The Church: A Black Hole for Evil

God, revealed in Christ and through the Scriptures, has made it clear how Christians should respond to the evil present in the world and often aimed at them. Still, the church struggles to distinguish between her unique cruciform calling and the vengeance-logic of the world. Thus, I love the metaphor given by Raniero Cantalamessa (see quote below): the church should be a black hole for evil. Following Jesus’ example, Christians should be people skilled at categorically stopping the cycle of violence in themselves. In this way, we follow the example of Jesus before us.

“How does one become a peacemaker? One way, significantly important in itself, is not to be a spreader of evil: Don’t be an agent of the accuser, don’t be a sower of darnel or bad seed, don’t spread news of evil. We need to be ‘the end of the track,’ the terminus, for any gossip we hear, for any ugly word, hostile judgement, criticism. The terminus is the place where the train or the bus stops and goes no further. We need to be like ‘black holes’ for evil, vortices that swallow everything and allow nothing whatsoever to pass by and continue on its way. Of course, to be a peacemaker means more than just that; it means to take the initiative in the matter of peace, to do what you can to promote justice. But we must be careful not to let these aspects obscure the other, the simpler and narrower strategy of ‘don’t spread evil,’ which is always open to everyone.” 
[Raniero Cantalamessa, Come, Creator Spirit, 317]

“Do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also.” Jesus, Matthew 5:39

“Do not repay evil with evil….
Do not become overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good.”
Paul, Romans 12:17,21

2 thoughts on “The Church: A Black Hole for Evil

  1. Hope you are not saying we need to bake cookies for Hamas and sit around the campfire. Of course we pray that everyone hears and accepts the good news of Christ. We also kill those who are about to kill others. Mercy and JUSTICE.

    “The Bible is not a book for the faint of heart — it is a book full of all the greed and glory and violence and tenderness and sex and betrayal that benefits mankind. It is not the collection of pretty little anecdotes mouthed by pious little church mice — it does not so much nibble at our shoe leather as it cuts to the heart and splits the marrow from the bone. It does not give us answers fitted to our small-minded questions, but truth that goes beyond what we even know to ask.”
    ― Rich Mullins

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    1. Would it be mercy and justice to bake for the Israel soldiers who kill thousands of Palestinian children each year? The Israelis are the ones constantly bombing schools and other public places.

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