The admonition to resist not evil is not aimed at army commanders, kings, and emperors, much less at settlers in a violent wilderness or urban homesteaders, but at members of a face-to-face community of the sort that Jesus had experienced in Galilee and in which Christians are going to live as members of a parish and diocese.
The theme of next year’s Summer Seminar will be Augustan England, which we are defining as the period between The “Glorious” Revolution of 1688 and the death of King George I. These were the years of William III and Good Queen Anne, the Duke of Marlborough’s victories and also the age that saw the emergence of two distinct political parties and ideologies.
Christians have interpreted Christ’s injunction to turn the other cheek in different ways. Over the centuries Catholic authorities have generally and consistently upheld the righteousness of self-defense, just war, and capital punishment, while the Orthodox have been more prone to view all war, just and necessary as they may be, as nonetheless sinful and requiring absolution. When a Byzantine emperor asked his Patriarch to proclaim as martyrs all the soldiers who died fighting Islam, he was refused. Neither Church, it goes without saying, instructed its followers not to resist the aggression of evil men…. The injunction to turn the...
I had a flash of realization: None of this is real, none of this has actually happened. COVID lockdowns, Antifa and BLM riots, the Kardashians and the Met Gala, “woke’ academics and cities on fire, the Biden presidency are all part of a poorly written script for a cheap dystopian TV series, a knock-off of Philip K. Dick.
An entire nation that adopted a policy of pacifism would soon become a nation of slaves. Since the Christian religion has not yet become the exclusive preserve of fools, cowards, and idiots, it is strange how many people believe that Christ requires believers never to resist evil by force.