Killing the dreamer epitomises the history of the Israelite family. Their persecution of their prophets and leaders is aptly reconstructed by Stephen in his defence before the Sanhedrin where he was arraigned for blasphemy. “Kill the dreamer” is the solution that comes up time and time again in the history of the modern world as it did in summary narrative of Stephen’s defence.
The surprising result of comparing biblical dreamer-killing with secular assassinations shows how deeply into human nature the resistance is drilled. Every group of believers has created structural barriers to curtail legitimate dreaming. Denominational visionaries and bishops seem to have taken the cowardly approach to development and progress, and most of these gatekeepers are ill-equiped to deal with dissent and the profound issues of the Christian faith. Step out of line – even to ask a pertinent question – and all barrels are aimed at you.
Dreamers are out of line with the trending treasures and yet their dreams were more fundamental than the wise imagined. Powers like the United States, while championing inventiveness and liberty are on record as having no compunction with imposing silence by means of death on dissenting voices and on those who dare to dream beyond the status quo. The United States is also not alone in prosecuting anyone who dares to seek to do the very thing that distinguishes America from her mother. Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr. are seated into the living archives of human memory. In the place where peace has a memorable and contestable mention the record is equally distressing. Jerusalem has been killing dreamers too, joined in recent times by Egypt. Two dreamers stand out: Anwar Sadat and Yitzhak Rabin.