It is the season of goodwill, but the ideal wouldn’t exist without Christianity.
Christians have been a dynamic force for positive change for more than 2,000 years. They have inspired a free and just world, and set the standard for ethics and morality. But they are also a geopolitical target for social injustice, and their persecution is fanatical around the globe.
President Obama saw fit to arm Syrian jihadi rebels, oblivious that some of the Syrian civil war’s worst victims are Christians. Bam-backed resistance fighters, whose forces include al Qaeda thugs, are engaged in the unchecked ethnic cleansing of Christians. They go door-to-door to expel followers of Christ from their homes without giving them a chance to gather their belongings. They kill Christians for defending their homes. They fire mortars and missiles into ancient churches and loot them. They force worshippers to convert to Islam or face death. And they behead Christians and feed their bodies to dogs. Christians are also easy prey in Muslim-majority Pakistan, where suicide bombers killed 90 men, women, and children in the pews of a 130-year-old church in September, while a few weeks earlier, Muslim Brotherhood supporters in Egypt wrecked 14 Christian churches — among at least 60 nationwide — and sent leaflets to Christian homes and businesses warning them to flee or face reprisals.
Christians are the new lepers, and even the simple Christian wish of “Merry Christmas” isn’t without incident these days. Yet Christianity, despite its stormy history of abusive Inquisitions and murderous Crusades, leaves other doctrines — excepting Judaism — in its dust. Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam can vie for top billing, but their strongholds are pits of human decay.
China is the world’s largest Buddhist country, but the planet’s leading executioner and a hotbed of widespread abuses. Around half a million people are currently imprisoned in China without charge or trial, as Chinese authorities continue to hound, bust, and silence civil rights defenders, and crush minority groups, invalidating Buddhism’s calls to lead a moral life that is mindful of thoughts, actions, wisdom, and understanding. India is home to most of the world’s Hindus, but Hinduism’s humanity has not translated into a better life for impoverished Indians, 65 million of whom are ignored by their government while they rot in slums “unfit for human habitation,” according to a 2013 census report. And Islam originated in pitiless Saudia Arabia, where barbarous executioners don’t sweat beheading several people a day because they are “very proud to do God’s work.”
Christianity, by comparison, institutionalized compassion. It is a human rights pioneer, whose believers feed the hungry, quench the thirsty, clothe the naked, heal the sick, give hope to the incarcerated, comfort the bereft, and show mercy to the destitute.
Christian values are the universal yardstick because Christians put people first — an altruism that should be hollered from the rooftops, as believers celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ this week, and wish everyone a “Merry Christmas.”