The thirty nine articles and the second book of homilies.

The most successful recovery from a left singularity was the restoration, which created a counter theocracy, restoration Anglicanism, which lasted from 1660 to 1828.  The Anglican religion theoretically endorsed the divine right of the King.  Since, however, by long established precedent the King could not actually behave like an absolute monarch without losing his head, the practical effect of this was to discourage private citizens from political power, from intruding on the royal prerogative.  So, the main function of the King’s supposedly absolute power was to prevent anyone from exercising it, and similarly, the main function of the official religion was to prevent competing religions from seeking and obtaining power.

Every Englishman who wanted to attend a prestigious university, or get elected to parliament, or get a prestigious government job, had to declare allegiance to the thirty nine articles, and the second book of homilies, just as today he has to write essays proving how progressive he is.

Most of the articles concern things of the next world, for example that God is Three and God is One, stuff that can never be proven or disproven, and has little effect on life on earth.  But some of the articles very much concern things of this world.

Paraphrasing them, and re interpreting them as a reaction to the left singularity ending in Cromwell and the continuing struggle with Puritan descended forces:


Article Fourteen:
“Voluntary Works besides, over, and above, God’s Commandments, which they call Works of Supererogation, cannot be taught without arrogance and impiety” Thus, no loudly proclaimed excessive holiness, no claims of authority based on extra and unusual holiness, thus, No Pharisees! You are encouraged to be holier than is required but forbidden to teach others to be holier than required, forbidden to claim authority on the basis of superior holiness
In other words, leftism forbidden, puritanism forbidden, for the fundamental core of leftism and its nominally Christian predecessors is Phariseeism:  “I am holier than thou, therefore I am entitled to command thee”, which leads to the left singularity as each Pharisee competes to be holier than each of the others.
Articles Eighteen to Twenty one:
The official church is officially true.  Accept no substitutes!
Article Twenty Three:
Only those officially endorsed to preach at you should be preaching at you.  Claims of authority not based on official endorsement should not be accepted.  In other words, no puritans, no pharisees, no leftists.
Article Twenty Six:
Conspicuous lack of holiness among official ministers of the church is irrelevant.  They are still officially official.  So ignore the pharisees pointing out that they are much holier than the official ministers, and claiming authority thereby.  It is being official, not being holy, that counts. Thus no Pharisaical competition to be holier than thou, because no claims of authority based on mere holiness should be accepted.
Article Thirty Four:
Rituals reflect custom, and are ultimately arbitrary, so variations in official ritual are OK,  And thus the puritan claim that their rituals are more authentic than the official rituals is irrelevant, and Roman Catholics can comfortably proclaim themselves Anglican while continuing to practice their preferred rituals.  Holy wars over the question of how many fingers are to be used when crossing oneself are not merely stupid, but impious.
Article Thirty Five:
Includes the second book of homilies, the official sermons that everyone that goes to church heard on a regular schedule.  Thus when an Englishmen declared he believed in the thirty nine articles, which was required to be allowed anywhere near the levers of power, he declared he believed in all of the official sermons.
Article Thirty Seven:
Give unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s.  Declares the superior authority of the state over the church in the things of this world. In particular,  no conscientious objection allowed, no conscientious civil disobedience.  If you are in the army or the militia, and the King sends you into some war, off you go.  The church does not have secular authority.  Superior holiness does not give anyone secular authority.
Article Thirty Eight:
Communism is bad!  “The Riches and Goods of Christians are not common, as touching the right, title, and possession of the same,” Private property is ordained by God.

Anglicans, of course, should go to church, though they generally did not, and if they went to church would hear the Second book of Homilies preached, which homilies they piously affirmed they agreed with then they declared that they agreed with the thirty nine articles.

Among the Homilies of the Second Book of Homilies:

Seventeen: A homily for the days of Rogation Week.

“It is the blessing of the Lord that maketh rich men (Proverbs 10.22). To this agrees that holy woman Anne, where she says in her song: ‘It is the Lord that maketh the poor, and maketh the rich, it is he that promotes and pulls down,’”

This homily is restated in the hymn “All Things Bright and Beautiful”

Each little flower that opens,
Each little bird that sings,
He made their glowing colors,
He made their tiny wings.

The rich man in his castle,
The poor man at his gate,
He made them, high or lowly,
And ordered their estate.

In other words, since (before Darwin) the natural world was obviously the product of divine design, social inequality was also the product of divine design.

In our era, post Darwin, I doubt we could get away with this one.  Instead, need to teach micro economics, from which follows a great many reactionary things that economists are embarrassed to mention, among other things “The Chamley-Judd Redistribution Impossibility Theorem” which tells us that redistribution from capitalists to workers is impossible, and trying to do so merely buggers the economy making everyone worse off.  Economists find it very difficult to express this theorem in plain language, for the plain language version is pretty much “Ayn Rand was right.”

Eighteen: the State of Matrimony

Wives should obey their husbands.  Husbands may beat wives for misconduct, but should endeavor to obtain obedience by gentler means.

Twenty one:  A Homily against disobedience and willful rebellion.

This tells everyone that they should obey the King and abstain from politics.


One solution to America’s problem would be swipe one of the more manly of the descendents of Charles the second, such as prince Harry, and restore Restoration Anglicanism, but I suspect that, because of Darwin, the decline of the manly and martial aristocracy, and the shriveling of Christianity to a tiny remnant, that would not work.  Instead, need something that has the same effect of as restoration Anglicanism.

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11 Responses to “The thirty nine articles and the second book of homilies.”

  1. Jake says:

    What about Mormonism? By birthrates alone they’re going to be a huge power base very soon.

    • Simon says:

      That would involve humbling yourself to God – jim won’t go in for that.

    • jim says:

      I hope we will end this business without waiting that long. Indeed, if we do wait that long the electricity will stop running, as in North Korea, and we shall huddle in the demon haunted dark, hiding from the evil spirits of fracking and radioactivity.

      • Red says:

        Jim,
        You clearly need a religion strong enough to bind the faithful and newcomers alike together for a “restoration” without the destructive nature of Islam. I don’t know much about Mormonism, but it seems to have a stronger hierarchical structure that modern day Protestant Christianity or Catholicism. I’ve never had much of an interest in it due to it’s ban on drinking and smoking, but it might be worth taking a closer look at.

        • jim says:

          Seems to me that Restoration Anglicanism, and its royal predecessor, the Episcopate, was kind of cobbled together ad hoc to give unity and cohesion to the ruling elite, rather than being an outgrowth of natural cohesion.

          Pardon my secularism, but it seems to me that micro economics can do quite a lot what religion does. While no one knows the truth about macro economics, micro economics is knowable, and mostly gives well defined answers to the questions: “What is a positive sum (voluntary) interaction and what is a negative sum (coercive) interaction?” If the elite agree upon that, then they don’t come in conflict with each other, coercive interactions being forbidden between members of the elite.

  2. Jehu says:

    Jesus is very clear that Christians are NOT to obtain status, even among other Christians, by the profession of piety—ie, by being a Pharisee, even if the orthopraxis is also there. Instead, if they want status they are to obtain it through being a servant. Several elderly ladies at my church go about this by bringing food to our services with exceptional skill and joyful hearts. Others doing it by helping the less Cathedral-savvy members of the congregation to navigate the unholy complexity that plagues their lives. Others share their hospitality with other members of the congregation. That’s how Christianity is supposed to work, and guess what, it doesn’t create any apex alphas. Perhaps that’s why Churchianity has a much bigger market share.

  3. […] The thirty nine articles and the second book of homilies. « Jim’s Blog […]

  4. […] And today, the successors of those that executed the king have officially unofficial theocracy.  To go to the best universities, to run for political office, to be employed in the government service, you have to submit essays and evidence of your commitment to one thousand and one points of progressive doctrine, much as in restoration England, you had to swear allegiance to the thirty nine articles and the second book of homilies. […]

  5. […] holier than thou if not them? I guess the Catholic Church will not do as a replacement for the Anglican one. I sure could use some depoliticizing repression myself, I’d probably spend my time more […]

  6. […] the Restoration, for example, the English monarchs imposed the 39 Articles and the Second Book of Homilies (sacredness violation warning: contains Jim) as the core of the sacred official belief system. The […]

  7. Brit says:

    “Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that in us you might learn not to exceed what is written, in order that no one of you might become arrogant in behalf of one against the other,” (1 Cor. 4:6)

    Scripture itself is against the puritans and holier-than-thou

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