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Proselytizin’

June 22, 2011

I’ve said this before but, people lump together everyone that calls themselves Christians, even though to different people that can mean vastly different things.  Some people make themselves the arbiters of morality and declare that because people do some bad thing, X, it will cause some negative consequence, Y.  One of the best examples of this is that church in Kansas which I won’t bother naming.  They are in the news again, as usual.

People can obviously believe what they want, but the Bible is pretty clear that human beings are not really privy to what causes what.  There’s a scene where the Pharisees (the stuffy stained-glass church people of Jesus’ day) come up to Jesus when he’s next to a blind man and say “who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”  What a loaded question!  It’s like when I am driving home in the summer next to the hog rendering plant and the person in the passenger seat says “who farted?”  Of course, no one did, it’s the smell of melted hog fat.  In both cases it’s a question heavy with supposition and born of ignorance.  Jesus sets them straight, “neither this man nor his parents sinned.”  Read it if you want to know more, it’s pretty amazing.

So anyways, some jerks decide to picket some funerals, and since they are the loudest, most annoying people that call themselves Christians, people will look at them and have this idea that we all have some arbitrary moral standard that we live by and try to impose on people.  Like, if we do enough good stuff we get rewarded, and if we do too much bad stuff we get punished, or something.

It’s not really like that though.  I mean obviously people reap what they sow, but God isn’t staring at you waiting to say ‘aha’ and press his ‘smite’ button.  It’s kind of the opposite of that.  I mean, think about it.  Think about someone you love and how you try to interact with them.  Even if they piss you off and disappoint you, and everyone eventually does, if you love them you love them, period.  You’ve decided beforehand to stick it out and win them over with kindness and help them when they’re in trouble.  That’s the ideal, and that’s what’s being done for you and me.  And bad things will still happen; we can’t avoid tragedy, but we can decide if we’ll become bitter and angry or if we’ll be the kind of people that help other people deal with tragedy when it’s their turn.

One of my favorite verses in the Bible is “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

So, let’s take all that and apply it to someone who has died in a car crash.  Can we say “this guy died so he must have messed up somehow.”?  Of course not.  The most we can say is that his days on the earth are over, we don’t get to know why, but it happened and a lot of people are hurt by it.  So maybe the lesson of a car crash is, it could happen to any of us.  So let’s live well and deal with it like civilized people.

 

I read a book once that said “we learn whether we are lovable or unlovable from other people.  This is why God tells us so often to love one another.”  I like that.

 

Just had to get that off my chest.  I hate having to explain those people away, but it has to be done.

Will probably write more later.

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