A Question I Was Asked:

What About the Cruelties imposed by Both Catholic and Protestant Missionaries Upon Many Peoples in the Name of 'Christian Mission'? I Could Not Find Any Discussion of This on Your Website

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I could not find a single response about the systematic enslavement of people of African descent from religious crusades conducted by organized religions. The Catholic church's support of black slavery was second only to the Moslem Arabs. The Protestant religion was equally involved and has always reflected the values and mores of the dominant white society. It puzzles me that Christianity is portrayed as a religion of peace and truth but I have never seen a Christian website deal with historical wrongs.

My question: How will God judge a nation or a people group that change the appearance of His son, used the scripture to deculturize other nations and continue to receive the financial benefits and privilege from that act?

UK Apologetics Reply:

Okay, let us look at this:

If you look in human history there are wrongs all over the place and by many peoples, nations and empires. Eventually all peoples will be judged because of such things. There are wrongs carried out in the name of religion, and other wrongs which are not religion-associated. To take one random example, what about the killing of many thousands of Armenian Christians by the Ottomans (some even put this figure at close to a million!) during the period 1915-1922? This wrong is never even spoken about today, whilst other wrongs get aired and repeated endlessly. I also agree that some nations should never have been deculturalized the way they often were. Yes, missionaries often made mistakes, even a few inexcusable mistakes but - hey - for the present this is still Satan's world and so often people were working in situations which were far from ideal and they were given the task of spreading the Name of Jesus right across the world, they were not - during this age of the Church - given the task of freeing all peoples from all injustices - all of that lies in the future!

You write, "... I have never seen a Christian website deal with historical wrongs." Neither will you because it is beyond the scope of any of us. The restitution of all things lies in the future, this is not for the present age. The early Christians, for example, accepted the wicked outrages of Nero because it was not the time to overthrow him but none of us would like to be in Nero's shoes when he comes up in the Great White Throne judgement!

I must admit that your question is a very good question. Ultimately it is God alone Who keeps a record of all crimes and injustices - the task is beyond any of us, however I really must conclude by defending Protestant missionaries for the most part, yes, mistakes were sometimes made but they had a mission which they were determined to see through. Yet I cannot defend some of the actions of Catholic mission which were often excessive and cruel. Since you also mention slavery, I really must remind you that it was a movement began and developed by Protestant Christianity which finally brought this to an end.

The problem which lies behind the question, I find, is that the writer believes that the age of judgement has already come but it has not, that lies in the future. For the present, we continue to live in an imperfect world in which Satan remains active and in which we are all prone to making mistakes and errors, even sometimes from the very best of intentions.

Robin A. Brace. May 25th, 2019.