The utter failure of Christianity 41

The Pope has said something that has been interpreted as a probable reference to the on-going persecution of Christians in the Islamic world. He did it in the context of a speech recalling the genocide of Christian Armenians* by the Muslim state of Turkey a hundred years ago.

He said:

Today too, in fact, these conflicts at times degenerate into unjustifiable violence, stirred up by exploiting ethnic and religious differences.

That was it. That’s all. He added a suggestion that the heads of states and “International Organizations” might do something about it:

All who are Heads of State and of International Organizations are called to oppose such crimes with a firm sense of duty, without ceding to ambiguity or compromise.**

Uncountable numbers of Christians have been killed in this century by Muslims. In Nigeria, the Muslim organization Boko Haram shoots, hacks, burns its victims to death, buries them alive, enslaves them, and scatters them, destitute, from their homes. The Muslims cut off the limbs of living babies or throw them on fires. (See our post with pictures here.)

In Iraq and Syria, Christians are victimized in just such savage ways by the Islamic State (IS/ISIS/ISIL).

In Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, and in Judea under the government of the Palestinian Authority – notably in Bethlehem, the putative birthplace of the Christian God – Christians are mercilessly oppressed. The numbers of Christians in Muslim lands continually dwindle as those survivors escape who can.

What is the Christian world doing about it? Nothing.

Are Christian leaders speaking out in angry protest? No, except for the remark made in passing by Pope Francis a few days ago. Maybe another Pope will talk about it more fully in another hundred years.

So what is the good of Christianity? If ever in its history it has been put to the test, it is now.

And it fails.

But it does not recognize its failure.

Recently we had a Christian visitor to this site who called himself/herself “LilySmith”. (I’ll use the pronouns “she” and “her” since it is a woman’s name.) She commented in defense of Christianity under our post A perfect match. She wrote this about what her Christian group is doing about the victimization of Christians by the Islamic State:

Governments, not individuals, are responsible for law enforcement and going to war. Christianity isn’t a government. Instead we are taught as individuals to overcome evil with good. In that vein, we support the work of Christian friends living in Iraq serving the people there in any way needed. We also support those helping Christians in the ME who are under stress right now.

What form does that “help” for the victims of “stress” take which she and her friends “support”? Food, clothing, shelter, a secure refuge? Or just sympathy? She did not say.

Nor did she say anything about wanting to see justice done. Nothing about stopping and punishing the perpetrators. That sort of thing is the concern of governments not Christians, she says.

Thinking like that is as true to Christianity as savage cruelty is true to Islam. Both are true to their holy texts.

Christianity does not speak of justice. It orders Christians to love and forgive the evil-doer. “Resist not evil,” it commands.

Christian websites which report the sufferings of Christians at the hands of Muslims, dwell on the brave endurance of the victims.

Here again we quote from the Pope’s speech from the Vatican, April 12, 2015, on the centenary anniversary of the Armenian genocide:

As Saint John Paul II said to you, “Your history of suffering and martyrdom is a precious pearl, of which the universal Church is proud …” .

… Saint Gregory of Narek, an extraordinary interpreter of the human soul, offers words which are prophetic for us: “I willingly blame myself with myriad accounts of all the incurable sins, from our first forefather through the end of his generations in all eternity, I charge myself with all these voluntarily.”  …

The Church thrives on suffering, on bloodshed, on agony. It invites persecution, and is thus a promoter of evil. And that makes it co-responsible for the atrocities Islam inflicts on Christians.

The Christians who are having their throats slit, their heads sawn off, their babies burnt alive, are martyrs, potential saints, and that is what matters; because Christianity is not a religion for the betterment of the life we live on this earth. Its concern is with an imaginary afterlife in an eternal heaven or hell.

So Christianity has not failed by its own lights.

But –

By every measure of reason, by the yardstick of accustomed morality and the norms of civilization, by the judgment of common-sense, by the test of whether it serves good and opposes evil, Christianity has failed utterly.  


* On the Armenian genocide, Dr. Ileana Johnson Pugh, writing at Canada Free Press, quotes Ambassador Henry Morgenthau, who “published in 1918 his personal account of the Armenian genocide”. ( A Personal Account of the Armenian Genocide, Henry Morgenthau, Cosimo Classics, New York, 2010). We extract a small part of the passages she quotes which describe the atrocities committed by the Turks.

Throughout the Turkish Empire a systematic attempt was made to kill all able-bodied men, not only for the purpose of removing all males who might propagate a new generation of Armenians, but for the purpose of rendering the weaker part of the population an easy prey.

When thousands failed to turn in weapons, the Turks ransacked churches, desecrated altars, marched the naked men and women through the streets, letting them be whipped by angry Turkish mobs. Those imprisoned who did not manage to flee into the woods and caves were subjected to the “bastinado” torture, the beating of the soles of the feet until they burst and had to be amputated.

Crucifixion, pulling of fingernails, of hairs, of eyebrows, tearing of flesh with red-hot pincers, and then pouring hot oil into the wounds were some of the barbaric methods of torture drawn from the records of the Spanish Inquisition.

Torture was just the beginning of the Armenian atrocities. What was to come was the actual destruction of “an entire Armenian race” by deporting it to the south and southeastern part of the Ottoman Empire, the Syrian desert and the Mesopotamian valley. …

The deportations took place through the spring and summer of 1915. The entire Armenian population of villages were ordered to appear in the main square, sometimes with little time to prepare, their homes and possessions confiscated for “safekeeping” and then divided among Turks. Once the deported Armenians had traveled several hours, they were attacked and killed in secluded valleys by Turkish peasants with clubs, hammers, axes, scythes, spades, and saws.

Out of a population of two million Armenians, only about 500,000 Armenians survived the genocide.

(Later in the twentieth century, Turkey was admitted as a member of NATO.)


** When the Inquisition condemned a heretic to be burnt at the stake, the Catholic Church handed the victim over to the secular authorities whom it compelled to carry out the atrocious deed, so the Church might keep itself clean of the sin of killing. The term used by the Church for the handing-over was that he or she was “relaxed”.

  • Daneel

    >Are Christian leaders speaking out in angry protest?

    >Nor did she say anything about wanting to see justice done. Nothing about stopping and punishing the perpetrators. That sort of thing is the concern of governments not Christians, she says.

    >Thinking like that is as true to Christianity as savage cruelty is true to Islam. Both are true to their holy texts.

    This is true, if you ignore all history of Church and Christian nations. For 15 centuries, the Christian nations resisted evil, with sword in hand if necessary.

    But this is past, Christianity on the West is dead, what remained of the Western church committed suicide at Second Vatican council, when the church abandoned everything what made it catholic. You shall celebrate, not complain.

  • LilySmith

    I think you have misunderstood what Christianity is all about. It has not failed in its mission. It is that you believe its mission should be something else. You want justice in the here and now, but that’s never going to happen no matter what religion you follow, or if you have no religion at all. This life is never going to be just.

    Christ teaches us how to live in this unjust world. He teaches us that God has forgiven us who put our trust in him, so we should forgive others. Yes, for the Christian there is a coming Judgment Day in which God will judge the living and the dead, and He will bring justice. Without such a day, no matter what you believe, you have no hope of justice.

    The suffering by Christians today in the ME and North Africa is mild in comparison to the numbers killed under the atheistic Communists of the last century. Where are the Communists today? Did you know that Christians in China, although still persecuted, outnumber Communists and will soon become the largest Christian community in the world?

    Christianity has been at odds with Islam since the 7th century AD. Look at the nations where Christians have dominated compared to where Muslims live. Where would you rather live?

    The mission of the Christian Church is to call out from all nations a people for God–to take his salvation to the ends of the earth. It has been doing that for 2,000 years. It has not failed in its mission.

    I would also like to clarify that I’m an Evangelical Christian. I don’t agree with much of what the Pope says. He’s way to heavy on the guilt and fear thing. I have no guilt or fear in Christ. That’s the point of faith. And yes, many mainstream Protestant Churches have left Bible teaching and joined themselves with the world. I support Israel.

    You can google Christian aid groups working to help those Christians persecuted around the world for their faith. There are many, and they do a great work.

    • You confirm what we say about Christianity being an other-worldly faith. A death cult, to put it another way.

      Communism is secular Christianity. Communists do not massacre because they are atheists, but because they are Communists.

      I noticed that on you own site you post only your own arguments, never those of whomever you are arguing against. One side only of a dispute is hardly worth reading. That is why we invited you to respond to our post. We thank you for doing so.

      • LilySmith

        Christians don’t worship death, so we are not a death cult.

        There is no such thing as “secular Christianity.” Communism is a social, political and economic philosophy developed by the atheist, Karl Marx. Christianity teaches of a coming kingdom where everyone is subject to the King.

        I don’t have my own site, so I don’t know where you’ve been reading my posts.

        • REALBEING

          “Christians don’t worship death, so we are not a death cult.”

          As a recovering Devout Christian for fifty-five years I cannot vouch for the authenticity of your premise, Lily.

          Yes! Human death wasn’t “worshiped” overtly and outright.

          However, to me it was always a rather strong inference that the coming death of the body was a welcomed event in the Christian tradition!

          One that most Christians relive each year at Easter, as in the symbolic resurrection of The Christ from his death!

          Not a “death cult” per say, but such a vehicle for mind domination has rarely been observed, IMHO!

          • liz

            “To live is Christ, to die is gain. ” (Paul)

            • There we have it!

              The very symbol of Christianity is an instrument of execution.

              I’ve sometimes thought that if women like hanging it from their necks on gold chains as an ornament, jewelers might try selling little gallows, guillotines, and electric chairs.

            • liz

              Ha! Great idea. Of course they’d be repulsed by that idea, but it just goes to show how far removed from reality their beliefs are.
              Christianity (and all religion) was a fraud from the beginning, peddled by the “snake oil salesmen” of the time. That’s one thing that’s never changed, along with the willingness of people to believe it all!

          • LilySmith

            Then Christianity is not about death, but about eternal life! I could say you all are the death cult, because you believe that when you die you get to stay dead forever. Christians are more optimistic than that. We are looking forward to life.

            • REALBEING

              I beg your pardon, Lily! Christianity only brings an untenable belief of a supposedly “supernatural premise” which states that there IS an eternal life after the death of the body. (But only if you attune your beliefs towards making a dead Jewish zombie your “Lord and Master!”)

              Excuse me for denying that as an Atheist I am into a “death cult.” I consider that since the ‘Christian belief system’ died in me, I’ve become more interested in making my life more meaningful.

              IOW, I’ve stopped focusing on death, and started focusing more on life and where it comes from.

              I firmly believe that the time I spend alive has been made much more valuable since I stopped believing in the false “hope” of being saved from oblivion by this “Master” I spoke of in my above paragraph.

              By spending my time on discovering the truth of FACT as we perceive it, (and not on what remains undetectable, but MAY be) I believe my life has shifted towards being dramatically more productive than ever before…

              QUESTION: Have you ever walked for years on the other side of the “fence?” You know…..the ATHEIST side?

              If you haven’t, then it is difficult to see the entire “ball-game” from only one perspective.

              Being an ex-Christian for sixteen years I now see the difference between having a completely free mind and being under the “yoke” of dogmatic viewpoint.

            • liz

              Exactly. Just as a committed communist can’t see that the coming collectivist Utopia will never materialize in the wake of capitalism’s destruction, the committed Christian can’t see that heaven will not materialize beyond the grave, and that every moment they’ve spent anticipating it, singing about it, and “witnessing” about it, in order to gain entrance to it, was a waste of time.
              A key to the success of the whole scam, of course, is that (except in the Bible), the dead can never return to debunk it claims of “eternal life” for the faithful!
              It’s a death cult veiled in the idea, “life is much better after death!”

        • I clicked on “LilySmith” at the opening of a comment of yours, and was taken to a place where your name is next to a hashtag, and the word “Follow” is beside it. Underneath it are the comments you made on this site (but no one else’s). Try it yourself.

          Are you unaware that the Church called the Crusades? Are you aware of what the Christian army did in the Crusades? Try googling “First Crusade and Jews of the Rhine”.

          While you’re googling (if you do) try also finding out about Protestant morality as preached by Luther and Calvin. Put “Calvin” into our search slot and read what he did when he was dictator of Geneva.

          You say I don’t understand Christianity, and then you re-affirm what I say about it – only you don’t recognize that what you describe is in fact a cult of death. Mystical. Other-worldly, as I said. Life on this earth is despised, as you say.

          Religion is immoral by its very nature. It pretends to know what it cannot possibly know. Each religion claims a monopoly of “truth”, but all the various “truths” are different.

          The Renaissance with the Reformation was the start of the slow dawn that became the wonderful morning of the Enlightenment. The Reformation questioned Catholic doctrine. A touch of doubt, and the sun of Reason began to rise. But the various Protestant religions became as dogmatic as Catholicism and as cruel. It was when the power of the Churches was broken, and Reason came into its own (again) at last, that the greatness of Europe and its splendid product – the United States of America – began.

          PS. We are well acquainted with the works of John Locke.

          • LilySmith

            You’re clicking on my Disqus account. The same account I use to reply here, I use to reply on other sites that support Disqus.

            I’m very aware that the Catholic Pope called for the Crusades. I’m also aware he promised things he had no right to promise to those who went. I know that the armies that went to fight were led by the monarchs and princes of the various nations of Europe to stand against the Muslim invasion that had already captured most of Spain, and would have captured France if not for Charles Martel. Since the 7th century, European nations had been fighting to hold onto their lands from Islamic invasion. I also know ancient warfare was brutal.

            I know all about Luther and Calvin. What does any of that have to do with the teachings of Christ–Christianity? I don’t follow the Pope, the leaders of Crusades, nor Luther and Calvin. I follow Christ.

            I hate to break it to you, but you pretend to know what you can’t possibly know as well. You have no sure knowledge of how this world came about, what is beyond it, and the purpose of mankind. You believe certain things about it, but you don’t know. We are all living by faith.

            The truth is the United States was not based solely on reason. It was Founded and populated by Christians. Reason is simply justifying your already held bias in most cases. Example: you say you’ve read Locke. In his Treatise on Government he used reason to determine that incest, adultery and sodomy were wrong even though found in history. His reasoning: “they cross the main intention of nature, which willeth the increase of
            mankind, and the continuation of the species in the highest perfection,
            and the distinction of families, with the security of the marriage-bed,
            as necessary thereunto.” Do you agree with Locke’s reasoning on this?

            • We do not claim to know “how the world came about”, we only know it was nor made by Jesus and/or his putative pa. We do not believe there is any “purpose for mankind”, only purposes set by individuals for themselves.

              The only importance of John Locke is that he advocated the separation of powers, which the Founders saw the sense of. Also he argued, wisely, for private property. But while he advocated religious tolerance, he insisted that atheism should not be tolerated!

              What Locke’s opinions were on anything else is irrelevant to our discussion.

            • liz

              John Locke’s reasoning on incest, etc., is sound in my opinion.
              Why would you consider it the justification of an already held bias?
              If anything, it proves the point that morality can be arrived at through reason alone, based on the observation of nature, contrary to the Christian claim that the sole basis of morality is the Bible.

            • LilySmith

              John Locke is basing his reasoning on his understanding of Christianity and the Bible. Today men use reason and they look to nature to justify sodomy. As I said, we use reason to justify our bias.

            • liz

              Locke’s reasoning was influenced by his Christian beliefs, but it was reasoning nevertheless.
              Christianity itself was formed on the basis of previous religions.
              All religions were developed by human beings who reasoned, and who integrated their reasoning into the framework of their belief in the gods of the day.
              Natural law was not an invention of Christians. It was developed by Greek philosophers, whom the founding fathers studied well.
              Just because Christians attribute natural law to their version of God doesn’t mean that they would not exist without that god.
              Men will use faulty reasoning to justify their actions whether they are religious or atheist. Just because some reasoning may be faulty doesn’t make reason itself the culprit. As Tom Paine once noted, without reason you might as well teach the Bible itself to a mule as to a man.

            • LilySmith

              Christianity is actually quite different from all other religions. No other religion in history taught about a loving and merciful God like the God of Christ. The problem is you don’t have all the facts of history and the truths about all religions, so your reasoning is faulty since all truth is not known to you. You rely on what someone else has told you, but don’t know if that person was correct or not. That’s true for everyone and is the weakness of basing your understanding of the world on reason. Your conclusions are simply the conclusions of what knowledge you have whether true or false, and what you believe in accordance with your experience in life and who you are. And these things add up to a very minute amount of truth and knowledge that exists. If all truth and knowledge was revealed to you, your conclusions would be very different.

              In other words, no one should be too full of themselves since none of us knows for sure much of anything.

            • liz

              I base my understanding of Christianity and other religions based on experience, the study of those religions, of their writings, and of history, not just “what someone has told me”. (If you studied other ancient religions you’d know that there are innumerable similarities between the Christian God and ancient gods. For example, compare the gospel of Christ to the “gospel” of Mithra).
              Of course “all truth” is known to none of us – that’s exactly what learning is all about – why it’s so important that we use our ability to reason to gain as much knowledge as we can.
              If we all just gave up learning because we know our ability to reason is imperfect, (and besides, our church Fathers told us curiosity is a dangerous thing!) we’d still be in the dark ages.
              If it is a “weakness” to base ones understanding of the world on reason, how much MORE of a weakness to base it on faith!
              Using reason, one at least has a chance to learn truth by challenging previously held assumptions, following where the facts and evidence lead, and arriving at rational, logical conclusions.
              Since faith, by definition, is believing something in spite of the fact that there is no evidence to support it, one can never discover fact-based truth through religion or the Bible. One simply accepts on faith what one is told to believe.

            • LilySmith

              Jesus never taught curiosity is a dangerous thing. Of course we should keep learning and the Christian West always has. You are picking and choosing quotes to bolster what you have already determined to believe about Christianity, proving my point about knowledge and reason. Your reasoning is based on limited knowledge and ultimately faith. The Bible is revelation knowledge. You can believe it or not, but I doubt most people believe simply because someone told them to.

            • liz

              “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for; the evidence of things not seen”….”we live by faith, not by sight”…”blessed is he who has not seen, and has believed”…”you must become as a little child to enter the kingdom of heaven”…”love not the world, or the things of the world”…
              These are all (paraphrased) quotes from Jesus or the apostles that I’m sure you’re familiar with. They encourage believers to ignore the world around them and focus only on the unseen world, which they are to believe in without evidence and, rather than thinking critically, to remain like children in their thinking. Nowhere is intellectual curiosity encouraged.
              Believers are exhorted to study and search scripture, but never the natural, real world. The focus is on the world to come. Real life is only a test of faith and long suffering, which will be rewarded in heaven : “blessed are you who weep now, for you shall be comforted”, etc…
              Whatever the Christian West has learned has been in spite of Christian teaching, not because of it.
              Rational reasoning is not based on faith, it is based on doubt, and a willingness to acknowledge what the facts point to as truth.
              Only those who use reason as a means to confirm their faith base their “reasoning” on faith, and ignore facts that don’t confirm their beliefs.

            • LilySmith

              No, none of the paraphrases you used encourage Christians to “ignore the world around them,” nor do they teach the Christian to “focus on the unseen world.” Instead it is a teaching on how to live in this world. The “things of the world” are defined as: “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life.” The Christian is taught to live in this world in the same way he will live in the next–in righteousness, which means to do the right thing.

              We are to live by love, joy, peace, patience, faithfulness, kindness and self-control, caring for those around us. We are exhorted to work to provide for ourselves and stay sober, to reject sexual immorality, hatred and selfish ambition. When people do that, they can accomplish a lot of good things in this world as well as have hope for the next.

              Any reasoning is based on faith–the belief that your view of the world is the correct view and you build on that belief from there. If your foundational belief, such as the view that no God exists, is wrong, then whatever you build on the foundation will not stand.

              If you would actually study American history and the beginnings of many of our universities and hospitals, you would find they were established by Christians. Your claim that American success was in spite of Christian teaching shows another bias on your part and a lack of actual knowledge and facts.

            • liz

              Yes, we are to deny ourselves the enjoyment of “the things of this world”, which are demonized as “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life”. To counter the “lust of the flesh”, many became eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom – if they were married they lived as though they weren’t; they were to forsake their families, deny themselves, and follow Christ, giving up their possessions, laying them at the apostles feet…Satan is “the god of this world”.
              Since the “pride of life” is a bad thing, then one must learn to deceive oneself and others with a false humility. Hypocrisy becomes second nature.
              “Selfish ambition”- what is that, but the denigration of the natural human impulse to act in ones own rational self interest? Ambition is what drives achievers to accomplish great things. Many a socialist has parasited off the achievements of ambitious, proud capitalists.
              Nathaniel Branden said, “Pride is one’s response to one’s power to achieve values, the pleasure one takes in one’s own efficacy…Pride has to be earned; it is the reward of effort and achievement; but to gain the virtue of humility, one has only to abstain from thinking -nothing else is demanded – and one will feel humble quickly enough.”
              And do you think love, joy, peace, patience, self control, working to provide for ourselves, etc., were invented by Christianity? I suppose no human knew the meaning of them before Christ revealed them to the world.
              You say that if ones foundation is the belief that no God exists, then the foundation will not stand. Where is the proof for that?
              Scientific study that has resulted in countless inventions and discoveries that have benefited mankind were not founded on faith or the Bible.
              There have been just as many totalitarian dictators who believed in God as there have been ones who were atheists.
              Of course much of American history and great achievements were accomplished by Christians, since the vast majority of Americans have been Christian by heritage. That doesn’t mean that their religious beliefs were the sole cause of their achievements.
              That’s like saying that because most achievements were made by men, that means that only men can achieve anything.

            • LilySmith

              You said, “They encourage believers to ignore the world around them and focus only on the unseen world, which they are to believe in without evidence and, rather than thinking critically, to remain like children in their
              thinking. Nowhere is intellectual curiosity encouraged.”

              Yet you admit that much of American history and many great achievements were accomplished by Christians. So they weren’t just ignoring the world around them, thinking like children, and not curious about the world around them. You seem to make things up to fit your bias and completely ignore history and facts to come to a conclusion.

              I’m sorry, but there’s no point discussing things with someone who just goes around in circles to justify her position. I’ll read any response to this post, but this will be my last.

            • liz

              You find a contradiction because you don’t want to acknowledge the obvious conclusion my argument points to.
              As I already clearly stated, whatever the Christian West has learned has been IN SPITE of Christian teaching, not because of it.
              IN SPITE of the focus in Christianity on self-denial, childlike faith, and the “spiritual” world, rather than on the development of reason and the enjoyment of this world, many Christians throughout history have gone against the grain – disobeyed the restrictions laid down for them by their spiritual betters.
              IN SPITE of the suppression of intellectual curiosity and independent thought by the Church for most of its history, many Christians thought independently and creatively anyway, to satisfy their curiosity and interest in the natural world, making many discoveries and achievements in the process.
              Many, like Galileo, were persecuted by Church authorities for doing so.
              That was how the Enlightenment happened.
              These are facts clearly there for anyone who studies history objectively to see, not something I just “made up” to fit my “bias”.
              And its a far cry from “going around in circles to justify” my position.

            • Thank you, liz, for your well-informed and cogent arguments in this dispute with a Christian who does not believe there is such a thing as objective truth, repeats points fully shown to be invalid, and whose statements demonstrate so much of what is wrong with religious faith in general and Christianity in particular. You have brilliantly won the debate.

            • liz

              Thanks! It always helps to have the facts on your side!

    • liz

      So, if this life is never going to be just – if the only justice to be hoped for is on Judgement Day, then shouldn’t we all just surrender ourselves to the injustice in the world and give up any attempt at achieving or receiving justice?
      That’s really the very definition of a martyr – one who surrenders themself to their fate at the hands of their persecutors, trusting God’s will to be done.
      This, to me, epitomizes what is wrong with Christianity – it erodes the natural survival instinct that human beings are born with – the instinct to act in our own rational self interest in order to live successfully – and attempts to replace it with an unnatural desire to become a “living sacrifice” who lives only for the sake of God and others, and who, as a result, feels guilty and selfish for pursuing our own happiness in life. Most Christians come to some sort of subconscious compromise with this mentality, but it has a negative, killjoy effect on all to one degree or other. I remember the feeling well.

      • LilySmith

        What Christianity is about is tempering justice with mercy. Since God has had mercy on us, we should have mercy on others and show God’s love and forgiveness available to them in Christ. That’s why we don’t fight as a Christian army, nor force our beliefs on others. But we do stand for our beliefs, and when in the situation of standing for our beliefs or tossing them out to save our lives, it is more admirable to stand.

        Remember, however, we believe God has instituted governments to enforce laws and maintain justice as best they can. So the Christian is taught to obey the law, and can fight in an army, or work in law enforcement under the authority of the nation in which they live. It’s just that Christianity has no law or government of its own since Christians live among the nations of the world.

        I have lived more successfully since following the teachings of Christ and trusting God’s wisdom for my life. I’m sorry you felt it a killjoy.

        • liz

          If “God has instituted governments to enforce laws and maintain justice”, then why are there so many unjust governments and laws?
          Did God institute Communist governments and laws, or Islamic governments and sharia law? Apparently not, yet, if you were under such a government, you would be required by God to submit to their unjust laws, according to the Bible.
          The few countries where it is tolerable to be a Christian are those who maintain the separation of church and state – in other words, secularism, which was brought about by the influence of the Enlightenment, not the teachings of the Bible.
          Before that was achieved, Christians were collaborating with monarchs to impose church doctrine – forcing their beliefs on others – under pain of death on people.

          • LilySmith

            Imagine the world without government. Imagine anarchy. The reason governments are corrupt and unjust is because the men and women who run them are corrupt and unjust. This is a sinful world. Read the philosophy of John Locke on government, and the Declaration of Independence if you want to know the argument of when a people can change their government. God set in motion–instituted–government, but government comes from the people.

            The Enlightenment was a result of the Protestant Revolution. Our government is based on the rejection of the Divine Right of Kings, which was a Pagan tradition. John Adams writes about this in the Defence of the Constitution. Since there is no government or law in Christianity, no government could be based on it. Instead they sought to make the people, through a representative democracy, the authors of the law and government. For that to succeed, however, the people needed to be moral. They saw Christianity as the moral foundation needed for the people to govern themselves. Here’s what John Adams wrote, “Thirteen governments thus founded on the natural
            authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, which
            are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the
            globe, are a great point gained in favour of the rights of mankind. The
            experiment is made, and has completely succeeded: it can no longer be called in
            question, whether authority in magistrates, and obedience of citizens, can be
            grounded on reason, morality, and the Christian religion, without the monkery
            of priests, or the knavery of politicians.”

            This country is tolerable because it is Christian–a Christianity that was freed from the “monkery of priests.” This country has never been atheist. If you want to see an atheist revolution, look to France and the Reign of Terror.

            • liz

              And how do you think “the monkery of priests” was done away with?
              By that first item on Adam’s list – reason. Reason was frowned on by church authorities, because it threatened to pull the veil from their pretense of infallibility, thus undermining their authority.
              St. Augustine, for example, considered curiosity a “form of temptation…fraught with danger.” A “disease…which drives us to try and discover the secrets of nature, those secrets which are beyond our understanding, which can avail us nothing and which man should not wish to learn.”
              With that attitude permeating church tradition, the Enlightenment was achieved in spite of the church – not because of it.
              Our founding fathers were steeped in both Christianity and Enlightenment thinking, including Greek and Roman political history and philosophy.
              Men institute governments, and men also corrupt them, and reform them.
              On what basis can you prove that “God set in motion – instituted – government”?

            • LilySmith

              The monkery of the priest was done away with in the Protestant Reformation. There is no such teaching of a Pope or a Priest in Christianity. Protestants used the teachings of the Bible to expose the corruption of the Catholic Church and its leaders who built a religion that Christ never built.

              The Enlightenment thinking Jefferson pushed was that of John Locke, and since you’ve read his writings you know clearly that he based his understanding on the Christian narrative. Do you know of any atheist thinker of the Enlightenment period that influenced the Founders? I don’t. The only one I know who left Christianity and embraced Deism when he went to fight in the French Revolution was Thomas Paine. Upon his return to America, he was shunned as an atheist.

            • liz

              You seem to assume that the Enlightenment only involved – and could only influence – atheist thinkers. The Enlightenment came about by people willing to question established dogma and think for themselves – many of whom were, of course, Christian by upbringing.
              John Locke didn’t get his theories solely from the “Christian narrative” – he was greatly influenced by Enlightenment ideas such as the concept of natural law, etc. If his education had been confined only to the bible and Christian dogma, he could not have formed his theories.
              Thomas Paine is a good example of the close minded refusal to accept any challenge to even Protestant Christian dogma by many Christians of his day. He was a Deist, not an atheist. But his criticism of Christianity resulted in his being shamefully reviled and self righteously shunned by his former American friends. Where is the open minded willingness to accept change there? It proves that progress in thought could not have come through Christianity alone, but only as it was FORCED to change, in spite of itself, by those Christians who went against the grain, like Paine.

            • LilySmith

              Which was my point to show that the Founders and early Americans were firmly planted in Christian teaching, not that of atheist Enlightenment thinking. Natural law is the idea that man has rights given to him by his Creator which no man and no government has the right to take away. The Creator John Locke believed in was the Creator of the Bible. Without Him, Natural Law means nothing. Without God, you have no inalienable rights. Here’s John Locke’s reasoning as to why it’s clear God exists:

            • Like all other attempts to prove the existence of God, Locke’s effort fails completely to do so.

              The failure of anyone to prove the existence of God is one of the best reasons not to believe in the existence of a god.

              “Seeing no reason to believe is sufficient reason not to believe” – Karl Popper.

            • LilySmith

              Locke used his reasoning to prove the existence of God in his mind. As I said to Liz, we use reason to justify what we already believe, not to actually come to a conclusion we wouldn’t have wanted to reach. Karl Popper’s quote is another example. His reasoning is that because there is no evidence in his mind, he doesn’t believe. The truth is he already didn’t believe, and his quote is to justify his believe that no God exists.

  • Excellent indictment! One does not have to advocate that Christianity become a political force to note the egregious moral failure in the face of Islamic evil. It’s mind-boggling.

    Add to that the BDS campaign by mainstream Protestant Churches that seeks to punish our ally, Israel, in their confrontation with Islamic evil, and one has to wonder if Christianity is more than just cowardly … it actually supports those with genocidal aspirations.

  • liz

    Right – Christianity hasn’t failed by its own lights. Brownie points in heaven!
    Interesting statement by Saint Gregory of Narek – “I willingly blame myself with…all the incurable sins..” This attitude of perpetual guilt is reflected now in the guilt Christianity’s secular counterparts the leftists feel for their “white privilege”.


      Guilt and fear…Religion’s “book ends.” But, put them together along with pain and resistance, and you get the glue that keeps this old habit together….

      This saint’s words expose his guilt brought on by a lack of internal adulthood since he readily accepts human mistakes that weren’t even committed by him.