Saturday, February 07, 2015

So It's the Crusades Again

As badly as I have neglected this blog for quite some time now, I've really been wanting to deal with lighter subjects when I do have time to post something. Film, arts, travel, scenery pictures, etc. But the 24-hour news cycle keeps churning out things that I can't let pass without at least some comment. President Obama's latest blunderbuss on the Crusades and Islam is the latest example. The blunderbuss was fired at the National Prayer Breakfast. Great, huh?

The graphic to the right was put up on Twitter today, and it speaks volumes. But the point I want to really underline today is not the Crusades vs. Islamic Conquest per se. I want to address the issue of things being done in "the name of Christ."

Anyone with honesty, as well as at least a general knowledge of Christian theology and the Bible, will know that the New Testament NOWHERE advocates wars of conquest to spread the Gospel. In fact, you cannot spread true Christianity with the sword. Someone must believe in and trust in Christ from the heart, and that cannot be forced at the point of a sword.

Another thing that is made clear in the Bible. Jesus and His apostles warned of false brothers and sisters, false teachers, and false prophets. They warned REPEATEDLY about it. Because monarchs, popes, bishops, and other leaders were self-described Christians, that does NOT mean they were true Christians as defined by the Word of God itself. It does NOT mean that they were regenerate. Political "Christianity" and cultural "Christianity," perhaps. But genuine, soul-saving, spiritually regenerating saving faith in Christ? Very likely not. And saying that these acts were done by "Christians" is, in my view, slander.

I am not intending to say that genuine Christians can't stumble or fall into sinful behavior for a time. Of course they can. But someone who is truly born again with the Spirit of God indwelling them, and who is thoroughly steeped in Scripture will not be engaging in wars of conquest.

I think there is a strong case to be made that the Crusades were largely defensive wars launched after hundreds of years of Islamic oppression. We can certainly find wrongdoing and excesses on the part of some of the Crusaders. But for our cipher of a president to try and find moral equivalence between what happened in the Middle Ages and what ISIS is doing now is just breathtaking chutzpah.

We have two more years of Barack Obama in the White House. We've had bad presidents before, but I have never seen of one or known of one who seems so gleeful about undermining the country he is sworn to protect, or one so intent on insulting the electorate. And the latest is that he's threatening Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu —cancel your address to Congress or else.

Obama says he is a Christian although I see little evidence of it, nor much evidence that he understands foundational Christian theology. He would do well to read the Bible if he can manage to do so without the Jeremiah Wright filter. When you strike at Israel, you strike at the apple of God's eye. Let's leave it at that.

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