Evangelicals and Their Gnosticism

I think this assertion by Yoram Hazony is true – nationalism is an effective counterweight to toxic ideological extremism. The 20th century saw the globe swept by waves of the ideology of fascism and marxism. These ideologies destroyed place, traditions, and rich culture. Trying to turn a nation into simply an idea before which all must give way offers a utopia that soon turns into a hell. Capitalism, too, must give room to civilizational cultures and traditions, even with its powers of creative destruction. People will not become “universal men.” They have tribal structures in their DNA. To belong to no place, no tongue, no religion, no culture is anti-human. It can’t be done.

Thus we see the uprising of nationalisms across the globe that build seawalls against the forces of homogenization. Some automatically claim this is racist and xenophobic. This is not a thoughtful response. And some claim the name of Christ in trying to trample down these boundary markers in the mistaken notion, I believe, that all such markers are anti-Christ.

The fact is that people cannot become placeless, tongueless, cultureless, religionless. To ask them to do so is cruel and a form of gnosticism which denies the reality of a “this worldness.” It was gnosticism which was the primary adversary of true Christianity in its beginnings, and it took a heroic effort to defeat it. But through church history it constantly reappears, as it is doing today.

Large swaths of the Evangelical world are falling under its influence. Common sense Evangelicals are resisting it, though they are criticized by their elites as neanderthals and xenophobes. It has created a division and a intrusive distrust that is so deep that the difficult to build Evangelical institutions are showing signs of cracks that are unrepairable.

We are a rather diffuse lot anyway and it is in our DNA to innately distrust hierarchies. Such hierarchies as we have now have overreached and are attacking their host body, Evangelical Pew Guy. This apparently is a time for redefining and building new networks. It won’t be long before formerly trusted Evangelical denominations become a new version of the mainline denominations, which forsook their confidence in supernatural Christianity rooted in an inspired Word from God in the Bible and were battered by the isms of their day.

Evangelicals always prided themselves that they stood fast. But not so fast! Spend enough time at an Evangelical Christian College today and you will see the cracks opened up in spades. Once Evangelical Pew Guy figures out how to connect with others of his ilk apart from the institutions that have been built since the early 1900s and they (we) will have ignition. Just sayin’.

The Trump Administration Puts An End to Obama’s Persecution of Little Sisters of the Poor.

This is one of the reasons I am increasingly voting the Party and not the candidate. The GOP administration has finally put an end to the persecution of the Little Sisters of the Poor by granting them an Obamacare religious exemption.

The Democratic Party is anti-Roman Catholic, whether it be with respect to LGBT, abortion, or contraception issues. This is not even to mention the Evangelicals, which are a bit of a harder target to hit because of their diffuse nature. We do not have one central target.

Increasingly the Democratic Party is also tolerant of anti-Semitism in its midst.

Winsome Words 10/29/2018

A decline in courage may be the most striking feature which an outside observer notices in the West in our days. The Western world has lost its civil courage, both as a whole and separately, in each country, each government, each political party, and, of course, in the United Nations. Such a decline in courage is particularly noticeable among the ruling groups and the intellectual elite, causing an impression of loss of courage by the entire society.  Alexander Solzhenitsyn

The De-Platforming of GAB

I want to be clear that GAB is not a right-wing site. It is being used by some right-wing extremists because it does not censure posts except in rare cases. I am not even sure how present extremists are, but they are there. I ran across them. I have run across them on Twitter, too. No matter where you go, there is vile stuff out there. After all, Facebook has streamed real-time suicides, assaults, murders, etc.

It might be that GAB will be the only place you can go to follow people whose opinions have been shunned or the only place you can go to express your “out of favor” opinions and not be shadow banned, suspended, or deleted.

Right now GAB has been de-platformed by App Stores, multiple hosting providers, and several payment processors. They are shut down while they transition to a new hosting provider. I am very concerned about the power of businesses to gang up on an out-of-favor site and de-platform it. Paypal and others can simply not allow money through their system and strangle it financially. Of course, we all noticed they didn’t do this when Facebook allowed vile postings through or even postings from foreign countries posing as Americans. A double standard is at work.

People who are out of favor are going to have to work very hard to communicate their opinions and beliefs.