Blog Round Up: A Christian Response to Westboro ‘Baptist’ Church, Court Decision and Christianity
|November 2, 2007||Posted by Anthony under Blog, General|
(Thanks to this site for finding the Youtube video for me)
I heard with satisfaction that the so called ‘Westboro Baptist Church’ had lost its court case and was penalized some 11 million dollars for protesting at the funeral of a fallen soldier. I think the father of that soldier shows that his son probably was a heroic warrior, as it is a battle all on its own to stick to a legal campaign, and acorns don’t usually fall far from the tree. Somebody had to slap this ‘church’ across the nose. I’m glad somebody did. What I want to know is why the Christian church at large didn’t do more already?
If they had, I bet some of the blogs I’ll be highlighting today would have come off differently.
For example, this one, which is titled “Don’t ever call me a Christian again.” Sure, he doesn’t go and abandon the faith, but in his attempt at distancing himself from ‘Christians’ such as those at WBC, he says,
Gross misunderstandings arise in people’s minds as a result of such an over-simplistic world view. But as they say, perception is reality. So I am separating myself from this hypocrisy and evil. I’m never going to call myself a “Christian” again. Insead [sic] I choose to be a “Christ-Follower.”
Surely it is obvious that it is only a matter of time before his new term becomes corrupted? I think rather than abandon to the wicked a term that is rightfully ours, ‘Christian,’ we ought to fight over that ground. People certainly do have an over-simplistic world view. We don’t help when we let non-Christians, even those claiming to be Christian, take our vocabulary and re-define it. Do we expect the Baptists to abandon their name because the WBC continues to taint their name? I don’t think so.
Gay sites like this one are understandably happy about this development.
The idea that God would punish individuals and nations in the way the WBC suggests can be easily refuted in the Scriptures. While there can’t be any question that God has an interest in the way nations conduct themselves, feigning to think that God operates in this way is thwarted when you read something like Jesus saying,
“Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them- do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.” Luke 13:1-5
Wisdom would suggest being extremely careful when trying to associate tragic events with God’s judgment. This goes for Christians who believe that God approves of their behavior and this is testified by their good fortune in career, etc, etc, too. According to Jesus, God doesn’t work that way.
I understand where this site is coming when he says that when we talk about Phelps and the WBC we give them what they want, so maybe we shouldn’t. However, I would like to quote him in one place against the “Christ-Follower” above:
How does Fred Phelps do it? His Westboro Baptist Church has only about 75 members, most of them related to him. Yet their nutty â€œGod hates fagsâ€ protests at military funerals keep getting national attention.
Yes, that’s right folks. Their ‘church’ only has about 75 members. Most of these, I’m informed, are from a small number of the same families. Why should we all abandon the term ‘Christian’ because a bunch of knuckleheads take the name themselves and do stupid things with it and get a lot of attention? Nonsense.
You know what we should do? The Christian churches that know better should denounce the WBC and file lawsuit after lawsuit against them. Essentially, we ought to lay siege to the WBC. It will become clear that Christians can take a stand and rather than thriving, the WBC will hopefully find it ridiculously difficult to operate. And stop.
And finally, this short blog here I think affirms a critical point. The title is the nugget: ‘”God hates Fred Phelps.”
The logic is clear. If bad things happening to you are a sign from God that you are being judged, then the WBC is being judged. The WBC is saying that they are ‘blessed’ to be persecuted, but naturally one could say that our soldier’s deaths in Iraq are also a persecution for which we should view as a blessing.
After all, our country has gone and done what the UN completely failed to do: remove a dictator and feed the people of that country and give them the opportunity for genuine freedom. The UN, you will recall, took the ‘humanitarian’ route and only put restrictions and such on Iraq, ie, the Oil for Food fiasco. Of course, hundreds of UN officials were bribed as well as numerous- mostly European- corporations, so that Iraqis did not get food, Oil got out, and Hussein got richer. For going in to Iraq, America has suffered. Not the least in the deaths of our soldiers, but in the scorn of the very ‘humanitarian’ nations that let Hussein do his dirty work in the first place.
See, that kind of ‘blessing’ and ‘cursing’ argument can be made to apply anywhere!