(Here’s a comment recently added to A Lament for the American Church. It speaks for itself.)
Thank you for finally putting into words what I have been feeling all along!
I have often wondered if it was just me that saw all the war mongering and hypocrisy in the Bush administration as an evil thing. I wondered if it was a lack in my faith or I was corrupted because I didn’t follow this administration blindly like so many Christians around me. I have not been very active in church too, so it was easy to see why I thought the problem was my all my fault.
But looking back at the reason I became inactive at the church I was at – it was because of hypocrisy I saw with some of the prominent members. This was before the Bush administration came into power, and some of those same members I was concerned about later ended up being arrested for fraud. So, my concerns then were not unfounded about a spirit of deception being present in that church.
The problem is now that same spirit of deception has enveloped so many churches and believers that it’s hard to see straight at all anymore.
It also concerns me greatly that people think that 100,000+ Iraqi civilians killed somehow don’t matter to God, that He doesn’t hear their cries because they are Muslims. He most certainly does hear them and is horrified by what is being done in His name. May He forgive this nation for all the truly awful things we do to people worldwide.
In life, I have found that a good lie needs a component of truth. The modicum of truth makes the lie more palatable. We are manipulated into believing falsehood because our perception of truth is skewed-not toward God but toward personal self interest.
As a soldier in the first Gulf War, I served proudly because we were kicking an invading country from a sovereign nation. We had the backing of our counterparts in the world. What we were doing had a defined plan and exit strategy.
This war flounders behind ever changing justifications and costs. Can you imagine how long social security would last if the amount that we spent on this war was put into it (half a trillion). How many children could we feed? What would our world opinion be if we did this? This is the Christian way.
Whereas the Christian leadership was vocally pronounced when it condemned President Clinton’s infidelity, it was strangely muted when President Bush chose to attack another country. The Church apparently was against the invasion. Most people don’t know that. They do know that the Church was against that vile President Clinton.
As a soldier, I defended the rights of people to speak out against the government. As a soldier, I worked diligently to supply the information to save my brothers and sisters in uniform on a daily basis. As a soldier, I supported by country and the constitution unequivocally.
As a Christian, my heart breaks for every person killed in the name of hubris.
I could not agree more. God is horrified about what is being done in His name. Have Christians forgotten the promises God made to Hagar about Ishmael?
So many times I have thought of a scene from the 15th chapter of C.S. Lewis’s “The Last Battle”. Emeth, a Calormene warrior who has been fighting Narnia, is telling the humans from our world about his first meeting with Aslan.
“…..between two rocks there came to meet me a great Lion. The speed of him was like an ostrich, and his size was an elephont’s; his hair was like pure gold and the brightness of his eyes like gold that is liquid in the furnace. He was more terrible than the Flaming Mountain of Lagnour and in beauty he surpassed all that is in the world even as the rose in bloom surpasses the dust of the desert.
Then I fell at his feet and thought, Surely this is the hour of death,for the Lion (who is worthy of all honour) will know that I have served Tash all my days and not him. Nevertheless it is better to see the Lion and die than to be Tisroc of the world and live and not to have seen him.
But the Glorious One bent down his golden head and touched my forehead with his tongue and said, Son, thou art welcome. Tut I said, Alas, Lord, I am no son of thine but the servant of Tash. He answered, Child, all the service thou hast done to Tash, I account as service done to me.
Then by reason of my great desire for wisdom and understanding, I overcame my fear and questioned the Glorious One and said, Lord, is it then true, as the Apre said, that thou and Tash are one? The Lion growled so that the earth shook (but his wrath was not against me) and said, It is false. Not because he and I are one, but because we are opposites, I take to me the services which thou has done to him. For I and he are of such different kinds that NO SERVICE WHICH IS VILE CAN BE DONE TO ME, AND NONE WHICH IS NOT VILE CAN BE DONE TO HIM (TASH)………IF ANY MAN DO A CRUELTY IN MY NAME, THEN THOUGH HE SAYS THE NAME ASLAN, IT IS TASH WHOM HE SERVES AND BY TASH HIS DEED IS ACCEPTED.”
The most indelible image I have of Kennedy’s assassination does not come from photographs or T.V. It is a drawing by a political cartoonist: it is of the Lincoln memorial, only Lincoln’s head is bowed and he is weeping into his hands. That cartoon was so powerful that newspaper after newspaper printed it after it first appeared.
I wish that some gifted visual artist who understands the horror of what is being done in God’s name and in Jesus’s name, could show Jesus weeping over what is being done in Iraq in His name. We are treating babies in Iraq as if they don’t matter while claiming to be pro life.