2015-04-14 PAG Post-Graduate reminder

ACH Study Groups

Ben & Fran Gilmore – Cofounders

7659 Gingerblossom Drive

Citrus Heights, CA 95621

916-722-2501 histbuff@garlic.com


April 14, 2015

This is a letter to our friends –

PAG Post-Graduate Reminder

All those who have completed the “Principles of American Government” online course are welcome to attend these monthly discussions. To participate you must call me to be added to the call list.

We will meet next Sunday at 1330H. I will initiate the video call on Skype.

The discussion will begin with the comments on the following article:

Religious Liberty and the Compelling State Interest Test

by Neil Markva

(This is an email that was sent by Neil December 20, 1999 to U.D. Roberts and others)

There are two types of lawyers today—Constitutional lawyers and Supreme Court

opinion lawyers. The former hold that the Court has no authority to make law, so that a

Supreme Court opinion is merely an opinion of men that binds only the parties to the

particular cause of action.

The majority rule in the so-called Christian legal community (of which I consider myself

a member) has rejected this premise, however, and has decided to play on the enemy’s

playing field, use their equipment, and operate according to their rules. When they seem

to be making some headway, the enemy simply changes the rules and we believers

remain on the outside looking in. And God is further isolated from the fray. Some of us

do not agree and refuse to buy into this point of view.

Members of the bar who think and reason in accord with the 18th century principles of

law and government as embodied in our nation’s state and federal constitutions are

marginalized, repudiated, shunned, and in short, simply treated as outcasts. Believe me.

I’m not complaining or whining. I’m simply stating facts. At the same time, I’m most

encouraged because people like you DO understand English and are willing to do what

has to be done to promote the TRUTH.

At the heart of the matter is the compelling State interest test, which presupposes that no

fixed laws of right and wrong exist. Consequently, all courts now “balance the interests”

allegedly involved in the particular controversy before a court. The rejection of an

objective, fixed law is a rejection of God, the Creator, and His laws of nature and of

nature’s God as the common law that governs all things (whether we believe it or not). In

place of the Creator and the fixed laws of the Created Order, public policy in America

simply substitutes custom, tradition, and court decisions as the common law.

Our Christian “leaders” acknowledged and accepted this new common law after God’s

law was completely rejected once and for all in 1962 by Justice William Brennan who

invented the “compelling State interest” test out of whole cloth. When Justice Scalia

rejected the compelling State interest test in the 1989 Smith (peyote) case in favor of the

jurisdictional test that recognizes God’s exclusive jurisdiction over our religion, the

Christian lawyers joined the ACLU, People for the American Way, and a collection of

other Marxist organizations. Clearly, Marxists aka Socialists do not want any State

recognition of Scalia’s attempt to restore the exclusive jurisdiction of God over our free

exercise of religion.

In their quest to override the Smith case and its jurisdictional argument underpinnings,

our “leaders” opted to reject it and promote the “balancing test” unconstitutionally

devised by the Supreme Court. And of what does the “balancing test” consist? With no

absolute, fixed law, they start with the consideration of the “interests” of the parties

involved in the case or controversy. The State’s interest is always brought into the mix

for, after all, the court is now a primary maker of public policy having successfully

eliminated the common law of God and having assumed complete power over any

legislative act by judicial fiat. Any decision is generally recognized and accepted as law

by everyone unless, of course, it undermines the socialist agenda.

The State’s interest invariably supports the interests of one of the parties. If you think of

a first party’s interest as the thesis and the second party’s interest as the antithesis, then it

is the State that will determine the synthesis that will become the starting point in the next

court case on the subject. This, of course, is simply the direct application of the Hegelian

dialectic applied to the law thus making every court case an example of dialectical

materialism in the best Marxian sense.

Few understand what is going on. But I do not think this analysis is an extreme position.

I challenge anyone to show me where my understanding is wrong.

I personally know the people involved. In one instance, after sitting through a seminar

presentation of one friend who rejected the jurisdictional test of the Smith case, I told him

that I thought we were turning our back on God by supporting the “compelling State

interest test.” For the jurisdictional argument recognizes our religious freedom as an

unalienable right so that the State has no authority whatsoever to restrain our exercise of

the duty which we owe to our Creator. He simply turned his back on me and refused to

discuss the matter.

It is particularly unnerving when you realize that our Lord commanded us to “teach the

nations to obey all that He commanded us” (Matthew 28:18-20). Instead, with respect to

the civil magistrates of America, we simply ignore this command and accept the State as

the new found sovereign in our lives. We have no king but Caesar!

Our opposition is directed toward the wholesale rejection of the concept of unalienable

rights with respect to numerous subjects including, but not limited to, our religious

liberty, the education of our children, and the use of our private property. Some of us are

convinced that there is a remnant that agrees with us. And we believe that things can be

done to get our Lord more involved in the battle that is raging.

He is involved. But, in my opinion, His hands are significantly tied by the confusion that

reigns in the Body of Christ with respect to these matters. He will do nothing to butt into

the work of His people unless they want Him to do so. And only in those situations

where there is agreement. Our friends in the legal community who favor the compelling

State interest test make it clear where they stand. It will take the concerted efforts of

others of us to see His TRUTH ultimately prevail in this particular matter.

To make sure that we are within His will, we must operate within the authority structure

of our Lord if we are to see healing and restoration in our land. We are working toward

that end. We cannot make personal attacks on anyone. But it is essential that we come

down hard on any idea that is a rejection of God and His laws.

When considering whether or not to support any legislation concerning any matter, we

recommend that you look for any “exception” clause and reference to a compelling State

or governmental interest test. If the latter is involved, don’t support it. For this reason,

none of the particular pieces of legislation that you have on the website should be


We have much work ahead. But it is good to see that others are moving along parallel


Hopefully, the foregoing is helpful.

In His service,

Neil Markva

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Ben Gilmore 1929-2023

On March 30, 2023 Ben Gilmore, the co-founder of ACHStudyGroups (co-founded with his wife Fran), went to be with the Lord in Glory.

A Memorial: https://www.mykeeper.com/profile/BenGilmore/