persecution and suffering. it’s real. (updated)

the veracity of the contents of the video had been called into question – so I have removed the post. Lesson learned: always verify stuff before putting it up. Hopefully Francis Chan hasn’t lost credibility for posting his video response online.

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5 responses to “persecution and suffering. it’s real. (updated)

  1. Persecution is universal, not just against Christianity.

    And it must stop.

    In India Muslims and Hindus have been going at it for nearly 1500 years. Even in recent times entire trains full of Muslims and/or Hindus have been set fire to, and huge riots have taken place, and horrendous attacks taken place. That’s why the Muslims and Hindus relocated, a great separation having taken place in Gandhi’s day with Muslims in India moving into Pakistan and Bangladesh, and Hindus staying in other areas. One especially bloody area is Kashimir, that has a ruler of one religion, and a majority of people of another. So the Hindus and Muslims keep going at it in Kashmir. It’s the same way of course in Palestine with the Arabs and Jews. Of course going back through Christian history, after Constantine converted to Christianity the war against all rival gods began, and grew more intense as Emperor after Emperor insisted on one holy Catholic orthodox church, and they closed temples, persecuted pagans, Jews, heretics, burned books. In fact it was only during the late 1800s and early 1900s when blasphemy laws were struck down and Jews (and still later, atheists) were allowed rights not granted to them before, like serving in government in Britain.

    Human beings have “suffered” at each other’s hands for as long as human beings have had hands. “Suffering” for almost any conceivable reason, including “suffering for the Gospel,” is therefore not unique. Throughout history and in fields of human endeavor as diverse as religion, politics, science, art, and education, great minds have suffered at the hands of little minds; great hearts and souls have suffered at the hands of the heartless and the soulless; obstinate hearts, minds and souls have suffered at the hands of equally obstinate hearts, minds and souls. Those inflicting the suffering often thought they were “right” to do so. And those experiencing it took succor in believing that their faith, or ideas, or actions, were “right.”

    Speaking of non-Christians who have suffered: Jews have suffered for over a thousand years at the hands of Babylonians, Greeks, Romans, Catholics, Protestants, Eastern Orthodox Christians, Moslems, and Germans. Which reminds me of the Jewish story of a rabbi facing the Inquisition, who was asked to deny his faith. He asked for time to think it over. The next morning he said, “I will not become a Catholic, but I have a last request – before I’m burnt at the stake my tongue should be cut out for not replying at once. To such a question ‘No!’ was the only answer.”

    Christian antisemitism has been the cause of much Jewish suffering over the past 1900 years. And, like the modern day disavowal of the importance of pro-slavery Biblical passages, most of today’s Christians disavow the importance of anti-Jewish New Testament passages, which is certainly an improvement over the past. Still, neither the antisemitic passages, nor the pro-slavery passages, have been erased from the Bible, and some people continue to find such passages “divinely inspired.” According to the author of Antisemitism in the New Testament, “Nearly every book in the New Testament expresses slander and contempt for Jews. Most Christians have maintained that the New Testament is not anti-Jewish but that antisemitism arose as a result of the misunderstanding of it. Examination of the contents of the New Testament does not support this claim.”[155]

    And what about the religion known as “Bahaism?” It began when the Persian holy man, Ali Muhammad (1819-1850) set out to reform Islam and bring people back to the worship of a purely spiritual God (not unlike how Jesus set out to reform the Judaism of his day). His movement caused much religious ferment. This led to his execution in 1850 by order of the Shah’s chief minister and at the instigation of Muslim clerics who saw his movement as a threat to orthodox Islam. Besides Ali Muhammad, 20,000 of his followers were martyred for their beliefs. Yet the “Bahai” religion survived, and it has communities in 205 countries.[156]

    The early Mormons were persecuted by the “orthodox” Christian majority, and the founder of Mormonism was killed by a mob. Yet that religion continues to do quite well.

    And what about agnostics, atheists, “heretical” Christians and “heretical” Muslims, all of whom have suffered at the hands of “orthodox” Christians and “orthodox” Muslims for daring to speak and publish their “blasphemous” or “heretical” ideas? Christians and Muslims have publicly burnt the books of their critics, so that even today, the words of Christianity’s earliest critics only survive in the form of excerpts in the works of their Christian opponents. In colonial America, there were laws that made “blasphemy” a crime punishable by death. Even up till the early 1900s, the authors of “blasphemous” literature in Great Britain and America could be put on trial, fined, and/or imprisoned for their “crime.” Some Muslims still view “blasphemy and heresy” as crimes deserving the death penalty.

    As I said above, human beings have “suffered” at each other’s hands for as long as human beings have had hands. “Suffering” for almost any conceivable reason and belief is therefore not unique.

  2. not sure dan – could have been a spiritual attack – that was a powerful video and it moved many people – but all it took was one or more folks calling into question if those were really Indian Christians really being beat up for their faith and the video has to come down.

  3. I didn’t think twice about it’s validity either. It was powerful. I would have said more after I watched it, but it was so moving and I had to head out to work. There just wasn’t time to pull my thoughts together.

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