Let us give offence.

The prophet Zechariah says that the LORD of hosts will descend and rescue Jerusalem when all the rest of the world stands against it, when the city is being sacked, and by earthquake he will make a way for the people of Jerusalem to escape while the LORD will fight for them. As Israel passed through walls of water to escape from Egypt, the LORD will rescue them by opening a way through walls of rock.

Christ did not come that way. He came in peace, with the people honouring him. And he deeply offended the Pharisees, who considered this near a riot.

Luke 19:28-40 28

After he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, 30saying, “Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it.’” 32So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. 33As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?” 34They said, “The Lord needs it.” 35Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 36As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. 37As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, 38saying, “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!” 39Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, order your disciples to stop.” 40He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.”

I try to keep the scriptural quotes down most days. But today’s lectionary talks about Zechariah’s prophecy of a king. Who rules, not reigns. The kingdom to come is not a democracy, nor a republic, for republics are made by men. It is throne, altar.

The Church is God’s instrument on this earth. It should reflect his nature. As such, it is not a democracy, and its constitution (which varies). The church should reflect the nature of God, and that is hierarchy.

Not equality. We may all be equally bereft of dignity, for we are all fallen short of the glory we are capable of, let alone that of God. But our talents and gifts are different. Our roles are different. We need to discover the dignity of the laity, of being a wife and mother, of being a husband and workman. We must not give into the educational snobbery of the elite, who consider how you are qualified.

I will confess I get a quiet delight when people ask me about my PhD thesis (i.e. “are you in the club?”} and I say I have a Master’s. (I am in the academic club, bu another means). Because the credential is an entry ticket. It is what you do that matters… not what your CV looks like.

For life is not about collecting politically correct merit badges. It is about loving our brothers and sisters, caring for our children, and letting our life bear witness to the truth.

And the truth is offensive. Consider this… from the Cramner.

The news that two foster carers have had the children they lovingly cared for taken away by Rotherham Borough Council because they belong to UKIP raises a question: could conservative evangelicals be banned as foster carers because of their opposition to women bishops?

As was very clear in the exchange in the House of Commons following Tuesday’s sinking of the women bishops’ measure by the General Synod’s House of Laity, the conviction that the pastoral leaders of local churches and of dioceses should be male is utterly despised by the politically correct establishment. UKIP’s opposition to multi-culturalism was cited as the reason why the two foster carers in Rotherham were banned; why should not the opinion of conservative evangelicals about male headship in the family also fall foul of social workers?

Over at  the orthosphere there has been a long discussion of how Christians should live, and in particular if they should move to a more conservative nation or state. The tactic of being in a suburb or region where you are majority has been discussed. The alternative is to make a network, not under the radar, but publicly: to imitate the Orthodox Jews and Mennonites. Alte flipped from this to a list which she expanded at her place, but it is very much what the conservative closed Brethren do in NZ (they are very cult like, and their theology approaches or is heretical, but they use the same techniques).

  • Use distinctive dress, fairly easy for women in particular to do. Something that says I’m trad, stay away.
  • Educate your children in the church and away from state controlled education.
  • Frequent only Christian professionals and tradesmen
  • Do not send your children to college, unless very conservative. Consider trades.
  • Marry your daughters off very young. Like 18-20.

Now, there are risks with either approach. You can be shunned and persecuted regardless of what you do. You will offend. I do not use most of Alte’s techniques — I live in a small university town, and the boys are exposed to liberalism: the suicide of a boy that knocked his girlfriend up when they were 16 or so sobered them up, and they avoid the drug and pick up culture. But they are often asked what is like to live with a conservative, homophobic troll.

Meaning me: and I’m trying to teach what scripture says. Which would deeply offend the brain dead Rotherham social work kultur. I’m offensive: being a Christian puts you beyond the pale in this post modern society.

So let us today offend the world, by living by the agenda of Christ, using words if needed.

  • john

    In ancient times the girl would be married from ages 13-15 like in the case of mary and joseph what are your thoughts on that?

    • http://pukeko.net.nz/blog chrisgale

      Well. the girl has to be old enough to know what she is getting into. That is probably around 18 or so. I have a fifteen year old and seventeen year old at home, both boys, and know a fair number of teenage girls — at about 19 — 20 they become much more sensible.

    • http://twitter.com/alf1361 Art

      I would say I am pretty comfortable with that, to be frank.

      I know it isn’t modern, but who cares?

      • john

        In olden times the kids would have to grow up pretty fast. So ages 13-15 marriageable age is not inappropriate because the children are put to work at an early age and learn from around then. But due to the public school system any spark of inspiration that they had was killed early on because the design of the public school is to produce conforming drones.

    • http://twitter.com/TradChristianit TradChristianity

      Joseph never consummated the marriage, which was common with such young wives. Virgin widows were not unheard of.

      Anything earlier than 18 and you endanger the health of the mother and children, which is highly imprudent. You also rob her of the chance to properly discern her vocation and complete her basic education and training. Ignorant wives being nearly as useless as over-educated ones.

      • http://pukeko.net.nz/blog chrisgale

        The junior doctor I work with (Female, 26, and not a traditionalist — was shocked when doing advanced training in gynae when someone argued the age was 16. At 18 –20 your pelvic tendons are much tigher and more rigid, at 16 they are flexible and the pelvis stretches…

        I’d argue for 18 as the female brain makes changes around self blame for everything to being able to attribute blame elsewhere and is more aware of their mortality around then.

        It is the age when you can vote, at least here, or marry without parental permission.

  • crankeepants

    The reason given for removal of the children was the carers opposition to multiculturalism. As someone with actual knowledge of the foster care system, let me translate this for you in the hopes you will retract or at least edit your post so it more closely aligns with the truth. The truth, that’s if you are at all interested in that.
    Opposition to multiculturalism means the foster carers were of a different cultural background to the children and at best opposed to educating the children in knowledge of their diverse culture, and at worst, were or are racist.

    Foster carers are expected (nay, required) by the State to engage in life story work with foster children. This means, educating the child about the culture and religion of their birth parents so the child forms an identity appropriate to their birth family. If foster carers are of a different nationality or ethnicity to the foster child, they are required to learn about the child’s ethnicity, enrol the child in non-English speaking language courses and get the child to develop knowledge of (AND Recognise, and CELEBRATE) important cultural and religious dates of that child’s birth culture/religion.
    If foster carers do not uphold their end of the contract, they know very well that they aren’t the appropriate family for that child and that if they do not abide by their Code of Conduct, regulations and legislation, that the children can be removed. If they don’t wish for that to happen and they want more autonomy, then they need to adopt. Foster care means the parent of the child able to make decisions for the child, is the STATE, not the foster carers. Those decisions are guided by legislation and regulations concerning what foster carers can and cannot do in respect to caring for the child.

    It is extremely dangerous to allow foster carers to think that they can just do whatever they like. They can’t. They are employees of the state and are actually held up to higher standards than birth parents. And that’s their choice. If they don’t want to do their job properly, then they can expect they won’t be asked to do it anymore.

    • http://pukeko.net.nz/blog chrisgale

      Um, no.

      I am reporting what Cramner said, who links through to the UK press about the Rotherham incident.

      Now, unless you have details of that incident — then you have to accept their issue. I do not have a clue as to which ethnic group the foster kids were. (I’d assume they were the same as the parents, but I do not know that)

      What you do, is imply that a person cannot work with someone they disagree with. That. is. bullshit.

      This quite conservative Calvinist works with dykes and pagans most days. In mental health. With social workers. I know the NZ system from the inside.

      So get off your high horse and do not tell me about professionalism. Or that political views disbar you…

      For if they do, I have a long, long list of communists I personally know….

      • crankeepants

        You still don’t perceive why they were removed even though I have kindly gone into detail above explaining it! You still persist in erroneously believing it is a political issue, with the council social workers just not liking the political beliefs of the foster carers. Unbelievable. Not everyone is a as shallow thinking as you. The last thing any social worker or foster agency wants to do is yet again remove a child from another family/placement after they have already suffered the trauma of removal from their own birth family. Placement transitions do not occur regularly and when they do occur, the reasons are well considered. Most agencies actually contract independent social workers or psychologists to assess the impact of a transition on a child and if it would be worth in respect to their psychological wellbeing and long term development.
        They were removed because the carers are hostile and opposed to inculcating in the foster children a knowledge of the foster child’s own ethnicity, culture and religion. Which is clearly DIFFERENT to the foster carers. In other words, the child would have been raised with a sense that their own ethnicity was inferior or something to be ashamed of and forgotten, thus being extremely DAMAGING to their sense of self.
        Do you get it now why they were removed or is this beyond your ability to understand? Please for the love of god, tell me you don’t work in mental health…

      • http://pukeko.net.nz/blog chrisgale

        No, I disagree with you. I have worked with people where we have had to place kids. Frequently. And we always try to work within family, whanau and hapu.

        Regardless of ethnicity.

        Disagreement about multiculti? IT DOES NOT WORK. Full stop. About the only thing I agree with Pita Sharples from the Maori Party on.

      • crankeepants

        Did you even watch the interview embedded within the article you linked too?

        You have got the wrong end of the stick.

        Vid makes perfectly clear that the children were from a “multicultural” background and that the foster carers are opposed to that background. Exactly what message do you think that is going to send to the children?
        This didn’t occur in NZ, I’m pretty sure they aren’t Maori and the foster carers were not kin.

      • http://blog.pukeko.net.nz Chris

        No. and you are banned.

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