Sunday Thoughts: “Blessed Are Those Who Are Persecuted” – Grievance Culture and Fake Victims Need Not Apply

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When future generations read about the early 21st century one term will stand out – “Victimology.”

Why are so many in our Western culture determined to identify as victims? And why are so many others eager to feed into this grievance mentality by reinforcing it with virtue signaling?

Two recent examples of this victimology doctrine are The Trans shooter who slaughtered children and adults at a Christian School and A Black man threatening patrons on a train in NYC who died when passengers subdued him.

The political left flipped the script about a Trans woman mass murderer whose mental state facilitated acts personified as pure evil. She is being hailed as the victim, even in death, she has been elevated to martyrdom in some sick twisted notion she acted as a champion for the radical Trans grievance culture.

Then there is the young black man with an arrest record a mile long for acts such as kidnapping a child, harassment of the public, verbal threats, and physical assaults, who at the time of his death, had an active warrant out for his arrest for assault. He was a  Michael Jackson impersonator whose mental health issues were allowed to play out daily around NYC’s public commons.

Several men stopped his menacing harassment, physical agitation, and aggression on a moving train, and one of those men utilized a chokehold while the perpetrator fought and continued to struggle with three other men holding him down. Sadly, the man died when his airway was obstructed. Clearly, this was not the intention of the heroes who stepped up to protect the passengers on the train from the credible threat. Drug toxicology results are still pending.

The headlines cried out, and another victim is elevated to the persecuted, Jesus -like messiah as the left rehab him into the new George Floyd, and lap dog, social justice protesters take to the streets on cue.

What is driving this need to prop up perpetrators as heroic victims of persecution and assign the defenders as persecutors? Not that long ago in our culture, we glorified the courageous who stepped in to save us from harm as honorable and revered among our citizenry. Real victims of crime were lifted in our eyes, and those who perpetrated and took advantage of others were frowned upon. There was only a one-way street demanding justice for the righteous victim. Today, we assign victim status to achieve some twisted pretense of triumph or stature to achieve a political agenda.

The left has used semantics to shift the Overton window effectively for decades now. Since this post is part of a series on Sunday Thoughts let’s look at the word persecuted or persecution through the lens of the bible, not just a political one.

Isaiah 50:10: “Who among you fears the LORD and obeys the word of his servant? Let the one who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the LORD and rely on their God.”

Here, God is teaching those who feel persecuted and condemned to stand in the dark, to persevere apart from feelings, perceptions and circumstances. And know you are not forsaken for even in what is perceived as persecution you shall be delivered.

Did Jesus prepare us for persecution? Observe what he said to disciples as he sat with them on the Mount of Olives:

Matthew 24, verse 9: “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.”

From the perspective of Christian teachings, persecution is attached to both the suffering of Christ, and Jesus’s warnings of persecution and hostility toward people who embrace his teaching, and who are not ashamed to stand for him.

History reflects this foreshadowing as it is estimated more than 70 million Christians have been martyred throughout history, and more than half of those deaths occurred in the 20th century. In 2022, Afghanistan, North Korea, Somalia, Libya, Yemen topped the list. Furthermore, it’s estimated that 360 million Christians in the world today experience extreme persecution because of their faith. Of course other religions have their legacy of persecution as well.

Modern-day martyrdom has a very low bar, don’t you think? I mean you do not even have to die rather simply declare a microaggression and stand with the woke tribe while you do it. There are many examples of those who believed in the biblically referenced passages about persecution and what Christians may come to bear in that matter in the days ahead.

I am often reminded of the persecution of Kayla Mueller and the lessons she offered from her ordeal. Kayla had a remarkable story for such a young life. Her faith, she believed required action and responsibility, so she set out to relieve suffering in the world. ” “I find God in the suffering eyes reflected in mine,” she once wrote. Addressing God, she added, “If this is how you’re revealed in me, this is how I will forever seek you”. 

While serving as a relief worker in Syria, Kayla was taken hostage by members of an ISIS cell. She remained a prisoner for 18 months, enduring abuse of every kind, along with several other female captives. She eventually became a personal prisoner of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the ISIS. It was reported that she refused to join her fellow captives, four women, who made a plan to escape their captors, saying to them, “I am an American and if I escape with you, they will do everything to find you again, so I shall stay”.

These other brave women did succeed at gaining their freedom and they smuggled out a letter Kayla had written to her parents. Here’s a portion of what this amazing young woman of faith wrote during one of the darkest persecution circumstances you can imagine.

“If you could say I have suffered,” she wrote, “throughout this whole experience, it is only in knowing how much suffering I have put you all through. I remember Mom always telling me that all in all, in the end, the only one you really have is God. I have come to a place in this experience,” Kayla wrote, “where in every sense of the word, I have surrendered myself to our Creator because literally there was no one else. By God and by your prayers, I have felt tenderly cradled in free fall”.

Kayla Mueller died at the hands of Baghdadi, yet her living testimony serves to remind us all that the power of light is greater than the power of darkness and that the power of the gospel will deliver you.

Kayla’s persecution shines a light on the absurd mental gymnastics the woke culture engage in to create and promote victim status. No person would dare deny that Kayla and so many others in this world have suffered persecution. So why do so many still feed the delusion of manufactured crisis’s and cardboard cut out martyrs?

No matter your faith status, think about letting the light shine on this cultural clown show, and next time you are summoned to virtue signal – simply refrain and state the obvious. Goodness knows we already have far too many suffering the burden of persecution to heap on the pile fake victims.

By Bekah Lyons

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