Mass Hysteria

Fred Clark at Slacktivist found this wonderful quote from the great evangelist Billy Sunday:

Our country is filled with a Socialistic, I.W.W., Communistic, radical, lawless, anti-American, anti-church, anti-God, anti-marriage gang, and they are laying the eggs of rebellions and unrest in labor and capital and home, and we have some of them in our universities. … If this radical element could have their way, my friends, the laws of nature would be repealed, or they would reverse them; oil and water would mix; the turkey dove would marry the turkey buzzard; the sun would rise in the West and set in the East; chickens would crow and the roosters would squeal; cats would bark and dogs would mew; the least would be the greatest; a part would be greater than the whole; yesterday would be after tomorrow if that crowd were in control. (George Marsden, Fundamentalism And American Culture, p. 221)

First off, this just begs to be paired with this clip:

Second, look at the bolded portion. Sunday is inadvertently quoting scripture, Matthew 20:16. As a bad thing.

It’s remarkable how a religion started by a man who spoke of overturning the world should come to worship the status quo. Think of all the radical statements attributed to Jesus. He said that his followers would be the one who hated their fathers and mothers; probably a way of saying that his followers would have to break with their families if their families didn’t accept Jesus. He said let the dead bury the dead, that he came to bring not peace but a sword, etc. His followers did not become respected members of the synagogue, instead they formed their own commune apart from society.

That’s all pretty much what you’d expect from an apocalyptic. But today, Christianity is associated with conservatism. Many people feel that Christianity is a force necessary to hold society together rather than turn it upside down. Being Christian now means having a family rather than hating them. It means getting a haircut and a real job.

  • trj

    today, Christianity is associated with conservatism. Many people feel that Christianity is a force necessary to hold society together rather than turn it upside down.

    Any True Christian knows that America needs to revert to the perfect society it was back in 1776. The only true progress is regress.

  • Elemenope

    It’s remarkable how a religion started by a man who spoke of overturning the world should come to worship the status quo.

    This was never more stark to me than during the kerfuffle over Obama’s erstwhile pastor Jeremiah Wright. Watching his so-called “controversial” sermons, I heard the bog-standard religious criticism of the status quo (and a fairly gentle one at that). That’s apparently not what every good, honest, God-fearing whiteChristian American heard. They were absolutely used to their pastors and religious leaders positively fellating the mighty and powerful (mainly so they could claim influence over them), and the idea that religious leaders would ever be critical of such blew their mind (and not in a productive way): How dare you say that God would not be pleased with what America does?!

  • Revyloution

    I caught ‘the least would be the greatest’ without the bold. This just strengthens my belief that most of these big time preachers are atheists in sheeps clothing. I think he knows damned well that the text of the bible is in direct contradiction to the lifestyles of modern US Christians. And he knows damned well that most Christians never read the damned bible. All he has to do is pander to their egos, then sit back and profit.

  • anti_supernaturalist

    the “Jesus” of fable has no social conscience

    • Xianity can not be characterized by what “Jesus” supposedly said. The so-called synoptic gospels are already cult recruiting propaganda — they have the same viewpoint (=synoptic) because Luke” and “Matthew” based their embellished legends on the earlier writings of “Mark” (after 70 CE). The running-off-at-the-mouth smart-ass hellenistic god-man presented by “John” (100 CE) simply reeks of total fiction.

    • No records exist in Aramaic or Greek deriving from before 50 CE. Saul of Tarsus (aka “saint” Paul) — who never met “Jesus” — spreads his Christ-cult throughout the eastern Roman Empire’s major cities. Some of his letters (epistles of Paul) are regarded as authentic (50-65 CE). Saul has nothing to say about “Jesus”; he has no knowledge of Jesus-cult literature which appeared only after his death.

    There are no ancient copies of written documents about “Jesus” remaining from before 3 rd century CE, including Paul’s letters and the “gospels”. Since xians cheerfully erased, altered, and faked new material, no one has any idea what the originals contained.

    • When anyone claims that “Jesus” spoke in Aramaic and that there must have been records in that language — such claims are supposition without much basis. Though the “gospels”, letters sof Paul and “Revelation” were written in Koine Greek — they were badly written by scribes whose command of Koine demonstrates that their native languages were Aramaic or Syriac.

    Gnostic xian documents, supposedly burned by orthodox xians around 450 CE, came to light only by chance in 1946. They are filled with odd treasures — Jesus-the-Menace as a child, dancing Jesus with friends, the gnostic gospel according to Thomas, an illusory Jesus on the cross while the real “Jesus” laughs from nearby at the crowd witnessing his “death”.

    All of these Jesus-cult documents are at best historical fiction with a minor human being in a Roman occupied backwater expressing a desperate hope that the world might come to an end.

    Jewish apocalypse expressed more than a hundred years before “Jesus” in first Enoch and the rantings of the “Teacher” found among Essene texts match better (not perfectly) the Jesus-cult character than the real opponents of Roman occupation.

    • Far from being a social radical or a “freedom fighter” — or as a “terrorist” from Rome’s viewpoint — “Jesus” never once follows the frequent tactic of faith-based fanatics who raise an army of believers and send them with magic talismans against Rome’s legions.

    The last fool-for-Yahweh was Bar Koschva (died 135 CE). Rome destroyed him and several thousand rebels (or theo-patriots) — then Rome laid waste all of Palestine, driving the jews into permanent exile. Thus began the Diaspora (Greek for dispersion) not reversed until about 1900 with the advent of zionism, and later the foundation of a jewish state in 1948 carved out of British controlled Palestine.

    “Jesus” the god never existed; “Jesus” the jewish fable never existed. The “quest of the historical Jesus” leads only to an imaginary figure who like “Daniel” and “Judith” never existed — they were for propaganda purposes only, as he is.

    • Xianity as an institution; one recognizably orthodox only began in 325 CE with the council of Nicaea called by the emperor Constantine (died 337 CE). The xian church has always allied itself with conservative secular power — when it was not both the religious and secular power.

    The anti-slavery movement in the US had the backing of some of New England’s protestant figures in the early 19th century; southern xians had no trouble being pro-slavery, racist, and anti-Semitic. Later exponents of the social gospel are also 19th-20th century figures always hated by conservative xians than as now.

    “Jesus” like another god, shapeshifter Proteus, has no fixed form. He can be made into a pacifist, champion of the poor, whip wielding anti-capitalist cleaning out the moneychangers, a frightening judge who threatens fire and
    suffering against all unbelievers. . . he is a tangle of contradictions. He has nothing to tell us because a contradiction says everything at once.

    the anti_supernaturalist

    • John C

      The carnal mind can never dis-cover Him Anti. So be re-new-ed in the spirit of your mind friend. Then you will surely see in the light of truth.

      ‘And God separated the light from the darkness’ (Gen 1:4)

      • Brian M

        Of course not, “He” never existed.

      • Jeff P

        The mind brainwashed by religion can not discover the truth, because it conveniently ignores all of the points anti_supernaturalist makes in their well written post, because even though it’s consistent and fact-based, it contradicts their faith, which has no facts to back it up.

        It amazes me that with all of the charlatans we have spreading religious lies for their own purposes today (most recent example Harold Camping) anybody would take at face value ANYTHING spread by the church. Are we supposed to believe delusional liars making crap up is a relatively new phenomenon in human history?

        • John C

          But of course ‘religion’ is the polar opposite of the true offer in Christ Jeff. Those who you assume speak for Him most often…don’t, ie this Camping fellow and that which you are referring to as ‘the church’ which mostly…isn’t.

          George MacDonald (1824-1905) said it best ‘I too have been for some time greatly dissatisfied with the Congregationalists, as they seem to be trying more and more to save the world from the outside by politics, and not by the rule of the Kingdom in the individual heart’.

          All the best.

          • Revyloution

            “Those who you assume speak for Him most often…don’t”

            So your’e saying we can’t trust you on anything you say about Jesus?

            Sounds fair.

  • Malena

    I honestly believe that the average christians need jesus, the bible, all the trimmings in their life to survive- to breathe. they need the rules and the regulations and this of course includes all the major religions -jewish, islam etc.
    the sheeple – can’t survive without this -can’t imagine life without it.

    • Matt P

      Malena,

      Most people are sheeple, never bothing to question anything they hear or read. I think that is what sets this website apart, the participants, regardless of background, are questioning what people say. They are actively seeking to uncover hypocrisy, untruths, and lies. No truthiness here.

      We all have different opinions, and most of us have disagreements about particular topics, but what we have in common is the desire to know.

  • Rob Jase

    I’m sorry but I can’t make any deep commentary on this because I’m trying to figure out what a turkey dove is.

    Its not in my Peterson’s or Sibley’s.

  • grumpygirl

    HA HA HA HA HA HA !!!! Best laugh of the day!!!!!