I want to focus in on Chapter 12 this week. I was really impressed by what Chambers says in this section about himself and his faith. I also highlighted most of this section in my own copy, so I thought it was only appropriate to use it for my writing this week. After the August 25th testimony, Chambers writes:
By then, I began to grasp the degree to which I was not merely a man testifying against something. I was first of all a witness for something. The turn the struggle had taken made it clear that what most of the world supposed it to be — a struggle between two men– was precisely what it was not. It was a struggle between the force of two irreconcilable faiths — Communism and Christianity– embodied in two men, who by a common experience in the past, knew as few others could know what the struggle was about, who shared a common force of character, the force which made each of them a Communist in the first place, and which I had not changed when I changed my faith.
I thought this was a very interesting passage. We are so use to discussing the differences between capitalism and communism, that we don’t realize that the comparison isn’t accurate. Capitalism is an economic system, communism is a faith. I also believe that communism is the logical conclusion of socialism. To combat both communism and socialism, we must recognize that we aren’t fighting an economic or political theory, but a faith.
But we do not have to enter this fight alone. We have the other members of Red State, and the other readers of the Book Notes Project. We also have God and His help. When we really need Him, He will be there for us. As I believe he was for Chambers. Chambers writes later in Chapter 12, “The point is that I was a man constantly wavering, from human and other considerations, a man constantly seeking guidance, constantly uncertain…I did not reach the height of my purpose in the Hiss Case immediately or all at once.” Instead, Chambers says that he reached his purpose in stages, and that each stage corresponded to what he had strength for. Chambers was put through all kinds of pain and suffering during the course of this trial. However, I believe God was with him through this ordeal, and was able to lend him aid when he needed it most.
For Next Week: We are getting in the home stretch on this book. I want to read up to Section XXVIII (page 750 in my copy).
The Next Book: Time to get your vote in. I am leaning towards Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis simply because of the time of the year. However, I also would like to consider the Federalist Papers or Liberty and Tyranny by Levin. If you have followed the Book Notes Project since the beginning, we started the Mark Levin book but didn’t finish it. I am also open to any suggestions that weren’t in the original reading list.