A Concise History of Christianity

Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
wrote some gospels – got them wrong.

Paul wrote letters, in frustration,
with a chic interpretation.

Constantine – oh glory be! –
converted Christianity.

The Fathers, not to be outclassed,
doctored everything, en masse.

Schisms then became the fashion –
dissecting minor points with passion.

(And when the pagans got the boot
the heretics soon followed suit).

But Councils flunked their math, you see;
well, one is one, and can’t be three.

Soon, anchorites and cenobites
took flagellation to new heights,

till loot and pillage took the stage.
Hurrah for all those great Crusades!

(While monasteries had learned to equate
their simple prayer with real estate

and friars and abbots, plain to see,
took vows of strict obesity).

The troop of Popes still came and went;
but Martin Luther stopped their rent.

Inquisitors, though, persuaded well –
the Engineering Corps from Hell.

Still, big trouble – tiffs and fights,
as both the “isms” claimed they’re right.

Splinter groups then had a ball –
today’s a #?!!@$#?! free-for-all.

Jesus, come and help us out!
Explain again what it’s about!
(and speak slowly this time).

From ‘Of Gods and Men’

6 thoughts on “A Concise History of Christianity

    1. Thank you, Eira. Ha ha! That’s nice. It had the same effect on Jeffrey Burghauser, who you might remember from some years ago. I recall that he burst out laughing immediately upon reading it, and later, when he had returned to the USA, asked permission to put it to music.

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  1. This one really spoke to me as a “short but sweet” look at the historical development of Christianity. It hits on so many of the important major tipping points of ideas that have had such a huge effect on our society yet it just flows so smoothly in your word play and rhyme. It rings like a song I want to sing on repeat and says a lot without having to say too much. Thank you!

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    1. Thank you, Shaquille, and apologies for this late reply, which is due to a fault in the system. You mention singing it – it was, in fact, put to music by a colleague ( a musician and fellow-poet) some years ago. Thanks so much for your appreciative words.

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