Wednesday, December 29, 2010

When Christ Becomes a War Lord

Recently I had what I thought was a conversation with a young co-ed who became incensed that I had written Xmas. She quickly informed me it was CHRISTmas and that she didn't appreciate anyone taking Christ out of Christmas.

So the teacher in me thought I would do the standard education thing: explain the use of chi by the ancients; how the early church treated the title of Christ with the same dignity and respect the Jews did with Yahweh and the Tetragrammaton; how the use of chi was perfectly acceptable through the early 18th century when people became more educated and no longer had to mark the X for their name or the name of Christ; how businesses continued the common practice to save money; and finally how it is a personal preference whether to use the chi or not.

She would have none of that.

You see, by using the chi instead of writing out the entire term Christ, I was participating in an organized plot by atheists who were trying to remove Jesus from the Christmas season. That's right. The atheists have organized, declared war on Christianity and have decided that the Battle of the Bulge is not from the extra helping of mashed potatoes and the fruit cake, but rather the effort to remove Jesus from the hustle and bustle of all that shopping we do this time of year.

Ok. There are so many things wrong with that way of thinking.  

First, Christmas is an entirely secular holiday anyway when it comes to the shopping. Who cares what they say? What matters is the religious expectations the individual and / or family may have. The shopping is not a religious exercise; nor is fighting the crowds a penance. What goes on in those stores or at those check out lines is not a worship event. Believe me: It is anything but celebrating the Incarnation.

The only reason merchants even use "Happy Holidays" is that they recognize there are many, many, many who are not Christians at all and have other faiths. Would you want to have the clerk say "Happy Ramadan" to you? So with several faiths celebrating at an entirely secular event anyway, who cares?

If the store has Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays or whatever, it is irrelevant. "Xmas" is a secular event that runs from roughly the day after Thanksgiving until the last football game in January of the New Year.

Second, the whole idea that atheists are using chi as a means to remove Jesus is preposterous at best, if not an out-and-out lie. I'm sure there is an atheist somewhere that has said they want to do that and use the chi for that purpose. OK. But I've never met a single atheist who has said that. I've never even heard of one who has said that. I certainly have never known an organized Atheist Army with Sharpies a'blazing, running around with a huge X superimposed on the Christ in Christmas. For the statement that atheists are trying to remove Jesus from the season to be true, there has to be some evidence. There is none. It is just a made up, pious sounding statement that has zero basis in fact. None.

Also, the not-so-subtle pressure the militant-Christian puts on merchants is astounding. That the Christian is going to treat a merchant with threats of economic murder is not Christ like. In fact, that intimidation is more like the Pharisees of whom Jesus said gave God homage with their lips but their heart was far from Him. So those people at Walmart better say Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays, and they better not have Xmas signs. Never mind what is in their heart; they had better say it like the militant wants or the economic carpet bombings begin.

How is this mentality any different from the Muslim extremists who insist that depictions of Mohammed are blasphemous? Sure, the Taliban will kill the infidel. But the Tali-Christian will try to put the offending merchant out of business. What is the different internal emotion between killing the body and killing the business?

Of course, I never have found any Biblical passage that says celebrate Christmas or give gifts in December anyway.

When Jesus is used as a War Lord to beat people into submissive acts instead of being presented as the Prince of Peace that changes people's hearts, there is a problem with the Act of War. It is a heart problem that is more concerned about outward appearance than internal devotion.

So, Happy Holidays; Happy Ramadan; Merry Xmas, Happy Chanukah; Happy Kwanza; Blessed Yule Season; Merry Christmas; or whatever you happen to be or not be. Jesus is more than a shopping event and He is no War Lord.

 



2 comments:

Georgia Mountain Man said...

Great post!

Anonymous said...

A Holiday Thought...

Aren't humans amazing? They kill wildlife - birds, deer, all kinds of cats, coyotes, beavers, groundhogs, mice and foxes by the million in order to protect their domestic animals and their feed.

Then they kill domestic animals by the billion and eat them. This in turn kills people by the million, because eating all those animals leads to degenerative - and fatal - health conditions like heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and cancer.

So then humans spend billions of dollars torturing and killing millions more animals to look for cures for these diseases.

Elsewhere, millions of other human beings are being killed by hunger and malnutrition because food they could eat is being used to fatten domestic animals.

Meanwhile, few people recognize the absurdity of humans, who kill so easily and violently, and once a year send out cards praying for "Peace on Earth."

~Revised Preface to Old MacDonald's Factory Farm by C. David Coates~

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Anyone can break this cycle of violence! Everyone has the power to choose compassion! Please visit these websites to align your core values with life affirming choices: http://veganvideo.org & http://tryveg.com





"And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat." ~ Genesis 1:29