Job in the Dock

bookofjobby Glenn Fairman   12/11/16
To every life comes a time of sackcloth and ashes, for who has fully escaped those catastrophes that send their torments into our deepest chambers of being? And when life’s walking-wounded level their white hot accusations against the Living God for His silent dereliction of duty, how often we are cut to the quick because what passes as our theology flees before an accuser’s inconsolable tears. Indeed, for every shattered, grieving soul, there was once a vibrant personality that flowered only to wither in a hellish time of boils, cancers, and duress.  Notwithstanding, it is here in our sufferings that the white noise of the planet dissipates under the roar of our own groaning. It is here that the dialogue that contends with that haunting “why” can fully begin.

The Book of Job is about many things, but above all it exists as an open-ended vivisection of why good people suffer. It is as poignant now as when it was composed in a time opaque to the appeals of modernity.job Its power is relevant to us because our natures have not changed one iota.  In it, Job, the righteous, has been leveled as the helpless pawn in the cruelest of wagers.  As he scrapes the crust from his pus-covered arms, his integrity is tried by three “friends” who represent the philosophic sophistry of the “religious.”  If we were to distill it all down, their indictment would be this: In this world, the righteous are rewarded and the wicked are trampled underfoot.  In this terrestrial way station that sets the steps of humanity towards their respective trajectories of Heaven or Hell, the ways of the just are blessed and a man’s sin will pay him out while he yet breathes. Thus, Job’s mighty fall is proof of some grievous iniquity, and he must come clean if he would stay this mountain of judgment.

Nevertheless, for all their impassioned rhetoric, the three are wrong. It doesn’t take even a cursory intellect long to realize that the sun shines on both the good and the wicked for a time; and for thetenboomgirls upright, a life wracked with poverty or sickness can be a veritable byword. Conversely, how often the brazen flaunt their beauty and wealth and spit their contempt at the humbled. Indeed, the same God that permitted Betsie ten Boom, an angel with congenital pernicious anemia, to assume a martyr’s death in Ravensbrück, also allowed the anti-Semitic Jew George Soros a free hand in collaborating with the Nazi SS and laying waste his brethren.  To the impassive heart, it would seem that Betsie’s reward for loving her persecutors and Soros’ Midas fortune would call into question the justice of God. For Betsie, who has slept these long 70 years, the earthly book slams shut; while Soros revels in his injustice to this very day.  If evil dances into its grave, then virtue would seem to be a fool’s errand.

In short, the Ancient of Days can be whittled down to little more than a Cosmic Butler – if we are spiritual enough to invoke the appropriate incantation. These gnostic variations of Christianity would have us believe that the world is more Carnival cruise liner than a refinery of souls, while the default state of the pilgrim is one of largely unwavering joy, health, and abundance.

Even now, the same rancid theology of Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar sickens the church of Jesus Christ. From the bowels of the Prosperity Gospel, we are told that the children of so rich a King were never destined to be earthly paupers. From the pulpits of Joel Osteen and Creflo Dollar we are sold the merchandizing of the Cross: where the strong positive confession and the planting of our precious seed corn will reap the hundred-fold bounty in the here and now. Moreover, the disciples of Mary Baker Eddy, and those who propose that all sickness is an illusion that can be corrected by prayer alone, would lead us down that rabbit-hole that usurps the sovereign rights from our Creator.  In short, the Ancient of Days can be whittled down to little more than a Cosmic Butler – if we are spiritual enough to invoke the appropriate incantation. These gnostic variations of Christianity would have us believe that the world is more Carnival cruise liner than a refinery of souls, while the default state of the pilgrim is one of largely unwavering joy, health, and abundance. Should we be surprised that this caricature of the Cross intersects with “nuts and bolts” Christianity at no common point?

If this “merchandizing gospel” were true, one would be a fool not to commit his soul to Jesus – since on the scales of profit and loss, this quality of mercenary devotion makes good business sense. To these well-coiffed moneychangers, all those who suffer in health or privation do so only from a deficit of the proper faithful attitude. Had Peter only known what is taught at the Lakewood Church, or had Paul only filtered his message through the positivity of a Tony Robbins seminar, then perhaps the whole history of Christianity would have turned out quite differently.

Listen: As I write these words, there is a woman lying in the next room exhausted in her bed of pain from a six-year battle with endometrial cancer, and to my eyes she is without guile. She is fighting the good fight and has always extended herself into the needs of others. We, and a host of others too numerous to even name, have offered supplications that would crowd the coffers of Heaven. Was this cancer a judgment brought about by some secret unforgiven sin? Are those reservoirs of mercy encompassing that Great Throne destined only for others, or has she not sweated out the necessary amount of sincerity for The Most High to consider her worthy? Or, are we praying to a leaden sky for a healing that will never arrive? If God cares, then where is He? If He loves us with an intensity that all other loves melt away before, then why must the righteous who abide in Him drown alone in a sea of stop-motion affliction?

You will please forgive me if I meander back and forth in this conversation that occupies my days and nights. Confronted with the voices of men who are not there, I am assailed with this dialogue that visits me in my moments of greatest weakness. Intellectually and theologically, I make a whip of cords and drive away the heretics and their silken accusations. But as amphibious creatures, our emotions are so easily vexed by the duality that Christians must continually wrestle with – even under the canopy of sleep. I can be as tough as leather in one moment, and in the next instant the sight of my beloved’s shaking hands or the gurgle in her speech flings me back into that Slough of Despond.

Job too, if you will remember, undulates in his misery at the protests of his faithless companions. Since he is convinced that he has retained his integrity, he will not back down or “curse God and die” – although he is so overwhelmed by his condition that life has become an object of loathing he would gladly escape. Yet, throughout the span of his defense his core belief periodically returns – as his spirit shakes itself free and rises above the waves of his circumstance. He proclaims:

For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God; whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me. -Job 19:25-27.

While Job’s words eventually silence the three, in the end he stands dumbstruck before the Voice from the Whirlwind – as will we all. And faced with the full brunt of our wretchedness as the Great Book is opened, how can we stand without an advocate? Indeed, “Surely as sparks fly up, mankind was born for trouble,” and no snippet of wisdom rings so true in describing our terminal diagnosis. In truth, how much Hell has man raised? What havoc has he lifted up from the turmoil of his inner parts? Thou hypocrite! How often we pluck the mote from a brother’s eye while laughing off the beam in our own.  Having turned our face from the plight of our suffering neighbor while marinating in our own tepid melodrama like a leper obsessing over his hangnail, how little we see from the stunted vantage point of our own diseased natural perception.  We, who have little more to show for this catalogue of insolence than our filthy hands, must all bear some measure of guilt for how this calamity has played out.  And if we deny the charge, we are liars. Nevertheless, although we deserve the gallows, it turns out that things are not quite so cut and dried.

Having turned our face from the plight of our suffering neighbor while marinating in our own tepid melodrama like a leper obsessing over his hangnail, how little we see from the stunted vantage point of our own diseased natural perception.  We, who have little more to show for this catalogue of insolence than our filthy hands, must all bear some measure of guilt for how this calamity has played out.

In the final accounting, it is Job and mankind, and not God, that must occupy the dock. And if the Potter smiled lovingly as His handiwork of clotted dust assailed His justice for 34 chapters, it was only because, in the fullness of time, He would Himself submit to those gallows of His own volition. God Himself would become an earthen vessel that was destined to be crushed beyond remedy – yet made new in order to light the way back home. It is a tale almost too beautiful to believe. One where: the wooden child becomes real, an old man is restored with a double portion, and my beloved will be healed as she one day basks in the ineffable grace of the Master Potter. Who could have guessed that the same Hand that bound the sweet influences of the Pleiades and loosened the bands of Orion would, in its proper season, stretch that hand tautly over a beam of wood and bear the full consequences of our verdict? Who could have known that the Voice from the Whirlwind and the bloodied man crying out “It is finished” would be one and the same?

Glenn Fairman returns from the wilderness and writes from Highland, Ca.
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52 Responses to Job in the Dock

  1. Anniel says:


    Through our tears both Bear and I say “Thank You.”

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    I’ve had a lot of very unpleasant times in life, but certainly none there were anywhere near 24/7 miserable. Even in recent weeks, when I frequently hope not to wake up the next day, such thoughts are scattered and fleeting, coming at especially bad (or often just irritating) moments. I never curse God, though I do wonder at times why he seems to hate me so much. (It’s really not that bad, but unfortunately my emotions tend to be very volatile — one reason I so appreciate the total rationality of Spock.)

    Not yet having to live in a nursing home, I have no experience with anyone whose life is a constant misery. Certainly I know many people with a lot of pain in their lives — just about everyone I know is in the vicinity of my age, and until this year they were all arguably in worse health (which tempered my natural self-pity). But somehow we all manage to get by every day. I hope you can continue to manage that much.

  3. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Continued prayers, best wishes, and sweet condolences for you and your beloved wife. It is brave and kind of you to impart lessons to us all from your most painful experience, Glenn.

    • Glenn Fairman says:

      If I did not have such an avenue to work this thing through,I would have surely despaired. As I read it after publication this afternoon, it seemed as if another had written it — and I saw things from a new perspective. I thank God for giving me this, and if it speaks to others, so much the better.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        Long ago, I read an article (by Charley Reese, I think) in which the columnist noted that if he didn’t have something like that with which to express himself, there’s no telling how he would have ended up. The ability to articulate our concerns makes it much less likely that we will explode. (“I was angry with my friend. I told my wrath, my wrath did end. I was angry with my foe. I told it not, my wrath did grow.”) It seems reasonable that even reading, especially those with whom one communicates, works similarly. (“I have my books and my poetry to protect me.”)

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Yes, I think you’ve nailed it very well, Timothy. But (and I’m sure you’d agree), this is no mere run-of-the-mill rant from Glenn.

          I was reading a few articles over at FirstThings the other day. There’s an article by a guy there which can be summarized as, “Okay…I ‘get’ Pope Francis now. I was wrong before.”

          Glenn’s article is full of pain and heartache. But at the same time, have you read anywhere else lately a better retelling of the Christian worldview, a worldview being actively distorted and besmirched at the highest levels?

          Today’s signal-to-noise ratio is very low. There is much more noise than signal. The signal is often drowned out completely. Consider that the world’s largest Christian denomination is led by a fake, in not an intentional subversive.

          I don’t just grieve for Glenn and his beloved wife. I celebrate in the sense that through this pain comes clarity, a commodity in very short supply these days.

      • Glenn, I just read your Job in the dock essay on American Thinker and was deeply moved and strengthened by it. Thank you. I am going through a dark valley with a friend now, and having reminders from this treasure trove of comfort from the Old Testament really corrected my vision to see the hand of God working in this situation. You are a gifted writer, and I am delighted to find you and read more of your work. May the God of all comforts comfort you in the affliction you are living through with your wife. God have mercy on both of you. Amen.

  4. Tom Riehl Tom Riehl says:

    God bless you, Glenn, and thank you for sharing your sorrow is such an effervescent fashion. HE abides.

  5. Rosalys says:

    Glenn, my heart aches to read of the pain your family is having to endure at this time. So beautifully written, if it is cathartic for you, it is also a gift to others. Thank you, and know that I, along with many here, are sending our prayers heavenward to One who grieves along with you.

  6. David says:

    Beautifully done.
    Loved the line – “These gnostic variations of Christianity would have us believe that the world is more Carnival cruise liner than a refinery of souls…”
    Indeed, the earth was created to train the faithful, all else is dross.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      It isn’t written from the Christian perspective (though others of his work have been; one novel turns out to be the story of the Apocalypse from the point of view of those not quite good enough for the Rapture, and thus left behind on Earth), but in Dean Koontz’s Odd Thomas series (especially the final book) the idea is presented that Earth is boot camp for the next phase (which would involve some sort of quest or quest. Eventually those who make it through both phases would make it to Heaven.

  7. David says:

    Further, your condensed prose is wonderfully evocative.
    Though I have spent most of my life crashing against the wall of God’s commandments, at times I see with sudden clarity the love that made them necessary and the grace the heals me in spite of my inadequate ability to live them fully.
    Write on Glenn, please…write on!

  8. Fenevadka says:

    Glenn, my mother, Anniel, asked me to read this article, which she found very inspiring. I very much liked it as well. I appreciated your indictment of the current wave of prosperity theology, something I find to have a very pernicious effect on discourse about faith and one that I think has the perverse effect of turning many people against religion because it tries to involve God in some sort of celestial contract economy that binds His will to ours and leads to the (justified) criticism that religion (at least in its guise) is a get-rich-quick scheme.

    I do have one nit to pick though, and that is with your characterization of George Soros. I find plenty of what Soros has done reprehensible, but in your argument about his conduct in World War II you have picked up on demonstrable falsehoods about him. This may circulate as fact in conservative circles, but citing them only weakens arguments that others should hear.

    I actually struggled to find what possible instance could lead one to accuse a young boy (Soros was all of 14 at the end of the War) of having “a free hand in collaborating with the Nazi SS and laying waste his brethren.” This certainly sounds like an active participant if not a mastermind who eagerly plotted evil. First off, Soros himself did describe his early home life as anti-Semitic, so I see your characterization there as having a basis, although given his experience in the War it is not entirely clear if it describes Soros’ own attitudes. But for the rest, I did some research, and I believe what you were referring to is the following:

    When Soros was 13 years old (in 1944) he – along with many other boys – was tasked by the Judenrat (Jewish council) with delivering papers to a list of Jewish men. These men were Jewish lawyers targeted for deportation and the papers were the orders for that action. By all accounts – except those trying rather desperately to find something to condemn Soros for – the boys were not aware of the contents of the papers and had they resisted doing their job they would themselves have become targets of Nazi attention. Soros says he showed the list to his father, who realized what it meant and asked him instead to warn the men on his list that they were targeted for deportation. If he actually warned them, that hardly sounds like he was trying to “[lay] waste to his brethren.” (I suppose one could question Soros’ account of his father’s response and his subsequent action in warning the men, but the burden of proof would be on the person doing so.) In any event, even under the worst assumption about this event, it does not seem that Soros is any worse than countless other Jews who avoided the Nazis by hiding their identity.

    *Should* he and other boys have assisted the Judenrat in distributing deportation papers? It is perhaps easy sitting at a remove of many years and with no skin in the game to say he should have resisted more actively, but that is something I would not expect of any young man in a similar situation, for he was placed in an impossible situation. To characterize that as you have done as “a free hand in collaborating” goes far beyond what can reasonably be said of what he did.

    Soros’ destruction (as an adult) of the value of British pensions was a reprehensible act that he should rightly be condemned for and that would have more than amply illustrated your point, but to repeat demonstrably false calumny (that comes very close to Godwinning your argument) to make a rhetorical point only cheapens that point. I am no apologist for Soros, but I do think this article would have benefited by leaving out what amounts to a cheap shot. Were it true – and I have no doubt that you had heard it from sources you believed to be reliable – it would serve your purpose nicely. But on a conservative blog, it is hard to set aside the political animus against Soros, and so skeptical readers who know something about Soros and come to this article may never get to your truly profound points because you indulged in reputation trashing.

    I mentioned this to my mother and she said it was a “minor” point. I will grant her that because your argument does not rest on this case, but it is a false note in an otherwise thoughtful and inspiring article on suffering and theodicy. You have many points here that I consider very important ones and other than that one thing, I would gladly endorse this article.

    (And please do not blame my mother in any fashion for this comment. She no doubt disagrees with me posting it.)

    • Anniel says:

      Dear Fenevad:

      I still believe the essence of free speech is free thought, even for my children. Does that shock you?

      I do know Soro’s history, so to me the point Glenn made truly was minor in the article.

      I do think today that Soro’s hiring of protestors to pretend to be Trumpsters as hooligans in riots should cause him to be charged under RICO statutes since he bussed them over state lines, thus indulging in illegal Interstate Commerce. But one day he will face a judge who understands him thoroughly. As will we all.

      BTW, The bagpipe looks good.

    • Fenevadka says:

      That’s part of why I put this comment up: There are a lot of truly legitimate points about Soros that could be made. I think Glenn erred in picking a bad-sounding one (we all love a good argumentum ad Hitlerum) that happens to be false, because it leads to questions about other things. It’s especially important in political discourse to be overly generous to the other side and hold one’s own side to a higher standard.

      And with regard to the argumentum ad Hitlerum, we need to be careful because we *know* how often that same tactic is used against conservative thought. (How many times have you seen the “You know who else was in favor of strong borders?” sort of argument?)

      I know that I’m a bit unfair to Glenn here, because his overall argument is absolutely *not* this sort of argument. But these sorts of things are what people often latch on to discredit an overall argument by focusing on the parts over the whole.

      [OK, it isn’t even really an ad Hitlerum in this context because there is no point being compared to Nazis, just an individual, but I’ll leave my phrasing anyway because I do think that it’s pretty close to one in terms of how Soros is treated, and it does weaken the argument if someone comes along, calls foul on the description of Soros and then goes away unconvinced that Glenn has demonstrated that the wicked sometimes prosper and there is no connection between earthly outcome and the morality of an individual. You’d think it’s an obvious point, but not always…]

      Incidentally, I was recently looking for a primary care physician and someone recommended a Dr. Spaetti to me as a really good doctor. My wife, Mrs. Fenevadka, found his blog and this article:

      This article convinced me to stay away from this doctor, for reasons very similar to what Glenn discusses. How could I trust a doctor who is secretly convinced that illness is punishment for sin and that I should suffer in order to find repentance? (And I wonder if he would be consistent enough that he would refuse pain medication for himself in the event that he were injured.)

      • Timothy Lane says:

        One can note, in response to the “Hitler also believed that”, the point made in The Real Majority 46 years ago (when “Hitler was also big on law and order” was all the rage with liberals): One can favor making the trains run on time without backing Mussolini. In addition, one can point out that Hitler was a vegetarian with strong (for his day) environmentalist credentials (anyone who doubts this can read Robert Proctor’s The Nazi War Against Cancer).

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      I mentioned this to my mother and she said it was a “minor” point.

      Your thinking and writing skills are far, far, above average. And you have a steady temperament. Very rare to find online.

      I think if what you say is substantially true about the 14-year-old Soros, it’s worth an addendum. But I agree with Anniel that it’s a minor point. Soros is deeply steeped in evil, and I seriously doubt Glenn would quibble about the truth of the 14-year-old Soros if your version is correct. But as a poster child for what is so wrong about many people in power, Soros’ poster remains plastered firmly to the concrete wall-of-shame.

      • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

        I think if what you say is substantially true about the 14-year-old Soros, it’s worth an addendum

        The following link is to a piece by an author who doesn’t cut Soros as much slack as Fenevaka.

        If Soros were a person of average intelligence, I would be inclined to agree with Fenevaka’s position more completely. But Soros is very smart and had to be fully aware of what he was involved in. This being the case, did he try to avoid being part of it?

        In his discussion on the subject, Soros appears to approach it as if he was not really a participant, like he was viewing things from the outside. I don’t know if that is because he is a sociopath, was damaged by the experience or there is some other underlying reason. It is, however, very odd. His remark to the effect that “if I didn’t do it, someone else would” is the same immoral case made by many who try to make an excuse for their sins. It is not very convincing.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Thanks for the further info, Mr. Kung. No one at this site (that I know of) is not interesting in getting things factually correct. And I don’t pretend to be an expert on the facts in this case.

          But we shouldn’t raise whole forests and miss that the tree Glenn was planting was one of “How can there be a good and just God when very bad stuff happens and bad people seem to get away with it?”

          Glenn might have used the example of Godzilla stomping on Tokyo and his overall point would have been just as valid. If we are to quibble. I think Fenevadka over-emphasized a small point. A simple “To the best of my knowledge, the Soros story about his escapades as a 14-year-old have been mischaracterized. Be that as it may, we do indeed struggle with the seeming dichotomy of a just god and people who are like Soros as portrayed in Glenn’s article.”

          I think the avalanche of words in defense of Soros perhaps stems from some other impulse. If Glenn had used a comma where a semi-colon was required, I still would have said, “Hallelujah, Glenn, for articulating so well what is in the hearts of most people of good will and deep consideration.”

        • Timothy Lane says:

          Soros undoubtedly knew what was happening to Jews in Hungary (and elsewhere). Situations like that (and even more so the camps themselves) encouraged the ethic of the Donner Party. This very likely marked him and contributed to his current sociopathic self (if nothing else, it provided a lesson in survival of the least ethical).

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            This very likely marked him and contributed to his current sociopathic self (if nothing else, it provided a lesson in survival of the least ethical).

            That is one of the most brilliant things said of late at StubbonThings. Let’s set aside George “The Devil” Soros in particular, at the moment. You’ve hit upon a core human truth (that very likely goes a long way to explaining the twisted Soros). The “lifeboat” scenario is well-known. And let me drop of name here gratuitously. A friend of mine is friend’s of a guy who wrote a song (jump to about 2:50) about that. More than a few Jews were thrown out of the lifeboat in order to save oneself.

            It’s interesting that the people we consider the greatest and the most compassionate are those who risk or give their lives for innocents. It is this aspect that makes Jesus on the Cross at least plausible in terms of how a compassionate Creator might act.

            It should also be noted by the stupid and the corrupt that entities such as “Black Lives Matter” is, for all intents and purposes, throwing whole segments of society out of the lifeboat in order to benefit the corrupt. Both honest law enforcement is thrown out of the boat as well as all the innocent black people living in neighborhoods where thugs are considered “social justice warriors” by the fawning media which revels in drilling holes in the boat.

            The purest and best human outrage is (or ought to be) reserved for those who have benefited and thrived through ruthlessness, thus part of my inherent and ongoing reluctance toward Trump. Another yuge aspect of human behavior, which also likely goes to explaining Soros’ ongoing evil, is that when humans commit evil, it is the relatively rare and humble penitent man who can face up to error. The temptation (especially those already twisted with corruption) is to double-down on evil, if only to normalize their evil to themselves. And no doubt much of this evil is the lashing out at all the normal, decent, and good people who, by their very presence, provide a harsh reflective mirror to the sinner and therefore must be ground into the muck for making one (such as Soros) feel like such a wretch.

            The rallying point of evil continues to be atheism, so there’s no wonder Soros is an atheist.

        • Fenevadka says:

          Nonetheless, the text makes it sound as if Soros were some sort of ringleader, when he was – even in the most damning reasonable interpretation – a *very* small fish who was not palling around with the SS.

          I don’t have an impulse to defend Soros (no ulterior motive, believe me), but rather a desire to try to be scrupulously fair to those I oppose and hold my own side to a higher standard. Again, my worry is that by jumping to the absolute worst possible characterization of a bête noire of conservatism, things like that make it far too easy to dismiss other points. We have all seen ideological opponents seize on a truly minor point to discredit the whole, so we have to be vigilant lest we fall into the trap of providing them with the ammunition.

          I put the characterization of Soros as some sort of Nazi mastermind gleefully persecuting Jews in the same bucket I do liberal attacks on Thomas Friedman because the Chicago School advocated for Pinochet’s military dictatorship to open up its economy as proof that Friedman was some sort of apologist for dictators.

          • Timothy Lane says:

            I think you mean the great Milton Friedman, not Thomas.

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            Well, you’ll find little sympathy for Soros here. If his past sins are less than reported, his later ones are doozies. And it is certainly a legitimate point to avoid the error of slander by connecting dot A to dot B to dot C to dot D, etc., and then declaring that because I like molasses, I must be sympathetic with slave traders. But Soros is a poor poster child for innocence in this regard. If he, as a whipping post at 14, is misplaced in time (and I’m not convinced that he is), then plant that post a little further on in his life.

          • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

            the text makes it sound as if Soros were some sort of ringleader

            I did not read it that way.

            The lowest private in an Einsatzgruppe, was no ringleader, but he certainly laid waste to those he murdered. The common Mongol horseman, under Genghis Khan and his heirs, was no ringleader, but he helped lay waste across most of Asia and much of Eastern Europe.

            Like you, I am also one who is concerned with the correctness of conservative writing, and agree that flagrant mistakes or mis-statements can weaken the strength of our arguments. But in this case, I have to agree with Annie, this was a minor point, because, Soros is an anti-Semetic Jew, who did cooperate with the Nazi SS to lay waste to his “brethren.”

            Of course, considering he is an anti-Semetic Jew, the question arises if those he laid waste to were truly his brethren. If not, he was simply a Nazi collaborator who went after Jews.

            One can have sympathy with a boy put into such a position. But it is more difficult to have sympathy with a man who expresses himself, about his actions during this period, the way Soros does.

            • Lucia says:

              I could sympathize with a 13 year old Soros participating with other Hitler youth doing whatever, because conformity and approval are the driving forces behind youthful behavior. But Soros stated in an interview a few years ago that he is still proud of his participation in the Hitler youth and has no regrets about what he did.

              • Timothy Lane says:

                One must remember that he would have little choice about joining (though I doubt it would have been the Hitler Youth in Hungary). This came up with Pope Benedict, who was attacked by liberals for having been a (reluctant) member. But how one regards it later is another matter.

              • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

                One interesting way of looking at this is seeing Jews such as Soros in open rebellion against God. Imagine that the Jews really were the conduit for the evolution of the moral and righteous man in a world where man was, and substantially still is, but a dumb, brutal, and vulgar animal. Imagine, on the other hand, that Islam is the religion inspired by the devil. Imagine that The Big Stories are true, that there is a fight between good and evil.

                Much of what we see today then makes some overall sense.

                If the Bible is just a “social construct,” then Christians (or anyone else…such as myself) dare not take these stories as literally true. (And I’m talking about the ones meant to be true literally, not the many allegorical ones where the error is to try to take them literally true.) The scandal! The embarrassment! What Troglodytes we would appear to be, especially to modern Christians and Jews. We should perhaps just simply adopt a shit-eating grin, spout some Bible verses once in a while, and “tsk tsk” at all the bad behavior of others but not dare to *really* believe this stuff.

                But what if? As we sit here trying to parse the behavior of Soros and others as mere “Leftists,” what if something much more fundamental drives his destructive behavior?

                Conversely, the authentic, god-fearing Jews ought to be protected at all costs, including the ones in Jerusalem. Instead of many Christians’ arrogant view that Christianity supplanted Judaism, what if they understood that you can’t build the second floor without the ground floor?

                I don’t necessarily believe the grand good-vs-evil story. But what if?

              • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

                what if they understood that you can’t build the second floor without the ground floor?

                Maybe they are Marcionians.

    • Rosalys says:

      This isn’t a falsehood. Some time ago, I watched an interview with Soros on television (60 Minutes?) When asked, he expressed no remorse for his actions, and in fact said, “It was fun!” I have seen another interview posted on YouTube, I believe a more recent one, in which he seems a little less enthusiastic about his WWII activities, but still no remorse. This is not rumor or hearsay. I watched it and I heard it. It is entirely reasonable to conclude that the man realizes that his earlier enthusiasm doesn’t play well, and is adjusting his narrative accordingly.

  9. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    Had Peter only known what is taught at the Lakewood Church, or had Paul only filtered his message through the positivity of a Tony Robbins seminar, then perhaps the whole history of Christianity would have turned out quite differently.

    Peter and Paul had their Joel Osteens and worse. They were called the Sadducees. The sect may have died out, but the inclination remains.

    The Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife, but the great point about Christianity is once one believes, one is not only saved, but impelled to try to do what is right.

    • Anniel says:

      I listened to a film where Soros was questioned about who he really is. He freely admitted his participation in bringing in and paying the mobs against Trump at rallies. But, as I recall, he also said he is an atheist so what difference does it make? There is no God, so each man for himself. That’s the impression that stays with me.

      As my one very liberal friend says, “Each person is entitled to their own Truth.” In her world even facts are not truth, and I guess that’s Soro’s philosophy, too.

      Pontius Pilate asked Jesus about truth, then washed his hands of it.

      • Fenevadka says:

        It is interesting right now that there is considerable hand-wringing about a “post-truth era” on the left, because they feel that Trump had no notion of truth. If that is so, I can only say, “welcome to the club; your side has consistently denied basic economic truth in favor of your social program.” The problem is that people who deny the idea of truth usually still believe that they have got it right and everyone who disagrees with them is a moron, but then use the notion of radical relativity to escape accountability for their beliefs.

        When I was a graduate student we read _The Seven Visions of Bull Lodge_. Without going into it, let’s just say that Bull Lodge, were he alive today, would be in an insane asylum. The professor asked if we were OK with his experience and visions and the students, all good relativists, nodded their heads. He looked at us like we were daft. He said if we were OK with it, we weren’t thinking about it. Some of the students gave their milquetoast responses about not being able to judge another culture.

        Finally I said “let’s make this real: Imagine if Bull Lodge showed up at your house to take your daughter on a date. Would you be OK with him then? If not, you aren’t really serious about engaging with him at all, and relativism means you don’t actually have to consider the implications of his visions and actions.”

        The professor liked this answer, but several other students got really mad at me because I’d dared question their fundamental principle that all culture is good and cannot be questioned. Much later a few other students thanked me for saying what they were thinking but did not feel they could openly state given the multicultural consensus in my field of study.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        One way to explore what they mean is to ask about Trump’s degree of truthfulness. Almost certainly they won’t think he’s entitled to his truth. What they really mean is that they, and those identity-groups they consider protected, can’t be questioned; but anyone else (which basically means any potential political opponent) is fair game.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        As my one very liberal friend says, “Each person is entitled to their own Truth.” In her world even facts are not truth, and I guess that’s Soro’s philosophy, too.

        It is sometimes painful to be corrected, thus I try to inoculate myself by surrounding myself not with yes-men but with (hopefully) the smartest and wisest people in the room. I have no problem saying, “Glenn, you’re right” or “Mr. Kung, you ignorant slut, I guess I was wrong in my logic.”

        And the point of that is to say that all this “Each person is entitled to their own Truth” nonsense is, at least in part, a license to be stupid. And this could be considered the very definition of what it is to be one of those college-bred Precious Little Snowflakes®. It sounds all warm and fuzzy and tolerant and respectful to say “Each person is entitled to [his] own truth.” But that actually functions as “Each person is entitled to say and believe really stupid things without consequence, insult, or opposition.” Anyone ever had a conversation with a liberal where even the very mildest of opposition to “their truth” was met with a super-huff and a puff? I have. Often.

        Relativism, like Darwinism, is meant to be the universal acid that eats through all previous truths. This faux-truth directive plays out politically, socially, and psychologically. And once the lens of the microscope is marred and twisted, it can be difficult to even describe what is going on. Thus, I think, the largest danger of the faux-truth directive is the “baffle them with bullshit” phenomenon. We become so used to lies, half-lies, semi-lies, and total lies, we don’t know which way is up, and soon no longer care. And, again, even though it’s possible he’ll do good things as president, this describes Trump to a tee.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          One basic aspect of freedom is the right to be wrong. Orwell came close to it in his 2 + 2 = 4 even if the Party says it’s really 5. The point is the same either way: no human authority has the legitimate right to decide what is right or wrong. Where liberals go wrong is that they don’t (no matter what they say) generalize this right to be wrong, and also choose not to understand that while they can’t be legally punished for being wrong, that still doesn’t mean they’re really right.

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            At heart, “political correctness” means “Ignore reality because ‘the cause’ is more important than truth.”

            There is, as with most things regarding the Left, an element of truth to this. The “cause” of parents in raising their children is (hopefully) to produce a good, productive, happy, healthy, and independent child, therefore sometimes little white lies serve the cause. It serves nothing but human brutality to tell little 3-year-old Johnny that his Crayon drawing of a horse is terrible, therefore he should give it up.

            And that brings us to what I think is the essence of political correctness. It is feminism combined with eternal Kindergartenism. We are all precious little snowflakes whom Mother must nourish and take care of as if we were eternal three-year-olds who could never handle such things as truth. And this becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy for I do not believe — including many conservatives — that very many people have enough nuance left (aka “wisdom”) to parse and make sound judgments about all the little quisling details that life throws at us. Much easier to just let others do our thinking and mouth the words “climate change.”

            Granted, there have been too-masculine cultures and states such as Prussia or Sparta. One excess does not excuse the other but simply points out the problem with excesses.

          • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

            no human authority has the legitimate right to decide what is right or wrong

            Perhaps it is possible for everyone to have their own truth, at least theoretically. But I do not believe any society has long lasted which doesn’t have a basic set of truths. In fact, it is around such “truths” which groups form. In addition to sprouting from physical reality, these truths also grow out of language and history.

            There will always be variance from such truths but the course of a society flows along the red line of such truths until a new truth arises.

            • Timothy Lane says:

              What I mean is that no one can set up a legally enforced standard. If the Behemoth says 2+ 2 = 5, you are free to say 2+ 2 = 4 — but also vice versa. But you still face the practical consequences if you act on the basis of wrong beliefs.

  10. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    I hadn’t heard of Marcionism, Mr. Kung:

    Marcion believed Jesus was the savior sent by God, and Paul the Apostle was his chief apostle, but he rejected the Hebrew Bible and the God of Israel. Marcionists believed that the wrathful Hebrew God was a separate and lower entity than the all-forgiving God of the New Testament.

    That’s an interesting and somewhat understandable viewpoint, given human proclivities for tinkering to suit one’s fancy and fad. One can thus understand the New Marconians who have adopted Kumbaya Theology whereby the idea of “Go and sin no more” has been replaced by “Do the best you can…I’m sure you tried hard enough.” In fact, I read an article recently whereby this is inherent to apparently the last directive from the fraudulent Pope Francis. But it is a emerging aspect of theology whereby “I’m okay/you’re okay” replaces “right and wrong.”

    A Christian (or Jew, for that matter) would agree that the Old Testament is full of prophesies about a coming Messiah. These two groups simply disagree about who that is. But there is likely little disagreement that the Old/New Testament still presents a God who offers both a carrot (love one another) and a stick (many references by Jesus to Hell). But in today’s Kumbaya Theology, feelgoodism replaces careful discernment and wisdom. The vapidly simple replaces the complex and rich. “Nice” replaces good.

    • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

      One can thus understand the New Marconians who have adopted Kumbaya Theology whereby the idea of “Go and sin no more” has been replaced by “Do the best you can…I’m sure you tried hard enough.” In fact, I read an article recently whereby this is inherent to apparently the last directive from the fraudulent Pope Francis. But it is a emerging aspect of theology whereby “I’m okay/you’re okay” replaces “right and wrong.”

      I was re-reading some Daniel Boorstin last night and came across the following sentence.

      “New England Puritans of our colonial age could never be disillusioned, simply because they were never illusioned. Their concept of Original Sin made them surprised and grateful that corrupt man could accomplish anything. Similarly, a sense of history can rescue us, too, from extravagant optimism and disappointments…”

      Our Puritan ancestors knew humanity and it would do everyone a bit of good to learn from then.

      I agree with Boorstin completely as regards the advantages of knowing history.

      • Glenn Fairman says:

        When the bar is raised, even a fallen humanity perceives that there is honor in rising above it.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        The important thing is not simply knowing history, but learning from it. But you have to know it first.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        Is that Boorstin from The Americans: The Colonial Experience?

        I would not have liked to have been a Puritan. Their history sounds much too cold, too hard, and I don’t know that I could work up a good hate against the Quakers.

        It is very difficult to put oneself in their shoes. But consider those who drink or drug themselves to death (or into a living oblivion) while surrounded in plenty. We should take the nostalgic tint off our glasses, for they were not building Utopia. But is is very possible that at least some achieved a sense of peaceful, productive, and holy purpose in life that all the Cheetos and iPhones can never match. We probably should envy the Puritans in some things.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          Yes, it would be that Boorstin, later Librarian of Congress. He added 2 more volumes of The Americans later.

        • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

          In addition to “The Americans”, he also wrote, “The Creators” and “The Discoverers”, which are even better. I am now re-reading a collection of his essays titled, “Cleopatra’s Nose” and another one titled, “The Daniel J. Boorstin Reader.”

          I think I have one or two other books by him, but I would have to dig through too many boxes to check.

          As to the Puritans, I don’t think Boorstin was being nostalgic about them. I believe he was making a statement that they were not Utopians because they understood humanity.

          I have a similar philosophy in that I often say, “Expect the worst and should it happen, you will not be disappointed. If, on the other hand, anything better happens you will be happy.”

          • Timothy Lane says:

            I don’t have Cleopatra’s Nose, but I’ve read the others. It’s been a long while, though, and I’m not sure where my Boorstin books are.

  11. James Vilardi says:

    Job’s suffering was individual. He lost everything, wealth, health, and family. No one shared in his suffering.
    My mom suffered from dimentia, and then severe alzheimers for a total of 12 yrs. Love does not abandon, and therefore we suffer along with our loved ones. Mom was not in a state of mind that she could pray, so we would pray for her.
    On the morning I received the call that mom passed away I prayed that she would go to Jesus as a child.
    I received, later that day, a message from a prophetic women in my church. She said she had a vision of a women standing in front of Jesus with His arms outstretched.
    Do you think my prayer was answered ? I know it was, and with tears running down my face my heart leaped with joy.

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