Tuesday, December 30, 2008

St. Theophilus was the sixth Bishop of Antioch. He became bishop in 168 AD and was an important leader in the early church. It is known, from Eusibius and other early church writers, that Bishop Theophilus wrote a very early commentary on the Gospels and a number of other works defending the faith recieved by the Church of Jesus Christ.

All of this godly bishop's writings have since been lost except for his apologetical writings to his friend Autolycus. Autolycus was a good friend, but a pagan, who looked down on his friend's faith in Jesus Christ.

In his first book to Autolycus, Theophilus says, "you call me a Christian, as if this were a damning name to bear, I, for my part, avow that I am a Christian, and bear this name beloved of God, hoping to be serviceable to God."

I find this quote interesting, I also find it to be very modern. Today, as for as the secular elite are concerned, one of the most embarrassing names that you can take is that of Christian. Unless, of course you are a "christian" who denies almost every tenant of the traditional faith of the Christian Church. A good "christian," according to secularists, is one who is a near socialist, approves abortion, gay marriage, and other loves of secular, post-Christian culture.

Conservative Christians, be they Roman Catholic, Orthodox, or Protestant, are anathema in to our culture's secular elite, as were Christians like Bishop Theophilus of Antioch in the second century Roman Empire. We have come full circle; it is once again, in the eyes of a large segment of modern American culture, and the Biblical faith of Christians is something to be scorned and hated.

According to our cultural elite, it is evil, bigoted, and a matter of hate for a Christian to believe that homosexuality is a sin or for a Christian to oppose gay marriage. In the mind those same elites the title Christian is "a damning name to bear."

The Christian faith was once the cultural norm here and in Europe. Those days are long gone. Today, our land has no cultural norm, In some places in our country, the old Christian norms still have a toe hold on the culture, in other areas those old norms are viewed as stupid bigotry and are despised.

At some point we may find ourselves caught up in a French Revolution type blood bath. I don't think such a thing can happen today, but we are moving in libertine direction and that is what is needed to bring about the conditions that allowed the French Revolution.

No matter, the God of Scripture is the Lord of history and we can trust in Him.

Coram Deo,

1 comment:

James H said...

Great post. I am catching up on my reading and I forgot about this Church Father