Friday 25 October 2019
A lot of what is called Christian morality today is not necessarily Christian, but more accurately described as Middle Class Christianity. It is the Christianity influenced by the Victorian era politeness and the rather quiet in door working spaces of many Christians, who tend heavily towards the middle class.
Here are examples of the difference:
Middle Class Christianity: Don't be harsh and use mean words to those who come to you, especially if they are in need.
Christianity: Jesus said to the Syrophoenician woman: You don't give the children’s food to the dogs (Matt 15:21-28, Mark 7:24-30).
Middle Class Christianity: It is wrong to even insult those who reject the message of Jesus.
Christianity: Jesus said to the disciples to shake the dust of their feet when leaving an unbelieving town or even home (Matt 10:14). A visible and very offensive gesture in his day. Use your imagination to think of similar offensive gestures
Middle Class Christianity: Quiet kindness and addressing your audience in calm smooth tones is the way to address people. Don’t use ad-hominins, stereotypes, or harsh language.
Christianity: Jesus in the gospel of Matthew: Woe to you Pharisees, you brood of vipers, you snakes, you white-washed tombs, you rotten corpses twice dead, you sons of hell (Matt 23).
Middle Class Christianity: Always use reason, dialectic and let your passion be bridled.
Christianity: Paul to the Judaizers: why don't you go and cut of your manhood’s (Gal. 5:12) you dogs (Phil. 3:2). Now that is powerful rhetoric. Indeed Paul was very good with rhetoric. Though yes, like all rational thinkers, he preferred dialectic, he still used rhetoric when it was useful.
Middle Class Christianity: Never, ever use bad words. Bad words are sin, bad words are never to pass your lips.
Christianity: Use bad words for bad things. For example: Paul refers to anything we would trust in for salvation other than Jesus as ‘skubala’ (Phil. 3:8). The Greek word 'skubala' is translated often as 'refuse' or 'rubbish' in English, but the KJV translated it 'dung', which is closer to its actual meaning. The word was actually the 1st century version of the word crap/B.S.. I am not making that up, everyone who has studied Greek knows this. Then there is Jesus using the word "Raca", a harsh and brutal insult (Matt. 5:22-23). Key point: they did not use these words to curse people. But the words themselves are just words, with a proper use in context.
Middle Class Christianity: Don't insult people.
Christianity: "The devil rides you", my favourite Martin Luther quote. Jesus, John the Baptist, Paul and John the apostle all insulted people. John the Baptist seemed to have a favourite: “You brood of vipers” (Matt. 3:7).
Middle Class Christianity: Is over-weighted with quiet middle class people who work in quiet controlled environments, where politeness and other such manners are part of the culture of the home and work environment.
Christianity: Is vibrant and open to many different people from various cultures, and is not just confined to the quiet submissive types who frequent office buildings, and knitting circles. Christianity is a religion that is for all people. Not just people who tend towards quiet and calm and polite conversation.
Now this post is not arguing that we should always use these harsher tones and harsher words, just that they are not always sin, if used properly, as Paul, Jesus and other Biblical people used them. This is not a summary of all of Christianity, there is much more to Christianity. But don't confuse actual Christianity, with Victorian niceties, and white, middle class culture.
Thursday 3 October 2019
Social media and the news media have been awash over the last couple of weeks with Greta Thunberg, the young, self-proclaimed mentally ill, Swedish teenager who has been given a platform to stare down, berate, challenge, and otherwise scold the leaders of the world.
A lot has been said about this girl, about her handlers, about how she is being used to try and guilt so called “climate-deniers” into refusing to challenge her. Though from everything I have seen, she has had the exact opposite effect than what was intended. Most of what I have seen online has this girl memefied to the hilt like no one else in modern political discourse, other than perhaps President Trump himself. She has been mocked profusely, and in my opinion rightly so. Her proposals are dangerous, and doubly so considering most of her attacks on world leaders are correct: they are largely cowards who can be bullied into foolish action. If they were to implement her proposals it would lead to the destruction of every developed nation’s economy, mass poverty, starvation, and more.
Not only are most people not falling for her clear and utterly obvious stage acting performance, she has seemed to create more of an uproar against those who would seek to use a young girl for a cause like this, rather than win anybody over to the climate cult’s religion. Which is good, it shows more people are waking up to the strategies used by the globalists to push their agenda.
But there is a more sinister undertone to this whole event that I think many people are missing, and to illustrate that event I want to talk about the Crusades you may not have heard of: the Children’s Crusades.
The Crusades are a favourite club that skeptics have long liked to use against Christians when seeking to denigrate our faith. Blaming Christians for the crusades can be likened to a punk kid punching the big kid at school over and over again, and then complaining to the teacher when the big kid hits him back. Every unbiased witness can see it was self-defence, the big kid was provoked, indeed he used a lot of restraint in not hitting the other kid back straight away. This is precisely the situation with the medieval crusades from 1095 A.D. to 1270 A.D..
They were, overall, a response to several centuries of Islamic incursions into the Western lands. “The immediate causes of the Crusades were the ill treatment of pilgrims visiting Jerusalem and the appeal of the Greek emperor, who was hard pressed by the Turks” (Schaff 1988, 221). Islam struck Christendom first, and continued to, long before a concerted effort was enacted by the West to strike back. “The aim of the crusades was the conquest of the Holy Land and the defeat of Islam” but it was inspired by countless Europeans who were incensed at the abuse which was perpetrated on Christians during their pilgrimages to the Promised Land (Schaff 1988, 220). Islam had struck Christendom, repeatedly, and viscously, and the Crusades were an inevitable and necessary response.
But that doesn’t mean all of the Crusades were all morally good, all effective, or even all sensible. Hitting the trifecta of being neither morally good, effective or sensible were the Children’s Crusades. But a little context is needed to help us understand how a Children’s Crusade could even happen.
The historical event of the Crusades is a fascinating one. A truly “Holy War” phenomenon like this had not been seen before, and has not truly been seen since (unless you include the Jihad war we are in right now, that the Western nations pretend isn’t exactly that). They created in the Western mind somewhat of a unique situation, where a strong and zealous “holy war” climate overcame much of Europe and forged in the Christian identity of many a desire for a righteous confrontation in the lands of the Middle East.
Though always holding a special, and unique place in Christianity, the mystical reframing of Jerusalem became a growing trend in European Christianity. Even though figures like Augustine, Gregory of Nyssa, and Jerome himself, advised people that Christ was with them wherever they may be, the desire to travel to the Holy Land grew amongst Christians,
“The Holy Land became to the imagination a land of wonders, filled with the divine presence of Christ. To have visited it, to have seen Jerusalem, to have bathed in the Jordan, was for a man to have about him a halo of sanctity. The accounts of returning pilgrims were listened to in convent and on the street with open mouthed curiosity. To surmount the dangers of such a journey in a pious frame of mind was a means of expiation for sin” (Schaff 1988, 222).
It became a spiritual height to aspire to, to be a person who journeyed to Jerusalem, simply because our Lord walked that very city (Schaff 1988, 222). It’s hard for the modern western mind to understand this desire for pilgrimage, but the medieval mind saw it as mark of true righteousness.
A religious fervour overtook many Western Christians in these two crusading centuries from 1095-1270. Yes, there were solid reasons to respond to the violence of Islam, yes there were practical reasons for wanting to defend Christian pilgrims from barbaric attacks. But it became more than that. It became a religious quest that many Europeans aspired to, to be a crusader, was to be something special, something set apart, something other worldly.
This religious fervour spread throughout all the classes of Europe’s people, and all the age groups; including the children. “The crusading epidemic broke out among the children of France and Germany in 1212. Begotten in enthusiasm, which was fanned by priestly zeal, the movement ended in pitiful disaster” (Schaff 1988, 266).
Any movement which encourages children to become sacrificial lambs and lay down their lives for its cause has gone to far. These highly religious climates can have side effects that causes everyone to recoil in horror, but too often this comes after the fact. During the height of the religious fervour adults egged the children on, used them as examples of innocent virtue, and even used them to shame other adults who are not as zealous for the cause,
“The French expedition was led by Stephen, a shepherd lad of twelve, living at the Cloyes near Chartes. He had a vision, so the rumour went, in which Christ appeared to him as a pilgrim and made an appeal for the rescue of the holy places. Journeying to St. Denis, the boy retailed the account of what he had seen. Other children gathered around him. The enthusiasm spread from Brittany to the Pyrenese. In vain did the king of attempt to check the movement. The army increased to thirty thousand, girls as well as boys, adults as well as children…They reached Marseilles, but the waves did not part and let them go through dryshod as they expected” (Schaff 1988, 266-7).
“The centres of the movement in Germany were Nicholas, a child of ten, and a second leader whose name has been lost. Cologne was the rallying point. Children of noble families enlisted. Along with the boys and girls went men and women, good and bad” (Schaff 1988, 267). (Emphasis mine).
Those in the German retinue reached Genoa in August 1212, their “numbers had been reduced by hardship, death, and moral shipwreck from twenty to seven thousand.” A report from the time says that Innocent the 3rd refused to let them free of their oath to defeat the Saracens (Schaff 1988, 268). They made their way to Brindisi, where some of the children sailed, and were never heard from again (Schaff 1988, 267).
“The fate of the French children was, if possible, still more pitiable. At Marseilles they fell prey to two slave dealers, who for “the sake of God and without price” offered to convey them across the Mediterranean. Their names are preserved, - Hugo Ferrus and William Porcus. Seven vessels set sail. Two were shipwrecked on the little island of San Pietro off the northwestern coast of Sardinia. The rest reached the African shore, where the children were sold into slavery” (Schaff 1988, 268).
These children were literally fed into the hands of these despicable, opportunistic adults. Their fate? Well, the same horrible fate of all of the other small children sold in Islamic slavery in the Medieval age. Pope Innocent the third summarized their pilgrimage thus, “They put us to shame. While they rush to the recovery of the Holy Land, we sleep” (In Schaff 1988, 268).
Yes Pope, they put you to shame, but not by their relentless zealotry, but because of the inability of the adults of Europe to protect these children from their small minds, and lack of wisdom. Children are not to be leaders of mass movements, they are the next generation which we adults must dedicate our whole lives to guarding, until they are adults themselves.
Scaff (1988,266) rightly describes the Children’s Crusade as “the slaughter of innocents on a large scale.” Because that is precisely what they were. But bad adults, for their own purposes, both accompanied and egged on these child Crusaders because of the heightened air of the moment. It’s one thing to send a well trained and equipped, and battle ready force of soldiers to Palestine to liberate Christian pilgrims, it’s another thing entirely to allow children to be caught up in the atmosphere to march themselves.
But Pope Innocent’s words could almost be read on the cover of a modern newspaper or online news site. A modern Pope Innocent the Third analogue might say, “They put us to shame. While they skip school and rush to the steps of parliament to protest climate change, we adults sleep.” Or as one actual headline in the Guardian reads: “My generation trashed the planet. So I salute the children striking back” (Monbiot, 2019). We live in ever increasing radical times.
There is a hint of the Child Crusade leaders Nicholas and Stephen in Greta Thunberg. Children like her are dangerous, precisely because there are so many adults around her who will delight to use her to inspire other children to dangerous action. And like the climate of the Crusading era, we live in a similarly zealous religious climate where people will seek any and all means to achieve their radical ends.
The climate cult appears to be the fastest growing religion of our age. They have their core doctrine, anthropogenic climate change, which cannot be challenged by any evidence to the contrary. They have false prophets, Al Gore and most of the media. They now have child saints, Greta Thunberg. They even have a means of propitiating sin: carbon offsets, which coincidentally make the false climate prophets rich, just as indulgences once made corrupt Popes rich. They have their crusade: to lower the western nations emissions, drastically by 2030. And they even have their end time prophecies: global destruction in 12 years…or whatever the new number is. It changes more regularly than an American charismatic predicting the return of Christ.
But worst of all, they have their fingers tips in schools where countless young children, disenfranchised by the modern godless society we live in, and with increasing amounts of depressive and other mental disorders, are at the mercy of their teachings, and their radical agenda. And it just so happens that these children have been trained by the modern school system and media, to look to their peers for inspiration, rather than to wise, and stable adults (which are becoming a rare breed). They have been trained to be inspired by the Greta Thunbergs of this world. This makes her dangerous, and the people behind her even more so. Our children are just a means to their wicked ends.
This all looks like a recipe for disaster, a modern version of the disaster of the Children’s Crusade. Unless we do what adults are supposed to do, and challenge the whole global cult narrative, and make sure our children, and the parents we can influence are protecting their children from the growing calls to climate radicalism.
We should no longer laugh at the Climate Cult, it is coming for our children, and this makes it dangerous, and a force to be opposed. The Greta’s of this world are dangerous, precisely because many of our world leaders are foolish enough to be led by children.
Isaiah 3:12 “12 My people—infants are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, your guides mislead you and they have swallowed up the course of your paths.”
Men of the West rise, you are needed.
Schaff, Phillip, 1988, A History of the Christian Church.
George Monbiot, 2019, My generation trashed the planet. So I salute the children striking back https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/feb/15/planet-children-protest-climate-change-speech