Russell and Duenes

When the Christian Capital Runs Out

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What happens when a people and a culture rejects Jesus and the Bible? Perhaps nothing right away, but pretty soon the “Christian capital” that the culture is borrowing and living off runs out. As Douglas Wilson says, the checks are already starting to bounce. What does this look like? Peter Hitchens, the less famous of the Hitchens brothers, gives us a glimpse in his fantastic book, The Rage Against God (which I am happily devouring just now and will have more to say about, Lord willing, in the near future). He writes of his time spent living and working in Moscow, and the lack of common decency among the people of there, which is the inevitable result of rejecting Christ, which is where Europe is quickly headed.

Because of the ferocity of the winters, the entrances to the escalators were guarded by heavy, stiff swing doors that were supposed to keep some of the heat in. I noticed that nobody ever held these doors open for those behind. As the habit of holding doors open for others was ingrained in me, I tried to defy this trend. Far from being delighted or impressed by my attempted courtesy, my Russian fellow passengers looked at me suspiciously, as if I were planning to play a trick on them. One even said in satirical tones, “You’re obviously not a Russian!”

A similar collapse of manners could be seen when a trolleybus swung into the roadside to pick up passengers. I often used this means of transportation to get home or to voyage through the outer fringes of the capital. If you were well bundled up, it was reasonably easy to withstand the ruthless pushing, elbowing, and fury that erupted every time the creaking, steamed-up vehicle stopped and flapped its doors open. This was a civilized European city, not Africa, but at such moments it was hard to see the difference apart from the temperature.

It is absolutely true – I saw it many times – that traffic stopped dead when rain began to fall, as every driver fetched windshield wipers from their hiding place and leaped out to fit them to their holders. Any wipers left in place while the car was parked would be stolen as a matter of course. Petty theft of unsecured property was universal – and universally accepted as normal. [p.90]



Written by Michael Duenes

June 5, 2010 at 8:42 pm

Posted in Duenes, Literature, Theology

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