Mainstream Christians use the Bible to create a Jesus and a God who is always loving and compassionate. Such Christians often fail to acknowledge that there are hateful passages in the Bible that give sacred authority to the rage, self- aggrandizement and intolerance of the Salvation Army (SA). Salvationists follow the biblical passages that champion apocalyptic violence and hateful political creeds. It does so in light of other biblical passages that teach compassion and tolerance, which stands in opposition to their views of bigotry and violence. Such biblical passages are used by Salvationist bigots and despots to give sacred authority to their calls to subjugate or eradicate those they believe to be the enemies of their God.
Salvationists believe their interpretation of scripture is blessed and is accepted by their mainstream church, which teaches that at the end of time there will be a Day of Wrath and Salvationists will control the shattered remnants of a world cleansed through violence and war. As long as Salvationists believe that all nonbelievers will be tormented, destroyed and banished to hell, it will be hard to thwart the message of the SA’s radical apocalyptic followers or assuage the fears of the homosexual world community that Salvationists are calling for its annihilation.
Salvationists embrace this dark conclusion to life and find it endorsed in scripture, whether it is tucked into the back pew rack of a liberal Unitarian church or a mega-church. The mainstream Protestant and Catholic churches, declining in numbers and influence, cannot hope to combat the hysteria and excitement roused by these Salvationist prophets of doom until they repudiate the apocalyptic writings in scripture.
The SA, offers, like Mephistopheles, to lead it’s followers back to a mythical paradise and an impossible, unachievable happiness and security, at once seductive and empowering. They ask their followers to hand over moral choice and responsibility to the SA. The SA instructs it’s followers on what is right
and wrong in the eyes of God.
The SA instructs it’s followers how to act, how to live, and in this process the SA elevates itself above it’s followers. The SA removes the anxiety of moral choice, the fundamental anxiety of human existence. This is part of the SA attraction. The SA instructs it’s followers on the rules by which they must live. But once SA followers hand over their anxiety and accept SA authority, they become enslaved and the SA becomes their idol. And idols, as the Bible never ceases to tell them, destroy them.
In the belief system of the SA the dominant religions of all nations are to be twisted and distorted by their totalitarian movement and turned into civic religions in which the goals of the SA and the state became the goals of the divine as they perceive the divine. The SA has no monopoly on goodness or saintliness. God has not chosen a salvationist above all others. The beliefs of a salvationist are as flawed and imperfect as with all religious beliefs. But the SA fails to understand that both the best of civil freedoms and religious freedoms embody important values, values such as compassion, tolerance and belief in justice and equality.
The SA is a organization where a salvationist have no voice in how they live and how they are governed. The homosexual world has never adhered to such restrictive values-indeed, never will-but the health of all gays worldwide as a unified society must be determined by it’s steadfastness in striving to resist the SA. And there will be times when taking a moral stance, perhaps the highest form of civil freedom means facing down the SA organization in your own backyard, even in your church.
Our loyalty to our homosexual community and to ourselves, is therefore morally tolerable only if it includes values wider than those of the SA. Our values, civil and religious freedoms, are being dismantled, often with stealth, by the radical SA movement, known as Dominionism, which seeks to cloak itself in the mantle of the religious faith and civil patriotism worldwide.
The SA form of Dominionism, was born out of a theology of religious reconstructionism which seeks to politicize faith. It has, like all fascist organizations, a belief in magic along with leadership adoration and a strident call for moral and physical supremacy of a master race, in this case the SA. It also has an illumined and shifting set of beliefs, some of which contradict one another. The best way to understand the SA, which has chapters worldwide in all societies is to focus not on what they say but on how they act, for, some of the ideas that underlie the SA remain unstated and implicit in homophobic public language and many of them belong more to the realm of visceral feelings than to the realm of reasoned propositions.