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What Easter should remind all Christians

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Five months ago, on December 25, Christians celebrated the birth of the one they called Messiah in Hebrew and Christ in Greek.

More than 2,000 years ago, some Jewish people expected of Jesus to be the kind of king who would sit on the throne of King David and establish universal peace. Such people were disappointed.

When Jesus attained the age of 30, he started his mission with the message: “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God. Other things will be added to you.”

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Far from being political, Jesus teachings were those of a religious reformer. Whoever, advocates reforms whether political or religious offends some of the people while pleasing others. If those he offends have political have political power they punish him. This is what happened to Jesus. The Easter days are not celebration but mourning among Christians, reliving the agony Jesus experienced as they nailed him to a cross, some say to a tree.

If, as Christians, all we do at Easter is to shed tears, we are not fulfilling our most important duties.

As he approached the final days of his life, Jesus would say: “As I love you, so you should love one another,” and: “Do to others as you would have others do to you.”

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The Easter holidays should remind us of these two injunctions. In the two millennia in which the Christian faith has been spreading from nation to nation, these commandments of Christ have been mostly ignored. Instead, what has prevailed is something like what the American sociologist and political scientist R.M MacIver quotes in his essay “Thy Deep Beauty of the Golden Tule” from La Civilita Cathalica, a Jesuit organ.

Thus goes the quotation: “The Roman Catholic Church, convinced through its divine prerogatives of being the only true church, must demand the right to freedom for herself alone because such a right can only be possessed by truth, never by error. As to other religions, the church will certainly never draw the sword but she will require that by legitimate means, they shall not be allowed to propagate false doctrines.

“Consequently, in a state where the majority of the people are Catholics, the church will require that legal existence be denied to error. In some countries, Catholics will be obliged to ask full religious freedom for all resigned at being forced to cohabitate where they alone should rightly be allowed to live. The church cannot blush for her own want of tolerance, as she asserts it in principle and applies it in practice.”

People with intolerant views about region have painted Christian buildings with blood of the people they have condemned as heat henry not Christ blood. Such intolerance has existed on both sides of the Christian religion. Where the monarch has been a Catholic, they have treated Protestants as aliens and criminals. Where the monarch has been a protestant, they have done the same to Catholics. But what have they gained? Those who have been compelled to recant their religion and embrace that of their prosecutor have been mere hypocrites not true church members. Honest faith depends on freedom of choice.

Today, anybody preaching doctrine like the one above is viewed not as pious but obscurantist; a fossil of troglodyte Indirectly International bodies have heeded the Master.

The level of intolerance exhibited in the above quotation is less common in Christian countries these days. But in non-Christian countries, we still read about members of minority religious sects being killed; their churches destroyed for no reason except to force them to give up their beliefs.

When rulers of countries in which Christians are the majority hear of persecutions of Christians elsewhere, how should they treat adherents of faith that persecute Christians? They should react according to Christ’s teaching. The freedom of worship that we want for ourselves we must grant the minorities among us. By example, let us teach the world that it is more important that someone is your fellow human than that they adhere to the same religion.

The author of the above quotation may have been a good Jesuit Catholic but not a good Christian.

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