"religious" right

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big time rant warning: rant rating-9

i hate to say it, stone me if you will, but i am in many ways in complete agreement with donald miller's political views. i can hear the boos from liberty already... just hear me out.

didn't Jesus get the most frustrated and upset when people tried to use His name, or His Father's name, to further some business or agenda? so often Jesus becomes the posterboy for the religious right. they're even labeled religious. i understand that they want to save America and have everyone realize their morality is all out of whack, but didn't Jesus want us to go and help the people? Jesus, nor any one of His disciples, spend their time lobbying in Rome to try and have legislation made that would make the Roman Empire more religious.

i think we are slowly turning off an entire nation to Jesus Christ. He has become connected to every single idea and concept that we have elected him posterboy of. it really bothers me. my guess is that throughout history, people have been somewhat hesitant to give their lives to Jesus, probably because deep down they know how much they will have to surrender. like the rich man and Jesus. but people cannot even get to that issue and deal with it. all they see is religion and morality.

we have created an "us vs. them" mentality. and what is the best that can come from that? we either kill or handcuff the enemy. that is war. why do we create war rhetoric for a religious problem? Jesus didn't spend His time pointing out the moral flaws in people. He liked them, legitimately. He wanted to be their friend and save them and show them the Father. somehow we have created a christian culture that can be based on hate. we view normal people (unsaved) as the enemy, and some christians truly and deeply hate those who oppose their political views, or those who are gay or work in abortion clinics. i GUARANTEE you that Jesus would have, and does, love those people. Guarantee. no matter how detestable the sin, Jesus still loved them, and never pointed the finger.

well, not entirely true. Jesus did point the finger. at those who were out to profit on His Father's name.

my point in all of this, is not to point the finger at those who are crusading for the religious right and neglecting to love anyone. i know that these people honestly believe that they are going to bring the world to salvation through morality. i would be contradicting myself if i said that i hated these people. i can say that i love these people. i know some people like this, and they are wonderful people.

i am frustrated, though. i wish that a person could think of Jesus and see what He really was instead of this crusading, gay-hating, fight-picking politician. Jesus loves people. i think some of us, myself included, need to get down on our knees and get to a point where we can say that we love those who disagree with us, and desire to show them love no matter what they think of us. to wholly desire them to find Jesus, who is the source of all joy and good.

that's it.


Misshapen Perfection said...

Interesting post... very interesting

Mauricio said...

Yo H,
I just thought I'd throw my hat into the discussion.
I've had my fair share of wrestling matches with Miller's work, too. I love reading that stuff, the Velvet Elvises and the Stumbling Towards Faiths. They challenge presuppositions and make great fodder for roundtable discussions.
I completely agree with you when you express the need for us as a community to spend less time telling people how to live and more time meeting needs in our world.
You mentioned how it's possible to have a Christian culture based on hate. I think that's true, and it scares me. You're right, though. It's possible to have all the right sayings, to jump through all the religious hoops, and still be the same broken person you were a year ago. A nightmare for me would be to have gone through my life and wake up and realize that the love, joy, peace, and hope that I talk and read about so much never got out of the pages I was memorizing and into my life and then into the world around me. Yet it seems to happen in many churches.
There are things in the emergent movement that I'm not totally sold on and am still wrestling with, but I think Don's right about this. We have got to learn how to love without expecting anything in return. As some wise guy once said, the world will know us by our love. ;)
Godspeed, my brotha!