In an interview Monday, a prominent Christian historian posited that the destructive chaos engulfing the country in recent months is likely rooted in a hatred of divine authority.
Speaking with Fox News host Tucker Carlson about the recent string of attacks against Christian churches, bestselling author Eric Metaxas first likened a recent anti-Christian tweet from former DNC Chairman Howard Dean to the scapegoating behavior of the infamous emperor Nero, who blamed the Great Fire of Rome on first-century Christians.
Pivoting to recent instances of church arson and desecration of religious icons, Metaxas said, “I think a lot of the nastiness that is being directed at these statues, it really has to do with something deeper, Tucker. I hate to say it, but there’s something very dark. You saw this in the French Revolution. There was a hatred at the bottom of it of God, of any kind of authority.”
“These people are drunk with the idea that they can somehow be an authority themselves, that they can seize power,” Metaxas continued. “And if you really want to cut to the chase, you forget about statues of generals and things. You go right for God, you go right for the Virgin Mary. My goodness, you go right for churches. You cut to the chase.”
Going on to reference Captain Ahab’s rage against God in “Moby Dick,” Metaxas said, “That’s really where the source of hatred is coming from. It’s a hatred of God and a sense of deep injustice. That’s what we’re talking about here. We’re talking about something that goes way beyond Confederate generals.”
Carlson agreed with Metaxas’ analysis, adding that “our leaders can’t stand” the idea of an authority higher than themselves. “I do think, though, that Christian leaders play a role in this,” Carlson continued, explaining that Muslim leaders would never countenance a mosque or Islamic monument being defaced. “I don’t see Christian leaders doing the same, and I don’t know why.”
Metaxas blamed widespread biblical illiteracy among Christian leaders as the reason behind their unwillingness to take a stand against evil. Referencing David killing Goliath and Elijah mocking the prophets of Baal, Metaxas said, “There are many instances of Scripture where people fight […] That has been lost. There are many people that have got a watered-down kind of Christianity, they’re offended by Trump. They seem to think that being nice is what it means to be a Christian.”
Metaxas, who obtained fame for his 2009 biography of German pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer, appealed to Bonhoeffer’s legacy of resisting the mobs that roiled Germany during the Nazi regime. “When Kristallnacht happened, Bonhoeffer knew that this attack on the Jews by these who, as far as I’m concerned, were animated by the spirit of Antichrist — these were not just political mobs, there was something deeper and darker — he understood that this attack on the synagogues, it was an attack on God himself.”
“I don’t like to use the word too lightly, but there was something satanic about it,” Metaxas added, and suggested violent protesters and vandals are partaking of the same spirit.
Metaxas and Carlson echoed the sentiment of Rev. LeRoy Marshall, whose majority-black church in New Albany, Indiana, was recently vandalized when “BLM” graffiti was spray painted on their statue of Lucy Higgs Nichols, an escaped slave and Civil War nurse.
Marshall told The Daily Wire last week that “the church needs to be saying something. It’s been crickets, silent, about what’s going on. I think if anybody has something to say, it should be the church first. If you’re talking about justice, we believe that justice starts right here at the church. And as Christians, that’s what we believe. So why we’ve been so silent, I have no idea.”
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