In what is a proud moment both for Christianity and Middle Tennessee, we have made The New York Times
because we are the home of "Xtreme Ministries
, a small church near Nashville that doubles as a mixed martial arts academy."
Yes, in order to trick men into coming back to church, Xtreme Ministries seeks to assure them that their desire to bash each others' skulls in is in line with the wishes of Jesus. I can only assume that this is one of the Beatitudes that gets left out of most modern translations--"Blessed are the face beaters, for they shall inherit all the publicity."
Yes, somehow, they have played down all that "love your enemy," "turn the other cheek,." "blessed are the meek and the peace-keepers" nonsense and played up the parts where Jesus is some hip cross between Odin, Mars and Brock Lesner.
But this is the thing that I find confusing. If you feel a religious calling to beat the crap out of your friends, why not get you a god who actually takes delight in his or her followers beating the crap out of each other?
"Christian fight clubs" get the attention of the New York Times. Odinist fight clubs barely warrant a raised eyebrow unless they're taking place on the yard. Even then, no one thinks it's weird, just not in line with prison policy.