Dark Brightness

Bleak Theology: Hopeful Science

Martyrs made by the state [Acts 12]

Never trust a ruler. Mistrust any King. The worst of them will be tyrants and kill randomly, but all in power will destroy lives for political expediency. There is no change of government, but when Christ is King and the Prime minister accounts himself as the main servant of the people, without tears and pain. And no revolution without blood.

That includes counter revolutions.

Today we have Herod deciding that killing Christians curried favour with the local elite. Who were cheerfully killing Christians themselves. They did not know that the time of their nation would end, that their temple would be destroyed, and their council destroyed by the legions of Rome.

And that some of them would live to see it.

Acts 12:1-17

1About that time King Herod laid violent hands upon some who belonged to the church. 2He had James, the brother of John, killed with the sword. 3After he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. (This was during the festival of Unleavened Bread.) 4When he had seized him, he put him in prison and handed him over to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending to bring him out to the people after the Passover. 5While Peter was kept in prison, the church prayed fervently to God for him.

6The very night before Herod was going to bring him out, Peter, bound with two chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while guards in front of the door were keeping watch over the prison. 7Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He tapped Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his wrists. 8The angel said to him, “Fasten your belt and put on your sandals.” He did so. Then he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” 9Peter went out and followed him; he did not realize that what was happening with the angel’s help was real; he thought he was seeing a vision. 10After they had passed the first and the second guard, they came before the iron gate leading into the city. It opened for them of its own accord, and they went outside and walked along a lane, when suddenly the angel left him. 11Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I am sure that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from the hands of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.”

12As soon as he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose other name was Mark, where many had gathered and were praying. 13When he knocked at the outer gate, a maid named Rhoda came to answer. 14On recognizing Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed that, instead of opening the gate, she ran in and announced that Peter was standing at the gate. 15They said to her, “You are out of your mind!” But she insisted that it was so. They said, “It is his angel.” 16Meanwhile, Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the gate, they saw him and were amazed. 17He motioned to them with his hand to be silent, and described for them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he added, “Tell this to James and to the believers.“ Then he left and went to another place.

What we are seeing now is that the elite are appeasing the immigrant, the stranger, the follower of Allah. They do not care about the cost: they will have their virtue shown. Bodies on the ground matter less than that they show virtue.

And we are still making martyrs.

In the latest instance of lethal violence against Christians in India, two masked gunmen on motorcycles shot a Christian pastor to death on Saturday night as he was standing outside the Temple of God church in Punjab state.
The 50-year-old Rev. Sultan Masih was standing outside the church talking on his mobile phone around 8:45 on Saturday evening when two armed youths with their faces covered drove by on a motorcycle and fired multiple shots at the pastor from a close range, according to police.

Two youths who were playing near the church witnessed the crime, and one said they had seen two men arrive on a motorbike and shoot the pastor. “We raised the alarm and informed his family. He was taken to the DMC Hospital in a car,” he said.

The pastor sustained a bullet wound to the head and two more to the chest and was rushed to a nearby hospital where doctors pronounced him dead on arrival. CCTV cameras installed at the church captured images of the attackers, but they could not be identified because it was dark.

Mistrust the elite. Do not follow their narrative. Do not be them. And do not be like them.