‘They came for the Communists, and I didn’t object – For I wasn’t a Communist;
They came for the Socialists, and I didn’t object – For I wasn’t a Socialist;
They came for the labour leaders, and I didn’t object – For I wasn’t a labour leader;
They came for the Jews, and I didn’t object – For I wasn’t a Jew;
Then they came for me –And there was no one left to object.’
Martin Niemoller, Protestant Pastor
In Nazi Germany
When a nation is at war all resources are turned over to the war effort, if you want to win that is! For example, in Britain, the peacetime army was massively increased to a wartime size by conscription. There was no choice, apart from really exceptional cases every man was required to leave his peacetime life and join the fighting forces.
Additionally, factories were turned over to producing munitions; car factories to producing tanks; the Rolls Royce plants to the production of Spitfire engines and so on. All available land, including sometimes bowling greens, tennis courts, even the strips alongside airport runways, was utilised for the growing of food, largely to replace that lost by the sinking of ships carrying food across the Atlantic. In terms of labour, women, previously largely home keepers, were brought in to work in factories and on the land to replace the men away fighting.
In short, the nation was at war and all of life was reorganized and disrupted in order to maximise the war effort. It was not a time for the comfortable life and there were to be no passengers.
This is Analogous to the contemporary Church which is engaged in a war, a ‘Spiritual War’ against Christians that has been ongoing since Jesus Crucifixion. For long periods of time in the West it has been in the background, suppressed as it was by a generally Christianized society. However, at times it has become a ‘hot war’, for example in the takeover of parts of Christian Europe, (particularly Spain, Portugal, Sicily and Malta) by the Moors (largely Arab Muslims from North Africa) in the Middle Ages. Now is one such time.
This is evidenced by not just the rising hostility to Christians over the last ten years and more, but now by attempts to ‘Cancel’ Christianity. A clear example of this is the case of the sacking/forced resignation of Andrew Thorburn. He was previously CEO of the National Australia Bank. However, after only one day of taking up a new appointment at Essendon, a major club in the Australian Football League, he was either sacked or forced to resign. The reason for this was because he was a leader in an Anglican Church the pastors of which had orthodox Christian views on issues such as abortion and homosexual lifestyle. This apparently is at odds with the football club’s ‘values’.
To put it concisely, it seems that Thorburn lost his barely held job simply for being attached to a church that expressed orthodox Christian views, the same ones held by most of the more than two billion Christians around the world.
This cancellation is evidence that the ‘War’ against Christianity is gaining in intensity. However, the Australian (western) Church/Christian body continues to fail to acknowledge the reality of the gathering storm, and prefers to remain as a comfortable peacetime institution, apparently disinterested, and certainly ill equipped for the battle, with little sign of ‘all of’ its life being ‘reorganised and disrupted to maximise the War effort’.
As all the statistics show, Christians are declining in number in the West, meaning that the anti-corrupting and preserving ‘SALT’ that Jesus said Christians are is becoming thinner in society.
This has created a Spiritual vacuum, and as with all vacuums is will be filled by something. The something being what C. S. Lewis (an Oxford University academic and former athiest) described as the ‘Dark Power’ moving in the world. This ‘Dark Power’ the Apostle Paul described as the “rulers, the authorities, . . . the powers of this dark world . . . . the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” Ephesians 6:12. It is these spiritual forces that have taken over and are destroying the erstwhile Christianized society that previously shaped western society, and provided most of the blessings that we in the West now enjoy, including the technology required to write this article.
We now appear to have reached the stage where Christianity itself can be cancelled and someone can lose their job simply for being a Christian.
Let us make no mistake. This is not a war against religions in general. No it is specifically against Christians because other faiths, e.g., Islam, Judaism, hold the same views as most Christians on the issues of abortion and homosexual practice.
The issue is ‘When will Christians wake up?’ and realise that settling for being SCABS, no not picket line-breakers in an industrial dispute, but ‘Sunday Church and Bible Study Christians’ most of whom never attempt to increase the SALT density in society by obedience to Jesus’ mandate to ‘Go and make Disciples’, just contributes to the battle being lost.
When someone signs up for Christ, they sign up to be conscripts in His army, to ‘Deny themselves’ and use their resources for the battle, especially their ‘Time’, and to work to create creative missional strategies that will produce more SALT, i.e., more Christians, or contribute to the addition of an amended last line to Niemoller’s poem.
‘Then they came for, the Christians –And there was no one left to object.’