The dictatorship of relativism strikes back—and goes nuclear

HT: Logia, The Journal of Lutheran Theology

Christendom as a whole is under attack

In a letter to the Sunday Telegraph published in that newspaper’s 28 March 2010 edition, five Evangelical bishops of the Church of England have politely drawn attention to the increasing volume of persecution of Christians in England and, in a governessy sort of way, insisted that the antichristian forces in British society cease and desist forthwith. The bishops’ reproach fell somewhat short of white-hot prophetic vigour: “We are deeply concerned at the apparent discrimination shown against Christians and we call on the Government to remedy this serious development.”

As the bishops’ letter begins with a protest over the case of a middle-aged English nurse dismissed for insisting on displaying, when on duty, a crucifix that she has worn since her confirmation decades ago, it demonstrates how British society in particular (along with European society in general) has lurched dramatically back to a stage prior to the work of the much maligned Constantine the Great.

While the bishops’ concern is genuine and the issue they address real, one wonders whether they are taking the right approach. Can we picture Peter and Paul, around the year 68, stamping their feet and stressing the paramount need for Nero to respect the human rights of the nascent Christian community in Rome? Can we get our hands on evidence that the bishops and other ecclesial spokesmen of the day adopted the tone of these Anglican Evangelical prelates toward Decius and Diocletian?

More to the point, can we imagine Diocletian, Decius, and Nero meekly agreeing to “remedy the serious developments” that had occurred on their respective imperial watches? Rather than issuing impotent appeals to the successive beasts that arise from the earth, bishops are to prepare and equip the Christian faithful to undergo the fires of tribulation that the Lord permits to come their way. For, make no doubt about it, the days of Diocletian and Decius and perhaps of Nero also are fast returning to the Western world.

Comments

  1. Rather than issuing impotent appeals to the successive beasts that arise from the earth, bishops are to prepare and equip the Christian faithful to undergo the fires of tribulation that the Lord permits to come their way.

    The only way to prepare the faitful that I can think of is to make known the Lives of the Saints. Christ did not bribe anyone to become His follower. He did warn us:

    I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

    I am reading again The Blessed Surgeon: The Life of Saint Luke, Archbishop of Simferopol. He was an “unshakable pillar and teacher of Orthodoxy” during the darkest years of Communist oppression in Russia. St. Luke’s virtues, struggles and achievements are staggering. God could have raised one thousand like him but one was just enough!

    Troparion of St. Luke of Simferopol – Tone 1

    O herald of the way of salvation, confessor and archpastor of the Crimean flock, faithful keeper of the traditions of the fathers, unshakeable pillar and teacher of Orthodoxy, pray unceasingly to Christ our Saviour to grant salvation and strong faith to Orthodox Christians, O holy hierarch Luke, physician wise in God.

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