Part One: The History
Then some people said, “Come on! Let us consider how to deal with Jeremiah! … Come on! Let’s bring charges against him and get rid of him! Then we will not need to pay attention to anything he says.”
What do you know that we don’t know?
What do you understand that we don’t understand?
The gray-haired and the aged are on our side, men far older than your father.
They replied, “You were born completely in sinfulness, and yet you presume to teach us?” So they threw him out.
Acts 6:13, 7:54,58
(After Stephen called the religious leader “on the carpet.”)
“This man does not stop saying things against this holy place and the law.”
When they heard these things, they became furious and ground their teeth… [and] they began to stone him.
Joan of Arc
Tried by an ecclesiastical court, and burned at the stake when she was nineteen years old for asserting that she had visions from God.
The various inquisitions that started around 1184 had jurisdiction over baptized members of the Church. Pope Innocent IV’s papal bull Ad exstirpanda of 1252, authorized and regulated the use of torture in investigating heresy.
Part Two: The Present
OK. Maybe institutionalized Christianity doesn’t burn people at the stake anymore. But it still has little tolerance for those who dare challenge it’s reign. If anyone points out how far from Christ it’s teachings are, it still says what it’s always said:
“We don’t need to pay attention. What do YOU understand that we don’t? You presume to teach US?!?! Gee, I guess we’ve all got it wrong all these centuries!”
Well, actually, yes…you have.
Over and over again.
Religion has always hated the prophets. That’s what Jesus said. It’s still true today. But any “new truth” is, of course, nothing new. It just keeps getting buried under the oppressive thumb of religion. Every time it’s “rediscovered,” the so-called church again cries “Heresy!” It still sarcastically says, “Gee, I guess we’ve all gotten it wrong, and now YOU understand.”
Some of us just understand that we don’t understand it all. I think that’s a good place to start.