The modern progressive pharisee does not ask for a sign. He does not enquire as to if the person to whom he is speaking is the Messiah. Nor is he willing to take up arms and defend Israel, as the ancient Pharisees did.
For they did reject the messiah, and fell for a strong delusion called Bar-Kochba, fought with Vespasian and Tiberius, and lost the temple. It has not been rebuilt.
The ancient Pharisees were more noble and sane than the progressive pharisees. For they would have demanded that Christ fall into their narrative, and the blood they spilt would be on their side, for they take as their model Stalin’s political officers and the Stazi.
Jordan Peterson understand this, and the progressive pharisees hate him.
He hit back at the suggestion being sensitive to causing offence was akin to good manners. “It’s a terrible problem,” Dr Peterson said. “Imagine the rule is you can’t offend anyone. Let’s say you’re speaking to one person.
“I can’t offend you — all right, fair enough. What if I’m speaking to 10 people? Do I get to offend one in 10? How about one in 100? How about one in 1000? You’re going to come out onstage and you’re going to say something important about something vital and you’re not going to offend one person in 1000?
“You can’t say something important about anything ever, without offending. Important speech about important issues, especially contentious issues, is instantly offensive.”
On the Canadian law that started it all, Bill C-16 — which made it illegal to refuse to refer to a transgender person by their preferred “gender pronoun” — Dr Peterson described it as worse than a mere curtailment of free speech.
“It’s a demand that the population uses a certain kind of linguistic approach,” he said. “It’s an appropriation of speech. There’s no excuse for that. That never has happened once in the history of English common law. It’s a barrier that we do not cross.”
Dr Peterson said hate speech laws were “bad enough”. “Who is going to regulate it? Who is going to define it? I know the answer to that — the last people in the world you would want to,” he said.
“And then we’ve crossed another barrier and we allow the government to compel speech for some hypothetically compassionate reason? No way. That’s a really bad idea.”
This blog is offensive, for it contains scripture, discusses the lectionary, which is offensive, for it calls us what we are and points to what we should be. It makes our failure clear.
And politeness weaponized by the politically progressive pharisees is akin to the false teaching Christ called leaven. it is an idol. And, like the ancient pharisees, they are falling for a strong delusion.
11The Pharisees came and began to argue with him, asking him for a sign from heaven, to test him. 12And he sighed deeply in his spirit and said, “Why does this generation ask for a sign? Truly I tell you, no sign will be given to this generation.” 13And he left them, and getting into the boat again, he went across to the other side.
14Now the disciples had forgotten to bring any bread; and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. 15And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out – beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.” 16They said to one another, “It is because we have no bread.” 17And becoming aware of it, Jesus said to them, “Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you still not perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18Do you have eyes, and fail to see? Do you have ears, and fail to hear? And do you not remember? 19When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” They said to him, “Twelve.” 20“And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” And they said to him, “Seven.” 21Then he said to them, “Do you not yet understand?”
22They came to Bethsaida. Some people brought a blind man to him and begged him to touch him. 23He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when he had put saliva on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, “Can you see anything?” 24And the man looked up and said, “I can see people, but they look like trees, walking.” 25Then Jesus laid his hands on his eyes again; and he looked intently and his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26Then he sent him away to his home, saying, “Do not even go into the village.”
The yeast of the Pharisees was akin to the narrative of this time. They expected Christ to show them a sign, follow their agenda, and play their version of the game of thrones.
They do not understand that Christ was more than that.
They are still asking that we conform to their narrative, show them a sign, and support their agenda.
But we shall preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to the pharisees and an offence to the scholars, for they deserve neither a sign nor do they understand wisdom.
The gift of grace is offensive, for the spirit chooses: the cross is offensive, because it show the cost of my wrong, and the wrong of us all.
And Christ will call to him those for whom he gives the free gift of grace, without any false need to ask these broken pharisees for permission. .