His body all broken

[No, I haven't gone all "Can't we just stop judging and love one another?" But the body of Christ on earth IS (for better, I am sure, not worse) all busted up just now. And so I thought I'd share this short rhyme, which ... basically just appeared in my head, exactly as written.]

“Love the sinner, hate the sin!” comes the call from the right;

“It’s no sin to be gay!” gets one into the fight.

“You’re picking and choosing! You disobey God!”

“Love neighbor as self! Your theology’s flawed!”

“You toss out the Bible! For that you will burn!”

“I study the Bible! It’s you who won’t learn!”

For now furies are spent, and everyone’s spoken,

On the field is left Jesus, his body all broken.

 

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About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. John is a pastor ordained by The Progressive Christian Alliance. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. And don't forget to sign up for his mucho awesome monthly newsletter.

  • http://www.billprickett.com/ Bill Prickett

    This one got me a bit choked up, John. Lovely!

  • Fred Molesworth

    As Ghandi said “I like your Christ. But I dont like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ”

  • Leslie Marbach

    Beautiful, John!

  • http://allegro63.wordpress.com/ allegro63

    Wow! I love it. Powerful!

  • Courtney

    Beautiful!

  • http://adelasteria.blogspot.com/ Kelley Danahy

    This brought tears to my eyes.

  • http://limpingtowardsgrace.com/ James_Jarvis

    God is not dead but if He were to die it would from a broken heart. Nothing breaks the Father’s heart like his children hurting each other. Father forgive us (me).

  • lymis

    …. right next to all the literal bodies of the gay people who have been beaten and killed simply for being gay, and those who took their lives because they saw no future that included love and support and freedom….

    … right next to all the literal bodies of the Christians who were beaten to death by raging mobs of gay people, and those who killed themselves because gay people wouldn’t let them live their faith.

    Oh, wait.

    • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore

      I know. I was afraid anyone might think I was doing the “Can’t we all just get along?” thing. Which of course isn’t exactly my … approach. But I dunno. This little poem just sort of popped into my mind, and I thought I’d share it. But … yeah. I do of course think this fights hurts/wounds Jesus. But I don’t think he’d have it any other way. Right is right, and needs to be won. This is hardly a “both sides have good points” kind of conflict.

      • Matt

        You had me going for a minute there, John. I thought you might be going down that road, but it’s so not you that I didn’t say anything. Thanks for clarifying. It really is a thought-provoking poem.

      • James Walker

        thanks so much, John. you gave voice to what I was feeling after some of the battles on the last couple of posts.

      • lymis

        Don’t get me wrong, John. It’s a beautiful piece and an important point. And I agree, Jesus would definitely be hurt by the fights. And he wouldn’t necessarily side with the aggressors on either side – at least not the ones stirring things up just to hurt people.

        But that doesn’t make it an equal fight, either, or make the consequences to each side equivalent.

    • Kevin Osborne

      The Christians were probably ahead of them in line when the new shoe store opened. There are places it just isn’t safe to be.

  • http://www.fordswords.net/ Ford1968

    I’ve been meditating a lot on “they curse us and we bless”. I dunno where it’s heading. But it has something to do with compassion. Our moral certitude (from all sides) keeps us from having compassion for those with whom we disagree. I’m not saying we should condone social injustice – that’s not what love our enemies means. But can we see God in the face of those who perpetuate it? My inability to do that is a moral failure which, I believe, is an affront to Christ.

    • http://limpingtowardsgrace.com/ James_Jarvis

      “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of
      me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of
      me.” Matthew 10:37 I’ve always struggled with this verse but suddenly it makes sense to me. If you follow Jesus you must stand with the poor and oppressed even it brings you into conflict with family. Either the family you where born into or your church family. I can not and will not do any less than to stand with my LGBT brothers and sisters. I can not pretend that anything less than fully equality under the law is anything less than this is the moral equivalent of apartheid. If I am true to my beliefs I can not and will not accept anything less than the full inclusion of my LGBT brothers and sisters into the church. This is not as some would have it a debate over the meaning of the word marriage. I support marriage equality and the ordination of LGBT persons who are called to serve. If someone decides that this means they will no longer sit next to me at God’s table that is their decision not mine.

      • Kevin Osborne

        Another way to look at it: “Worthy of” is aspiring to a reward, in this case a stance on the pedestal of Jesus. One has the same viewpoint as Jesus in that we are all, individually, the image of God and, operationally, are less than God only in our viewpoint.

        To understand God and the whole schmear, don’t be less than anyone. Or, more. Know thyself.

    • http://brmckay.wordpress.com/ brmckay

      But can we see God in the face of those who perpetuate it?

      On occasion I remember this too. To not forget it is my hope.

      Just recognizing that it is the Truth is it’s own proof.

      My inability to do that is a moral failure which, I believe, is an affront to Christ.

      I prefer not to think so much in terms of “moral failure” or “affront to Christ”. But rather, just not yet Christ. Since trying to please, or live up to an external and separate God, reinforces the very habits that keep it so.

  • Bones

    “What came first?

    Our idea of the good person? Or our interpretation of what the bible says is a good person? Or the biblical writers’ idea of what is a good person? Or the biblical writers’ culture’s idea of what is a good person? Or God’s idea of what is a good person? Or the ancient culture’s idea of what God’s idea of what is a good person? Or our beliefs about what God’s idea is of a good person?

    Of course, these all feed off of each other in a vicious circle of life that protects those at the top of the food chain and consumes those at the bottom.

    Jesus defied his religious culture’s idea of what was a good person by being a truthful one.”

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/nakedpastor/2013/05/gays-rejected-but-so-was-jesus/

  • Christina Scroggins-Shipley

    <3 it… and fitting for my mood today. Bless you!


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