On Christmas Day, 2021, Dr. Gary North posted his last message to the public. Here it is (it was titled “Merry Christmas”):
I am sending you my latest book, The Biblical Structure of History. This is my final book. I wrote it in six weeks: October 3 to mid-November. In early December, my health began to fail. I can no longer write my daily articles. I look back in gratitude: I completed my final project. My timing was right. Thanks for reading my tips for the last sixteen years (or whatever).
My book is here: The Biblical Structure of History
North was a PhD of History. On another page on his website, he had already posted the individual chapters. The page contains the following introductory words:
There is no neutrality in academia. This applies to the study of history.
Historians abandoned any commitment to neutral history a century ago. Yet they pretend that they are sufficiently neutral to be entitled to financial support by taxpayers. Public day schools and tax-funded universities teach anti-Christian history.
Homeschool families have no materials to teach students how to deal with humanistic historians in college. The students are sent into the academic meatgrinder unprepared.
My book will prepare them.
I have today finished reading this book and will now quote passages from its final chapter, the title of which is: “Progress”.
Biblical progress means the redemption of the world. This will be comprehensive. It will apply to every area of life that is presently under the dominion of sin. There will be no safe zones for sin.
Evidence of God’s comprehensive redemption will be widespread knowledge of the word of God. Dominion is not merely technological. It is covenantal.
The Bible teaches that there are rival kingdoms that compete for dominion in history. They do so in terms of rival systems of ethics. The conflict between the two kingdoms is not primarily based on power. It is based on ethics. The kingdom of man does have a tendency to manifest itself as a power religion. But the Bible makes it clear that this strategy of dominion eventually fails. “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God. They are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright” (Psalm 20:7–8). “Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction. How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! they are utterly consumed with terrors” (Psalm 73:18–19). The biblical basis of long-term dominion is obedience to God’s laws.
A Christian historian should begin with this premise: there has been no change in the concepts of covenantal success and failure with the coming of the New Covenant. There is ethical conflict in every area of life between the two kingdoms. A Christian historian should understand that there has been an escalation of conflict because of the New Covenant. The conflict has spread outside the borders of Israel ever since the days of Augustus Caesar. There has been an increasing self-consciousness on the part of both covenant-keepers and covenant-breakers about the nature of the conflict. Each side becomes more self-conscious about implementing its worldview at the expense of the other. Renaissance humanists were far more self-conscious than their predecessors. Enlightenment humanists were more self-conscious than Renaissance humanists. Humanists in the nineteenth century became more self-conscious than humanists in the eighteenth century. Humanists in the twentieth century continued this increase in awareness regarding the threat of Christianity to the extension of the kingdom of man. But, with each escalation of self-awareness, humanists have become more irrational. The confidence of Renaissance humanism is no longer widespread among humanists in the twenty-first century. The epistemological and moral acids of deconstructionism and postmodernism have undermined humanism. These acids have barely touched Christians. Among those Christians who did not go to graduate school, these acids have had almost no effect at all.
With greater wealth and greater knowledge comes greater responsibility. This is a fundamental principle of life. Most societies understand this. People teach this to their children. But covenant-breakers do not recognize this truth in their own lives when they prosper. Their success leads them into disasters. This is what Psalm 73 teaches. Success for covenant-breakers is a slippery slope. It confirms their covenant. They are deceived by this confirmation.
Humanists are losing faith in the future. They are also losing faith in Western civilization. The top American universities ceased requiring a course in Western civilization in the 1990’s. Postmodernist historiography has called into question the historiography of the modernists, the Enlightenment, and the Renaissance. This creates a tremendous opportunity for Christian historians to re-interpret the history of Western civilization in terms of the contributions of Christendom, which is what Renaissance historians dedicated themselves to refuting.
Humanism is now in defensive mode. It dominates the institutions of higher learning and public education. It dominates what are called the mainstream media. But their audiences are shrinking. A kind of disintegration is taking place. This disintegration became visible in 2011: the so-called Arab Spring. It was an unorganized revolt against Middle Eastern governments. It began to spread. This has been chronicled in a 2014 book by Martin Gurri: The Revolt of the Public. Social media available on smartphones have begun to fragment the establishment’s near-monopoly of control over the flow of information. It took less than a decade from the development of YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter to overturn governments in the Middle East and around the world. It happened without warning.
The Internet has created opportunities for evangelism and education on a scale unparalleled in human history. It is time for Christian historians and Christian storytellers to take advantage of this opportunity.
This final chapter is followed by a conclusion to the final part of the book, a conclusion to the book, and one appendix (“A Battle Over Narratives”).
I pray that North’s work will fall on fruitful ground, that it will help gain converts to Christianity and prepare future readers for the ongoing clash between the “two kingdoms”.