R. J. Rushdoony insists that his model of Christian Reconstruction is strictly biblical. But he allows that his Armenian family background may have something to do with the way he understands the Bible.

Rushdoony was born in New York City in 1916, not long after parents Yeghiazar and Rose arrived in the United States. For nearly 2,000 years, Rushdoony ancestors lived on a mountain adjoining the biblical Ararat. R. J. proudly relates that, in the Rushdoony line, there is an unbroken succession of fathers and sons or nephews who were pastors from the early fourth century until the present. The present-day father of Christian Reconstruction thus comes from a highly religious family living in a distinctly religious country.

About A.D. 300, Armenia became the first nation to accept Christianity as the state religion. A century and a half later, the Armenian church was separated from the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches by virtue of its refusal to accept the orthodox Chalcedon Creed.

When Protestant, mostly Calvinist, missionaries arrived in Armenia in the nineteenth century, the nature or natures of Christ became the subject of passionate debate. The official Armenian church taught that Christ had one, wholly divine nature; the Calvinists, having accepted the Chalcedon Creed as essential to orthodox Christianity, taught that he had two—human and divine. This was a major difference between fledgling Armenian Protestantism and the old Armenian church. The Rushdoony family became a part of the Armenian Protestant minority, which naturally (given its context) viewed the Chalcedon formula as the keystone of genuine Christianity.

Accordingly, Reconstruction has emphasized the importance of the creed. The inside back cover ...

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