The Sin and The Spin |
'Fruits' of ABC's 'Jesus and Paul' adds up to the bitter poison of progressivist pabulum passed off as having importance, even factual. What rubbish! But then what do you expect from ABC whose anti-Catholic track record is legend!?
"It is impossible to properly communicate or describe the disgust and sadness felt upon seeing how network television and the entertainment industry portrays and twists Christianity and Catholicism. The only reason I even watch this trash is so that I may then attempt to defend and answer the blasphemy and slander against our Faith and above all our Divine Savior. It is surreal how correctly Jesus reminds us that He will always be the target of attacks, ridicule, injustice, disrespect, and lies. Even though we all know that as sinners we hurt Him everyday, there is something in our soul, mind, and heart that must respond when He is systematically attacked by agents of evil hell-bent on dragging Him to their own Golgotha where they can re-crucify Him again and again."
ABC's 'Jesus and Paul: The Word and The Witness,' telecast on Monday of Holy Week, was a shameless, blasphemous, and biased attack on Our Divine Savior, on Catholic and Christian beliefs, and on St. Paul as a major figure in the spread of those beliefs and faith. This latest three-hour piece of trash should come as no surprise, however, from the network which has already graced us with such fine, objective, and accurate investigative journalism as its special on 'Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and The DaVinci Code.'
Different Blasphemy, Same Agenda
Just as it did in the prior blasphemous report on The DaVinci Code theories, ABC dresses its biased, anti-Christian, secularist, feminist, modernist, homosexual agenda as serious, unbiased, fair-minded, investigative journalism. Every attempt is made to reduce Jesus from The Divine Son of God and Our Savior to just a fervently faithful, illiterate peasant with a vision, a dream, and a calling to spread a message. While it would have been just as easy to describe Jesus as a carpenter, the word peasant is used to dig the thorns deeper into His Divine Image. Contrary to our faith and Scripture, Our Lord is described as illiterate and uneducated to further spike His Holy Name with disrespect.
Once again, we hear references to Jesus having brothers and sisters, to the so-called Gospel of Thomas, and to Gnostic beliefs stated as facts. Once again we see Scripture and our Faith being described as some cutlery to be sold off to the most gullible bidders by a shrewd follower of Jesus. Once again the Divinity and Person of Jesus as Son of God is totally ignored. In fact, Peter Jennings, who spearheaded this rubbish and is a darling of the progressivists, makes the statement that Jesus never called Himself the Messiah! Maybe he should read John 4:25-26 wherein Jesus speaks with the Samaritan woman. As in DaVinci, ABC does everything it can to paint Jesus as just a really radical and passionate Dude who started a movement on its way to failure until talented followers stepped in to apply effective sales techniques. Elaine Pagels, another expert, tells us that it is really amazing that God would send a human being and for us to say that God was with us with this human being. Once again we are given so-called experts and scholars whose absurd, radical, and foolish notions are passed off as golden nuggets of wisdom from on high.
Anyone having any doubts as to where this trash was coming from and where it was headed needed only to look at the commercials for contraception, the brief view of a banner for the Conference of Catholic Lesbians, and the idiotic statements coming from the panel of so-called experts which more resembled a reunion of Mel Gibson haters than any array of intellectuals with viable thoughts. This program was basically The DaVinci special, part II.
Oh, there were a few differences, such as length and the fact that each segment was connected using everything from rock music to jazz to rap to reggae music, anything but Gregorian Chant. If you can imagine the absurdity of flashing MTV-like scenes a la NYPD Blue of Jerusalem while some irreverent rock song blasting out "forgive them for they do not know what they do: is blaring, you get a sense of the outrageous irreverence ABC held for the subject matter as well as the disgusting combination of sound and images shown in this vile piece of trash. In fact, of all the putrid programs that have aired on the networks - especially ABC and CBS - this one tops any previous garbage put out on the curb by the Disney network. At the beginning of the holiest week of the year we are subjected to this kind of mindless anathema? Yes, for just as Jesus guaranteed, "If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you: if they have kept My word, they will keep yours also" (John 15: 20). I will proceed now to show not only how they are persecuting faithful Catholics, but how they have not kept His word in any shape or fashion. In fact, they are twisting it beyond recognition into a gnostic knot of confusion for the mindless viewers. Hopefully this column today will enlighten them.
Role Reversal and Sinful Spin
One of the axioms of television, as we can clearly see, is that one must add something new to re-applied propaganda, and 'Jesus and Paul' is faithful to that principle given the unique nature and context of St.Paul's life and contributions to the Faith. Where the DaVinci trash blasphemed Jesus as having a relationship with Mary Magdalene, this newest sacrilege trashes Our Lord by practically pushing Him below St. Paul in influence and effectiveness in the history of Christianity. This is done by a series of shameful stepping-stones.
First, Jesus is portrayed as fervent but uneducated, inspired but limited, purposeful but shamefully eliminated. We are told that His ministry was "an embarrassment" to his friends and family, and that he was viewed as "nuts". We are reminded many times that, despite His passion for His message, Jesus would never have gotten this thing off the ground unless Paul came along to save the day. Second, the apparent marginality of His work and words was only further intensified by the circumstances of His death, which is described as a "disgraceful death" by Armstrong and a "humiliating end" by another scholar. Lastly, Paul is painted as the actual savior of this faith, for it was left to his unique skills to "convert the disgraceful death into a victory" in a sort of sales spin which turned the "weakness" of this message (Christ's death!) into a "strength" through clever selling and rationalizing. According to these scholars in this program, it was up to Paul to repackage this disgusting death into a more palatable and effective recruiting tool, and he masterfully accomplished this end. We are told that, without Paul, Christianity would not have survived or looked like what we call Christianity today. What is most absurd about putting Paul above or even aside Christ is that Paul himself constantly referred to His Lord as the ultimate objective to which all of us should aspire. Furthermore, downplaying Christ's Divinity in a program about Jesus and Paul is also absurd because it was Paul who said that receiving The Holy Eucharist in an unworthy manner is akin to abusing the Body and Blood of Christ. This is clearly a reference to The Real Presence and Divinity of Our Lord. Obviously, however ABC and its cadre of so-called objective and thorough experts missed this point!
By the end of this garbage we are expected to believe that Jesus was the inventor and Paul to spokesman who developed the ads and sales approach to sell that invention. It is stated directly that, without Paul, Jesus would have been wasting His time. In short, we are to believe that the Master was merely an initiator and the Follower was the true hero in this whole thing!
One Target at a Time
After attempting to dispose of Jesus as just the spark, which Paul turned into a flame, ABC proceeds to tear Paul down and rebuild him to fit their religious agenda. Focus is given to the context, conflicts, and controversies surrounding Paul's writings. There is a clear implication that Christianity has always suffered from discord and a lack of diversity, and that many of Paul's problems stemmed from that. We are told that Paul never intended his writings as prescriptions for belief or life, but merely as guides trying to solve practical problems in communities he had served, especially since he wrote them down off the top of his head while thinking the world would soon end. Yes, these 'experts' actually said that!
Paul is painted as a sort of split personality between puritanical moralist and messenger of love and diversity. Pamela Eisenbaum and other scholars ask if Paul was Anti-Semitic, a male chauvinist, anti-homosexual, and generally too harsh in his writings.
Eisenbaum then proposes a more enlightened view of Paul, which stresses his writing on diversity, inclusion, and love. She opines that Paul intended close relationships of various religions, equating Ecumenism with a loving marital relationship wherein similarities and not differences are stressed. Eisenbaum goes further to suggest that Paul never meant sex as being for procreation but to control passions, given his view that the end of the world was at hand. Where Paul is seen as harsh, it is concluded that Christ would have been accepting and merciful, as when Calvin Butts III opines that Christ would never have rejected a homosexual. However, where Paul is seen as innovative and inclusive, it is opined that he had a more enlightened view of things and is the way to go.
In the end we are given an image of a genius whose talents allowed Christianity to survive and whose writings must be interpreted and applied (read twisted) into contemporary America given their popularity from the pulpit. The arrogant and even quite foolish statement is made that Paul never anticipated that his audience would be 20th Century America! Truly a shameful miscalculation on his part given the utter importance and uniqueness of this golden society in this equally golden age!
Reunion of Fools
ABC boasts a "wide variety of biblical scholars" in its ad for this program, but the only thing we get, as usual, is the usual suspects. While there are too many so-called experts presented, it is enough to focus on a few. Fans of Mel Gibson will certainly recognize our dear friends Paula Fredriksen and ex-priest John Dominic Crossan, those giants of biblical thought and, of late, of movie criticism. Their views here are spoken with as much arrogance and self-perceived authority as their pearls of wisdom regarding Mel and his movie, with about as much weight given the success and quality of that masterpiece.
To these two bright lights we add Karen Armstrong, the ex-Catholic "runaway nun" who quit the convent and wrote a vicious book attacking convent life, and Pamela Eisenbaum, who, like Fredriksen, is a Jewish feminist and has written extensively trying to make Paul palatable to feminist viewpoints. We also hear from Elaine Pagels, who has written extensively on the Gnostic Gospels, Robert Funk, founder of the Jesus Seminar, and Marvin Meyer, who has written on the so-called Gospel of Thomas, among others.
Judging from their writings and backgrounds, nine things are painfully certain regarding the usual panel of experts and scholars - more commonly referred to as 'the usual gang of idiots' - which ABC gathers for their forays into biblical and religious thought, moral propaganda, and Christian and Catholic bashing.
First, they are usually radical, feminist, ex-religious, pro-homosexual, and/or anti-Christ and Anti-Christian. Second, they tend to downplay Christ's divinity and Scripture's validity and sacredness. Third, they clearly have personal agendas, which they push via their so-called research findings, pearls of wisdom, and self-perceived authority to yap about eternal topics with their eternal egos. Fourth, they clearly want to change the structure of Christianity and the Catholic faith into the kind of pathetic dribble it is slowly becoming. Fifth, they are usually falsely portrayed as representative of mainstream thought. Sixth, they are usually absurdly portrayed as having just had a meeting with God Almighty or even having suggested some changes to Him. Seventh, their views are usually presented as the clear path to peace, love, prosperity, salvation, and less taxes.
Eighth, they will be unlikely to ever bash Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, or any other religion other than Christianity and especially Catholicism. Ninth, they will not be invited to Mel Gibson's home anytime soon. Any scholar or expert who is not characterized by the above observations need not wait by the phone to hear from ABC regarding its next special, which will probably attack The Virgin Mary, The Rosary, or even The Blessed Sacrament with a catchy title and the next serious correspondent in line.
I have read scholar after scholar who merely twists Paul to suit the current views of this lost society. According to them, Paul spoke out against homosexuality and adultery to facilitate his sale of this new religion. These were not well-grounded beliefs based on Christ's teachings and The Bible. They were sales gimmicks designed to please his audience and present things in the most effective sales position. On the other hand, where his views can be twisted into some agenda of the day, he is called a genius and the true visionary. His letters are called both the foundation of modern Christianity and a theology-on-the-go designed for a world he thought would soon end and certainly not for the gifted and profound minds of this golden age of morality and enlightenment. We have both the ability and the authority to "interpret those words and meanings" to our unique society, we are told. All kinds of rationalizations, interpretations, assumptions, and conclusions are made based on biased, liberal agendas, and this is called profound research by gifted minds gracing our halls of indoctrination posing as education.
This ABC program is just a pathetic piece of trash on a much larger garbage can, and that is the most tragic part of this whole sad story.
It is impossible to properly communicate or describe the disgust and sadness felt upon seeing how network television and the entertainment industry portrays and twists Christianity and Catholicism. The only reason I even watch this trash is so that I may then attempt to defend and answer the blasphemy and slander against our Faith and above all our Divine Savior. It is surreal how correctly Jesus reminds us that He will always be the target of attacks, ridicule, injustice, disrespect, and lies. Even though we all know that as sinners we hurt Him everyday, there is something in our soul, mind, and heart that must respond when He is systematically attacked by agents of evil hell-bent on dragging Him to their own Golgotha where they can re-crucify Him again and again.
It is truly painful to see ants preaching pompously about The Master, daring to describe, define, and categorize His Majesty.
As in the original Passion, He is surrounded by mindless devils who think that the world revolves around their trivial speeches and pompous books. It is even more painful to see a network so obviously biased against Jesus and His Divine Majesty gather these pilgrims of poison into one torpedo boat and float them down the river with the latest attack against Our Savior. Karen Armstrong, one of ABC's experts on this program and one of those pilgrims, once stated, "Religion is like a raft. Once you get across the river, moor the raft and go on. Don't lug it with you if you don't need it anymore." After seeing ABC gather Armstrong and her colleagues of calumny for another round of Christ bashing, I just wish that all of these experts and scholars plus the bosses at ABC would just get in that raft and get lost in their sea of bias, agendas, and self-importance.
Armstrong, Eisenbaum, Fredriksen, Crossan and their ilk may think that Jesus is some raft that one can discard when we think we do not need him anymore, but it is they and their kind of "expert" that we must discard on our ark sailing toward Our Divine and Most Holy Savior!
Editor's Note: We are pleased to announce Gabriel Garnica will be contributing many articles in 2004. Heaven is once again under attack by those who would seek to ignore and overthrow God's majesty and authority. Gabriel Garnica, educator and attorney, will submit regular insights and commentaries to remind and help guide readers toward a deeper and more assertive faith. Touching on topics and issues ranging from personal faith, doctrine, education, scripture, the media, family life, morality, and values, Gabriel's notes will be music to traditional ears but unpleasant tones to those who have bought into the misguided notions so prevalent and spreading in today's Catholic world.