The New Religious Wars
Against Christians, amongst Christians.
If you had asked me twenty years ago to predict what the 21st century would hold in store, “religious wars” probably wouldn’t have been tops on my list.
But it should have been.
Right now we’re seeing many forms of religious war. The most obvious has raged between radical Islam and everybody else. Yes, radical Muslims are somewhat of a minority within Islam; but they’re a huge, activist, vocal, sometimes violent, determined, and ruthless minority, they’ve been fighting the fight for the better part of a century (centuries, that is,) and have really stepped it up since their victory in Iran in 1979. During Obama’s time in office their threat has grown in numbers, in strength, and in barbarity.
I wrote that it’s a war “between radical Islam and everybody else.” The war against the Jews has been going on for a long time, with Israel/Palestine as the epicenter (that war isn’t just a religious one, but it certainly is a religious one as well as a political one). The war against the Hindus also is of great antiquity. The ancient war against Christians took somewhat of a breather in Western Europe after the Siege of Vienna. In recent years, however, radical Islam’s revived war against Christians has reached a violent fever pitch.
The West could fight that war and win it, if it chose to do so. But radical Islam is aware of, and takes advantage of, another war—an internal one within Christianity that weakens the response immeasurably. Christians are divided into two camps, one of which is what for want of a better term I would call leftist Christianity (revisionist Christianity? non-traditional Christianity?), which rests on social justice warrioring, embrace of same-sex marriage and related causes, and intense devotion to third-world problems. This is the “bleeding-heart liberal” wing of Christianity, and its numbers are strong.
Traditional, or fundamentalist, or socially conservative Christianity is opposed. The recent SCOTUS decision in Obergefell on same-sex marriage pits that group against the latest trends in the law. The same is true of orthodox Jews and Muslims, of course, but somehow I doubt that the left will make them their next target—they’ll most likely begin with legal attacks on dissenting Christians because they are seen as the least truculent as well as the most numerous. Traditional Christians are weakened by the fact that their fellow-Christians have mostly abandoned them, and because there has also been a campaign for a long long time to stir up hatred against them.
I’ve seen this myself among many liberals I know. I’m not talking about leftists, who tend to hate religion in general (unless they’re members of one of the aforementioned leftist-oriented churches, or unless the religion is Islam). For decades I’ve heard casual comments about how awful fundamentalist Christians are, and this is from liberal Christians themselves, or at least liberals who were born Christian. Conservative Christians now equal hatemongers in many people’s eyes, and so whatever is done against them legally will not, I predict, ruffle so many feathers.
I’m not a Christian. I’m not even especially socially conservative. But it will ruffle my feathers if it happens, and I believe it will happen.
[Neo-neocon is a writer with degrees in law and family therapy, who blogs at neo-neocon.]
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The term “leftist Christianity” is offensive. It is heresy, apostasy. Any church that exists in rebellion to the clear word of God is not a Christian church. The war you describe is a war between Christians and deceivers.
J. Gresham Machen explains this in his book (1923), Christianity and Liberalism.
thanks for the tip i will look for the book ,”Christianity And Liberalism”. My wife and I argue a lot about when did the country go south I say about 1890 with the rise of the social gospel. She like most people blames it on the Sixties generation.
No, the people who believe like you do are the heretics and apostates, at least according to the people who you say are the heretics and apostates. That’s the reason that there are thousands of Christian denominations: Each one wants to set its own microscopically-different definition of doctrine and, thus, define who the real heretics are: everyone else but them. What some Christians, especially the evangelical conservatives aka fundamentalists, want to do is to win that argument by passing laws which require everyone else to conduct their lives and limit their behavior according to their standards of faith and morals. That’s why we have freedom of religion: to invalidate any such laws and to insure that liberal Christians (or atheists or agnostics or anyone else) who believe that there’s nothing wrong with homosexuality or same-sex marriage to have the freedom of religion to enjoy the free exercise of their religion by marrying one another without having other Christians’ belief that it’s wrong imposed upon them. Just because you are absolutely certain that what you believe is right and true doesn’t give you the legal right to force anyone else to agree or conform to your beliefs, no matter how much you want or believe that to be the way it has to be.
“Just because you are absolutely certain that what you believe is right and true doesn’t give you the legal right to force anyone else to agree or conform to your beliefs, no matter how much you want or believe that to be the way it has to be.”
So, by your own reasoning, the nation should not be allowed the legal right to force a baker, florist, photographer, etc., who wishes to remain faithful to their own beliefs, to participate in a gay ceremony, right?
Oh, but that’s different. Because disapproval of homosexuality is against my religion, and my religion is special.
Those who are asking for those services are not forcing the providers to agree or conform to their beliefs. There is no such agreement or conformity necessary to sell someone a cake or flowers or take a photo.
They’re demanding more than mere verbal agreement, they’re demanding that these people personally participate in their crimes. What’s the difference between the caterer at a gay wedding and the getaway car driver at a bank robbery?
Those requesting such services are asking the providers to materially participate in the ceremony. The Bible has specific passages in it warning believers not to participate in actions deemed sinful. If a provider feels it is wrong to provide said participation, that is a first amendment right to freely practice one’s religion.
You don’t have to believe that, but those that do should be allowed to practice their faith as they see fit; where is the harm to the other side by asking them to find a different service provider?
If the Westboro “Baptist” mob want me to go photograph one of their “God Hates Fags” rallies, and I’m not allowed to turn them down, I’m pretty much being forced to participate whether I like it or not. Likewise if the local KKK branch wants you to go cater their annual Klavern dinner. Who cares if it goes against your moral beliefs to actively participate in something you don’t support or believe in, such as a God Hates Fags rally or a KKK annual dinner? You’re not allowed to discriminate, you intolerant bigot!
If they agree with the Apostles Creed then they are Christians. It does not mean they are smart or have a lick of common sense.
“I’m not a Christian. I’m not even especially socially conservative. But it will ruffle my feathers if it happens, and I believe it will happen.”
This sentence was at the end of the article and one would suppose that it was referring to the war between Christian sects but one could not be sure. This piece is poorly written, has no examples of the “War” and has no conclusion. Why would any good website publish this?
Reading comprehension is apparently a weak point with you.
What exactly were you expecting to find, inspector?
I took it to mean that if there’s a lawfare-type “war on conservative Christians” (by the government, by secularists, by feel-good “it’s all good!” Christians), there’s a fair chance that no-one much is going to be rushing to their aid, because they’ve been so thoroughly marginalized and “othered” in mainstream culture.
The ascendancy of the brutal left has been inevitable since the Church threw in the towel in the fight 50 years ago. The bishops and popes have squandered their moral authority ever since. I look at my leftist, pansy bishops with disgust; they can’t see that they’ve been had.
We’re on our own now, a fragmented resistance, just as the left has designed it. Maybe we can hold on for awhile, but they have the organization, the money, and the will to go for blood.
I fear for my kids.
Leftists don’t hate religion in general, they hate *other* religions.
Leftism *IS* a set of religious beliefs that just vehemently insist that they are not religious in nature.
The hatred fundamentalist leftists have for the adherents of other faiths is in all practical ways indistinguishable from the hatred of medieval Catholic fundamentalists for heretics, or modern Islamic fundamentalists for heretics.
Leftists stopped hating Islam when conservatives started to notice that Islam is deeply problematic and dangerous to civilization. Then leftists decided that Islam must be okay and that it needs to be protected from conservatives and Christians (and Israeli Jews).
“Christians are divided into two camps, one of which is what for want of a better term I would call leftist Christianity (revisionist Christianity? non-traditional Christianity?), which rests on social justice warrioring, embrace of same-sex marriage and related causes, and intense devotion to third-world problems. This is the “bleeding-heart liberal” wing of Christianity, and its numbers are strong.”
Hahahaha! It’s not called “leftist Christianity”! It’s called actually paying attention to what Jesus said and not worrying so much about what Rick Santorum says!
When was the last time you read the whole Scripture, both Old and New Testament?
I have studied the Scriptures along with New Testament Koine Greek at the Moody Bible Institute and have done personal research for over sixty years.
Let’s talk about what you think Jesus said.
Then you understand that the Old Testament has nothing to do with what Jesus said!
That is, unless you believe that Rick Santorum is a better example to follow than Jesus himself…
Jesus considered homosexuality a sin. Period. Lie as you please, troll.
The “old testament” had everything to do with what Jesus said. Like all Jews of his time, he believed that it was God’s word and absolutely true. He knew nothing of a “new testament”, or of what Paul would do after he was gone.
Jesus gave the Old testament as a means to convey to his created order the plans and promises he had for us. He came to earth to fulfill his Abrahamic and Davidic covenants. God keeps his promises even though his people do not.
At the last supper Jesus proclaimed the cup of wine-his blood poured out- would become the new covenant, the New Testament in his blood. Jesus knew all that would take place and he told his disicples the Holy Spirit would come to teach them all things.
God’s Kingdom on earth was the plan of both Old and New Testaments.
We are now walking on ressurection ground.
Jesus didn’t “give” the “old testament”. He was a Jew, he believed God gave it, and he obeyed it to the best of his ability.
Jesus is very God. He did not have a human father.
The Gospel of John declares in the first chapter that Jesus was in the beginning with God. Jesus is the Logos, the Wisdom of God and has always existed. He spent thirty years on this earth as a Jew.
He was not created. He is the Living Word-the Logos.
Jesus said before Abraham existed “I AM”.
Jesus fulfilled the law and the prophets. He didn’t just try to keep the law he kept the law perfectly-God’s law and not man’s traditions added to the law.
Jesus was the spotless lamb of God, the true passover lamb, who could take away the sin of the world. Read Isaiah 53 about the Suffering Servant. This is prophecy about the sinless Son of God who would be crucified because he loved the whole world.
No one goes to ghenna because of sin. The cross erased man’s sin. People go there because they choose to live apart from God.
HE Jesus spoke to Paul.
Jennifer, our background is similar, minus Moody.
No point in debating anoNY. Proselytize, yes. Debate, no. It is clear the writer knows not the Word.
I agree Juba…
“Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will also be like him.” Proverbs 26:4
Liberals want an idol made in their image-a non-racist Gandhi or a humanist “Jesus Christ Superstar” but never the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the Son of God.
So true. South African blacks, and Gandhi’s offspring will tell you he was a racist
Liberal Jesus says “It’s all good,” right, Anon?
Backing up our argument with cartoons, are we?
A good exegete should assess their audience and try to speak to each individual’s culture, maturity, level of education and context.
God, I would hate to see how you talk to Rags then.
How God speaks to Rags is up to God. 😉
I suppose god could chose to speak to me out of a superating asshole.
But he’s going to have to make it clear if he wants me to pay attention to you, assoNY.
Did Jesus say it’s a good idea to smother the ability of churches (and free people generally) to do voluntary and effective charity, while the government forcibly takes more of our money and siphons it through an inefficient bureaucracy staffed by overpaid hacks before a small portion of it trickles down into actual “charity,” though it might actually be cultivating and sustaining a dysfunctional and criminal underclass?
That’s what leftist Christians (and leftists who occasionally find it convenient to invoke Jesus) evidently believe that Jesus would prefer.
Jesus probably would say not to worry about it, render unto Caesar.
Until Caesar tries to dictate to God.
Jesus was a Jew of his time, and like all Jews believed that the entire Torah was God’s word. That means he was racist, sexist, homophobic, colonialist, and above all he was a zionist.
Jesus being very God is everything God wants to say to us.
Jesus is none of those derogatory things you ascribe to him.
Jesus came into the world as a Jew, began his kingdom on earth, was crucified, buried and rose again. He has returned to his Father in Heaven where he intercedes for those who call on his name.
He will return soon to begin his earthly kingdom reign.
A former KGB agent claims that leftist “liberation theology” was invented by the KGB to help communism get a foothold in what was then deeply Catholic South America by blending economic Marxism with traditional Christianity.
At the time, much of Latin America was governed by “right wing” military dictators and the poor blamed them for their poverty, so it had an appeal. Liberation theology became popular with left wing Catholic Jesuits, in both South and North America. The current Pope sounds so much like a Marxist to many people because he’s a left wing Jesuit steeped in this liberation theology. The “Reformationist” sects of Christianity created their own versions of it. Obama spent 20 years in a church that preaches black liberation theology.
Fundamentalism is so poorly defined today as to be almost meaningless beyond being a put down of who people don’t like. Read up on The Fundamentals from where the term came. There are some Christians that are what is described as legalistic: if you don’t do our rituals or avoid what we avoid (like certain clothing or holidays), you are not really Christian. These are the most restrictive types. Other Christians, like myself major in the majors but don’t take minor details of some sect so deadly seriously. I am a serious Christian and believe that the Bible is a supernaturally inspired text and should be followed in the best possible way by studying not only the text but the context it was written so as to grasp its fuller, more precise meaning. I do not take seriously Christians who believe that Christianity is all about “love”. They really have no clue as to what God’s love is nor what God’s love requires of us.
I repeat my statement that Christians agree with the Apostle’s Creed. That is all it takes to be a Christian. That has been the statement of the faith for over 1500 years.
Sorry, Matt. It takes more than that. It takes the God-ordained means of water to which God’s Word and command is attached. I knew people in China who would sing hymns and recite prayers with gusto. It meant nothing to them. They were just doing what everyone else was.
Neo-neocon, please take the time to make some simple and basic discoveries before you write and publish your ignorance. Not being Christian or socially conservative are not excuses.
1. Nobody is born a Christian. Every living baby is born spiritually dead even though born into a Christian family.
2. Christians are made. This is accomplished via baptism through the water and the faith that God gives through His Word attached to the water.
3. Being Christian is a vertical faith relationship between the individual and God. Every tub sits on its own bottom.
4. There are no atheist Christians or Christian atheists; either you are with Christ or you are against Him.
5. There is no cultural Christianity because one must have faith in God, see #3, which is reflected in the horizontal relationships with people in the world around us and the socio-political attitudes and stances one projects.
When she wrote, “liberals who were born Christian”, I took that to mean “liberals who were born into families which practiced Christianity.” I think some of you are being awfully harsh on her.
Keeping her honest. Rule of writing: research is requisite.
“There is no cultural Christianity because one must have faith in God, see #3, which is reflected in the horizontal relationships with people”
Horizontal relationships, eh? Is that why you guys are so fixated on the gays?
Anony is one of these little Christian-hating trolls who likely has never opened the Bible because somebody said it condemns everything anoNY does. Here’s the solution to that problem, my friend: repent and be baptized. Christ died for you.
” with Israel/Palestine as the epicenter (that war isn’t just a religious one, but it certainly is a religious one as well as a political one). ”
It didn’t start out as a political war but became politicized when the Western World sold its heritage for a barrel of oil.
What ruffled my feathers more than a bit was witnessing Melkite Archbishop Hillarion Capucci caught by the Israelis, in 1975, gun running for the PLO from Lebanon to the West Bank in his official Mercedes.
Ooh, the screams from the Vatican at his imprisonment was heard around the world, and Damour?
And so it continues till today. For the Western World Christians are expendable.
And the thanks he got was the massacre of Christiansin the Lebanese town of Damour in 1976.
The war against the Hindus by the marauding Muslims took the lives of millions as Mohammed’s thugs invaded the Indian sub-continent and occupied territory that was never theirs.
Oops. The sentence about Damour should have been before, “And so it continues till today. For the Western World Christians are expendable.”
“they’ll most likely begin with legal attacks on dissenting Christians because they are seen as the least truculent as well as the most numerous. Traditional Christians are weakened by the fact that their fellow-Christians have mostly abandoned them, and because there has also been a campaign for a long long time to stir up hatred against them.”
Christians are not truculent because “Jesus LIVES; the victor’s won!” This means we are not weak, neo-neocon, no matter how many people abandon us or stir up hatred against us. The more they fight us, oppress us, revile us, or kill us, the stronger we become and the more the Church grows and orthodox Christianity spreads. It is not our numbers that make us strong; it is Christ.
When the State demands we do that which is contrary to the Word, that’s when we resist. When that happens, watch the leftist churches die—their numbers are already declining. The fastest growing religion in the world today is pro-Israel orthodox Christianity, and they are coming waving that blood-stained banner of Christ.
As for the homosexuals who are seeking our suppression, repression, and oppression, ask Rome how God deals with those; search Romans and Revelation to see what God has in store for these unrepentants.
“The fastest growing religion in the world today is pro-Israel orthodox Christianity, and they are coming waving that blood-stained banner of Christ.”
Is that the one where Jesus is depicted with rippling muscles and an M-60?
Have you ever read the Narnia books? Aslan was not a tame lion.
I’ve read plenty of fantasy in my time, but I never looked for answers there.
That’s your loss. What is fiction for, if not to explore the important questions?
And, Jesus kicked the money changers out of the Temple.
“Render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar’s. But, render unto God what is God’s.”
That’s a possibility, anoNY. What made you think He was a Mickey Mouse in the first place? You let “Lamb” fool you? Don’t. After the Lamb is a roaring lion/frowning judge. Same guy.
BTW, have you heard of Michael, the warrior prince? Big. Strong. Muscular. Wielding a sword capable of whacking many. Read the Book of Daniel.
This is the “bleeding-heart liberal” wing of Christianity, and its numbers are strong.
Er, no. Post-Christian denominations like the United Church of Christ, the Episcopal Church USA, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the Presbyterian Church are either stagnant or losing members. Their strength comes from their bullying, brazenness and media connections, not membership.
I am a refugee from the ELCA, which is fast dwindling to a collection of 60s crackpots spouting anti-Semitic propaganda. Think of Dr. Joseph Mengele as the drugged-out Sean Penn character from Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and you will understand the ELCA.
In Europe the church has been largely cuckolded by the secularists as many Christians have surrendered to the demands of the State. In Africa the situation is different – Africans, sometimes at the risk of their own lives, are standing strong for the Gospel. Don’t believe the media reports that wildly exaggerate the popularity of genocidal Liberation Theology – I have seen it with my own eyes, and the media’s proclivity for lying is well-established.
These all have in common: ordination of women (no basis in Scripture, and God is not an EO employer) and sexually active homosexuals. Talk about spitting on the Word!
The Church in China is starting to shape up. People are moving away from Christianity as the pathway to financial success towards true faith in God.
BTW, I walked into an ELCA church once, not knowing it was ELCA. When the priestitute ascended the altar, I got up and left.
Religious freedom means Christians must be fully Christian in public, perhaps like gays want to act fully gay in public. Except a majority has decided on many moralities, and five black robed radicals should not overrule that.
But civic oriented actions by Christians are different than living as Christian, mostly, though one bleeds into the other in practice. (“Moral Man and Immoral Society” has much on this, too much to get into)
I mean, people could be in the same church faithfully, but have different political views. The interpretations of Biblical views, as regards implementation into society, are wide ranging. The Biblical view of homosexual action is clear, but legal treatment of gays that are “married” with children is less certain, especially since they are probably not Christian. (but states should decide)
So I have little issue with lesbian ministers, but that church should give full disclosure that despite the “Christian” brand, they don’t believe the Bible is completely true, even on major and consistent themes. Instead I think they usually try to rewrite the scriptures to fit “modern times”.
That’s indeed necessary, but “If it feels good, do it” would require more contortions than the five justices used in creating their new found right to gay marriage.
Still, Romans 13 would have us believe that all powers are of God, and we should obey them, give tribute to whom tribute is due, custom to whom custom. I heard teachings saying that refers to men of God, but it sure looks like tribute, customs, rulers … are government things. That’s one reason I don’t think the Bible is perfect, and man has the ability to think and be inspired on his own. I realize that is “dangerous talk”, and if it makes me apostatic, so be it. (It was an age of powerful rulers or death, and interpretation needs historic and cultural perspective)
But regardless of church apostasy or not, I think Christians have plenty of common ground on freedom of religion, and no conscientious Christian baker should be forced to service a gay wedding mockery of their faith.
I mean come on, gay parades, the most loved costumes are defiled nuns, ministers, boy scouts … whatsoever things are good, pure, honest, just … they defile those things for a laugh. Sure maybe some find “true love (phileo)” and just want to mimic the ceremony … it is still mockery to the Christian. Find another baker. Surely there is unity with most Christians of any variety, on that.
All society should easily agree really, or do they agree with that nut teacher that tweeted “let’s go burn down that pizza place”. I think the left loses big time on that issue, so we can build alliances on that, with gay marriage legality politically off the table, for now.
I wonder if anyone here recalls the story of Lot and the two cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.
The old testament was meant to provide us with examples.
God’s word is clear and absolute. It leaves nothing to question.
Five cities. But their sin was hostility to strangers, so if you’re worried about their fate you should focus less on same-sex marriage than on immigration, and especially at the pure vitriol poured out at illegal immigrants in many right-wing circles. Securing the border is only common sense, as is deporting violent criminals, but hating people who are only trying to do the best for their families, as all of us would do for ours, is the sin of Sodom and her four allies.
Wrong, their sin was hostility to strangers who had been invited in by the laws of hospitality. Which makes them legal immigrants, and your comment the same old lie.
Wrong. Nobody invited strangers to visit Sdom. The Sdomites went out of their way to discourage strangers from visiting them. And when one came nonetheless, they would treat him cruelly in the hope that no more would come. And that is why God sent the angels to destroy them. Nothing that happened that night affected their fate, since it had already been sealed before then.
Thank you neo-neocon for taking up this serious matter.
With their decision the majority of SCOTUS Justices declared “open season” not on the already defiled churches of the Strange Bedfellows like the homosexual and antisemite embracing UCC church. These justices declared “open season” on the true Followers of the Way. These justices know that they cannot control or break us into obedience to immorality or into a worship of idols. We will go to prison first or we will die for Christ.
“Indeed, Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito explicitly warned religious traditionalists that this decision leaves them vulnerable. Alito warns that Obergefell “will be used to vilify Americans who are unwilling to assent to the new orthodoxy,” and will be used to oppress the faithful “by those who are determined to stamp out every vestige of dissent.” (see anoNY for further details about the “new orthodoxy”)
The warning to conservatives from the four dissenters could hardly be clearer or stronger. So where does that leave us?”
…LGBT activists and their fellow travelers really will be coming after social conservatives. The Supreme Court has now, in constitutional doctrine, said that homosexuality is equivalent to race. The next goal of activists will be a long-term campaign to remove tax-exempt status from dissenting religious institutions. The more immediate goal will be the shunning and persecution of dissenters within civil society.””(see anoNY for further details about the “new orthodoxy”)
I join you in thanking new-neocon, Jennifer, previous grumbles notwithstanding.
I was watching one of the WWII Nazi Germany vids today. One of the things they required early in of Jews was a list of Jewish-owned businesses. After that, Jews were forced to sell their businesses to Germans for less than nothing. The homosexuals also likely have a list of Christian-owned businesses against which they intend to move.
It’s best to make it easy for them and wear the Cross. In times like this, we cannot deny Whose we are. We will not seek a fight, but we will not run from it either. The Assyrian, Coptic, and Ethiopian Christians have shown us the way. Jesus will give us the courage to endure to the end.
They had best read the Scripture and discover that their arms are too short to box with God.
“radical Muslims are somewhat of a minority within Islam” – They are supported, in every conceivable way, but the so-called “moderates”.
You might as well say, “Yes – actual combat soldiers in WWII were somewhat of a minority of the US population”.
One day, the naïfs will discover there is no radical Islam; there are no moderate Muslims; there is only Islam. There are only Muslims. Hopefully, they will make that discovery before they lose their heads.