Jesus Christ

The Fundamentalist.

By Neetheam Al-muhaisen

Christian fundamentalism.

In a world that is striving towards unity and “oneness” at all costs, the Christian question of unity or separation is beckoned, will he put aside doctrine and conform? When one engages in debate; proselytizing, critical questioning, attempts to persuade, reasoning, you are engaging in an intellectual struggle, a war, by which some ideas must flourish and others must die. Christianity has an ideological component, it’s about persuading people to change. Take the first 300 years of Christianity, when Christianity could not be competed against in the realm of ideas, the powers that be used force to try and wipe Christianity out. Christian’s were thrown to lions, burnt as human torches, because Christianity could not be conquered in the realm of principle and persuasion, and this rested on Christianity’s unconformity with the Pagan world . Christianity was upending paganism, even persuading men to destroy their own idols and burn their own books of magic. Christianity was turning the whole world upside down. That’s how ideological struggles can play out, and that just shows how powerful the struggle of principles can be. A good idea, when it’s time has come, will emerge, and does not need the use of state force to vindicate it, on the contrary, frequently the stayers of progress have used state force, religious-political organization, and elitism, to get their way. Is religion then a cause of conflict because of the antagonism it creates? If the whole world were Atheist, would there then be no intellectual antagonism, and therefore no need for wars? Yes. But this is not an argument in favor of irreligiousness, only one’s desire for unity. For then again, if all the world were Catholic, or Muhammadan, or Buddhist, the same “if all the world were..there would be peace” could be beckoned, atheist or otherwise. A FORM of this is emerging. That all “truth claims” are beckoned to be put aside for the sake of unity. The new world is one of subjectivity and tolerance at the expense of any truth or absolutes.

As Chrisitans, we are beckoned to be “in the world, but not of the world”. The true Chrisitian is a wanderer, ever intent on not being absorbed by the culture around him. He lives in independence from the patterns of this world, he is actuated by a principle higher than the present world, originating from the Ancient throne of God. Because of this he feels misplaced, a pilgrim. To attest to this, Judaism, the foundation of Christianity, started off as one man’s pilgrimage from Babylonia, the city of Ur, to the land of Cannan, though it is noted that Abraham sought a city “…which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God”. The journey was a spiritual search, not merely one of material gain, and how great was that search even impacting the world to this day!

Christ’s fundamentalism.

In Jesus Christ’s day there were two schools I’d like to point out, the Pharisees with their man made dogmas and strict conservative traditions, and the Sadducees, with their skepticism of spiritual things, denial of spirits and disbelief in a resurrection. Both sides ended up attempting to box Christ in with elaborate arguments. Jesus was an outlier, he would stand for no side in the political and spiritual ramble of the day, but beckoned all to stand for him. “I am the way the truth, and the life, no one comes to the father but by me”. This independence meant he was like, to use an analogy, the only sane person in a mental asylum, of whom he is rejected on all sides, and feared as the most insane. Christ was feared because he showed men themselves. An embodiment of the law of God and absolute truth, he was confronting men, as he stood a mirror to show them their corruption, while at the same time offering them forgiveness and acceptance in him, beckoning decisions to be made by all. “One thing you lack..sell all that you have, take up your cross, and follow me”. He came to bring a sword to the earth, for his teaching would be of such a confronting nature so as to divide families and friends, in the choice to follow Christ or continue in the daily merry-go-round of this world.

Lifted above earth and below heaven, he is crucified. Rejected. The only true light in a world of darkness, discarded as if to be the greatest of all evil. Every true Chrisitan then inevitably partakes of this same rejection. Fundamentalist Christianity has become a loathing for it calls for that self-same spirit of Christ, “There is no other way but by me”, this causes it to be against every man in so far as calling each person to surrender themselves to Jesus Christ, and every man is united against it, if they so choose to live apart from the Ancient will of the creator expressed in the first coming of Christ.

But Jesus looked directly at them and said, “Then what is the meaning of that which is written: ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone’? Everyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls will be crushed.” When the scribes and chief priests realized that Jesus had spoken this parable against them, they sought to arrest Him that very hour. But they were afraid of the people.… [Luke 20: 17-19].

The Spirit of fundamentalism embodied in the phrase “There is no other way by which a man can be saved..but by me” (Jesus) is destined to clash with the emerging unity at all costs of today just as christian unconformity in the early christian age led to persecution by the World System of that day, Rome. At Christ there are but 2 choices, to ‘fall on this stone’ to be broken to pieces, or to have the stone fall on you and ‘be crushed’. One entails a surrender to Christ by an act of will, the other destruction by him upon resisting and warring against him.

The Christian Spirit in full maturity is needed today. The kingdom of God has these characteristics based on Mark 4: 26-32

  1. Its growth is slow and imperceptible.
  2. Its conjuring is mysterious.
  3. Its harvest is quick and immediate. Has an immediate impact when reaching maturity.
  4. Its “seed” is full of potential.

In the last 4000 years of history, from the start of Abraham’s spiritual pilgrimage, through to Christ and the steady emergence of the modern age, one man’s decision to follow God, and be made into a ‘great nation’, as promised to Abraham, has led to the kingdom of God steadily and imperceptibly advancing on the earth through each age. Judeo-Christanity has had a huge impact on the world and its ideas still continue to dominate spiritual narrative. You are called to be a part of that narrative, and all inevitably play a role, for or against, the kingdom of God’s advance.