Thursday, October 13, 2016

Secret Combinations and Wolves in Sheep's Clothing

Source: "Mocking Christ" (painting by Ivan Kramskoi)

You probably already saw the story on this, but if not, the Wikileaks dump from a couple days ago contained emails written in 2011 between John Podesta and a Left-wing activist (Sandy Newman of the Voices for Progress group) discussing subverting the Catholic Church. In an email to Podesta, Newman wrote: "There needs to be a Catholic Spring, in which Catholics themselves demand the end of a middle ages dictatorship and the beginning of a little democracy and respect for gender equality in the Catholic Church." Podesta responded by assuring her that he and his minions were working on it, stating: "We created Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good to organize for a moment like this. But I think it lacks the leadership to do so now. Likewise Catholics United. Like most Spring movements, I think this one will have to be bottom up."

Writing at The American Conservative, Rod Dreher comments on the email exchange, observing:
This is chilling and infuriating — though I suppose not surprising. It’s simply that now it’s undeniable. It shows that at the senior level of the Democratic Party’s brain trust, a Clinton political operative — a Catholic! — created front groups specifically to undermine the authority of the Catholic bishops, and to separate the bishops from the people, as well as to secretly undermine Catholic teaching to make it more friendly to the Democratic Party’s agenda. Podesta ought to be excommunicated. 
So now we know what’s coming under a Hillary Clinton presidency: a war on the Catholic Church and any other church that stands in the way of progressives in power. ...
* * *
It’s clear now that believing Christians are going to have to fight these powerful, deceptive, amoral progressives for the rest of our lives. Dark days ahead. A Catholic friend e-mails to say, “So we knew the KGB infiltrated the Russian Orthodox Church, but who knew the Democrats were sponsoring activists inside the US Catholic Church? Wow.” 
* * *
 We lost the culture war, and now live in what you might call occupied territory. Now we have to be resistance fighters, and that requires a lot of patient, careful, deliberate work. The old-guard Christian leaders who think the main battlefront is in politics are incapable of leading the kind of resistance we need. They are fighting the last war. We need a Charles de Gaulle. We need a St. Benedict. If we are going to get them, they’re going to have to come from within our own ranks. 
Liberals will call this post hysterical and overwrought. Don’t listen to them. These e-mails are a sign of what’s coming. Prepare. 
Now, if this has been done with the Catholic Church, what is to say it hasn't occurred as to other major churches that oppose abortion or gay marriage?

It brings to mind Christ's admonition in Matthew 7:15-20:
15 ¶Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 
 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 
 17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. 
 18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. 
19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 
20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
In this case, what to look for in the evil fruit is going to be whether the person is seeking to advance correct doctrine, or teaching some version of the gospel mixed with the philosophies of men. Examples of this is the left's religion of abortion and gay marriage. These are masked with platitudes of empowering women, or fairness and tolerance, respectively.  Often they are accompanied with reasoning that "a loving God" wouldn't condemn someone like that, or that "a loving God" would excuse, if not condone, the particular practice or behavior.

The reasoning behind this--"a loving God" would or wouldn't--is flawed. The scriptures are quite clear of what God thinks of a proud people:
Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it.
Jeremiah 6:19. Moreover, the scriptures clearly teach the Christ was to be a stumbling block or rock of offense. For instance, in Isaiah 8:14: "And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem." And in 1 Peter 2:8 where Christ is described, as to those that fail to follow his commandments, as "... a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed." Not to repeat a trite cliche, but this is an issue of Christ never saying his way was easy, but that it was worth it. 

Christ clearly and repeatedly offended the Jews of his day, and likewise his Gospel and commandments also offends many Christians of this day. It is supposed to offend people. Their feelings of offense will be the trap and snare that drags them down.

See also: "Clinton campaign chief helped start Catholic organisations to create ‘revolution’ in the Church"--Catholic Herald.

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