Thursday, August 13, 2015

Christians and Enemies

Some Christians get antsy at the prospect of complaining about persecution, or regarding others as their enemies. The persecution usually gets explained away by saying that it can always be one-upped somewhere else in the world*, but it's the latter which I find interesting. There's this modern Christian attitude that regarding anyone as your enemy is itself wrong. The categories of 'misguided' or 'misinformed' or even 'mentally ill' are supposed to be large enough to contain every problematic person, while "enemy" covers no one.

One problem being that 'love your enemy' becomes a pointless teaching, then. Apparently Christ wasn't commanding we love anyone at all with those words.

(* 'Oh, you're upset Christian bakers are sued into oblivion for not making a same-sex wedding cake? Well, in China their churches get shut down!' I suppose in China, the reply is, 'So we shut down your church. Big deal. You know they behead you guys in the Middle East?' And in the Middle East... well, there's not many Christians left complaining.)


The Fez said...

As a christian, I cannot say that I, personally, have ever encountered any kind of persecution in the relevant sense. That is to say, no one has accosted me with violence or defamation on account of my beliefs (though I've gotten into plenty of intense arguments). Nonetheless, I perceive that persecution against Christians is intensifying in the United States.

It may be that many Christians have difficulty acknowledging this because, like me, they simply have no first hand encounters with persecution. Living in the Bible Belt, in Texas, as I do, it is unthinkable. Reality has yet to align with experience. "No one wants to believe it can happen to them", and all that.

Syllabus said...

The persecution usually gets explained away by saying that it can always be one-upped somewhere else in the world

This can be turned around in a rather amusing way. If someone starts saying stuff like "Oh, what horrible discrimination against those poor gays in Colorado," or whatever, you reply with "Why are you complaining about Colorado? ISIS throws gay dudes off buildings. Iran hangs them from construction cranes. You really need some perspective," etc etc.