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DENYING THE BEAUTY OF TRUTH
or Crucifying the Children ?
Not a pleasant occupation, but one
readily engaged in, when it comes to the heart and mind of the growing
child: the real horror shows are not of the body but of the soul.
of Dealing in Ditchwater Dynamics -
Denying the Beauty of Truth:
Implications unsought may nevertheless be found
Adelaide Advertiser, Thursday, May 15, 1997
"They take up all of them with a hook,
They catch them in their net, and gather them in their dragnet,
Therefore they rejoice and are glad,
Therefore they sacrifice to their net" - 1:14
Sounds ordinary enough ? Yes, but in the context, the 'fish' are men; and the fishers are violence pedlars, corrupted and corrupting oppressors of their own race.
NETS appear with men, and Habakkuk queries the horrible swiping, sweeping of people into nets by the heartless callous people of the world. He pictures vividly the hearty pride, the casual cruelty as those who "know" mock God and man, and go about their business, their evil, selfish and shrewd business, in whichever political hemisphere. Then having done (see Psalm 73) for a time what produces satisfaction to the gaping financial or political maw, at any moral cost, they "sacrifice to their net".
THIS MEANS they sacrifice to, worship, put their confidence in their MEANS, be it intelligence, wealth, political power, use of an ideology as in Communism where so often the powerful are ruthless (officially having no God), the ruthless often are rich, and the powerful-rich are ill-related to their system, enjoying its fruits with callous privilege.
Nevertheless, they sacrifice to their net, to their ideology; or in the case of the bludgeoning commercial oppressor, whose object is not service but breach of whatever for his/her own gain: there too, the means of 'success' in being horrible is worshipped, is regarded as a place for sacrifice. Freedom is wonderful, but no guarantor of righteousness. Slavery prescribed for the mind is incomparably worse; but purity in strength and truth are not the equivalent even of freedom. More is required for each individual than freedom OR compulsion can secure!
How much IS sacrificed to such bloody ways, such moral promiscuity is well rehearsed in Shakespeare's Macbeth, in the lady with her little hand, alas, toned morally blood-red to her inward sight. And she ? a site for psychiatrists, who have no cure for guilt. Thus in turmoil, and bringing turmoil, this petite sub-section of sin squanders itself in spiritual squalor*1.
Nowadays it referred to as 'survival of the fittest', as if a means which in the biological sphere does not produce more advanced designs, yet one imagined and imaged to do so in violation of the facts (see That Magnificent Rock, Ch.1, SMR Ch.2), had somehow become a moral ground for ultimate disregard of the productions of the creator which do not happen to bear one's own name! Even if it were description as pretended, it is not prescription; and even if it were prescription, it need not be heeded. Much else that is prescribed is certainly not heeded! But in fact, it is not descriptive; and were it so, it gives no ground for conformity.
So does spiritual squalor rationalise, even while the Cross of Christ is de-programmed from a school drama, even while philosophies of folly are frequently taught in such places, codes and concepts that help as little else, to program violence into the mind of children. (Cf. SMR pp. 109-110, 197, 231-234, 386-388.)
But the news ? In however small a way, it illustrates a trend. And the small? They are often in the end, the great!
The news then ? This: A 12 year old boy was to play Christ in a passion play at Primary School level and his principal apparently regarded the principle of the thing as containing too much violence! Violence ? Do they not play or read Macbeth ? Do they not watch unwashed violence continually ? Is not the news so full of it, on TV, as to be almost unwatchable ? Has this principal told the children not to watch it ? or recommended this ? The incredible blindness of such an attitude, when here in the Cross of Christ is violence displayed in its true colours, and force shown in its emptiness on its own, rebuked, and exposed!
Greatly to his credit, the Prime Minister, John Howard, has come forth to rebuke the NSW government in this, a spokesman reported as saying :
Any action to prevent children enacting religious teachings about Easter was an "insane example of how political correctness has too strong a hold within government circles in Australia."
"Where," he queried, "will the thought police end ? Will Anzac Day be next on the list ?" the spokesman asked. *2
Also reported is a State Opposition Leader as declaring: "The teachings represented are central to Christianity. For Christians there can be no watering down of the message - without the death of Christ there is no Easter."
This is the teaching on the net: it is an abomination to God; and this is the teaching about the Cross, that it is the necessary price for the covering of sin with justice, for those whose lives are themselves cleansed and forgiven by God Himself personally, who equally personally made the payment (Galatians 3:10-13, Matthew 26:28-29, 20:28). While this exposure of the true nature of mere violence is made in simple enaction, the School will not have it so, but doubtless continues with its Education Department system, to broadcast the philosophy of the 'survival of the fittest' syndrome, which is a disease of society so gross, that its continued and doubly irrational support is one of the foulest disservices to the conscience, heart and understanding of the young it is possible to make.
Such is education in Australia: but not all of it.
At least the children gave some evidence of better perceptions, as they often do. The mother of the boy to play the central role in the play stated that the students thought the passion play "fantastic and understood perfectly it was only a play." In that case, the children are in this, denied this approach to violence infinitely superior to its practice.
They are denied such an opportunity against their own wills, where skill and concern is available. "It would," she said, "be much better if the Education Department were as over-zealous with literacy and numeracy as they have been with this."
Actually, children are exposed to so much violence in society, the home very often and on TV, as well as in the classroom philosophies often presented, that an interpretation that answers, as in Habakkuk is needed young, to prevent the sores of ignorance inducing psychic and moral problems.
It is a great day for Australia when its Prime Minister can rebuke such denial of the instructive desires of children.
At the same time, this type of denial of the Cross reminds us somewhat forcibly of two things:
i) the children in our current system are frequently indoctrinated in terms of subjectivity relative to religion, though as SMR shows - with That Magnificent Rock Ch.5, a uniquely valid teaching is available, leaving all competition behind logically; and thus, while survival of the fittest sits, the inward net they grow up with, alas not identified as mere play-acting but taught as real in the arrival of the present life forms, they themselves are taken and crucified with this piercing philosophy of folly as the nails.
Exposure for just a day at an immoral play from the seditious secular mind ? not at all, for their schedule is for many vain years of their schooling. The disproportion is gross and grievous!
ii) The other reminder: The Christian teaching also includes this. While the Cross of Christ is the way to redemption, showing patience, forgiveness, grace, wisdom and power in the resurrection but in the endurance no less, there is also the teaching - Take up your Cross and follow Me! ...
"Whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple," said Jesus Christ (Luke 14:27). Paul puts it that he is "crucified with Christ" (Galatians 2:20). In this, the natural trends to be dominant, or self-assertive, or otherwise autonomous through positive or negative means, wayward, a law to oneself or a spiritual subject to society or any other idol, are 'crucified' or yielded to death so that the free course of spiritual beauty may flow in relation to God, loved with all one's heart, and to one's neighbour, as oneself.
The newspaper picture of the 12 year old as if in crucifixion, in the suppressed passion play, vividly evoked both teachings:
first, the heartless religion of a philosophy of science currently modish, crucifying the young through the classroom, as a price for studenthood; and
secondly, the need for t
hem, as for all of us, to be crucified with Christ. "Whoever," as Jesus said, "desires to save his life will lose it; and whoever loses his life for My sake, will find it" (Matthew 16:25). This has the inestimable advantage of being voluntary, rather than a matter of the goads and nails of the often misaligned if not irresponsibly indoctrinating educative system. Queensland has been for some time at least in part, like some Canadian cases, an excellent example of an exception to this woeful trend. (Cf. For freedom:- Revelation 22:16, Psalm 110:3; for schools, News 14, point 6, News 12 and Ch.8 , esp. p. 222, That Magnificent Rock. For Queensland, see Ch.8, p. 189, That Magnificent Rock.)
THAT is the net which has net worth, for:
"The kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind which, when it was full, they drew to the shore: and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away. So it will be at the end of the age" - Matthew 13:47-48. Nothing could be further from both the action, and glorious realism and spiritual teaching of Jesus Christ than this soporific substitute of survival of the fittest, for the facts of life's origins, its creation, or the way for God's creation, mankind, to walk.
(See That Magnificent Rock, Ch.6, and SMR pp. 179ff., 485 ff., 560ff.. Where, as in p. 179, a page continues to the next Section, simply proceed to that Section for the topic.)
Though some of the war of this century has been against clear evil, much has been in terms of self-aggrandisement, striving, stupendous blindness and desire, political maladies, mixed morals and confusion. It seems conceived better by many, to continue a rat, rather than to die a person of enduring value; for the love of God grows cold in multitudes (cf. Matthew 24:12). The survival of the fittest flits in place of theendurance of the best, as if quality and reality had taken unending vacation. But judgment knows no vacation.
The sacrifice of ideals, vision, virtue, what makes personality precious, spirituality, godliness among the nations, and this, sometimes in a swath of power-hungry godlessness, power broking or other dead philosophy instead of lively wisdom, has been purchased at enormous cost in millions of men, in maiming of untold numbers, in wild violations and desperate yearnings and much atmospheric pollution, adorned more with radioactivity than with grace. It cost to achieve this desolation in mankind and in the world; and the desolation is cost in itself: a double defeat. It continues brassily blatant till its end.
If this folly with its fallacious phrase, the survival of the fittest, is a willing child of prophecy, obediently playing out the forecast last act, it is no less in thought a molestation of the loveliness that awaits the persons of mankind, when the God of creation is once more applied to, in repentance and reality, through faith in Jesus Christ. Magnificent indeed is the opportunity to leave the death-train and join the train of Christ, which routinely goes on its stations in the pilgrimage God has set for His people.
Like the Captain, the quest and the quality in view, so the destination is so very different. The gift of eternal life (Romans 6:23) to faith was granted not through survival on this earth, but through planned sacrificial splendour in Jesus Christ, in coming, in working and then the mortal transaction itself. That payment in death to secure that end is expressive of His nature and what is available to mankind. History is a wonderful lesson on how it cannot be done; Jesus the Christ is a more wonderful exhibition of the only way that is available, with that splendid spirituality on which the world turns its back. The results, however, do not turn their back.
With the world in moral conflagration, it does not appear unduly wise to be dousing the youth of this, our race, called human if not humane, in more of this inflammable, this heady spirit.
Inveterate folly and incalculable loss continue to greet the rising generation while Darwin die-hards see what it creates, alas neither the world nor its generics, but havoc instead of holiness, vice instead of virtue; instead of reality, it brings schizoid substitutes which slither, irrational and refuted, into the growing minds of the misled. There is no change from the ancient wisdom:
"Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
before the difficult days come,
and the years draw near when you shall say,
I have no pleasure in them...
when the almond tree blossoms, the grasshopper is a burden and desire fails.
For man goes to his eternal home,
and the mourners go about the streets...
Then the dust will return to the earth as it was,
the spirit will return to God who gave it." (Ecclesiastes 12:1,9, 12:7).
It is refreshing to find that on this occasion, vastly unlike the constantly oppressive case of spiritual dictation in South Australian High Schools (That Magnificent Rock, Ch.8), a compromise was reached at length. At length ? it was found AFTER the play did not proceed for this year, but provision was made for it next year. That will of course depend on the many activities and reactions in the meantime.
As with Hong Kong, it is always easier to make proper sounds until the pressure is off! As to that Island territory, it may have appeal to have as many nations as possible NOW while it is ... dangerous in world opinion, seeming to countenance the unrepresentative oppressions in the field of human rights or better said, torture of hearts and minds and slavery - Isaiah 58:6-12 is instructive here! - by an official presence at the Hong Kong takeover from Britain. (Unhappily, these oppressions have been abundantly and persistently attested by many for so long - cf. SMR pp. 664ff., 670, 684 and News Item 18 infra.) Later, when things are more settled, except there be repentance, there may be another story.
This is not to say that in the Australian case, the play may not proceed next year. It is however to notice that the zeal of the work has been postponed, after being first discountenanced entirely. The forces at work in this case were exposed at a level which led to withdrawal for the time, from the scene. It is not ultimately political, of course, for this is merely an arena for the battle (Ephesians 6:12ff.), in which many fight without even being aware of the commanders. (Cf. II Corinthians 4:3-4.)