Secular journalists don’t know much about Christianity. Amy Coney Barrett can teach them
October 12, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — As the Senate confirmation hearing for Supreme Court justice nominee Amy Coney Barrett gets underway, a little instruction on the Catholic faith might go a long way to prevent secular journalists and pundits from making embarrassing claims.
And so, to you, I offer this very brief primer.
Christianity is strange — very strange — so nothing about the teachings of our faith should surprise you. Most of you will be freaked out:
- We believe in the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- We believe that God created the universe and everything in it.
- We believe that God created mankind, male and female.
- We believe that although it was written by the hands of men, the Bible is the Word of God, as if God himself had written every word of it.
- We believe that through sin, humanity is separated from God, but God sent His only Son — the Second Person of the Triune God — to redeem us from sin and restore our relationship with God.
- We believe that prophets of the Old Testament foretold His coming and that many personalities found in the Old Testament prefigured Him.
Now here’s where it gets really weird:
- We believe that the Second Person of the Trinity entered time and space, conceived by the Third Person of the Trinity — the Holy Spirit — in the womb of a young virgin named “Mary,” who remained a virgin for her entire life.
- We believe that after Jesus Christ entered public life, He worked many miracles — everything from turning water into wine to healing lepers and restoring sight to the blind to raising the dead to life.
- We believe that far more than a teacher or a role model, He is Himself God —true god and true man.
- We believe that after He was convicted as a criminal by religious and civic authorities, He was beaten, tortured, nailed to a cross, and crucified, as foretold by Old Testament Prophets.
But wait! It gets even weirder:
- We believe that on the third day following his death, He rose from the dead.
- We believe that forty days later, He ascended into heaven.
- We believe that ten days after that, He sent the Holy Spirit to dwell within his disciples, imparting to them a share in the divine nature, making them adopted sons and daughters of God.
- We believe that the Holy Spirit’s presence in the believer’s life yields a confidence in one’s divine sonship that exceeds human understanding.
- We believe that the Holy Spirit bestows “spiritual gifts.”
- We believe that as the Church, we are the Body of Christ, while also believing we are the Bride of Christ.
- We believe that during the Mass, bread and wine are actually turned into the real Body and real Blood of Jesus Christ, which we then consume.
- We believe that Jesus’s Blood cleanses the stain of every sin we confess.
- Finally, we believe that we are to evangelize every person in the world. This includes you, and it may be the most significant result of ACB’s very public confirmation hearing.
Weird, right? There is nothing mainstream about Christianity or Catholicism, other than the watered down social justice aspects that don’t come close to defining Christianity in any substantive way.
On the contrary, Christianity is the most radical counter-cultural movement the world has ever known.
So it’s completely OK to be shocked. The Gospel is meant to shock and offend, and then convict you of your absolute need for salvation through Jesus Christ, in, through, and for whom you were created, and whose sacrifice on the Cross is the only means of salvation available to you and every other human being ever born.
Here are some immutable truths that you no doubt will regard as both heresy and hateful. For us, these are not just articles of faith; they are solidly based in science and nature:
- What you are tempted to identify as “transphobia” is the solid, grounded knowledge that men are men and women are women. There is no migrating back and forth between sexes.
- What you call “homophobia,” which is basically defined as disagreement with anything that the Human Rights Campaign asserts, is merely the recognition of the scientific fact that the complementarity of the sexes exists throughout nature.
- Marriage is between one man and one woman, displayed in the complementary natures of our bodies and beings, again, throughout nature and history.
If you resent and disagree with these truths, that’s unsurprising, especially for those who are products of public and higher education.
That’s OK. Nobody is perfect.
Dr. Russell D. Moore once alluded to the old TV show town Mayberry, which many remember fondly as a period in time in which Christianity seemed to flourish — a wistful nostalgia for something that never actually existed.
We don’t have Mayberry anymore, if we ever did. Good. Mayberry leads to hell just as surely as Gomorrah does. But Christianity didn’t come from Mayberry in the first place, but from a Roman Empire hostile to the core to the idea of a crucified and resurrected Messiah. We’ve been on the wrong side of history since Rome, and it was enough to turn the world upside down.
Christianity isn’t normal anymore, and that’s good news. The Book of Acts, like the Gospels before it, shows us that the Christianity thrives when it is, as Kierkegaard put it, a sign of contradiction. Only a strange gospel can differentiate itself from the worlds we construct. But the strange, freakish, foolish old gospel is what God uses to save people and to resurrect churches (1 Cor. 1:20-22).*