Christians in America are no longer people of faith, we’re people of fear.
Instead of truly putting our trust, faith, and reliance upon the Way, teachings, and example of Jesus, we put our actual faith in guns, our obscenely over-funded military, and in strong-man & authoritarian leaders. …You’re saying, that doesn’t apply to me! Okay, I’ll switch pronouns… Not only are they not Christians, they aren’t Americans. They wish we still lived under the rule of a sovereign king. They’re the “Tea Party” because they miss the days of having tea time along with a monarch sitting from his throne each day.
In that spirit, I’ll go back to the “royal we” and say, we apparently don’t actually believe that our Christian God is capable of ensuring that God’s will will continue to be done. We don’t trust that the faith that was taught to us by our parents and grandparents can hold up to the “onslaught of Muslims” who we fear are “coming over hear to take over and ruin our way of life.” We don’t believe that Allah is simply the Arabic word for God. And we think that we need to resort to building walls and taking up arms in order to protect us – as we no longer believe that Jesus’ teachings of nonviolence are effective. We no longer believe in either the resurrection or in Jesus’ rebuking of Peter just a few days before Jesus was executed – that “those who live by the sword shall die by it.”
Alas, it’s hard to continue saying “we” (as we don’t want to admit having anything to do with this false way of being Christian) – so, back to focusing on “them.” If they really trusted in the God they claim to trust in, then they wouldn’t fear welcoming people of other faiths into our nation. They’d actually TRUST in God’s resurrection power and in the mighty acts described in their Bibles! They’d believe that the more the Roman Empire persecuted the early Christians, the more their movement spread like wildfire (and they’d realize that persecuting Muslims will have the same effect)! You’d think they’d believe that their God is trustworthy and doesn’t need defending. And they’d actually believe that nothing can separate us from God!
..I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
And yet… who will speak up for them when they come for the trade unionists, or those who complain when their Social Security is abolished or when their Medicare or Medicaid are cut back? ….
As the prophet Elijah put it to the ancient Hebrews who were dabbling in the idolatry of worship to Baal, “How long will you go limping with two different opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.”
Ba(a)ll in your court American Christians.
In Pax Christi (the peace of Christ) not in Pax Romana,
p.s. Yes, it is the case that not all American Christians are this way. While ever since 1980, conservative evangelicalism and fundamentalism have co-opted and hijacked the faith, there are still plenty of liberal and progressive Christians who do not share those views. In fact, we’re growing in number. I couldn’t be a Christian in the U.S. today if it weren’t for progressive Christianity.
“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when adults are afraid of the light.”
Rev. Roger Wolsey is a United Methodist pastor and author of Kissing Fish: christianity for people who don’t like christianity