August 29th, 2012Love and War and Gonadsby Kevin O'Brien | http://www.thewordinc.org
My last two posts (both here and at my own blog), The Rape of Reason and Love and War , are connected.
In the first, I point out the appalling hate-speech of an otherwise intelligent atheist reader of this blog, who asserts that God "raped a Jewish virgin", and who betrays his anti-Semitism by complaining that God would even mess with those backwards Jews, rather than revealing Himself to the much-more-sophisticated Chinese (who today show their superiority to any in the West by their enforced abortion, their abandonment of girl babies, their totalitarianism, and their imprisonment of political dissidents).
In the second, I try to help a struggling reader of Scripture see that only one thing can square the Wrath of God in the Old Testament with the Mercy of God that takes human form in the New - and that is the unity of Love - not the emasculated love of our suburban parishes, but the consuming fire of the God Who is love, evident all about us, and expressed throughout the Bible from start to finish, a disturbing love, a love that will not let us rest in our sins and in our superficial human parodies of Divine Love.
The two posts come together in this quote by Robert Carballo, which Joseph Pearce passed along here on the Ink Desk, the context of which you can read on The Christian Shakespeare site, where Carballo makes his case in full.
Carballo points to a modernist critic of Shakespeare, who takes time in an article on The Merchant of Venice to spew some hate and spread some propaganda and lies about the Catholic Church. Would this critic have dared similarly to criticize Islam? Carballo asks.
No, he reserves his bullying for the Christians, for he knows that what now obtains is, in his words, "the transformation of Christianity from its militant, combative, baptize-or-be-damned phase ... to its much gentler, attenuated, and more pacific institution of today." In other words, a Christianity which is easy to defame and bully through lies, half-truths, historical distortions and purely subjective interpretations---and a Christianity that largely lacks courageous leaders but has plenty of cowardly followers who have been domesticated by a quasi-heretical, pacifist, and distorted preaching of the theological virtue of charity.
We have been domesticated (I would say emasculated) by "a quasi-heretical, pacifist, and distorted preaching of the theological virtue of charity."
In other words, of love.
If our love were more like the love of God - neither pacifist (opposed to fighting under any circumstances) nor accommodating of sin (God will either destroy sinners, or more typically let them destroy themselves, as I point out here), but truly charitable, atheists would have neither the courage to hate our God, hate His people (the Jews) and claim that God raped one, nor perhaps would they have the desire to do so.
It may be that their contempt of us stems from our own lack of love - a love with gonads, a love that speaks the truth and fights for what it loves.
The Muslims, at least, have that advantage over us. Which is why my atheist reader would not dare to blaspheme against Mohamed or Allah - but will think it's cute to knock the Virgin Mary and the God he claims raped her.
Sadly, we both lack real courage - Christians and their critics.
Because we both lack real love.