Monday, March 14, 2011

Brody's Scribbles... Fear & Hell or Love & Serve

In this morning's edition of Joe.My.God, Joe Jervis, the site's publisher ran a video from an American fundamentalist Christian woman  which absolutely left me speechless. I was appalled at her reaction to the tragic events in the Japanese homeland.
I've asked BNS columnist Kathy Baldock to respond to this tasteless display of so-called Christianity in action.
By Kathy Baldock (Reno, Nevada) MAR 14 | Well, I was waiting for some crazy zealot to blame the tsunami in Japan on some “gay action”. Not gays this time; it is atheists. There is a 22 year old woman in la-la-land who is busy praising God for the direct answer to her prayers. On Wednesday the 9th she prayed that God open the eyes of atheists so they could see He exists and He loves them.
And, how did God answer her Lenten fasting and prayer? On March 11th, an 8.9 earthquake hit off the coast of Japan with a predicted death toll of over ten thousand. Ten thousand people. Not ten thousand atheists. Ten thousand of God’s creation.
This insanity is what repels people from God. Ms. Tamara actually says God “grabbed Japan by the shoulders and shook them” and now she is “so overjoyed and encouraged” and “can’t contain her joy.” This is her reaction to the devastation, the death, the pain, the impact socially and economically on a country of 127 million people.
This “fear fueled God” message that some Christians deliver to those outside (and inside) the club really has to stop. This us/them, saints/heathens division is ugly. Just last night, I was watching a documentary of the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Believing that the church must do what it needs to do to aid victims, the “other” of his day, the Jews, Bonhoeffer stood against the Nazis.
Bonhoeffer said “The church is the church only when it serves others,” and “Only he who cries out for the Jew may sing Gregorian chants.” Praying for ”the others” or our enemy does not mean we seek their destruction. Love and serve. The message of Jesus could not be any clearer.
We have a pus in the Body of God that uses manipulation and fear to subjugate others . . . love and serve. We want to scare people into a decision to follow our God. . . . love and serve. We tell them all about the hell they are going to if they don’t listen to us . . . love and serve. We feel compelled to tell them “the truth” . . . love and serve.
Ms. Tamara is so encouraged that one day of prayer reaped the loss of over ten thousand lives in a Buddhist country . . . love and serve. She is excited to see what forty days of Lenten prayer will bring . . . love and serve.
God did not do this. This planet is cracked and broken like any thing that ages. The people of Japan are suffering . . . love and serve. There are outcasts in our own society suffering . . . love and serve. What is the core message of Jesus the Christ? Love and serve.


Tim Trent said...

How lucky Japan is not a christian nation. They do seem to have managed without this rather beastly deity for a good many years.