Discussing
Persecution and the American Christian 'matyrdom complex'

Andy Rau

Rick
April 24, 2008

I think that what non-christians or academics don’t understand is that persecution and war imagery is not a peculiarly American Christian right-wing neurosis, it is the heart of the Gospel. An academic might say that Jesus had a messiah complex, that He had illusions of persecution, even thoughts that the devil was after Him. He saw demons behind every sick person. And of course Paul often compared Christian life to a battle and was constantly looking for “the devil’s schemes”. “Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” This is either true or it is not. We either have a real devil who goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, or we are nuts with a persecution complex. The academic Elizabeth A. Castelli, is sure that Christians have a persecution complex, that we are looking for enemies and devilish schemes behind things. This arrogant author even believes that Martin Luther King was guilty of promulgating a revivified American Puritan jeremiad. Whereas I think he had a legitimate prophetic mantle. <br>I tend to side with Jesus and Paul. Jesus could look at Peter, hear him talk and then say “Get behind me satan”. The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis deals with the invisible realities of the spiritual life. Of course there is a spiritual persecution that is real for every Christian in America, or anywhere for that matter. Of course I don’t believe American Christians are persecuted in the sense that Christians in Darfur are. But as I said to Peter in his blog last week, persecution is a sliding scale with verbal abuse on one end and death on the other. Some may carry it to extremes, a few might be clinically paranoid, but spiritual persecution is a reality for EVERY Christian. There is a real war on Christians. <br><br>As an aside, professor Elizabeth A. Castelli wins the prize for the most frequent use of the word discursive.

John
April 25, 2008

Wow, where to you start, lets say that you as a Christian want to place a cross in a public area to show other Christians there is a place where they may go to seek rest. One organization the ACLU would have to tear it down as it would be a violation of church and state. Now from there the Ten Commandments are being pulled from schools, office buildings and even court houses. The Ten Commandments are the basis for our laws today, but because of the few the many may not see those words given by God; again a violation of church and state. Is this persecution of the many for the few? I say yes, but don't let it get you down. For our Father is greater than all of this and when we get home, he will be waiting for us. In God's Grace John

Kjml
April 25, 2008

I'm with Rick. Satan would be overjoyed to find that we [Christians] had all decided that he had better things to do than interfere with our Christian walk or the saving of souls. We are not persecuted in America the way Christians in the Middle East, China, or Africa are and we can and should thank God for that on a daily basis. But to deny that there is, in fact, a spiritual warfare going on in our culture, and that those who follow Jesus are the target, is the height of naivete'.

Mark
April 26, 2008

Typical gobbledigook from a "professor of religion" who in fact does not have any faith. Although capable of an occasional insight, Ms. Catelli does not balance her one-side treatise by attempting to understand the other point of view. The article is therefore a polemic rather than a true study of the issue.<br><br>To an intellectual who spent 90% of his life as an atheist...this sounds just like I did 5 years ago. <br><br>It is now so obvious that this type of psycho-social analysis is just a sophisticated form of neurosis, designed to prevent the self from considering the Truth that we must all submit to the LORD.

Matt
April 30, 2008

Christians are under attack in America! Take Grand Theft Jesus: The Hijacking of Religion in America. Written by Robert S. McElvaine for example. This worthless"historian" attempts to attack Christians with the bible! This book is likely to be the reference book of the Anti-Chris. I found <a href="http://jaajoe.com/index.php?option=com_content&amp;task=view&amp;id=42&amp;Itemid=35#jc_allComments" rel="nofollow">this great review of Grand Theft Jesus</a> that tears the arguments Dr. McElvaine to shreds.<br>

Kelli
May 5, 2008

When is the last time you worried about your children being ostracized and bullied at school and in your neighborhood simply because you go to church?<br><br>When is the last time you had your vehicle vandalized simply because you were a Christian?<br><br>When is the last time you worried about getting fired or being able to find a job because you were a Christian?<br><br>When is the last time you worried about getting kicked out of your apartment because you were a Christian?<br><br>When is the last time you had someone tell your teen daughter that it is wrong to accept you and have a relationship with you simply because you're a Christian?<br><br>Don't talk to me about being persecuted. <br><br>These are real things I have faced, but change the word 'Christian' to 'transgendered.' Most of the hatred and misunderstanding of transgendered people is propagated by Christians who apparently believe they are persecuted and yet have no tolerance for others who are different. <br><br>-Kelli<br>

M Brooks
July 22, 2008

The Germans turned on the Jews and Gypsies within a 20 year time frame. Pre-Hitler, German was a safe harbor to the Jews. There was antisemitism but no open persecution. Today we do have a concerted effort to remove Jesus Christ from the Public Realm. In fact today if you compare it to the 1920's, we are in a similar state was was Germany. We are only one President away from seeing "hate crime" legislation passed that will ban preachers from preaching against homosexuality under threat of law. This is just the start. The head of NASA recently expressed his view that any one who opposes "Global Warming" should be jailed. A government official espousing that any one who disagrees with the PC Doctrine of the moment be jailed. We are at the edge of the cliff. All it will take is one lemming to jump and the rest will follow. Mark my words. History is our best reference for future events. America is following the course of Germany, France, and Rome.

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