I wasn’t planning on posting another of my discourses publicly, but the more I’ve considered it, the more I thought that at least one more was important.
Christianity and Western civilization have been together since their beginnings, almost as siblings, and no civilization in the history of our world has been better for mankind than this one, based on Judeo-Christian ethics. Nothing else has been remotely close. To simply let that civilization pass would border on the suicidal, and I will do what I can to prevent such a thing.
This, sadly enough, is where millions of people go irrationally bi-polar. They’ve been trained to find fault, reflexively and persistently. Huge swaths of the political class get and retain power by criticizing; without things to complain about, they would have no jobs. Others go in the opposite direction, reflexively defending the doctrinal Christianity they see as the only alternative to the culture of complaint.
As I explained in FMP #90, the obsession with deconstructing Western ways took form in the later Enlightenment and has damaged a great deal ever since. And it has very certainly deconstructed Christianity, to the point where the religion has lost adherents generation after generation.
Bear in mind, please, that Western civilization is not, and never was, perfect. It has always had flaws. The reasonable and honest thing to do, then, is to repair its flaws. What the political and academic classes have done, however, is to chop at the civilization, not to improve it((With exceptions, of course. I’m writing in generalities.)). A longish discussion would be required to explain this in more depth, but most of the parties doing this sought to wrest legitimacy from its previous holders, turning it into power for themselves.
As a result of this, the accumulated flaws of Christianity have been exposed and attacked. However uncharitably and even deceptively this has been done, the flaws were real. Centuries of perceived association with the divine corrupted Christian hierarchies, just as power corrupts all such structures.
And so Christianity has arrived at a crisis: The doctrines holding its hierarchies together are being pulled apart intellectually and Christian families are quietly walking away from them. Yes, there are exceptions and complications to all of this, but it’s also the way things are. And beneath it all, the doctrines that are being pulled apart have little or nothing to do with Jesus. They are based, in the main, on later ideas about Jesus; ideas so long taught that people assume they must have come from him.
Western civilization is also at something of a crisis point: The anti-Western teachings of the past few generations – taught by the ever-complaining classes – have beaten the better influences of Christianity out of the broader culture, replacing them with shallow psychology at best.
In the end, what has been extracted from the people of the West is cultural confidence. Most westerners believe they are part of a monstrous civilization that has stomped on the rest of the world((Notably, they mistake the acts of states for the acts of the civilization. States, however, are not the civilization; they merely reap from it.)), while the converse is more true.
Western civilization is far from perfect simply because humanity is far from perfect. You can find fault with every culture and every civilization; that’s trivially easy. What’s far more important is to improve a civilization. Such work, of course, is among the least attractive to those seeking power.
And so I’m posting this discourse on the kingdom of God to help reset Christianity on Jesus himself, not on the surplus and power-serving structures that have been built in his name((Judaism, Christianity’s older cousin, needs mainly to be left alone.)).