Many of you know that I like to tackle the stuff that many stay away from … and frankly it’s not because I am so courageous, I just speak my mind and like to give my perspective on religious issues, good or bad.
So here are my thoughts on Religious Bigotry; it’s a shame for people of faith, especially people of the Christian faith for whom I am apart, to be bigoted as it relates to faith. Christians are to be people of love, grace, mercy … people full of kindness… right? At least that is how I read the Bible. I do not see room for religious bigotry.
Now let me be clear here, I am a Christian and I believe that Jesus is the way the truth and the life and that there is no other way we are made right with God but by the blood of Christ Jesus that was shed on the cross. Okay, I get it; I believe it and I share it! BUT I see many in my own group who are judgmental, and even hateful of those who do not share our tenants of faith … this my friends is religious bigotry and if the truth be told it’s not very Christ like. I believe we should LOVE people into the kingdom of God, not judge them or even scare the hell out of them! That’s so not Jesus!
I’ve never seen a group more divided and even divisive as the “Christian Church” … each group thinking they have the corner market on biblical understanding and divine truth … often bashing other groups because of their “lack of understanding”. Just nuts! I remember this all to well since I was one of these people years ago … thinking that everyone else was wrong and I (of course) and the group I was in (of course) had the FULL unadulterated truth. Religious pride in its grandest form! It’s disgusting!
All this doesn’t mean that we change our beliefs or that we say others are right and we are wrong … I think it’s more an attitude of the heart, a heart of love and compassion towards other people. And don’t we ultimately defeat our enemy by making them our friend? I think so! Also when you get into absolute truth … truth is truth, but how you come to understand and live out that truth is crucial.
For example if my son came to me with a math quiz and he had said that 5 + 6 = 8 I would lovingly instruct him and show him again how mathematics work to help him reach the truth on his own. I wouldn't tell him that his mathematical skills are stupid and he is going to math hell … that wouldn’t help him. I also wouldn't just say – “your wrong, and the answer is 11 … I am right … I know the truth and you don’t.” And here is another thing I would do; I would have him explain to me how he came to the conclusion that 8 was the answer … then we could discuss.
I think religious people often get defensive, argumentative and upset when someone challenges or offers another opinion because they are insecure and can’t really defend their position because they don’t even know WHY they believe what they believe.