concept of culture and imposing it on society and the church.” He also states, “The kinist heretic strikes at the very heart of the Bible’s doctrine of the church by adding his own southern white cracker traditions onto the teaching of Scripture.” Schwertley feels justified in using a racial slur against white Kinists, but does he use ethnic or racial slurs in arguing with non-white theological opponents? The reason for this hypocrisy is simple. It comports with the inherently hypocritical standards of political correctness. Schwertley condemns Kinists for abstract sins like “racism” and bigotry, but this condemnation doesn’t apply to him and his use of racial slurs against white people.
Schwertley says, “The Kinist has so perverted Christian theology that he lives in an Orwellian world where love is hate and hate is love,” while demonstrating his own love by slandering us as “fools” and “idiots” in his closing prayer. This is nothing but sheer hypocrisy, and it speaks volumes about Schwertley’s character. Finally, Schwertley states that Kinism can be summed up as, “Keep those dark-skinned people away from us white people.” It is easy for Schwertley to extol the virtues of integration and racial diversity and thunder his condemnation against the “racism” of Kinists for wanting to live in homogeneous communities, when in reality Schwertley’s church is located in a community that is nearly entirely white. Schwertley might contend that he would be fine if his community was filled with non-white orthodox Presbyterians to replace godless whites in his area, but this is a pure hypothetical and it doesn’t change the concrete reality of Schwertley’s hypocrisy.
Being “All Things to All Men” and the Galatian Heresy
Schwertley believes that 1 Corinthians 9:19-23 refutes the Kinist conception of nationalism and national identity. In this passage, the apostle Paul states,
For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more; and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might win those who are under the law; to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might win those who are without law; to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. Now this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I may be partaker of it with you.
Schwertley comments: “Was not Paul already a Jew of Jews, born of the tribe of Benjamin (see Phil. 3:5f.)? He certainly was. But the apostle was writing from the perspective of a Christian who had been made a new creation (2 Cor. 5:7) and thus was no longer defined as a Jew or a Greek, but as a Christian.” Schwertley reasons that because the Apostle Paul considered Christ to be his preeminent loyalty, he did not consider his national identity to be important at all. Paul does indeed consider Christ to be his first priority, and even considers all things a loss in comparison to Christ (Phil. 3:8). However, it is false to say that Paul no longer defined himself as an Israelite. Schwertley himself acknowledged that Paul considered Israelites in Rome to be his kinsmen. Likewise, Paul explicitly identifies himself as an Israelite in Romans 9, wherein he identifies unbelieving Israelites as his especial “kinsmen according to the flesh.” During a disputation with the Pharisees and Sadducees, Paul pronounces divine displeasure against the high priest Ananias. When he is accused of reviling the high priest, Paul quotes Exodus 22:28, which forbids cursing the ruler of your people. By identifying an apostate high priest as the ruler of his people, Paul is identifying himself with the Israelites even though the majority of them were not Christian. It should be obvious that Paul didn’t consider his loyalty to Christ to nullify his national identity or his loyalty to his people, even though many at that time were not Christians.
Schwertley states that because Paul was willing to adapt his conduct to the cultural practices of those whom he was evangelizing, this means that culture isn’t important to a Christian – yet this actually proves the opposite. Paul expected cultural differences to remain among Christians of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Paul willingly followed the cultural customs of those whom he was evangelizing precisely because he did not expect all Christians to merge into one common culture. Another important consideration is the context in which Paul states that he will be all things to all men. Paul isn’t expressing indifference to culture as such; rather, Paul is stating that he is willing to forgo his Christian liberty and keep the ceremonial laws among the Jews, and while not observing them among the Gentiles. Paul didn’t expect Jews to become Greeks or Greeks to become Jews. According to the apostle Paul, Christian liberty means that we are no longer bound by the ceremonial law, but he was willing to forgo his liberty in order to avoid needlessly offending the sensibilities of those to whom he was ministering.
This is important to remember when considering Paul’s rebuke of Peter in Galatians. Schwertley insists that Paul rebukes Peter for “acting like a Kinist.” This statement shows that Schwertley understands neither Kinism nor the nature of Paul’s rebuke. Why does Paul condemn Peter when Paul himself asserted, “unto the Jews I became as a Jew” (1 Cor. 9:20)? John Calvin explains the difference between the conduct of Paul and Peter. “Paul accommodated himself to the Jews no farther than was consistent with the doctrine of liberty,” while “Peter Judaized in such a manner as to compel the Gentiles to suffer bondage, and at the same time to create a prejudice against Paul’s doctrine.” The Judaizers believed that the Gentiles should be required to keep the precepts of the ceremonial law, especially the law of circumcision, in order to be Christians. This was a violation of the principle of Christian liberty, as Paul makes abundantly clear in Galatians 2:11-16, when he points out Peter’s hypocrisy for forgoing the ceremonial law when it suited him while compelling the Gentiles to keep the ceremonial law to please the Judaizers. This encounter between Paul and Peter had nothing to do with the propriety of national identity among Christians. Schwertley is reading his own bias into the context of 1 Corinthians 9 and Galatians 2.
Conclusion to Schwertley on the New Testament
As someone who has profited at times from Schwertley’s writings on various subjects, I cannot help but be disappointed by Schwertley’s attempt at refuting Kinism. I’ve come across numerous examples of Schwertley’s ability to combine sound biblical exegesis with firm logic, but his sermons against Kinism do not display these qualities. He frequently stoops to base insults and ad hominem attacks, all while condemning us “crackers” as hateful bigots. Schwertley’s duplicity is obvious even to a casual observer. In addition to his hypocrisy, Schwertley grossly misinterprets many important New Testament passages such as those dealing with Christian unity and the Galatian heresy. Schwertley believes that Christian unity precludes national (and by extension ethnic and racial) loyalty. This is sufficiently refuted by the observation that Paul continues to identify his people as ethnic Israelites, even though most of them were not Christians. Furthermore, Christian unity also transcends the distinction between men and women, as Galatians 3:28 indicates, so that Schwertley’s interpretation of this verse, if consistently applied, would lead to absolutely untenable positions, such as the belief in women’s ordination and the full-blown acceptance of sodomy. Schwertley fails to understand the nature of the Galatian heresy. Peter’s error wasn’t in treating ethnicity as an essential aspect of a Christian’s identity, but rather in insisting that the Gentiles observe the ceremonial law. Schwertley utterly fails when he argues that 1 Corinthians 7:39 teaches that a Christian can marry anyone as long as that person is a Christian. This misunderstanding is due to Schwertley’s narrow understanding of the meaning of “only in the Lord.” In addition to these misapplications of New Testament Scriptures, Schwertley also ignores the many New Testament passages that support Kinism.
Schwertley omits any commentary on Acts 17:26-27, in which Paul teaches that God has divided the nations and set their boundaries. These very boundaries are said to play a role in the nations finding God. This is certainly relevant to Kinism, and yet Schwertley’s entire sermon series omits any mention of this passage. Schwertley also fails to mention 1 Timothy 5:8, in which Paul states that Christians must provide for their own people, especially those of their own households, and that those who do not are worse than infidels. This is significant in that Paul identifies his own people as his kinsmen according to the flesh in Roman 9:3 – another verse which Schwertley fails to address. Schwertley similarly fails to take note of Philemon 16, in which Paul appeals to Philemon to accept Onesimus as a brother, not only in the Lord as a fellow Christian, but also in the flesh as an ethnic kinsman. If physical relationships do not matter after conversion, why does Paul ask Philemon to accept Onesimus as a brother in the flesh?
In the Gospels, Schwertley fails to note that Jesus sends His disciples exclusively to the lost sheep of the house of Israel at the beginning of their public ministry (Matthew 10:6), and states that He is also sent to the same people (Matthew 15:24). While this doesn’t preclude the salvation of all nations, it does demonstrate that Jesus made His own nation a priority in His personal ministry, just as He did so by choosing His disciples from His own nation (and in the case of James and John the sons of Zebedee, probably His close family members), and having His disciples confine their early public ministry to the Israelites. When Jesus does commission His disciples to take the gospel message to all nations, He commands them to disciple the nations as nations. Nowhere does Jesus indicate that this discipleship of the nations would lead to their irrelevancy, dissolution, or eventual amalgamation into one Christian body politic. These omissions are glaring, and they indicate that Schwertley hasn’t done the research necessary for a rebuttal of the Kinist position. Schwertley’s entire sermon series seems to focus on peripheral passages that are only tangentially related to the issues at hand, while ignoring important passages establishing the importance of national identity and distinctions for the propagation of the gospel and the maintenance of a Christian social order. In the next article, to wrap up this series on Schwertley’s sermon series against Kinism, I will address the eschatology of race. Race and ethnicity are a permanent, not a transient, aspect of our God-given identity.
Read Part 9
- These articles provide useful information on the difference between absolute genealogical purity of race, which does not exist, and relative genetic purity, which does exist: “Racial Purity, Genetic Ethnic Interests, & The Cobb Case” by Ted Sallis, and “95% of White Americans Have No African Ancestry.” ↩
- Recently, Morton’s analysis has been vindicated against the false accusations of leftist Stephan Jay Gould. ↩
- For more information on the biological reality of race, see “The Reality of Race” and part 2 of my rebuttal of Ken Ham. ↩