Denouncing The Norway “Christian” Terrorist, Hate, and Violence

Kato Mivule | August 2nd 2011

For the past two weeks the mass media has been awash with references to the Norway killer, Anders Breivik, who murdered more than 70 people as a “Christian Terrorist”. Many Evangelicals, especially in the USA have been greatly disturbed by such references. Other media circles spoke of Anders Breivik as a “Christian fundamentalist”, a phrase that has received considerable opposition from Christian Evangelicals in America.

Of course the use of term “Christian fundamentalist”  by the mass media was used with a connotation of violence as in Muslim “fundamentalist” or Muslim “extremist”, that is, one who uses religion to justify violence. Yet, “fundamentalist” could mean one who simply believes in the fundamentals of a religious belief and not necessarily violence. US Evangelicals did not want to associate Christian fundamentalist with violence but simply Christians who believe in Christian Bible fundamentals, and which is very understandable and notable.

The mass media is not without blame as they tended to get into exaggeration and hype to sell their stories. Yet still, the mass media's use of the terms “Christian fundamentalist”, “Christian terrorist”, and “Christian extremist”, was not from a vacuum but a Christian history that is filled with numerous shameful counts of Christians who used Christianity to justify their violent acts contrary to the teachings of Jesus Christ.

Anders Breivik, in his 1500 page manifesto claimed he is a “Christian”, and used terms such as “Knights of Templar”, in reference to the Crusaders, a hoodlum of Christian militants that raced and raged  across Europe with violence, mayhem, murder, and slaughter of Muslims, driving the Muslims away from Europe all the way to Palestine and capturing Jerusalem. As a matter of fact, when the Crusaders arrived in Jerusalem, and having driven Muslim forces from Europe, the Crusaders then turned against the Jews in Jerusalem and slaughtered them, accusing them of crucifying Jesus Christ and not converting to Christianity.

These Christian Crusaders perceived themselves as in defense of Christianity in Europe being sanctioned and approved by the Roman Catholic Church then. The Knights of Templar were the leaders and captains of the Crusaders, they oversaw the Christian militant hordes that racked violence not only against the Muslims but other European residents who stood in their way to Jerusalem.

Some Christian Evangelicals have called on the mass media to self-examine and deal with all the bias and unfair treatment of Evangelicals in the liberal press. While such a call might have some merit, Evangelical Christians might be missing a great opportunity here, and that is to denounce ALL types of hate, violence, and injustices that are done in the name of Christianity.

Those who seriously need self-examination are not actually the mass media but Christians themselves. Many Evangelical Christian apologists miss the point that the mass media did not use the term "Christian Fundamentalist" with a connotation of violence from a vacuum. First, as we stated earlier, Christian History as is very well known, is filled with numerous counts of “Christian extremists” who used violence in the Name of God.

The contemporary Church is not without blemish in this, from the Crusades to present day hate groups in North America that strongly carry the Christian label, for example. Then look at the Tea Party campaign during Health Care Debate in America and the 2010 elections, recall all the Hate speech and buying of guns, recall the Pastor who burnt the Koran, Christian Preachers who came to Washington DC with a Bible in one hand and a concealed gun in their fight to "Take America Back", Talk Show Radio hosts and TV personalities who have used Christianity to justify their spew of hate, are all examples of folks using Christianity as cover for hate, and it is such hate that we must strongly denounce as Evangelical Christians.

Lastly, the Norwegian Killer called himself a "Christian" in his 1500 page manifesto. Now, his type of "Christianity" is certainly not your US Evangelical type. However, this is no excuse to blame the mass media but rather true Christians must stand out and speak out against ALL types of HATE and tell the world what true Christianity is all about, the rest is mere scapegoating and playing the victim card.

We do very well to remember that Jesus Christ calls us to be peace makers. This does not mean to agree with everyone, becoming sycophants, or letting go of your distinct convictions but having room to agree to disagree peacefully and not threaten violence or hate, returning good and not evil. There is no New Testament justification for any type of hate or violence as a Christian virtue.

In this world filled with wars, hate, violence, retributions, murders, slaughters, and killings, Christians ought to stand out and denounce any form of violence and call for peace and work towards peace. It is better to be known as a peaceful people rather than be associated with the hateful and violent.

Kato Mivule

[1] S. Scharfstein and D. Gelabert, Chronicle of Jewish History: From the Patriarchs to the 21st Century. Ktav Pub Inc, 1997.

[2] I. Singer and C. Adler, The Jewish encyclopedia: a descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day. Funk and Wagnalls, 1912.

[3] C. H. MacEvitt, The crusades and the Christian world of the east: rough tolerance. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008.

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[6]“Norway Massacre: A Christian Terrorist Debate, Christian News.” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 02-Aug-2011].

[7]“Christians Belong Inside the Tea Party | Christianity Today | A Magazine of Evangelical Conviction.” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 02-Aug-2011].