Introductory note from Nate Richardson: The following are my notes on this most excellent book. I found myself taking a long time to get through the text, highlighting just about every word and loving every page. When I first heard Peter Kreeft lecture online, I instantly knew I had found another all-time hero, and was thrilled to see that he had written many books.
Some of the topics of this work are abortion, homosexuality, spiritual warfare tactics, loving sinners while hating sin, the worlds peace vs Christs peace, the enemy not as each other but as devils, roots of the sexual revolution and its impact, dangers of ‘spiritualism’ and a belief in ‘the future’ rather than belief in Christ, people of faith uniting against the modernists, the importance of chastity and ‘flesh’ sins, resisting relativism, the virtue of poverty, the immorality of psychology & evolution, giving the whole soul to God to win the war as a saint, and so on.
The following notes are a dramatically reduced presentation of important ideas I found in the text. I also add occasional commentary. These notes are summaries of ideas in my own words with occasional quotes from the author. Please read the full book for the entire intended message of the author. As these notes are more extensive than my typical book highlights, permission from the author has been attained to share them. This work is shared for educational and religious non-profit purposes.
As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I occasionally add doctrinal commentary of my faith into these notes, and specify my commentary as “Note – …” Kreeft points out in this text that orthodox people of all faiths can unite in the culture war.
The chapters are as follows:
Ch. 1 We are at War: A Wake-Up Call
Ch. 2 The Identity of our Enemy: Principalities & Powers
Ch. 3 The Kind of War we are In: True & False Spiritual Warfare
Ch. 4 The Fundamental Principle of All Culture Wars: Colson’s Law
Ch. 5 Our Enemy’s Battle Plan: Satan’s Strategy for the 3rd Millennium
Ch. 6 The Fiercest Battle: Sex Wars
Ch. 7 The Secret Weapon that will Win the War: Saints
Ch. 8 Basic Training: How to be a Saint
Ch. 9 The Prognosis for Victory: Why We Must Win
Now on to the highlights:
To say things just happen, that we can’t influence them, is the purest pessimism. Those who say you can’t stop progress mean you can’t stop regress.
“Sometimes I think I would rather be a salamander than a sociologist.”
Polls show that Americans worry most deeply about social cultural moral issues that affect them, like drugs, terrorism, divorce, homelessness, rape, alcoholism, violence, child abuse, abortion, destruction of families, teen pregnancies, AIDS, and suicide. “We’re more worried about our wrongs than our rights.”
The 50s were much happier than we are today. Some say you can’t turn back the clock and stop progress, but you can, and you better if the clock is keeping bad time. A clock or a society is a manmade invention, it doesn’t just happen. We made it, we can fix it. Stop the false god “Progress”. In the name of Progress we have ceased real progress. Real progress is getting closer to our goal, and for everyone that means happiness. Since we aren’t in the happy days anymore, we have stopped progressing.
“Who wants to bring babies into a battlefield? Only the heroic or the naïve.”
Kreeft points out that this book is loud and crude, “and I’m not sorry”. In a battlefield, an ugly blaring trumpet works better than a sweet violin. You cannot win a war by blissfully sewing peace banners on a battlefield.
Many ideas are so ridiculous only a PhD could believe them.
Thoreau said “Read not the times; read the eternities.”
A Time magazine cover had the question, “Why is everything getting better?” Why is life so good in America, why does everybody feel so satisfied and optimistic? The answer they gave was one answer: People have more money. Except of course the poor who don’t read Time magazine. The reality is everything isn’t better, people aren’t satisfied and optimistic, they’re just making more money.
Time Magazine is Playboy with clothes on. It’s a big piggy bank, the other kind of playboy. For both kinds of playboy, things are getting better and better.
Note: The Devil’s kingdom is growing well. Those who say ‘we are growing well’ are speaking for the Devil.
Americans gave 75% approval of Bill Clinton, who was the perfect combination of the two kinds of playboy. Big whores for himself, and he kept us happy with big piggy banks. We loved him the same reason the Germans loved Hitler: the economy. Hitler gave the greatest economic miracle of the 20th century. “What else matters as long as the emperor gives you bread and circuses?”
“Sexual pigginess and economic pigginess are natural twins.” Lust and greed are almost interchangeable words. America doesn’t know the difference between sex and money. It treats sex like money because it treats sex as a medium of exchange, and it treats money like sex because it expects its money to get pregnant and reproduce!
The “pig philosophy” problem is that it is often fatal, as seen by AIDS and suicide.
Suicide is almost directly proportionate to wealth, richest countries having the highest rate of it. Suicide among preadults has increased 5,000% since the “happy days” of the fifties.
Half of all marriages end in suicide, that is what divorce is, the death of the “one flesh” that marriage created.
Individuals aren’t the primary building blocks of society, families are.
1/3 of all American children are killed by their mothers using healers as hit men.
A tribe in the Congo of Africa could believe everything about the modern world except for 2 things. 1, that in the west there are atheists, 2 is that in America more than a million mothers each year pay doctors to kill their babies before they are born.
Mother Teresa said “When a mother can kill her baby, what is left of civilization to save?”
Chuck Colson says a “new Dark Age” is here, and it began by calling itself “Enlightenment” when it began 3 centuries ago.
Chesterton wrote 75 years ago about the next heresy would be an attack on morality, especially sexual morality.
See Kierkegaard 150 years ago in “The Present Age”
See Spengler 85 years ago in “The Decline of the West”
See Huxley 65 years ago in “Brave New World”
See David Riesman 45 years ago in “The Lonely Crowd”
See CS Lewis 55 years ago in “The Abolition of Man
See Romano Guardini 50 yeast ago in “The End of the Modern World”
See Solzhenitsyn 25 years ago in his Harvard commencement address.
See John Paul the Great who called us “the culture of death” and “the evil empire” for our abortion holocaust.
Anyone with a basic understanding of the bible can tell that our society is doomed to destruction.
Yes God is merciful, but the unrepentant refuse forgiveness. Forgiveness is a gift which must be freely given and freely received. How can a moral relativist receive forgiveness and mercy if he denies that there is anything to forgive except unforgiveness, nothing to judge but judgementalism?
Jesus isn’t compassionate toward demons worshiped by the Canaanites who “make their children pass through the fire” Ezek. 20:31.
Jesus, Jehovah’s son, is just like his father. “The Father and I are one.” (John 10:30). We can’t think that war-like Jehovah is different than gentle Jesus. To say that the Father is different than the Son is similar to the old heresy of Marcion.
Jesus is no more the son of a god who allows abortion (killing children) than Barney is a son of Hitler. (In other words: we can’t say Jesus approves of abortion, we know His Father didn’t, and Jesus is just like His Father.)
The valley of Gehenna was a vast abortuary, like our culture.
When the people of God entered the Promised Land, the Prince of Peace commanded them to kill the supernatural cancer of the Canaanites.
God has not started manufacturing styrofoam millstones.
God is a lover who is a warrior.
Love is at war with hate and betrayal and selfishness.
Love fights. Ask any parent. Parental love isn’t puppy love, their love is war. God is love but is it puppy love, or father love?
The road from paradise lost to paradise regained is soaked in blood.
Spiritual warfare is a theme of scripture, present in the lives of all saints. “But never present in the religious education of most of my “Catholic” college students. Whenever I speak of it, they are stunned and silent, as if they have suddenly entered another world. They have. They have gone through the wardrobe to meet the Lion and the Witch, past the warm fuzzies, the fur coats of psychology disguised as religion, into the cold snows of Narnia, where the White Witch is the ruler of this world and Aslan is not a tame lion but a warrior – a world where they meet Christ the King, not Christ the kitten.” P20
We are at war. The barbarians are inside the gates writing the scriptus of the TV shows and movies, writing the public school textbooks and judicial decisions. “Only the ones in the lunar bubble of academia or the lunar bubble of establishment religious education” whose prophets cry peace when there is no peace and “who compose those dreary drippy little liberal lullabies we endure as “contemporary hymns.””
America is the center of the culture of death, the worlds one and only cultural superpower. Pious Muslims call us “the Great Satan.” But America has the most moral wise and biblically based constitutional foundation in the world, just like ancient Israel. America is (was) one of the most religious countries in the world, like ancient Israel.
“If God still loves his Church in America, he will soon make it small and poor and persecuted, just as he did to ancient Israel, so that he can keep it alive, pruning it. If he loves us, he will cut the deadwood away and we will bleed. Then the blood of the martyrs will be the seed of the Church again…It never happens without blood, without sacrifice, without suffering.”
If something really is Christs work it will not be comfortable. Whatever happens without the cross may be good work, but it isn’t Christ’s work.
“If we put gloves on our hands to avoid the splinters from the cross, if we practice safe spiritual sex, spiritual contraception, then his kingdom will not come.”
“Wake up and smell the corpses, the rotting souls, the dying children.” Live in reality, not denial.
If one side knows they are at war and the other does not, who will win? Imagine the shock of children who thought they were running through a field chasing butterflies, when those butterflies were live bullets, and they were on a minefield. (Note- media & pop culture can be these) Wartime consciousness clicks in, and perspectives and values change. “Little things no longer loom so large, and large things (life and death) no longer seem so little and far away. No one complains about lumpy beds on a battlefield or bleats about their “sexual needs” or worries about their stock options.”
(Note – awareness of reality creates gratitude and motivates cooperation)
The spiritual battlefield is infinitely more dangerous, it decides whether our souls live or die. “out whole eternity is perilously poised over an abyss [and there are] indeed real enemies who are trying to kill us [body and soul].”
Protestants and Catholics Mormons, Jehovah’s Witness, these aren’t enemies, they fight together against a common enemy.
Muslims are often more loyal to their human Christ than Christians are to their divine Christ; they often live more godly lives, faithfully following their fallible scriptures and fallible prophet.
God blesses those who obey his laws, this is why Islam is growing faster than Christianity today in the West. Their families are more stable and safe for children with lower rates of abortion divorce and sodomy. Muslims work for the same divine General, and are our allies in the culture war.
To call terrorism Islamic is like calling Inquisition Christian; like calling a cannibal a chef.
Those who hate us are not our enemies, they are patients we are trying to save. Our enemy is Satan. Christ prayed that those who killed him be forgiven as they knew not what they were doing.
Note: The soldiers executing Christ were just following orders, and these are who Christ prayed forgiveness for. But the Jews who plotted to kill him were in fact very guilty, and were sons of perdition who will receive no forgiveness in this life, or the life to come. But most of the point Kreeft is trying to make remains true: we try to help everyone, leaving it for God to decide outcomes.
Warner and Disney make missionary movies for the Antichrist.
Those who poison us are also our patients, as they were also poisoned themselves first. We descend into their world and offer ourselves for their salvation, into the gutters like Mother Teresa. We all must go into the spiritual gutters, that’s where the spiritual dying are. Give your life by giving your lifetime.
Christophobes pull the claws out of the Lion of Judah (Christ). Some teachers prefer the praise of peers rather than the praise of God. The living Christ makes souls pregnant with alarmingly active life.
The real enemy we fight are demons, fallen angels, evil spirits. Luke 12:4-5 fear him who can cast into hell.
“God’s work is to save souls, not destroy them. Destroying souls in hell is the work of Satan, not God.” P28
Eph. 6:12 beware spiritual forces of evil.
Pope Leo XIII saw a vision wherein Satan was allowed to do his worst in 1 century, namely the 20th. He fell into a swoon when he saw this.
In the 1960’s many Catholics fell away from the faith. They traded the wine of the gospel for the water of psychobabble, and accepted the anti-miracle of the Antichrist.
“There is one nightmare even more terrifying than being chased by the devil, even being caught by the devil, even being tortured by the devil. That is the nightmare of becoming a devil.” P30 The horror outside your soul isn’t so terrible as the horror inside your soul, which is sin. Sin means doing the devil’s work, and it can only be done by our free consent. (The devil didn’t make you do it.)
The weapon that will win this war is saints, little Christs, flawed cells in Christ’s flawless body (church). Satan cannot understand or conquer Christ’s saints.
Spirituality is the current form of the oldest heresy in Christian history. Its old names were Gnosticism, Manichaeism and Marcionism. It denies devils (saying that spirit is only good, not evil). It denies sin (saying that man is only good, not evil). Real Christianity identifies goodness not with ‘spirituality’, but with sanctity, holiness, charity, obedience to God’s will and law. Christianity identifies man’s self with body as well as soul (this is why sex is not indifferent but crucial).
(Note – clearly, mere ‘spirituality’ denies the importance of the body and what we do with the body.)
Secularists don’t like Christian writer CS Lewis because his writings have real religion, not just ‘spirituality’. He is rational and conservative. New Agers don’t like Lewis because he isn’t ‘spiritual’.
“Christianity includes commandments, while “spirituality” includes only values.” P34. Most bookstores have different sections for “religion” and “spirituality” or “New Age”. The New Age movement is the clearest example of “spirituality”. Many churches now are pushing New Age ‘spirituality’.
Don’t just believe in ‘the future’. Believe in God. There are 3 types of people in Western civilization, and you can tell which type they are by how they answer why we celebrated entering the 3rd millennium (at year 2000):
1. Intelligent Christians (celebrating the anniversary of Christ’s birth), also including religious Jews and Muslims. This is the only group of the 3 which does not bow its knee to the god Tomorrow. It is the only group who believes that the devil exists.
2. Believers in ‘the future’, the ‘spiritualists’. They don’t believe the devil exists because that’s not ‘compassionate’, and because it would require a belief in supernatural evil, moral evil, spiritual evil, personal evil, and evil itself. Every spiritualist denies at least one of these types of evil.
3. Intelligent materialist secularists who point to the accident of evolution, whose lord and savior is science. They don’t believe the devil exists because they cannot detect him with their instruments.
Spiritualists are often amoral who don’t believe in moral evil (sin), only physical evil (pain). Sometimes it’s because they don’t believe in free will, they’re determinists. Sometimes it’s because they have a phobia against guilt, & therefore against moral law. They don’t know of the one who saves us from guilt, Christ.
Some spiritualists are Gnostics, believing all things spiritual are good by definition. Original Gnostics also had a belief along with this that all things material are evil, but modern spiritualists no longer say that.
Some spiritualists are cockeyed optimists who do not believe in evil at all, the word ‘evil’ sounds too judgmental.
The devil’s triumph is the muddled middle spiritualists, who do not believe in Christianity (yet most of them think they are Christians); they think any religion is good not because it’s true, but because it fosters morality/compassion/tolerance. Chesterton said that tolerance is all that remains after a man has lost all his principles.
Spiritualists think religion is also a bad thing because it fosters ‘fanaticism’ (all saints and lovers are fanatics).
Spiritualists like religion, but not ‘organized religion.’ They’ve never been serious Christians who’ve joined a church with it’s messy members, like the messy Ark of Noah. “Organized religion” is an oxymoron.
Jesus Christ shouldn’t be a curse word. Society is dying when the name of its Savior is turned into a curse word. (Note: It seems we have rejected the blessed Christ, aka the offered blessings from Christ, so now we are cursed, and people blame that curse on Christ. It could be remembered here that when people have great knowledge and opportunity, much is required of them, and indeed the displeasure of God is upon them when they reject all responsibility and truth. But God doesn’t just leave us to ourselves, he does in fact curse us in his wrath when we persist in informed evil, which rejecting Him is.)
Spiritualists miss the drama, verve, passion of life. The height of the mountain is measured by the depth of the valley. We don’t justify evil, but we cannot appreciate good without the contrast of evil. Without Satan there’s no history, no challenge.
(Note – History shows not only the devil, but also the Christ inspiring us to overcome the devil.)
Without challenge of bad, there’s no response of the good. History and individual life are the challenge between good and evil. Time began in Genesis 1, but history began in Genesis 3
(Note – Technically time according to our measurement began at the fall too, but that’s beside the point here.)
People today depict Satan as a clown, or an abstraction, neither of which have real power to harm. Christ took Satan very seriously (though not obsessively). If we claim to have matured beyond Satan, we claim to have matured beyond Christ. If we see Satan as a fool, we see Christ as a fool, for Christ told us to fear Satan (Matt. 10:28).
In the Lord’s Prayer, it says “rescue us from evil”, it should read “rescue us from the evil one” as the Greek word is a singular noun, not a plural or a participle, and it has a definite article.
The movie “The Exorcist” left audiences shocked because it was real, based on an actual exorcism case carefully researched and written by William Peter Blatty who actually believed Satan is real. One of its scenes used a tape recording that had been made in an actual exorcism, the audience heard the actual voice of a demon. This was a different kind of ‘demon movie’, unlike the fake Exorcist II, etc.
The real devil is magnetically attractive and appears as “an angel of light” (2 Cor. 11:14). We are ants compared to the devil, but the devil is an ant compared to Christ. In the hymn “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” by Luther it says speaking of the devil, “on earth is not his equal” and “did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing;” and speaks of how this earth is “with devils filled”, but that we can be delivered by God.
CS Lewis said that just as the face of God above brings is irrevocable joy, so the face of the devil brings irrevocable misery. All roads lead either to the Beatific or the Miserific Vision.
(Note – This is mostly true, we do know that Christ delivers souls from hell (2 Ne. 9) with exception of the sons of perdition who forever dwell with the devil (D&C 76). But the point Kreeft is making is a good one.)
Satan poses as God, and the name of Michael exposes Satan, as Michael means “Who is like God?” Satan pretends to be God’s equal, God’s enemy, but his real opposite and enemy is Michael. Angels and demons are more powerful formidable and intelligent than humans.
(Note – this is true in most ways, but it remains true that beings with bodies have power over those without, as Elder Packer and Joseph Smith taught. Angels and demons are all the same race as humans, all children of God. Angels will have their turn on earth. Demons rejected the opportunity to have that turn.)
The unholy trinity is pitted against a holy trinity in the book of Revelation is:
the whore of Babylon v the woman clothed with the sun;
the unholy city Babylon v the city Jerusalem;
666 v the holy 7.
Satan’s time is broken in half, 3.5.
As Christ gives peace the world cannot give, supernatural love, & light that darkness cannot comprehend, so Satan gives war the world cannot give, supernatural hate, & a darkness that worldly light cannot comprehend or overcome.
Supernatural evil is a clear reality. The 20th century was a century of genocide. Many people don’t know about the incredible carnage of Auschwitz, Hiroshima, the Gulag, Ukraine, Armenia, Rwanda, the killing fields of Pol Pot’s Cambodia, Mao’s Cultural Revolution, Sudan, etc. These become abstract statistics. Stalin said of the famine he engineered in Ukraine, “One death is a tragedy; ten million is a statistic.” Human nature could not have been responsible for such unlimited and deliberate malice. The perpetuators of these crimes had no remorse, no guilt, as if he hadn’t done it himself, but the demon that possessed him. It’s simply not human to butcher women and children, and to kill 6 million Jews for being Jewish.
Supernatural goodness is also a clear reality. Saints have as obvious of supernatural goodness as the arch evil people had supernatural evil. Galatians 2:20 says “It is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me.” The evil men could have similarly said, “It is no longer I who live, but it is Satan who lives in me.”
The supernatural evil wasn’t just tucked away in “primitive” places, the holocaust took place in the heart of Western civilization, and most Germans were not shocked. And today, American’s are even less shocked about the abortion holocaust. American’s are more comfortable with killing babies than they are with calling it a holocaust. Same thing with sodomy, they call using that word ‘hate speech.’ We aren’t even mildly shocked at what our ancestors would have been stunned by. This lack of shock is a greater victory for Satan than the holocaust itself: Satan is more proud of killing conscience than killing bodies.
The book of Revelation suggests that Hitler was nothing compared to the Antichrist which is to come. There is a time before us unimaginably terrible, that “if those days had not been cut short, no one would be saved.” (Mat. 24:21-22).
Colson’s law is that a community with fewer “inner cops” (people with moral conscience) needs more “outer cops” (police force). The only alternative to conscience or cops is chaos. A democracy which loses its conscience will necessarily become a totalitarian state. The Founders of America knew that the government they were designing would only work for a moral people; conscience is the foundation of democracy.
Community and chaos are vertical opposites, while cops and conscience are horizontal opposites. The only ways that community can prevent chaos are cops and conscience. Chaos and community are opposites. The more conscience a community has, the less cops it needs. The less conscience, the more cops are needed. Chaos is the disease of the body politic, chaos is deconstruction (and a whole philosophy today proudly names itself after this process.)
Cops ———————————————– Conscience
Augustine said the unifying soul of a community (civitas, “city”) is common love. He said “amor meus, pondus meum”, meaning my love is my weight/gravity; or, my density is my destiny.
Cripples need crutches for the same reason sinners need churches. Religion is a crutch, a defensive weapon, a shield.
(Note – Interestingly, heaven won’t be run by deacons and bishops, not by the church but by the patriarchal order of family.)
Both social and physical bodies need shields. The 2 shields of the body politic are
1. Positive law, or human law, enforced physically by cops, the outer shield, made of force and fear of punishment, and is not free.
2. Natural law, moral law not made by man, bud discovered, enforced spiritually by conscience, the inner shield, made of freedom and the love of good, which is free.
The paradox of democracy is that it is founded on the premise of strong moral conscience, yet tends to produce weak ones by its very permissiveness. Freedom depends on willing submission to conscience, yet this freedom from cops temps us to free ourselves from conscience too. Paradoxically, an excess of external physical freedom requires more cops to stave off internal spiritual chaos (which erupts into external public chaos sooner or later), which means more cops and less freedom.
The media is more powerful than the military, because the pen is mightier than the sword. Popular opinion can be just as totalitarian as any king, but harder to topple. Today’s version of the medieval inquisitors on a witch hunt are using speech codes like ‘hate speech’, ‘right-wing extremism’, and ‘homophobia’, and they’re taking the hunt to a whole new level.
Liberals agree with conservatives that conscience works better than cops, but liberals think conscience comes from society, not from God or human nature or natural law. All parents try to get kids to internally chose good, rather than having to rely on external controls.
The history of any society group or person shows the science of Colson’s law between cops and conscience. Police states without conscience are brittle. The “Thousand-Year Reich” lasted 12 years. Whereas the moral societies were long-lasting. The law predicts that a community’s longevity is proportionate to its morality. Examples of long lived moral societies include:
–Confucian over 2100 years, holding together the largest nation for the longest time, was taken down by Mao Zedong, history’s greatest mass murderer.
–Islamic almost 1400 years, and is still growing, especially in Christian places. Christianity is growing everywhere except in Christian places, and especially in anti-Christian places like Sudan and China (persecution multiplies Christians).
–Roman about 700 years, which began as a republic and evolved into an amoral empire, which became a totalitarian police state, and fell from within.
–Mosaic: The longest lasting moral order was the Mosaic of 3500 years (though not as a continuous civil society).
It is a historical fact that religion has always been the primary source of moral teachings; No age has ever ignored the crucial role of religion but this one. Natural moral law can be found out by reason, but Platos and Aristotles are rare.
Even if explicit religion isn’t the source of morality’s being, it certainly is the source of morality being known and taught. No officially secular society has survived more than 72 years, the USSR being history’s clearest case. “If the results of that test are not clear, nothing in history is.”
(Note – I don’t think all of moral law can be wholly discovered by reason, but it’s still a good point. Certainly Gods laws are rational, but Gods thoughts are higher than ours. It is true that we ought to think and seek God. Brigham Young said we should put away our foolishness and become philosophers. Also I should point out that whenever we discover truths intellectually, it is by the spirit of God. Interestingly, wicked thinkers discover falsehoods by the spirit of the devil, and are deceived.)
The (Catholic) Church moved from Jerusalem to Antioch then to Rome, and could move again if needed, like fleeing a decaying neighborhood to a new home.
The Church has contracted moral AIDS from western civilization. America, only 225 years old, is already in crisis; the immune system is compromised, and it is dying young and painfully. You can only cure disease if it is diagnosed, so with the body as with the spirit. Find the cause and you may be able to find the cure. Ironically the “Enlightenment” is where we caught the disease; the Enlightenment was when we closed our eyes to God, and we called the age of light and faith as “Dark Ages”.
(Note – Clearly we also see some tragedy and apostasy in the Dark Ages, and some goodness and revelation from the Enlightenment.)
(Note – for the Latter-day Saints, a move from SLC to Missouri is predicted as the 2nd millennial government, the American Zion to go with the Old Jerusalem as divine capitals.)
Confucius was asked to name the single most important one of his many social principles of reform, he answered, “the restoration of language”, calling things by their proper names.
The disease is primarily coming from the doctors, the specialists, the ‘experts.’ 99% of violent murders are by doctors (a reference to abortion, etc.). Similarly, the murder of morality has been by our prophets, high priests, psychologists, sociologists, these being the most irreligious and relativistic segment in our society. One sociologist pointed out how in America, the irreligious rule the religious, by saying that America is “a nation of Indians ruled by an elite of Swedes”, since India is the most religious nation in the world, and Sweden is the least.
The media are an army of missionaries evangelizing religious people out of their primitive superstitions like poverty, chastity, and obedience, and into the missionaries’ new ‘enlightened’ religion of greed (money), lust (sex), and pride (power). They’re trading peace with neighbor for peace with the world, peace with self for peace with the flesh, and peace with God for peace with the devil.
“we must infiltrate the psychology and sociology departments, along with the popular journalism and media production centers, that is, the mind-molding areas of the battlefield. The most powerful forces in America are no longer church and state but Harvard and Hollywood.” We can walk out of a church, or vote out corrupt state leaders, but the education and media launch assaults we can hardly escape.
Love makes more waves than hate. Wicked men will hate and fear you more for loving them than for hating them. They will quickly forgive you for being wrong, but they will never forgive you for being right. Saints always go to the ghettos, especially the moral ghettos. They make waves… The waves of garbage often drown the saints and make them martyrs.” Like a white corpuscle, saints give themselves up to fight an infection. “If nobody wants to crucify you, you’re not doing your job. Or else your job isn’t his [Christ’s] work.”
Mother has become a swear word.
The devils were created by God, and ejected from heaven for rebellion.
(Note – I would clarify that they weren’t devils to begin with, but when they became such, they were thrust out.)
The final defeat of the devils is sure.
Devils keep things vague, abstract, opinionated.
Devils assert their rights, their self-actualization against the narrow-minded bigoted tyrannical fascistic chauvinistic racist sexist homophobic dogmatism and right-wing fundamentalist fanaticism of God.
Devils declare absolute relativism, super-enlightenment, and use political correctness for revolution.
Devils offer things they cannot deliver.
Hell is about fear, power, strength. Heaven is about love, weakness. Machiavelli in “The Prince” taught the philosophy of hell, “It is better to be feared than to be loved, for men will love you as they choose, but they will fear you as you choose.”
Devils see love as a weakness, making a person hostage to the happiness of another.
Love multiplies your sorrows by the depth of and number of those you love. But saints know it also multiplies the joy.
(Note – Love is voluntary service, it creates joy. D&C 121 speaks of God’s power beings something that flows to him without compulsory means.)
God knows we are his children, devils say we are just animals (evolved from animals, evolution theory, the heart of modern science propaganda).
At the fall, the invisible essences of mankind changed, more so than the appearances.
(Note- the physical appearances have fallen too, now we show disease, decay, generational genetic defects, etc. Death (and the signs of it approaching) as well as sinful natures are both important parts of the curse.)
Mankind went from fruit love and tame animals in Eden, to forbidden fruit, untamed animal passions, and war east of Eden.
(Note – the fall was necessary, but it was a fall. Note how this is the opposite of evolution theory: we aren’t going up, we are going down. Our origin was heaven, our current location is far beneath it. But the journey (the hero’s journey of going and returning) is essential.)
It’s hard to heal, easy to kill. Easy to abort a baby with a vacuum tube. The conscience is weak against propaganda of devils due to its legality, respectability, and how proper it is. One bull can ruin a whole China shop, one affair ruin a whole marriage, one mass murderer a whole school of children.
Forgiveness is the solution to life’s pickles. Devils know nothing of forgiveness. True forgiveness is of sinners, not of sins; we don’t condone sin when we forgive sinners. In the past, the temptation was to hate sin but also hate sinners. In the present, the temptation is to love sinners, but also love sin.
God sends prophets into battle; the world keeps killing them.
Satan tempted Jesus by offering Jesus the whole world. Satan offered to empty hell, to release all the souls from it, if Jesus would just worship the Devil. If Jesus would have done this, it would have split the trinity.
(Note – Jesus does empty hell by and by, except for the sons of perdition who are cast to eternal outer darkness. Again, the point is that the devil tries to get people to do things at the wrong time and in the wrong way. The only real way to save souls was the atonement of Christ. See 2 Nephi 2 for more about how Christ delivers souls from death and hell. This isn’t to excuse sin, the eternal fires of hell are not to be taken lightly.)
Pilot was a typical compromising politician. “Well, I’m personally opposed, but…”
Many Professors profess nothing but professionalism.
Judas Iscariot was the 1st Christian to accept a government grant.
Satan is prince of the air – ABC, NBC, and CBS are his unholy trinity.
Satan was allowed the 20th century to do his worst.
When the devils stopped killing the saints, the church got big and fat, comfortable and successful, and its strength became its weakness. The history of the church is like the history of Israel. When the people rise through repentance and obedience they are blessed, then they turn to luxury and pride, which brings destruction and misery. The misery prods them to repentance again, and the cycle begins anew.
(Note – The Book of Mormon also demonstrates this ‘pride cycle’ taking place among 2 ancient civilizations in America. We also note that the Lord doesn’t need large numbers to do his work, as we saw with Gideon’s small (shrunken) army. Similarly, the Book of Mormon prophecies that in the last days, the people of the Lord would be few, and scattered around the world, but armed with the power of God in great glory. We can expect great miracles performed by Gods people to bring deliverance against the terrors to come before the Lord’s return.)
A draw in the battle between good and evil is a win for the devils.
Mao Zedong (founder of the Chinese communist party) killed more than anyone, over 50 million, and especially targeted Christians. The persecution caused Christianity in China to increase 25x over 50 years from around 2 million to around 50 million.
When Poland was under communism, they all went to church and refused to take down their crucifixes from their public-school classrooms even when state soldiers threatened them. Now that Poland is free, they want abortions.
What did East Germans look for in West Germany when the Berlin Wall came down? Porn shops.
America is 90% Christian, 50% are churchgoers, and it is one of the most selfish self-indulgent violent societies on earth. Their favorite word is ‘freedom’, not ‘virtue.’ They sing hell’s anthem, “I did it my way.” This is a greater victory for the devils than Mao.
Christianity has 2 billion adherents and is the worlds largest religion by far. If you add in philosophical theists, religious Jews, and Mulsims (1 billion), that means ½ of everyone on earth worships the God of Abraham. Yet the devils strategy is the make people think that nobody believes anymore.
Unity between truth and falsehood cannot be true unity. Compromise weakens the truth. ‘Comparative religions’ are becoming comparatively religious. No army can win battle when it is fighting civil wars amongst itself.
(Note – this is why many have looked forward to the restoration of all things, where all would be gathered in one in Christ. Catholics see it as the re-enthroning of the Catholic church, the authoritative ‘return of the king’ as Tolkien’s book demonstrated. Many protestants attested that their hope was to see the church restored, rather than focusing on a church of their own. Truly, authority is needed to operate Christ’s church and its ordinances. At least the Catholic church understands this. Latter-day Saints proclaim it to be the restoration of Christ’s original New Testament Church as ushered in by literal angels like Peter and John the Baptist, who conferred direct priesthood upon Joseph Smith. That Church continues to this day, and will grow to fulfill its destiny to unite Christianity under one head. This is not to say that there aren’t problems in the restored church, there is a prophesied cleansing of that church due to the worldly philosophies many of its members are embracing, still apart from society, but following it by and by.)
Back when people still believed in truth, those who rebelled against the church were called heretics. Today those who call moral laws as just values call themselves ‘dissenters.’
Today’s left is to have a heart with no head, and the right to have a head with no heart. The left hates the word truth, and the right hates the word compassion.
People use their political groups to classify their faith, when they should be using their faith to classify their political groups. Don’t use the world’s categories to judge the Church, use the Church’s categories to judge the world.
Feminists demand ordination to priesthood for “empowerment”. When will they demand martyrdom for empowerment? It’s ironic that these people call themselves feminists.
The more educated people are, the more they think they are radical bold nonconformists as they follow each other around like sheep, nose to tail. Nonconformists today are really conformists to propaganda.
The essence of hell’s philosophy is absolute relativism. Devils insist that others not define reality or truth for them. (Note – now it’s all about ‘your truth’ rather than ‘the truth’. The devils have sold this masterfully.) Once people believe relativism and subjectivism and disbelieve in objective truth, it doesn’t matter what else they believe or disbelieve, the devils have won. Even an adamant atheist who believes in objective truth isn’t fully won over to the devil.
When the premise is relativity, the conclusion will be atheism.
All truth witnesses of God’s premise (objective truth) and leads to the conclusion of a belief in God.
The devils don’t just try to get us on the wrong path, they try to get us to reject the idea that there are any paths at all so we don’t accidentally stumble upon the right path. They want us to throw away the map and compass altogether, to throw away our principles, our belief in objective truth, especially about good and evil.
You can’t fool a farmer half as easily as you can fool a scholar. At the beginning of the century there were 10 farmers for every scholar, now there are 10 scholars for every farmer. The teachers buy into lies much more easily than students, and soon all will be teachers. One study projected that at the rate of employment of lawyers, in 2 generations, every US citizen will be a lawyer (and not the good kind like Thomas More).
The 3 main teachers today are formal education, informal education (entertainment), and journalism.
Textbooks and TV scrips are now written by Canaanites and Carthaginians and Aztecs (who favor human sacrifice via abortion). Only 3% of media say they support any limitations at all on the latest fashion in human sacrifice (abortion), while 80% of the public do want limitations on it. The ‘teachers’ are far more advanced than the students (they’re far more out of touch with reality and truth). A study showed that German soldiers’ willingness to participate in Hitler’s holocaust (approving of it and performing actual torture on prisoners) was directly proportionate to their level of education. In America it is the same: approval of their holocaust (abortion) is directly proportionate to how much education they’ve had.
Parents think that public schools are ‘their’ schools. Parents they keep their kids enrolled in public schools because they are more concerned about the survival of their societies schools than they are about their children’s souls.
(Note – We now see that the teachers are NOT delivering information which is in the best interest of parents, not in the best interest of the public. They’re touting media propaganda. But naturally we are patient with parents who haven’t pulled their kids from these schools yet. Obviously many of parents are also ignorant of what is really happening, and are unaware of what to do about it. And even many teachers are unaware that they have been deceived and are teaching things which will harm children. Homeschooling or going into private schools is a big step. But Kreeft is right, something must be done. I am a big fan of the homeschool movement and have personally joined it with my family and encourage others to do likewise.)
All devils can do is tempt and influence thought (they can’t force action), but what they can do is quite enough, because thought leads to action character and destiny. Americans don’t pay much attention to philosophy, so their philosophy is easily conquered.
Devils today have people believing deconstructionism: that truth itself is nothing but the hypocritical mask on the fact of power.
Old-school evil leaders of nihilistic existentialism (like Sartre and Nietzsche and Beckett and Camus) had a few redeeming qualities, but today’s evil leaders have nothing. (It’s a full sale victory for the devil, complete converts to his side.)
Devils want to do away with reason altogether. Devils don’t want you thinking about issues, thinking about reasonable solutions, or thinking about truth. Eventually, seekers find. So devils attack the seeking, not the finding; the premises, not the conclusions; reason itself, not specific arguments. Don’t even debate, don’t engage the mind in argument and reason. (Don’t have people think about the subjects of religion and morality at all.) Devils appeal to passion, not reason. (Star Wars analogy, anyone?)
Relativism is the big lie. If there are no real absolutes, there can be no real war. If you reject the idea that there is any real evil worth fighting and any real good worth fighting for, you reject the idea of fighting, the idea of spiritual warfare itself. Most Christians don’t know there is a battlefield, much less that they are on it.
Temptations in the past have been to get people to overestimate and fear the devil, but the new strategy works even better: to get people to underestimate the devil, and doubt his existence. The devil becomes as invisible to their minds as he is to their eyes.
A wise old military adage says, “Forewarned is forearmed,” the policy of a hawk. The converse is true: Unwarned is unarmed, the policy of a dove. Put the hawk and the dove together and see what happens.
The steps of temptation are written in a book “Ecumenical Jihad”:
1. Control media toward sexual revolution, which leads to
2. Destroying sexual fidelity, which leads to
3. Destroying marriage, which leads to
4. Destroying family, which leads to
5. Corrupting society, which leads to
In other words, the path to hell is media, sexual revolution, no marital fidelity, no marriage, no family, no society.
A good society is simply “a society that makes it easy to be good,” as Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin said. Thus a bad society is one which makes it easy to be bad.
Family is the fundamental building block of society, the only institution where you’ll ever learn unselfish love. The only place where people are loved not just for their performance, but just for being. (If abortion hasn’t already ended their being)
Stable marriage is the foundation of family. Marriage is ruined when you remove it’s glue: sexual fidelity.
Satan gets to our heart through our hormones. Morality is the main reason people want to get rid of objective truth. They don’t deny the objective truth about good and evil when it comes to anything except sex. They don’t defend rape or pillage or slavery or opposition or theft or nuclear war or embezzlement or racism or even smoking, but they do defend divorce fornication masturbation contraception abortion sodomy bestiality bisexuality and cross-dressing; they have an ‘anything goes’ approach to morality if and only if it has anything to do with sex. They don’t defend murder unless it has to do with sex (abortion), so they allow murder to protect their ‘sexual freedom’, and this murder is of the most innocent and defenseless of all. Abortion is backup birth control, and birth control is the demand to have sex without having babies. (Sex is the one moral freedom they demand, but it reaches all areas). Abortion has won against nature’s strongest instinct: motherhood.
The 3 foundational temptations are greed, lust, and pride.
The Church of England should be called The Church of Henry’s Hormones. The devils have found out how to clone the Henry’s into Clintons and Kennedys, but there aren’t any churches in their back pocket for the devils to pick anymore.
The sexual revolution made the sins easiest to tempt into the most respectable sins, the most masked by the new philosophy. The sexual revolution wasn’t just a revolution in practice, but even more so in philosophy. Its Machiavellian: if you can’t rise up to your standards, lower your standards down to where your practice is (make them “realistic”).
(Note- the feminists said, ‘hey the men are getting away with murder’. Rather than calling the men to repentance, the feminists said, ‘we should be able to do whatever the men do!’ and descended with the men into the cesspool.)
They lower their standards to avoid hypocrisy. They see hypocrisy as the greatest evil of all. Hypocrisy is not the greatest of evils, but its easy for people to think it is because they never see themselves as hypocritical (they never have to indict themselves, convenient moral high ground). Hypocrisy doesn’t mean not practicing what you preach, it means not believing what you preach.
We have thrown out principles. All we have left are “issues”, not “oughts”.
Sex sins are glorified by Perversion Pride weeks (now the entire month of June).
“Everybody’s doing it” becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Thus a bigger moral principle than virtue is killed: the conscience is killed.
All virtues are connected, and taking out sexual morality leads to all other virtues going down. It is a cancer. (As mentioned earlier, we are already killing in the name of sex.) Children who threaten the self-indulgence of sexual freedom are aborted.
Christians abort fornicate sodomize contracept masturbate and adulterate at exactly the same rate as non-Christians, and most of them don’t even know that. Nobody tells them, it would threaten their positive self-esteem! And if they did know it, they wouldn’t know what to do about it. “Just say no” is too negative for them. They have a pathological fear of fear, a negation of negation.
Flesh sin (sexual sin) can harm more than spirit sin. Why?
1. It is veiled (hidden) and justified.
2. God commanded reproduction.
3. Sex is the way of originating life itself, you can’t turn that into mere recreation.
4. Love involves two becoming one, symbolic of the unity of God
5. Marriage is the main symbol for becoming one with God, and adultery is the main symbol of sin, unfaithfulness to God. Almost all major religious metaphors are sexual: Father God, Mother Church, spiritual marriage.
6. No other appetite is so wildly out of control; gluttons have a limit to what they can eat, but lust can be boundless.
7. Sex pervades everything in life. Sex understanding (gender) is self-understanding. Change that, and you radically change everything.
The sexual revolution is the main motor for philosophical revolution of moral relativism and subjectivism and (to justify that) epistemological subjectivism (“what is truth?”) and even metaphysical relativism (“create your own reality”).
The sexual revolution also produced the greatest generation gap in history. Nothing more separates parents and children than sex ethics. A society with a wide generation gap has no glue of tradition to hold it together.
Science is skewed by immoral sexism. Evolution is their new dogma because they need it to justify acting like dogs. Modern Darwinians are more fanatical and closed-minded than the medieval Aristotelians were. The bishops and the scientists have changed places: it’s the scientists who refuse to look through the bishops’ telescopes. They’re standing on their heads and think their critics are upside down.
Christ taught the paradox of being strong when weak, and weak when strong. For example, the Church gets stronger when persecuted (be Nazis, communists, etc.), and the Church gets weak when it gets fashionable.
The devil has planted some of his modernist people in all the churches, but now the orthodox in all the churches are uniting against the modernists. Protestants Catholics etc. are more like those of their conservative fellows of another religion than the liberals of their own. The devils work is falling upon itself: my planting his spies in all the churches, now there is a grassroots uniting of all the orthodox in all the churches against these spies.
Relativism is so stupid it takes a PhD to believe it, it is so inherently self-contradictory. Is it an absolute that there are no absolutes? How dogmatically they fume against dogmatism! Is it objectively true that truth is not objective? Relativism is illiberal, not liberal. Totalitarian, not egalitarian; autocratic, not democratic; when truth is kicked out, power, not compassion, takes its place. A society of relativists inevitably becomes a police state.
Psychology has replaced morality in our homilies (sermons) and families.
Even though people reject truth, they still crave truth. Even though they don’t believe in heroes, they still love them. Though they have rejected and abolished true beauty, they still crave beauty. Philosophies of the devil get in the way, but people still hold on to desires for good things because their hearts were made by God.
When Pat Buchanan used the term “culture war” in 1992 the media demonized him. Media claimed that Pat wanted to start such a culture war, but the truth is that we were already in one. People are beginning to distrust the experts. Homeschooling is mega-multiplying, people are even buying old books about virtue. They’re fighting a holy war, an ecumenical jihad (open heart, firm head), one hand to embrace allies, the other on the hilt of a sword to fight their common enemies, which people are beginning to realize are devils and philosophies of devils, not so much other people.
We must have a new theology of the body and overturn the sexual revolution. We can’t just have a matter-vs-spirit dualism.
Feminists have rejected real feminism. The devils can’t be beaten by the closed feminist fists and minds, but they can be beaten by open Marylike hearts and wombs.
Gays are the only class of sinners who not only deny that their sin is a sin but insist on identifying themselves with it.
When you attack homosexuality, you attack homosexuals (because they’ve made that their core identity).
Alcoholics don’t say you attack them when you attack alcohol; cowards don’t say you attack them when you attack cowardice; and murderers don’t say the church is hypocritical for attacking the sin of murder and not the individual sinners. Yet the homosexuals are so tied to their identity as homosexuals, that they say attacking that lifestyle is an attempt to kill them.
The church hates the sin and loves the sinner. If the church didn’t love the sinner, it wouldn’t bother rebuking the disease of the sin in an effort to save the sinner. The church thinks more highly of people than they do of themselves because it wants to reclaim those people from their fallen lifestyles. The self is greater than the deed.
Gays aren’t an abomination to God, its their sin that’s an abomination to God. In Romans 1 Paul is saying don’t condemn the sinner, just the sin.
The church will never say that doing sin is good, just like how it will never say that a person is inherently bad. She defends your being just as absolutely as she attacks your lifestyle; she hates your cancer because she loves your body.
If the church changed its teaching about sin being inherently bad, it would also have to change its teaching about people being inherently good. When even the church bends to the winds of social whims, who will protect you when those social winds are against you? Remember what happened in Hitler’s Germany, mankind can be very changeable and fickle. (Note – You want rule of (God’s natural) law, not pure democratic rule of people.) You may be worried about what the political Right may do to you today, but tomorrow, when the fashion is no longer to be leftist, what will protect you? Not long ago the fashion was to be politically Right wing, and the pendulum may swing back. You can’t rely on fashionable opinions to protect you – that is building sandcastles, and the tide will always change and knock them down.
Sodomy is the religion of the gays. Its their worship, their identity, their heart, their choice in life. We say we love sinners but hate sin. We could imagine if the church said “we love Christians but we hate Christianity. We love worshippers but we want them to repent of worshipping.” Similarly, we see that this would make us very uncomfortable, because that would be a church against our religion. Thus we see that the gays who are offended when the church tells them “we love you but not your lifestyle”, that they are so offended because that lifestyle has become their identity, it has become their religion.
Some claim that “your god” doesn’t like sodomy, but “my god” does. But there is only 1 God. And it is because there is one God that we must argue. Because there is only 1 God, either the Christian or the Sodomite is very wrong about God. If there are many gods, everyone can have their own and everyone can be right. Thus we see that subjectivism and relativism is really polytheism.
(Note- there can only be multiple Gods in the sense that when one becomes perfectly united with God, they become one with God. It’s not multiple philosophies, but one eternal law of the universe which we accept or reject.)
Sex is the door that God himself regularly enters our world through, creating new images of himself. Thus sex is intensely joyful and self-forgetful. Sex is like religion because it is objectively holy in itself and it gives us a foretaste of heaven, of the self-forgetful, self-transcending, self-giving, which is what our deepest hearts were designed for. Self-giving constitutes the inner life of the Trinity. Sex is holy because it brings God himself to earth; conception is a divine act, a miracle. It is like conversion or the sacrament of the Lord ’s Supper.
Our culture’s most shocking moral defeat is abortion. Nothing less than a false religion could overcome natural moral law and nature’s deep instinct of motherhood. Abortion is a religious issue because it is about sex (and not just because traditional religions reject it). Women (even more often men) want abortions because they want sex without babies. In order to persuade people that babies are not a toy which can be thrown away, that babies are holy, we must persuade them that sex is holy and not to be treated as a toy. Abortion is different from other issues because sex is different from other issues, and the context of abortion is sex.
When you surround an enemy, you win. When you surround a choice with truth and light, you’ll make the right choice. Being in a good family and society, it’ll be easy to be good. But living in a broken family, bad choices will come naturally. If you surround the choices of abortion homosexuality and pornography with the truth about the holy mystery of sex, as society used to do (at least significantly better than today), then even ordinary people will make the right choices.
Whenever the world produces a heresy, a lie, and great sinners, the Church produces a doctrine, defines a truth, and great saints.
The Church is not limited to a specific Church (a Roman Catholic Father Feeny was excommunicated for teaching that). Catholics and Protestants (etc.) have worked together to battle the sexual revolution. They refuse to reject the God’s word in the bible.
Abortion is the primary sacrament of the sexual revolution. Sex functions as a religion. Don’t expect victims of the sexual revolution to be rational and objective, you are challenging their god, waging spiritual warfare, condemning their ecstasy. When denouncing their sin, put the negatives (no to sin) in the context of positives (yes to sinners).
Very unholy things are sometimes done with almost holy intentions. Love and lust are closely and confusedly intertwined, like cancer cells and healthy cells.
Remember “there, but for the grace of God go I.” In other words, without Gods help, you could have a similar sin as they do. Think about how you would want the church to help you in such a bind, and try to help others in a similar way.
Make heroic sacrifices for the spiritually poor. Sacrifice your ‘freedom of thought’ first of all. “Take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5). Don’t think about it, don’t think about yourself, just sacrifice for the love of God and God’s lost children.
The body of Christ [here meaning the Church] produces antibodies when attacked by any disease, and those antibodies are saints. Antibodies are tailored to the specific disease. When the disease of greed threatens the body, antibodies of saints who are heroes of poverty arise (like St. Francis). When facing the disease of indifference to human life, the church produces missionaries of charity like Mother Teresa. Violence brings heroes of non-violence; gluttony produces heroes of fasting; drunkenness heroes of sobriety. The most critical diseases today are sexual ones, and volunteers are needed to fight this battle. The common feature of all antibodies is that they aren’t just sin avoiders, they are saints. Not just good people, but little Christs, hands and fingers of Christ, Gods medicine that saves the world.
The strongest weapon in the world is sanctity, nothing can defeat it. Sanctity isn’t the opposite of war. Saints aren’t nice, they’re warriors. They bother people so much that they’re often martyred. “If they persecuted me, they will persecute you.” (John 15:20) You don’t take nice people and nail them to a cross.
The world can give us peace with itself, with flesh and the devil, with greed lust and pride; but Jesus gives peace with neighbor self and God, based on poverty, chastity, & obedience.
Saints are masters of love, but that love isn’t nice. Saintly love is as distinctive as the type of peace he came to give (he explicitly said that, ‘not as the world gives give I unto you’, etc.). Jesus said the whole world would be able to distinguish Christians from everyone else by the different type of love they had. (John 13:35: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”) If this love were not distinctive, how could the world distinguish Christians from everyone else by it?
Saints love true peace and hate false peace, peace based on lies. Saints hate violence, intolerance for sinners, and tolerance for sin. Saints love sinners more and sin less than anyone else, which often offends others. When Jesus loved sinners, it offended his enemies, it was overcruel, peace without truth. In Jesus’ day, those who loved sinners were accused of loving sin. Today those who hate sins are accused of hating sinners. Anyone who speaks against sodomy is accused of “homophobia.” And soon to speak against fornication or adultery may be labeled as sexophobia. Already to speak out against abortion is called “divisive” and “judgmental.” Today in some parts of America and Canada it is illegal “hate speech” to state the Church’s perennial teachings, and Christ’s, on controversial issues of sexual morality.
Saints are always and necessarily embroiled in controversy, because they are as devoted to truth as they are to love. They refuse to be false prophets who give people what they want rather than what they need. The double devotion to truth and love is the only way to save the world.
12 nice Jewish boys brought down the Roman empire.
There’s only 1 reason we aren’t as saintly as the primitive Christians: we don’t want to be. Its totally our choice. This is both a terrible indictment, but also a wonderful hopeful open door. If we really believed that we could be saints, how could we endure being anything less? And what is the price to being a saint? Everything you have. 100% of your life, your time, holding back absolutely nothing. This means martyrdom, and for most of us, a more slow and painful martyrdom than simply an execution – it’s dying daily, every minute for so long as you live; dying to all of your plans and desires, including your pet plans about how to become a saint. You’ll still have desire, but not selfish desire based on what you want. Give God a blank check and let him fill the amount. It means “islam”, complete submission, surrender. It’s like what Mary’s surrender, when she brought down heaven to earth and saved the world.
The soul is like a tube connecting heaven and earth. If the tube is open and empty and hungry at the heavenly end, to suck grace in, the tube will be full at the earthly end, pouring grace out. (Seek heaven, not earth, and you’ll have what you need of earth.)
We are a people who always want to know, we want the method, the easy means to the difficult end. But easy things don’t cause sanctity. There’s no technique for loving God and neighbor, you just do it. A cause cannot produce an effect greater than itself. God is a gentleman, he respects our wishes and only gives us what we want. There is no gap between the wanting and the getting. Loving is willing, willing is wanting. All who seek will find. Becoming a saint is infinitely simple, that is why it is infinitely hard.
(Note – there is no complex machine to multiply our efforts, no trick, no shortcut to salvation. The way of Christ is the only way, it is the plain and narrow road, and few there be that find it. This doesn’t mean most go to hell, it means only few wish to and in fact do become saviors on mount zion. God isn’t a salesman peddling tricks, he is making everything completely obvious. God’s will is clear. Life is a test, but the test is not in finding out what God wants, it’s a test in whether we will chose to do what we know God wants. We all know fully well what God wants, and were schooled in that long before coming here. At the final judgement, it will be so painfully obvious that we willingly and knowingly did what we did in life, that we will explain “thy judgements are just!” It’s a test of the heart, not the mind.)
(Note – At the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper we covenant to be ‘willing’ to take Christ’s name upon us; this could be understood as ‘wanting’ to. Do we really want to? Is this what we want in life?)
(Note – Joseph Smith taught, “When we understand the character of God, and know how to come to Him, he begins to unfold the heavens to us, and to tell us all about it. When we are ready to come to him, he is ready to come to us.”)
Aslan (CS Lewis’ Christ figure) is not a tame lion. If you just say yes to him, you don’t know what he will do to you. (In other words, don’t expect an easy go at things when you become a Christian, a saint.)
The culture war is not just for society but for souls. Not just for time, but eternity.
Life offers only one tragedy in the end: to not have been a saint.
(Note – the popular poem of John Greenleaf Whittier, “Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been.”)
The commandment is to love God with all your soul. It’s been in scripture for thousands of years, its no secret. It’s all or nothing. God is infinitely patient, and infinitely demanding. As George MacDonald said, God is “easy to please, hard to satisfy.” It will take some time to get it down, keep practicing until you get the dance perfect; we are spiritual infants, we must allow Christ to mature in us. We weren’t designed to become saints in one day. A maxim of medieval philosophers is “Whatever is received, is received according to the mode of the receiver.” And one of our modes of receiving is time. Your nature is to be like a plant, not a machine. God is your gardener, not your mechanic. God always says “in due time.” But impatience is also a gift, as seen in the book of Job, because God’s time is always now; if the plant does not grow in the present, it will not grow in the future.
Miracles are exceptions which presuppose the rules. You can’t believe in miracles unless you believe in the law of nature, the rules that define miracles as exceptions.
God is like a bulldog, a Churchill, a fanatic. The terms Father, Lover, Fanatic, are almost synonymous. God is a consuming fire, and we accept Him or reject Him. God is a lover, not a thief. He takes only what you give Him. Love doesn’t make you do anything, it seduces, not rapes. God is involved in your life only to the extent you ask Him to be. If God isn’t in your life, it’s your fault, not His.
We believe in God’s laws because they are his will. Being a saint is the most prosaic (straightforward) and poetic thing in the world.
It takes time to plan, don’t plan, just do, and do it now, instead of thinking of doing it later. Don’t even say “I will,” willing is about future, just act now. Thinking can be a comfortable substitute for doing. Seeing the error of your ways is also not enough, you must mobilize. God doesn’t want you to get A’s on your tests, he is your lover, not your professor. Don’t focus on your problems and inadequacies. Instead, surrender to God. Look God in the face, because no one can sin while looking God in the face. Gods face is truth, and total honesty with the truth is the key to holiness. Chose to turn your face to Gods face.
(Note – it does seem quite true that a lazy person can be someone who is ever making long to-do lists (which costs nothing), then is very hesitant to complete things on that list. Often it is in fact superior to simply do. When things have to be written down to be remembered, they are often unimportant, or a manifestation of our hesitancy to do them at all. So we must have the right spirit about us, the spirit that gets the best things done now, and lets the rest go when it must go.)
You can’t kill all the gnats that distract you, you must ignore them. But you must beware of the biggest one: pride. Wanting to do it your way. Answers come only when you surrender to God.
Truth is stronger than falsehood. Light stronger than darkness. When light shines into darkness, the darkness cannot comprehend it, understand it, surround it, or put it out.
Love is stronger than hate. We fight because we love God, man, nature, children, femininity, masculinity, sexuality, the body, the soul, life, love, and truth, while the enemy does love any of these things. Love is even stronger than death. “God is love [agape], and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them” (1 John 4:16). God cannot lose. If you don’t abide in His love, you ought to lose.
Our weapon is the blood of Christ. Christ isn’t merely a beautiful ideal, we can’t have Christ without blood. And if we are merely martyrs, human sacrifices (for good causes), that won’t work either, because blood without Christ doesn’t work. We must let ourselves be Christ’s blood-bank, and save the world.
(Note – I would say here, blood is works, Christ is grace. Our weapon is the blood (works) of Christ (grace), in other words, our weapon is the works of grace. And our work alone won’t work, only our work with Christ. I am very pleased with Kreeft’s emphasis on working by grace as a means of saving the world, which opposes the popular view that we should simply sit back and watch what God is doing without any intention of being personally involved in the battle. Many take it so far as to think that their small fragile contribution is so insignificant that they shouldn’t bother contributing at all, but this would not only damn our individual souls, but would frustrate the whole mechanism God uses to do His work. The wise in Christ know that they must give their all, and that tremendous sorrow will ensue (for himself, those he may have helped, and the God who cares) if he slackens his hand.)
In the 1950’s and 60s, when there were still more communists in Russian than in American universities, Archbishop Fulton Sheen used to say that Russia was like the cross without Christ, and that America was like Christ without the cross. Neither sacrifice without love nor love without sacrifice will win. Christlike love never gives up. (“charity suffereth long…”) Gerry Spence said, “Nothing is as fearsome as a bloody, battered opponent who will never surrender.”