Religious promotion of atrocities by Abiy Ahmed supporters is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit

The hope for a new harmonious national Ethiopian identity has now transformed to Abiy Ahmed and his blasphemers proclaiming killing, raping, and starvation are ordered by God to restore order. It is curious that Abiy Ahmed who claims to belong to a Christian denomination devoted to the Holy Spirit would so viciously act against it.

The dove is the classic artistic representation of the Holy Spirit

The Mulu Wongel (Full Gospel) Pentecostal church to which Abiy Ahmed claims membership began in the 1960s as a result of European missionaries. A key feature of this Christian denomination is that following initial baptism the believer seeks repeated episodes of intense connection with the Holy Spirit often evidenced by speaking in tongues similar to what the Bible describes in 1 Corinthians 14. The Mulu Wongel Church says it wants to be transformative to communities including families, women, and children while being transparent, impartial, and demonstrating humility.

This faith now claims 4.5 million Ethiopian believers. In interviews with the press the Prime Minister has stated that his “faith dictates his political vision and actions”. Detractors say what he is really doing is creating a grand deception.

After coming to power as Prime Minister in 2018 he sought expansion of his religious advisors seeking out Pentecostal and evangelistic diaspora in the United States and Europe as well as congregations of diaspora Ethiopian Orthodox Church from unrecognized Synods by the domestic Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Out of this expansion of support there arouse a new concept of how Abiy Ahmed began to see himself. Reinforced by his new friends, he began to espouse this idea of medemer which outwardly looked like a fusion of different Ethiopia ethnicities into a central national unity and purpose. He has confided to reporters that he does not understand why “others do not understand him”.  As more opposition developed he became more and more heavy handed. Instead what was underneath the surface was really an old recurring idea going back centuries of building an Ethiopian Empire with Amharic elite leadership at the helm. Whereas before he had seemed to identify with his Oromo identity this was tossed away when he saw a chance to gain power with the Amhara elite.

Although Abiy Ahmed came to power as the last minute leader of Oromia soon he ditched his Oromia allegiances and friends. Jawar Mohamed, the charismatic Oromo leader who lead the Qeero movement which could be said was the major cause of Abiy Ahmed coming to power was placed in prison where he languishes today.

Soon all things he claimed to stand for with the Mulu Wongel church were sinisterly transformed. Numerous diaspora protestant and unrecognized Ethiopian Orthodox churches began to speak of prophecy. That Ethiopia had survived and prospered by the marriage of church which proclaimed a manifest destiny under committed leaders in the vein of the Amharic monarchy which had been deposed by Derg Regime. They drew an analogy to the struggles of the early Jewish nation in the Book of Judges. In the midst of current unrest throughout Ethiopia seen following the withdrawal of the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front(TPLF) in 2018 from national power they called for a return to this old concept insisting it was the will of God and Abiy was the intended “King”.

Although Abiy Ahmed had previously made speeches praising the TPLF and told a reporter in a televised interview he had no intent to ever go to war with Tigray that promise did not last. Following his meetings with the tyrant Isaias of Eritrea although not clearly evident then Abiy decided that Tigray would be the strawman in his quest for power with Isaias as his henchman. He cared little that Isaias has tortured, imprisoned, and killed members of the Mulu Wongel Church in Eritrea.

The diaspora clergy who had modest congregations found a cash cow with Abiy Ahmed. Many of them created GoFundMe accounts sometimes taking hundreds of thousands of dollars or euros with firery speeches about the threats to the survival of Ethiopian nationhood if the rats or cancer of the Tigray and others was not removed. God was making special allowances for Abiy Ahmed and fellow believers to do whatever was necessary to preserve their vision of Ethiopian state. Following God’s will would in fact create a new divine superpower to lead Africa and dominate the world. Whatever was necessary would be allowable under God such that no sin could be committed because it was for a higher purpose.

They seemed to have forgotten Jesus teachings in the Bible about sin. Although Jesus does say governments may ask citizens to perform functions as a part of their duty to the state there is a certain sin which is clearly unforgiveable. Blasphemy is especially egregious when a leaders of a group encourages others to do evil acts in the name of Jesus.

“whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin” (Mark 3:28–29)

In three Gospels Jesus makes abundantly clear that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is unforgiveable especially if the offender shows no sign of remorse. It is curious that Abiy Ahmed who claims to belong to a Christian denomination devoted to the Holy Spirit would so viciously act against it.

The Rise of Ethiopian Clerico-Fascism supporting Abiy Ahmed

The term clerical or clerico-facism was first used relative to Ethiopia by Italian opponents of Mussolini invasion of Ethiopia in 1935. Almost a century later  clerico-fascism returns to describe Christian clergy in Ethiopia as well as diaspora in the United States and Europe who support completely the brutal invasion of Tigray by Abiy Ahmed.

Initial enthusiasm for religious unity under Abiy Ahmed leadership has faded to an Abiy Ahmed centric view

Currently in Ethiopia, the Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, son of a Christian mother and Muslim father, but now a Pentacostal Christian is being criticized as being a clerico-fascist by opponents to his regime. They see this clerico-facism as really Amharic elitism by another name.

In 1920s Italy, the rise of Benito Mussolini found support with the Partido Poplare Italiano who advocated a joining of fascism and Catholicism. At the time the Catholic Church world wide was deeply concerned with the threat of communism and socialism which advocated loyalty to state above all else. That religion was an antiquated system contrary to the state. The marriage of Catholicism to facism offered a clear path of survival to the church all though opponents saw it as heresy.

After being elevated to Prime Minister from being the head of the Oromo Regional political party he went on a tour of the United States in 2018. He was accompanied by Jawar Mohammed, a Muslim diaspora leader, who both advocated a national identity overriding regional nationality as well as cooperation between all religions including Orthodoxy, Protestant, Catholic, Muslim, and others.

Now three years later radical Christian voices have become not only the main defenders of his policy of oppression and non-negotiation with political opponents and Tigray but appear to be even writing his policies. To understand this further we have to back in time to review the religious history of Ethiopia. The Prime Ministers promise of medemer, mixing for the benefit of all Ethiopians, has been changed to the old theme of Amharic elitism.

Legend has it that the Saban Queen of Sheba met King Solomon of Israel producing a son, Menelik, who began what is known as the Solomonic dynasty of Ethiopia. The Axumite Empire based in what is now the Tigray Regional State and Eritrea of initially ruled by the ancestors to the Tigrayans but gradually the Amhara region who are also descended somewhat from this empire took over. For centuries there was a close relationship of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (EOC) and the monarchy such that Ethiopian identity was tied to this religion for both Tigray and Amhara. Muslims came to Ethiopia to seek refuge during the Prophet Mohammed’s struggles with the pagan Saudi Arabian leaders and were welcomed. Today they make up a sizeable minority in the country as a whole but traditionally were marginalized by not be allowed to own land. There ability to construct mosques in areas of Ethiopia were always restricted.

The ancient EOC began in the Semitic Tigray and Amhara region but over the past approximately 200 years its dominance spread with conquering of Cushitic kingdoms in the western and southern regions of Ethiopia. The religion, Amharic language, and many cultural practices of the Northern regions were exported to the new conquests. In fact just before the beginning of the 20th century, the monarchal capital was shifted from Northern Ethiopia to Addis Ababa in the center of the country in what was Oromo territory. This was done to allow for the Amhara rulers to better defend and govern their larger territorial gains.

The EOC promoted the idea that the Semitic kings were chosen by God to rule over all of what we know call Ethiopia. The Bible they use was written in Geez a precursor to the current Amhara language and the official language of trade and government become Amhara. Additionally the EOC promoted the idea that the Oromo and Southern peoples were of an inferior nature to the Semitics of the North. This resulted in the EOC approving of land seizure, capture,  and use of Southern and Western non-Semitic Cushitic’s to be used as slaves.

The Protestant conversions began in the Southern and Western regions by Western missionaries in the late 19th century and continuing today who told the people that they had equal status under God. Today the Protestant churches, mostly Pentecostal, are growing fast and have moved up from the Southern regions to central Ethiopia including the capital city of Addis Ababa. They have little presence in Tigray which has small groups of Catholics and Muslims.

When Abiy Ahmed toured the United States it excited both Amharic diaspora who were EOC and also the newer evangelical protestant. Pentecostals believe in the concept of Arminianism which clearly proclaims that salvation is rigidly defined by their specific definition and all others deserve suffering and hell completely. Other types of evangelical Christians believe in the Calvinistic idea that only a few are pre-chose by God even before birth for salvation and leading society. A tri-partite alliance of Pentecostals, evangelical Christians, and significant elements of the Amharic EOC has formed as stalwart advisors and defenders of the policy of aggression to only the Tigray but other minority groups in Ethiopia. In Ethiopia and other countries with large numbers of diaspora major divisions have arisen within the EOC.

Abiy Ahmed’s opponents say that he has under gone a transformation from calling for equality to one that really promotes Amhara elitism. As noted by many historians such as Professor Christopher Clapham who writes: “Although Ethiopia has continuously formed a multi-ethnic political system, participation in national political life normally required assimilation to the cultural value of the Amhara core: the Amharic language, orthodox Christianity and a capacity to operate within the structure and assumptions of a court administration.”