Christian Pastor Off Task23 Οκτωβρίου, 2022
Terry Jones is off task.
Jones is the man who has said that he and his congregation will burn copies of the Quran on September 11 to protest radical Islamic terrorists. In spite of being told that such an action will inflame Muslims all over the world and possibly put the lives of American service men and women in jeopardy, Jones says he is going to go ahead.
In an interview, Jones said that he appreciated the fact that Americans might suffer because of his actions, he will go ahead because not to do so would mean that America was backing down.
I am unable to call Jones a Christian or a pastor, though he calls himself both, because in my opinion, he is off task. A Christian is mandated to follow the teachings of Jesus the Christ, and a pastor is charged to lead people toward God, not away.
All through the Bible, and especially for Christians, in the Gospels, Jesus calls for us to love each other as God loves us. This Jesus in the Bible is one who loves, accepts and encourages everyone, and asks us to do likewise. The actions of Jesus comforted people, and made others see the value in loving each other. The action that Jones is pledging to take is about as far away from what the Gospels ask of us as could be.
Significantly, religious leaders of all faiths are denouncing Jones.That in and of itself is ironic, as religious leaders are not wont to speak out against other religious leaders, and it speaks to a basic belief that most clergy about God. The God of us all would be disturbed, the religious leaders say, not to mention the jeopardy to world peace the actions of this one man is creating.
Historically, “Christians” in America have been guilty of being off task. Christians have practiced exclusion and bigotry and even hatred, so it is significant that other evangelical Christians are speaking out. Their voices add credence to the shame of what Jones is proposing to do.
What is saddest of all is that this man calls himself a pastor, but instead of leading people toward God, who would want us all to love each other, he is instead sanctifying their fear and hatred. This God who created us all would not want – does not want – us to hate each other.
At the end of the day, what Jones and others like him forget is that God, as we have been taught, is powerful enough to chastise those who offend Him. The tragedy and horror of September 11 will not ever be forgotten, nor should it be.
But, as my mother would always say, “Two wrongs do not make a right.”
Jones will have to answer to God for what he is doing, but there is another, even more sobering thought: it is possible that the whole world will have to answer for what Jones plans to do.