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Doctrine not inspired by Jesus

I’ve been reading with interest the articles in your newspaper concerning the Doctrine of Discovery. Until a week or so ago, I had never heard of such a thing. After discovering what it was by reading Indian Country Today, I was really angered by not only what it stands for, but even more that Christians were blamed for coming up with such a thing.

Can anyone, in their wildest stretch of imagination, after reading the Gospels and seeing what Jesus Christ is really like and what He teaches and stands for believe that He would condone such a thing? Never.

Real followers of Jesus Christ (I hesitate to use the term “Christian” because it has become so twisted and misused) have the Holy Spirit of Christ infused in their heart and so will become a reflection of His loving nature. It was not real Christians who came up with such a doctrine, or of “Manifest Destiny” or any other evil contrivances of like species.

It may have been a church or other religious bunch, but they were certainly not inspired by Jesus Christ. If it carries a cross, says prayers, sings hymns – and then steals land, makes slaves, destroys homes and longs for gold, you can be sure the devil has shape-shifted once again.

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Jesus Christ called them wolves in sheep’s clothing and warned others to beware of them. Who was Jesus talking about? The organized religions of His time. But the warning applies to any wayward, organized religious machine. He said by their actions you will be able to tell what they really are in their heart, regardless of the outer coat they wear. So I wanted to make it clear that Jesus Christ and real followers of His were and are not the inspiration of these monstrous deeds done against this country’s first inhabitants, and any other places where similar stuff has been perpetrated in the name of God.

The ones who came up with this Doctrine to begin with were also the same ones who burned at the stake and tortured to death real believers who dared to follow Jesus. The inventors of these things were not Christians. Jesus Christ had nothing to do with the atrocities committed by such men. They may have been religious, but certainly not of Christ. The Doctrine of Discovery and Manifest Destiny were both works of darkness, and the true nature of those who created them will be all too plain on that day when Christ will reveal all things and people for what they are, whether good or evil.

– Norm Gotch

Snowflake, Ariz.

Steve Newcomb replies: That a devout follower of the life of Jesus Christ would be unwilling to acknowledge the historical and political truths of Christianity as evidenced by the destructive thoughts and behaviors of previous generations is understandable. To say that only good behavior of those who faithfully considered themselves Christian should count as being “truly” Christian leads to the odd conclusion that most Christian missionary work among the Indians was non-Christian. Moreover, as Vine Deloria Jr. said in the book “God is Red:” “While the thrust of Christian missions was to save the individual Indian, the result was to shatter Indian societies and destroy the cohesiveness of Indian communities.” Besides, we as Indians didn’t need “saving.”