Feel free to move this if it’s in the wrong forum. I stumbled upon an article on Huffington Post (I don’t usually read this website because of the blatant liberal bias on it.) about Pope Francis talking about the persecution of Christians in his homily yesterday. As can be expected, the comment section was ripe with anti-Catholic fallacies (including one where someone literally said that Christians have been persecuting other people for centuries, and that it’s “about time” someone hurt Christians). One comment said something I have heard before. I know it’s wrong, and it’s typically used to mock Christians, but I can’t quite put into words what’s wrong with it. The premise is that Jesus said that Christians should rejoice when they are being persecuted, so why do Christians complain about persecution?
10 - Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 - Blessed are ye when they shall revile you, and persecute you, and speak all that is evil against you, untruly, for my sake:
12 - Be glad and rejoice, for your reward is very great in heaven. For so they persecuted the prophets that were before you.
13 - You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing any more but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men.
There was another thing that Jesus said that since the world hated him it will hate us too. If the world persecuted Jesus and the prophets that indicates being persecuted is a sign they’re standing up for what they believe in. Being persecuted is a grave injustice
P.S. Don’t read anti Catholic comments, it will just lead to frustration
Remember that Saul of Tarsus approvingly watched the stoning of St. Stephen. A decade ago, I was not too far from that, or far from the Huffington Post person. They have forgotten the goodness of their Father's house; and they are self-guided to the Divine Mercy. Remember, too, that those who say these things are in thrall to sin and the devil, and they are urged on by what has enslaved them.
Avoid anti-Christian filth like the Huffington Post.
If I am being persecuted for being a Christian I can rejoice insofar as it means that I’m on the right track for salvation. But Jesus never said that we should rejoice in the suffering of other Christians. The golden rule of Christianity is to love God will all your heart, mind, and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself. It would go against this golden rule to ignore the suffering of other Christians. We can rejoice for the Christian martyrs who are in Heaven. That would not be rejoicing in their suffering. It would be rejoicing that they received their eternal reward in Heaven.
That Christians have persecuted each other and other for centuries is historic fact. However, that does not give any other group the right to persecute modern Christians…or any other group.
This smells like an equivocation fallacy. (Switch referencing)
…It’s good to have a dentist fix your cavity - therefore having cavities isnt bad.
…marriage is a wonderful institution - therefore men marrying each other is good.
…blessed are you when people revile you - so try really hard to get people to dislike you.
….suffering hardship builds character - therefore let’s ignore other people’s hardship.
The ‘switch’ in this case is the false equivalence being drawn between the (immoral) act of persecuting someone, and the (moral) act of fortitude in enduring that persecution without flinching or compromising truth and justice.
Think Maximillian Kolbe, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, John the Baptist, etc.
Go back to the godless liberals at Huff Post forum and ask them if…
"look everybody, they don’t seem to mind"
…could excuse other forms of abuse such as beastiality or pedophilia.
This should be qualified. Christians who persecute anybody are people who fail to live up to the profession of their faith. In other words, they’re not being very good Christians.
This is vastly different than, say, Muslims persecuting infidels, who in doing so live up to the example and teaching of their revered sage, Mohammed, who is the perfect Muslim.
Or of moral relativists, who, in persecuting anyone, may or may not be living up to their own personal moral code, depending on their individual moral rationale (such as might makes right, for example).
Or of political socialists, who, in persecuting those who are disobedient to the state programme, are living up to their expressed ideology.
In the provided examples, the religious, moral and ideological codes held endorse persecutions, and as such those who persecute those deserving of persecution (in their views) are acting properly. This is an entirely different situation than Christians persecuting other Christians, who, in doing so act contrarily, and therefore hypocritically, to their professed belief.
This is a distinct difference, and an important qualification to make, because those Christians who are not guilty of persecuting because they live up to their beliefs and creeds, and at the same time condemn persecution of Christians, are proper in making such a condemnation and should not receive the kind of rhetorical backlash that commentators on sites like Huffington Post dish out.
Moreover, the fact that such commentators actually appear to condone such persecutions actually demonstrates the premise of this post; that some ideologies, worldviews, religious positions, moral codes, etc. actually endorse various levels and kinds of persecutions against select groups.
So make the qualification. Yes, Christians have historically persecuted both non-Christians and Christians alike, but those that have done so, have done so contrary to their profession of Faith, and the Christian teachings on Faith and Morals. Thus, such instances of Christian oppressiveness cannot necessarily properly be compared to the persecutions rendered by other groups, and referencing such becomes something of a null point.
Everybody is making good points.
Thank you. I like it when a fallacious statement can be neatly categorized. I don’t know if I was aware of the equivocation fallacy. Makes sense.
I would like to respond to these comments, but you can only comment on HuffPo with your Facebook account, and I’m not about to let these people know who I am. I just can’t believe adults who most likely are well educated and make these ridiculous statements.
The joke is on them because I don’t know if you all are aware of this, but Andrew Breitbart, the man who later started the conservative Breitbart news site, worked for Huffington when she was a conservative. (I don’t know why he was working for her because at the time he was liberal himself.) Huffington became liberal, and assumed Breitbart still was, and he claimed he gave her the idea for the site. Whether or not that’s true, he did help her put the site together. He was interested because unbeknownst to her, he thought the site would be a way for outsiders to see how liberals really are. I don’t know if that’s the most charitable thing to do, but his plan definitely worked.
Christians are persecuted for doing the right thing in a world that often values the wrong thing. We should rejoice in our ability to stand for righteousness. But that in no way means we’re to encourage unrighteousness, as if it’s good to desire evil to be done to ourselves or to anyone else for that matter. God’s will is truly done on earth when we all align ourselves with it-when we all want to do the right thing IOW.
That is an example of a Semitic hyperbole, as when Jesus instructed his disciples to pluck out their eyes if they caused them to sin (Mt. 5:29), or when he said that we had to “hate” our fathers and mothers (Lk 14:26). It is an exaggeration to make a point. Hebrew and Aramaic (which is the language that Jesus spoke) do not have a “superlative,” and so one way to substitute for that is to exaggerate the opposite extreme of a comparison.
Jesus is saying, in this case, that when we experience persecution, that is (in a way) a good sign, because we are in good company: those who take the narrow gate are often seen badly by those who enter by the wide gate.
He is not saying that we should seek out persecution or simply accept it when it happens.
Because most Christians are worldly and are afraid to follow Christ radically. They also have nationalist, cultural, and personal reasons to get angry at persecution. They forget that the Blood of Martyrs is the Seed of the Church. It becomes more of a factional dispute than faithful patience.
How is that a stumper?
Persecution is a sign that you’re on the right track
This should be the key to knowing that it is the Church that Jesus Christ founded. He said in John 15:20 “Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you”, and Mat 5:11 “Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven”
Of all of the Christian churches, Only the Catholic Church is so reviled and lied about, this is proof that we have found the Church of Jesus Christ; so be of good cheer, you’re in the right place.
But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t point out the injustice of it or pray to be delivered from it as He asked The Father to let the cup pass from Him.