Hubby should really be more careful when he puts out his books to study. He is a constant source of "fresh" material. This week the study is the first eight paragraphs of the chapter, "Oppose the Devil and His Crafty Acts", or, the wonders of baptism, covered in the book "Keep Yourselves in God's Love". The following sentence leapt off the page, "Since Satan has already devoured the entire ungodly world of mankind, he can now focus on and intensify his attacks on those who have so far eluded him - Jehovah's people."
There it is; the rest of the "world", aside from the Witnesses, are a lost cause; captive to the spell of the "evil one". I wonder if hubby has connected that this would include me? I love. I oppose evil. How can I be captive to evil and do good at the same time? A house divided against itself cannot stand (Mark 3:25). Witnesses, immersed in the "word" from the FDS, wear evil-colored glasses when they look out on the "world", primed to ignore the good and see only the bad.
Note the juxtaposition of the words devil-baptism-love, taking a joyous event and turning it in to a "divine" war. I don't know about you, but I am sick of wars. Sick of prejudice, fear, misunderstandings, jealousy, greed, robbery, and lashing out at perceived "enemies". It's hard enough to make it in this world without fighting each other. Humanity is at it's best when we help each other.
I continue the book "The Battle for God: A History of Fundamentalism" by Karen Armstrong. Throughout the book Ms. Armstrong suggests that as soon as a fundamentalist group takes a literal, "scientific" approach to their sacred texts, they run the danger of losing the core message of charity. Instead, Ms. Armstrong maintains, the organization becomes increasingly nihilistic as it embraces a future where mankind is destroyed. She suggests fundamentalism begins as reaction to a rather empty modern society where the spiritual and divine are denied. The wish for complete destruction is more primal and has little to do either with goodness or a desire for a better world. The destruction wish, I think, has a lot more to do with defeatism, fear, and a lack of confidence in our own ability to choose good.
Anyways, those are my rambling thoughts this morning. It will take a while to process this all and explain it succintly. Ms. Armstrong builds her argument carefully and deliberately; 371 pages of it. I read on.