God the Original Fascist
Part 4e: Holy Wars—Manifest Destiny In A Biblical Setting
Revolution #023, November 20, 2005, posted at revcom.us
The Bible presents a story in which the most ruthless and savage consequences await any peoples deemed to be inferior—a category which the Bible in turn would have us believe includes all those who are not followers of the God mentioned in the Bible. In addition, these same sorts of consequences are also said to await all those who do not follow absolutely and rigidly all of God's laws and commandments. And when we consider that God's commandments include things such as the sanctioning of slavery; tremendous and brutal oppression and repression of women; death to homosexuals, adulterers, defiant children, prostitutes, and all those who practice a different religion; we can begin to form a picture of the horrific nightmare that would constitute society if the Bible were taken literally and this were made “the law of the land.”
Even more ominously, we are beginning to get an actual glimpse of what such a society would look like, thanks to the rhetoric of the ever-growing (in numbers and power) Evangelical Christian movement in this country, but thanks even more to the degree to which this Fascist movement has already achieved significant successes. Indeed, the society that would result from a literal application of the Bible's core principles would be like the infamous Dark Ages of Europe, except potentially even worse; were such a society to take root in the world's only superpower in the present time, its military reach would stretch the entire globe and would be buttressed by incredibly advanced technology.
For century upon century, organized religion has been able not only to survive but to exercise a major role in society, based to a large degree on its ability to hide behind a veil of artificial legitimacy. In other words, it is exactly because these religions hold the mantle of traditions that have been passed down through the generations that they are able to persist. Even those who are inclined to be skeptical of the existence of a supernatural power have either been afraid to challenge these traditions for fear of alienating people, have been unaware of the fundamental essence of these traditions, or have felt that even if the traditions are misguided, they are not really capable of doing any real harm. All of these are dangerously erroneous assumptions.
Indeed, it's time to take the emperor's clothes off and face reality: It's 2005, and the president of the most powerful country in the world is a fascist in every sense of the word. How much sense does it really make to think that we can combat this fascism by turning to the supposed teachings of God, The Original Fascist?
The Bible instructs us to believe that “God created man in his image.” (Genesis 1). Were this true, given everything that has been described in this series about the nature, rhetoric and commandments, and the actions of this God, it would certainly present a very bleak vision of humankind. Certainly, this vision would not encourage anyone to think that humanity could come together to emancipate itself once and for all. Indeed, the Bible itself seems to make this point in describing “How great was man's wickedness on earth, how every plan devised by his mind was nothing but evil all the time.” (Genesis 6)
Fortunately, science and rational thought, if they are applied in a thorough and consistent way, tell us that, as the saying goes, “it's just us chickens”—we human beings and the rest of material reality are all that exists, with no gods of any kind. And, in fact, humanity as a whole is characterized by neither “wickedness” nor goodness, but by the ability to be the one or the other, depending on the kind of society people live in and the kind of values that characterize that society. So, reflecting upon the absence of a higher power should not be depressing to us. In fact, given what we would have to believe if we believed in God, it should be liberating —because it is made quite clear from the Bible that we shouldn't count on God's help to establish the type of society we would want to live in, to say the least! On the other hand, humanity freed from mental enslavement to religious doctrine, and motivated by the understanding that human beings themselves bear the sole responsibility for their own liberation, is capable of tremendous achievement. With this in mind, we can give a new and deeper meaning to the words Bob Marley famously sang: “Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery/none but ourselves can free our minds.”
With this—and everything else that has been shown in this series—in mind, perhaps there is one important lesson the Bible can teach us: BE GLAD THAT THERE IS NO GOD!
Read the Whole “God the Original Fascist” Series Online at revcom.us!
- Part 1: The Core Principles, and Actual Outlook, of the Bible
- Part 2: The Repressive Social Order of the Bible
- Part 3: God Consolidates His Rule by Total Fear and Terror
- Part 4: Holy Wars—Manifest Destiny in a Biblical Setting
Why is studying what the Bible actually says crucial in these times?
“When you approach a town to attack it, you shall offer it terms of peace. If it responds peaceably and lets you in, all the people present there shall serve you at forced labor. If it does not surrender to you, but would join battle with you, you shall lay siege to it; and when the Lord your God delivers it into your hand, you shall put all its males to the sword. You may, however, take as your booty the women, the children, the livestock, and everything in the town—all its spoil—and enjoy the use of the spoil of your enemy, which the Lord your God gives you. Thus shall you deal with all towns that lie very far from you, towns that do not belong to nations thereabout. In the towns of the latter people, however, which the Lord your God is giving you as a heritage, you shall not let a soul remain alive.”
“You're either with us or with the terrorists.”
George W. Bush, shortly after September 11, 2001