Subverting our Caesars

Trevin Wax, in his book Holy Subversion, demonstrates that one reason early believers were persecuted was that they subverted the allegiance demanded by the Roman Caesar. Early believers were subversive because they rejected the idea that the Caesar was the chief among the gods, they rejected the idea that power made right, they rejected the idea that sex was to be promoted regardless of its form, they rejected the idea that wealth was to be hoarded.

Wax points out that, obviously, we have no Caesar breathing down our necks, requiring our allegiance by providing bread and circuses — keeping us fat and entertained, as it were.

However, modern Caesars still lure us into practical Caesar worship. Views on money and wealth cause Christians to behave like the world. Views on sexuality cause Christians to act like world. Views on power, politics, health and even entertainment subtly tempt Christians to act like the world, becoming not merely practical atheists (living like there is no God), but practical polytheists (living as if there are many gods to be appeased and praised).

Christians today — much like those of the first centuries — must deliberately recognize and topple all would-be Caesars, deposing them from their worldly thrones and recognizing instead the one, true God, who alone occupies the throne and rules in all aspects of our lives.

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