The Chosen Surrogates

As we came to see that the greatest danger to America is internal, not external, we also began to wonder if it is possible that God the Great Storyteller is putting something mysterious in play in the drama of the world, by choosing Donald Trump, Xi Jinping, and Vladimir Putin.

Those ‘Chosen Ones’ are the top players in the political world. Some people call it… “the Game of Threes”…

To claim we are living through a new Cold War is both an understatement and a category mistake. The 20th-century face-off between the Communist East and the Capitalist West was, ideology aside, about two superpowers trying to contain each other. The global conflict of today is far less static.

What we are witnessing instead is a new Great Game, a collision of great powers that are trying to roll back one another’s spheres of influence. Unlike the Great Game of the 19th century between the British and the Russian Empire that culminated in the fight for dominance over Afghanistan, today’s Great Game is global, more complex and much more dangerous.

Call it the Game of Threes. It involves three prime players, Russia, China and the West, which are competing in three ways: geographically, intellectually and economically.

Who Will Win the New Great Game?, By Jochen Bittner, New York Times, April 26, 2018

This is all strange stuff for our team to deal with, because it’s so foreign to our version of the story we are in. There are no chosen ones in our story.

But unlike our nonplot narrative, this is yet another indication that the story in the Bible is an archplot.

The Active Protagonist is on his quest to achieve his object of desire and actively intervenes in the story.

And we know this may be difficult for you to take seriously as you continue to occupy the minimalist corner, but you may want to consider this Keillor guy…

We should not read back into the Old Testament our American idea of judgment. We picture a passive, impartial, professional jurist independent of executive and legislative branches, who decides cases that others bring into court according to laws the legislature has passed (the verdict vindicates the law and maintains order more than it redresses wrongs against victims), relies on the executive to enforce the verdict, and corrects the other two branches’ errors. We picture the state prosecuting a defendant, except in civil cases. We may regard the state as overbearing and sympathize with the underdog on trial or the John Dillinger who avoids capture and trial. In general, we tend to be reductionistic: we exclude entire realms such as foreign policy from the realm of justice; “justice” may mean only procedural fairness; verdicts may be based on narrow individual rights, with the broader social outcome and others’ interests ignored. 

These notions carry over into our idea of divine judgment. We picture a distant, passive God who suddenly acts where he had never acted before when we did such and such. Our surprise means he is unfair.

Steven J. Keillor, God’s Judgments

You see, this verse from your book of Proverbs has our attention now…

The king‘s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.

Proverbs 21:1

And, your Drollinger Dude helped us to begin to think more broadly than just the Donald about a greater range of Chosen Ones…


A third theme to be gleaned from the study of Lamentations is God’s use of surrogates to enact His judgment. It is interesting how this theme is illustrated in the Book of Jeremiah, versus the Book of Lamentations. King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon will work the destructive calamity that will result from the sin of God’s people. The Book of Jeremiah mentions Babylon at least 150 times. In Lamentations however, Babylon is never mentioned – only the Lord is mentioned as the one who will deal with Judah’s sin. The conclusion is that Babylon is the surrogate instrument of Yahweh to achieve His ultimate purposes. Note this by comparing Jeremiah 50:23 to Lamentations 2:1 ff….

….Babylon has become an object of horror among the nations!

How the Lord has covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud of His anger! He has cast from heaven to earth the glory of Israel, and has not remembered His footstool in the day of His anger.

This insight more than suggests that God uses other individuals and other nations (whom He dislikes too!) in order to invoke His wrath. In accordance with this insight:


The Book of Lamentations As It Applies to America, BY RALPH DROLLINGER, Capitol Ministries, MAY 1, 2014

So, thanks Ralph! You are opening our eyes.

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