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Lectionary

In praise of violence.

There are those who say that we should be deeply non violent. I have some sympathy with such an approach. It works for small and isolated communities. To sustain it, you have to remain small and isolated. There is a reason the Amish split their communities when they get too big: there is also a reason that the narrative pushed against them, for the Amish women see motherhood as a blessed calling.

The future will always belong to those who turn up, and that makes the liberals fear.

But pacifism is a theological error. There is a time for hatred, and a time to make a whip from cords, and purge the temple. I have no doubt that the people selling cattle and sheep considered that their service is necessary.

But they were driven out. The people believed in Christ because of the signs he was doing. But the only sign mentioned is that the he will rise again.

Again, that is the only sign that mattered.

John 2:13-25

13The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. 15Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” 17His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” 18The Jews then said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” 19Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 20The Jews then said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?” 21But he was speaking of the temple of his body. 22After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.

23When he was in Jerusalem during the Passover festival, many believed in his name because they saw the signs that he was doing. 24But Jesus on his part would not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people 25and needed no one to testify about anyone; for he himself knew what was in everyone.

We are human, we are made, in the image of God. As he fought for what he loved and cherished, so shall we. It may be with words. It may with acts of grace and charm that appear non violent, but cause the conscience to be pricked, or for people to be shamed, or scorned.

It may be by simply doing good, for the dark rejoices in evil, and hates the good.

But sometimes it means that we fight to defend. Sometimes we push back. Armed if necessary. There was a time for Massey’s cossacks. There was a time when the police removed protesters from Bastion Point. The press are of the dark, and therefore call these dark days.

But we will defend what is good, and true, and right. Let us hope that, as a society, we step back from the brink of civil conflict, and again live in peace. However, historically that is not the way to bet.

It is better to be where the crowds are not, and to live in peace. But know this: the dark hates you, and wants you expunged from history. Plan accordingly.

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