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Thoughts on the News

JeffLogan's picture
JeffLogan's picture

Je Suis Huguenot. Vive la persécution?

Perhaps the Pope's image decked with a sign reading "Je Suis Huguenot" should be the next cover of Charlie Hebdo. For in this same city of Paris, in 1572, mainline, not radical, Catholicism aroused its right arm, France, to slaughter tens of thousands of Protestant Huguenots. But did this terrorist act, to use the modern vernacular, quench the Huguenots or the Protestant movement? No, their blood was like seed which after falling to the ground sprang up in a rich harvest of new converts.

And so we have seen like results from persecution through-out history. Satan tried to abolish Christianity early on using the Jewish leaders but the blood of the first Christian martyrs was like seed springing up from the ground. Then Pagan Rome persecuted the Christians for hundreds of years trying to stamp them out. But it failed to diminish their numbers. Instead it seemed to grow them.

Persecutions continued with the Papacy and the Crusades. But I wonder how many were actually converted to paganism or Catholicism by torture and threat of death? Oh, I'm sure some recanted but yet it seemed to rather embolden the heretics in their stubborn obstinance.

How many would agree that Islamic Jihad can succeed in converting the infidels to Islam? Can persecution or threat of death ever succeed in producing true converts? Or, will some yield simply to avoid suffering and death yet inside remain just as devoutly opposed to the faith they are forced to profess? It is for this same reason that I cannot accept that eschatology involves a period of great tribulation for sinners, while the saints are in heaven, with the hopes of converting them, by persecution and threat of death, to Christianity. Oh, there's a great time of tribulation alright, but I think we missed its purpose and incorrectly judged its outcome.

See, the problem is this... while love is powerful and can even grow stronger in absence, fear is marginalized by separation. Once the threat is removed the motivation vaporizes. Not so with love. "Love never fails." So why would God use imperfect means, which have been tried by humans for thousands of years and failed miserably to accomplish the goal, when His Wisdom far exceeds that of man? Come on! Think outside the box religion has put you in. It makes no sense at all.

What are your thoughts?

Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. -Proverbs 18:2 NIV