19 comments on “Hated by the World

  1. Don~ I find this whole narrative quite puzzling. The religious community in the US has always been a majority demographically. I’m not aware of any laws abridging the rights of Christians. In fact, the religious have more dogma enshrined in legislation than any time since the Founding Fathers. The media has been a megaphone for believers as long as I can remember. I’m wondering if I’m missing something.
    I would suggest that if you’re dissatisfied with societal moral fibre that you have a “believer” problem, not an “non believer” issue. You’re easily 70% of the voting population.

    • I would respectfully suggest that you might have missed the point of the post you’re commenting on, for it deals primarily with conditions 2,000 years ago. Perhaps it wasn’t well communicated, so that’s on me. As for my secondary observation about the present day, I certainly agree with you that we have no legal restriction of religion in the US. We may well agree to disagree on the other points, which is fine by me Yet this morning’s new, although no much heralded, makes one wonder about the future in this country when you consider the magnitude of contempt we are held in by those who will most likely be running things in a few months.

      • I hear so frequently from believers that they’re persecuted, that I get tunnel vision sometimes. 🙂 I would agree your post is an accurate representation of the “new church” in Roman times. We would also agree on the state of politics. I have no desire to see Hillary in the WH ever again.
        Thanks for being open to comment.

        • A Christian who claims to be persecuted in the USA doesn’t know what persecution is, for there is quite a big difference between persecution and disagreement or political opposition.

          I always appreciate thoughtful comments whether I agree or not, so thank you for making yours.

  2. In response to Persedeplume’s comments, I wonder if we are approaching a tipping point in which America’s Congressmen will go “Hey…we’ve pushed the evangelicals far enough back…why are we giving this spiritual legislation such a wide berth! Get rid of it!” And they’ll try, and the church will find itself shocked by how little resistance is offered.

    Our status as Americans is not a permanent cushion. Don’s message is necessary. We Christians should constantly live vigilantly, partially so we are pragmatically prepared, but partly so we are always counting our blessings.

    • Brandon I think you are quite right; none of us knows what the future holds, and thus we should exercise our civic duty to participate in the process just as all Americans should. Yet we should remember that our hope and our futures are securely in God’s hands. This is where we ultimately place faith, that God will see us through whatever may come, rather than placing our hope and faith in the institutions of men.

  3. What a wonderful thinker! Thank you. And – for me – addresses one of the difficulties with this “world stuff”. The often quoted “of this world but not in it” quote. Which immediately puts an (unnecessary?) us and them – and is a “Christian presupposition” which influences so much else.

    “As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world.”

    Tiny difference – but one which I read with sirens blaring and bells ringing (like how He does when He wants your attention). And which resonates with “in and OF this world”. No us and them. We are all one.

    One small difference? “I have chosen you” from this world. And we are all chosen – we are all invited. It’s just some refuse to hear the invitation, some read it and put it in the bin, and others are vaguely aware of it and find a time later in life when that invitation is “just the right moment” for them.

    I have struggled for a long time with this arbitrary Christian thing of “I am in but I am not of”.

    It carries an implicit “better than thou” complex. It attaches “religion and all that” to “relationship with God” and makes them one and the same. Which they are not (in my view).

    Because that simply reinforces a “better than thou” complex. For me – this one increasingly become that I am in and of this world – that I do belong here for as long as I am here. The alternative?

    If I am here – but shouldn’t be – if I am chosen and “you” are not – if I shouldn’t even be here … How much does that “I don’t fit” drag us away from the very Jesus we worship?

    But the “other way”?

    I am in this world, I am in this world, I belong here while I am here – we all are – there is no us and them. There are merely those who see this “invitation” in different ways – and in different weeks of the lives – and maybe until that one moment. And that – for me – shifts a lot of “religious baggage” that weighs “us”(!!) down.

    (and explains why I have always learned as much about God from those who don’t believe in God as those who do)

    Don, I have never been able to verbalise this to myself until just now. Thank you!

    The pondering continues!! 🙂

    • Doh! Another post spun of the back of this one! The time difference and my working day – I am just about to press publish. Big hugs ((hugs))

    • Thank you Paul. For whatever it may be worth, I think of this whole “world” business not as “us good” and “they bad”, since as you say, that really isn’t true. In my mind it’s just like speaking to someone who comes from a different culture. Their culture is different from mine, with different expectations, customs and language; it may involve a completely different understanding of certain things… Whatever those differences may be, “those people” aren’t “bad”, just a little different, which to me makes them interesting if anything. As long as we are aware, we can still have a relationship, mutual respect and even trust can still develop, and when it does there may be an opportunity to extend an invitation… to dinner, to a party, or… who knows what?

      • If my comment comes across as a general swipe at all who call themselves Christians – my apologies. And what a delightful expansion on the accepting the invitation. It is a lovely and loving explanation I do not often hear said clearly by many.

  4. Pingback: In but not of … | Just me being curious

  5. Pingback: Hated by the World | The Life Project | franciscansonthemountains

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