God’s Providence: What If Jesus Had Never Been Born - Part 2 (Transcript)

Dr. James Dobson: You're listening to Family Talk, the radio broadcasting division of the James Dobson Family Institute. I am that James Dobson and I'm so pleased that you've joined us today.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Well, welcome back to Family Talk. Happy Thanksgiving. Hope you're enjoying some football and family and a lot of good food and more. What a wonderful time of the year. I wanted to start our broadcast today out by just going to Psalm 100, and it's a Psalm that I love to read, especially on Thanksgiving Day. It says, "Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye land. Serve the Lord with gladness. Come before His presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord, he is God. It is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves. We are His people, and the sheep of His pasture." Verse 4 says, "Then enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise. Be thankful unto Him and bless His name." And I love this. Verse 5, "For the Lord is good, His mercy is everlasting and His truth endureth to all generations."

Again, happy Thanksgiving and we're so delighted that you've joined us here today and it's a delight to bring back to our studio Dr. Jerry Newcombe. Jerry is the executive director of the Providence Forum and he's an historian who just has a passion for understanding our Judeo-Christian heritage. He's a best-selling author and you know him from his association with the Dr. D. James Kennedy Ministries. Jerry, welcome back, and a special Thanksgiving greeting from Dr. Dobson and our entire team here to you and your lovely wife, Kristi.

Jerry Newcombe: Thank you for the privilege.

Dr. Tim Clinton: In a time when it seems like truth is dying, truth is truth, Jerry, and the truth is it applies to all generations. That's what Thanksgiving's all about.

Jerry Newcombe: That's right. That's right. Each generation can rediscover the great American saga, the quest for freedom, and ultimately it gets back to God. What is America in one phrase, a two-part phrase, but one phrase? America is self-rule under God. You can describe it any way you want to and be like the consent of the governed and all those kinds of things, but basically you got to have the God part because if you don't have the God part, then basically our rights are up to the state and what the state giveth the state can taketh away as my good friend, Bill Federer, great historian who's by the way a guest in many of these different programs that we've made for the Providence Forum series, which is called the Foundation of American Liberty. But God-given rights are non-negotiable, and so we live at a time when somehow Americans think that the government gives us our rights. No, it does not. God gives our rights and the founders, God bless them, they understood that our rights come from the Creator and therefore they are indeed non-negotiable.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Jerry, one of the concerns that has really presented itself in our culture modern day times is what's happening in our schools, what's being taught about America's heritage, America's original story. Jerry, can you take us back there? I know The New York Times came out with that 1619 Project. I know there was the 1776 Commission. Two completely different narratives if you will, but what are some of your thoughts and what's the application here from moms and dads?

Jerry Newcombe: Well, the 1619 Project postulates that America didn't begin in 1776 when the founders declared independence from Great Britain and dependence upon the Almighty God. It began rather in 1619 when the first Africans were brought over as slaves. Actually initially they were indentured servants in Jamestown. So 1619 is when unfortunately what became this whole evil institution of slavery. It began in 1619, and in fact, the lady that is the chief author of the 1619 Project originally even wrote that the reason that there was the American War for Independence, the American Revolution, it was all about slaveholders protecting their slave-holding interests, which frankly is absurd. Because for example, in 1774, two years before the founders declared independent, 1774, in Virginia, several of the Burgesses in the House of Burgesses, this would include George Washington, James Mason, and then also Thomas Jefferson, they created something called the Fairfax Resolves. And the purpose of the Fairfax Resolves was to abolish the slave importation of slaves coming from Africa or coming from the Caribbean, no more into Virginia.

And people need to realize that the fight against slavery, for example, Wilberforce's Christian crusade against slavery was in two phases. Phase one, stop the slave trade, stop the bleeding, if you will. Phase two, then free the slaves. And so the founders actually started this process of trying to stop the slave trade. And in fact, what happened was King George III said, "No, no, we will not allow this Fairfax Resolves. Get in line you colonists, I'm in charge, not you." And so it's amazing though that the founding fathers of America get no credit for something like that. Then later on when they wrote the Constitution in 1787, they actually wrote it up and they said one of the stipulations of this is within 20 years of this going into effect, the slave trade will stop. And that did stop in 1808. Now, unfortunately because of the cotton gin being invented and the demand for slavery then growing real fast, there were a number of slaves that were already here, and so they populated, and so therefore that didn't end slavery. But they started the process. They also wrote something called the Northwest Ordinance, which said, okay, new territories that are added that become states in the United States, they will follow this model. And one of them, one of the stipulations of that was no slavery in those states.

So the founders really, there were a lot of attempts that were made to stop slavery. So to say that the American Revolution was about protecting the right to own slaves is absolutely historically false. It's just false.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Jerry, that's fascinating to me because there's a real attempt to erase and rewrite history and all this is going on. A fascinating piece to me too was in your documentary, A City on the Hill, we talked a little bit about yesterday, states that the Puritans cherish the biblical concept of covenant. That was an agreement for self-government under God. In other words, our rights come from God, not from the government. That's an important concept for everybody to understand, isn't it?

Jerry Newcombe: Absolutely. And that's why your dad, when he was serving in World War II, and thank you for his service. When he came back to the United States, he kissed the ground because you can smell the freedom, you can feel it. God did something very special in the founding of America in helping to show the way that city on a hill, that the founders were not perfect by any means. The settlers of America were not perfect by any means, but they did strive towards creating a more perfect union, and there's a reason people will risk their lives to try and come here to America, even to this day. If America was as bad as what people who postulate the 1619 Project say it is, it's almost like they should go to the southern border and say, "Hey, everybody, turn around. America stinks. It's just a hopelessly racist country."

Some that postulate the 1619 Project again, the idea that America began when the first African slaves came to this country, not 1776 when the founders declared dependence on Almighty God, but independence from England, they should almost go to the border and say, "Hey, America stinks because we're bad and we've always been bad." Did you realize that some that postulate the 1619 Project believe that America's racism is in our DNA, it's in the national DNA? In other words, America is hopelessly racist, it can never get over racism. Well, that's a terrible, terrible message.

Dr. Carol Swain, for example... You mentioned the 1776 Unites. That was a response by scholars, historical scholars against the 1619 Project saying, "You're off base." It even includes some secular historians that are like, "No, no, no, this is bad history that you're trying to pedal here."

And Dr. Carol M. Swain, an African American, former professor at Vanderbilt Law School and also Princeton, she's on the board of D. James Kennedy Ministries. She's terrific. And she said that the CRT, the critical race theory, and this will be true of the 1619 Project as well, it sends a very crippling message to little Black children. It basically says, "No matter how hard you try, you're not going to succeed in America because this country is systemically racist." Well, she said it in a radio interview with me, and by the way, she co-wrote a book called Black Eye for America. It's all about critical race theory and why it gives America a black eye. She said that this crippling message tells children you can't succeed no matter what. And she said, you could say America might have been systemically racist up until the early 1960s when the different civil rights laws were passed and voting laws and so forth. But once those things were passed, yeah, you have anecdotes of racism here and there and so forth, but you don't have the systemic racism which they had to deal with before the acceptance of those laws.

So, you were asking me earlier about some of these documentaries that we made. One of the ones coming up in February, to be released in February is called We the People. And it not only deals with the Constitution and how Christianity played a major role in that. It shows how Christianity helped play a major role in helping alleviate some of the bad things that were done, let's say, to Black people or to Indians in the American experience.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Jerry, I want to wrap up this piece. This documentary no doubt has had even at this stage of your life, a real impact on you personally and professionally. And when I think of what's happening in modern day culture, and again, the attempts to silence or shame or stigmatize people to erase history and more, it's just shocking. And to see it in culture, it's just like, God, be with us. Lead us.

You're listening to Family Talk, a division of the James Dobson Family Institute. I'm Dr. Tim Clinton, co-host and our special guest again is Dr. Jerry Newcombe. He is the executive director of the Providence Forum. He's a historian, best-selling author, also senior producer and on-air host for Truth that Transforms. That's that flagship television broadcast of the D. James Kennedy Ministries. Jerry, again, a fun conversation, amazing conversation. No doubt people are saying, "Hey, where in the world can we learn more about these documentaries if we want to watch them maybe right now?" I wrote down providenceforum.org, that's providenceforum.org, or I think you said djameskennedy.org. Is that correct?

Jerry Newcombe: Yes, both are correct. And in fact, the providenceforum.org, that's where you can get more information on these historical documentaries, which is called the Foundation of American Liberty series. I created it. If anybody asked me, "Well, what's the foundation of American Liberty?" The answer is our Judeo-Christian heritage and that we were grateful to have people like Dennis Prager, Eric Metaxas, Os Guinness, Alveda King, the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., contribute comments in this series of documentaries, one of which is A City on a Hill, all about the settling era of America before we had independence. So in other words, mostly focusing in the 1600s and early, early 1700s.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Can you imagine what would happen if every young person, mom, dad, but every young person watched those documentaries and let God soak that in their hearts? Especially in this day and hour that we're living in, Jerry we're fighting time and on Thanksgiving Day, we enjoyed ourself every year like we're going to do this year. And Jerry, on Friday, my mind shifted all the way to Christmas already. I love to just get after it. Let's start singing Christmas carols. Let's get the lights up, let's get after it. You guys are coming out with a new documentary, a new film called What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? I think it goes back to a work that you and Dr. D. James Kennedy did together back in the '90s, but tell us a little bit about it and the greatest story ever told. At the end of the day, everything we're talking about ultimately anchors itself in Christ.

Jerry Newcombe: It does. You're absolutely right. The impact of Jesus Christ on our planet is just, is without parallel. And in fact, Dr. Kennedy and I, when we wrote this book back in 1994, both of us appreciated the movie that we'll probably be seeing in the next couple weeks, maybe you and your family as well, called It's a Wonderful Life with a Jimmy Stewart character. It's a Frank Capper movie. The Jimmy Stewart character sees what life would be like had he never been born, and he realizes that it actually made a difference. And we thought, well, what if that principle were to be applied to Jesus Christ because so many aspects of our culture we're just incredibly impacted by Jesus Christ. There's not one square mile on this planet that you can find where all these kinds of different positive things that we've enjoyed in Western civilization... Yes, we've had lots of problems, but a lot of that is when we're moving away from Christ.

But the influence of Jesus in terms of charity and hospitals, the phenomenon of hospitals were started by Christians. The phenomenon of education for the masses, public education, the foreigner public education, that all gets back to Christianity. For example, in the American experience, the goal was, well, we need to be able to read the Bible for ourselves, so therefore we need to be able to read. Therefore, we're going to go ahead and start schools. So the Puritans were the ones who started all those original public schools. They weren't called that back then, but in Massachusetts, so people could read the Bible for themselves. In fact, the first law that they passed about that was called the Old Deluder Satan Act. And the preface of that law said it being one of the chief ends of that old deluder, Satan, "To keep men from the Word of God, we're going to go ahead and have it so that children can learn how to read the Bible for themselves." Even when they learn their ABCs, they learn from something called the New England Primer, of which there were literally millions, tens of millions of copies made, and they learned their ABCs through biblical truths.

So ultimately we do need to get back to God. This is a generation that is lacking because the God factor's been cut out. I mean, basically the Supreme Court made some wrong decisions way back when that effectively made it so that in the public school arena, all ideas just about are allowed under the public schools except anything related to God or certainly Jesus Christ. And it's like, well wait a minute, education for the masses goes back to the Bible, goes back for young people to learn about Jesus Christ. And so we need to get back to God. I mean, that's really at the end of the day, America needs to come back to God. But what if Jesus had never been born? Just shows how we can document in one area after another of human endeavor, Christianity made incredible contributions that were extremely important.

I mean, one aspect that's even not even thought about these days very much is science. It was Christianity that gave birth to what became modern science because they felt that a rational God had made a rational universe. And it was their idea as scientists to think God's thoughts after Him. Sir Isaac Newton wrote more about the Bible and theology than he did about science. So, What If Jesus Had Never Born? shows how if Jesus had never come, to paraphrase C. S. Lewis, it would be always winter but never Christmas.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Jerry, I'm looking at Romans 11:36, "For from Him and through Him and for Him are all things, and to Him be the glory forever and ever." There's something about the holidays, Jerry, that just warms our hearts, hopefully slows us down, anchors us, and settles us. That no matter what the noise is or the chaos that's going on around us, and no matter the insanity of what's happening in culture to erase and shut down different things, at the end of the day, it all comes back to a babe in a manger, to the one that the pilgrims said thank you to as they began to celebrate God's goodness and grace, even in spite of their circumstances and challenges. The ones who began to build this country, who anchored themselves in the belief that we don't get our rights again from the government, we get them from God. And it's to that end that joy floods our hearts.

I want to close with a verse and I wanted to give you a closing thought here as we wrap up this little double hit on the holidays, Jerry. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, "In everything give thanks; for this is the will of the Father concerning you." Jerry, when we do that, when we go to that place, it just seems like everything else fades and everything... Darkness turns into light, doesn't it?

Jerry Newcombe: It does indeed. There's no greater attribute really than to be grateful. In fact, one practice that I've started to develop in the last year or so, I try to think in the morning, go through in my mind a hundred things that I'm grateful for, a hundred things. And it's just amazing how when you just count your blessings and you realize what God has done for us. And earlier when you were talking about how the life of Christ touches us and it touched the pilgrims and the Puritans and so many of the founding fathers, not all of them, but most of them.

I think of a time where about 10 years ago in a busy mall, this happened to be in Canada, while they had all these harassed shoppers in the food court, this lady gets up and starts singing Hallelujah. She starts singing the Hallelujah chorus and then a janitor gets up and joins her and then someone else does it. And this was a flash performance. You've probably seen this video. I can't watch it without tearing up because of how beautiful the Hallelujah chorus is. And this was performed really professionally and all the shoppers are just so amazed. There's nothing like Jesus Christ and His coming into our world to touch the human heart and human soul. No wonder so many great things were started by Christians for Christian purposes. Even to this day that work continues.

For example, there are languages around this world that have never been set to writing. Christian missionaries are now... We don't know these people by name, but many of them under Wycliffe and other mission outlets, they're taking time to get that language to be written down so that they can translate the Bible into that as of yet unwritten tongue. Wow, what a difference Jesus Christ has made in every way, including spreading literacy, knowledge, and above all, dying for us in our place, paying a price He did not owe and then sealing the deal by rising from the dead on the third day. The ultimate Christmas gift is accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and living for Him because He makes all the difference in the world. Every beat of the human heart, I don't care who you are, every beat of your heart is courtesy of Jesus Christ. So why not make peace with Him? Accept Him this Christmas season? Is the best Christmas gift you could ever receive.

Dr. Tim Clinton: And that is the gospel. That's the truth. Dr. Jerry Newcombe has been our guest. Jerry, if people want to learn more about you and those documentaries, A City on a Hill, the soon-to-be-released What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? Beautiful, perfect for Christmas. Providenceforum.org and djameskennedy.org. Is that correct, Jerry?

Jerry Newcombe: Yes, that's exactly right. Djameskennedy.org for Truths That Transform, including What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? Providenceforum.org for more information on the Foundation series.

Dr. Tim Clinton: Jerry, we love the gift of God in and through you, and thank you for being faithful and bold and courageous in this day. Again, on behalf of Dr. Dobson, his wife, Shirley, the entire team here, we tip the hat to you and pray that God would just continue to raise you up and give you strength and courage as we go on the road forward. Thank you for joining us, Jerry.

Jerry Newcombe: Thank you and happy Thanksgiving.

Roger Marsh: Well, what a powerful conversation today here on Family Talk. I'm Roger Marsh, and that was the conclusion of part two of a very special interview that is certainly fit for a day such as this, which is Thanksgiving. Our nation's founders really strived to create a country with an understanding that our rights come from God and not from the hand of state. We are truly blessed to live in a nation where so many people still want to come and make a new home here. So many good points brought up through the past couple of days of programming here in this conversation featuring our own Dr. Tim Clinton, as he spoke with Dr. Jerry Newcombe. And it shows how much the past has set a path for tomorrow. Of course, there's still a lot of work to do, but today, here on this Thanksgiving, we encourage you to reflect under the banner of God's appointment of our blessed and unique country to give thanks for our courageous founders and our current leaders.

As you may be preparing to sit down to a special meal today similar to the one that they did over 400 years ago, you're going to be breaking bread with those you care about and we care about you. So please, we want you to know from all of us here at the JDFI, we are honored that you have spent some of your special day with us. We could only be on the air because of you, and we are so grateful for your support and your generosity.

Now remember, if you were in the middle of meal prep while this program was airing and perhaps you missed a portion of this one or part one, visit our website at drjamesdobson.org/familytalk, and you could hear part one and part two in their entirety there. Again, that's drjamesdobson.org/familytalk. And in this season of giving, if you feel led to make a donation to support the ministry of Family Talk, remember you can make that secure tax deductible donation to the JDFI online as well. Again, that address is drjamesdobson.org. You can give a gift over the phone as well when you call 877-732-6825. That's 877-732-6825.

And now on behalf of Dr. and Mrs. Dobson and their kids and grandkids, and from our co-host, Dr. Tim Clinton, his wife, Julie, and all of their kids and grandkids as well, I'm Roger Marsh. From all of us here at the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute, we hope you have a happy and very blessed Thanksgiving and join us again tomorrow for another edition of Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk.

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Dr. James Dobson: Hello everyone. This is James Dobson, inviting you to join us for our next edition of Family Talk. Every day we come to these microphones with someone in mind, whether it's a busy mom looking for tips on discipline, or a husband who wants to learn more about connecting with his wife. We want to put an arm around your family in any way that we can. So join us next time for Family Talk, won't you?
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