Imagine a Muslim group in Iraq declaring a national “Burn a Bible day” on March 20, the opening day of Shock and Awe campaign launching the beginning of the Iraq war. 

Imagine a Muslim Imam saying, “We don’t want to offend moderate Christians, only the radical one’s who are blowing up our country.’  So He incites a group of followers to bring all the Bibles they can to Baghdad, and hold a bonfire of Bibles. 

Imagine having a group of Muslims follow in tow, and dedicate an entire holiday to the desecration of the Holy Word of God.  Dancing in joy as they send a message to the “Christian Nation” of America.  Enough is Enough, they scream out loud. 

What would you do?

Would you sit by passively and just think, “oh those crazy people,” and go on with life or would you rise up and defend God’s word?

Well, as the report came out this weekend, General Petraeus has warned of just an uprising happening in the Muslim world.  He claims that the events reportedly planned for Sept. 11 in Gainsville Florida have a real potential impact for the safety of our troops in Muslim lands, and greater still; the work that’s already been done to lay a foundation of trust between Middle East and West. 

For those of you who haven’t heard, Evidently there is a Pastor in Gainsville Florida who has decided to re-interpret the scriptures according to his own design.  He’s had enough of “radical” Islam, and is threatening to burn Qurans on September 11 in order to convey a message of enough is enough. 

I was driving to a men’s group this morning when I heard this interview on the radio, I couldn’t believe my ears.  I can’t imagine someone who believes in Jesus to act in such a way, and to gain notoriety for it at the same time, this is absolutely ridiculous. 

If you take time to watch the interview you’ll hear a few points made by the pastor,

1.)  “I’m offended when they Burn the flag, or burn the Bible.”  he says with resolve in his voice. 

An Interesting First Point.  So,You’re offended when they burn the Bible Mr. Jones, but you have no quams about burning their sacred holy book.  So here we go, like a bunch of third graders on the playground.  “My dad can beat up your dad.” and so we wind up flaming a fire of anger and dissent.  Your hubris is not honorable Mr. Jones, it’s rather childish, and you are 100% in defiance of God’s teaching in this day. 

2.)  “Our Message is not intended to offend Moderate Muslims” He says. 

Mr. Jones, can you really tell me that if someone intended on burning Bibles, that it wouldn’t offend the “moderate” believers in this country?  What you are attempting to do will not only incite the violence from the radicals, you will incite the rage for moderate muslims to stand up against you, and mis-understand the heart of Christian teaching.  Your Quasi attempt to welcome moderate muslims into this country is no more than a smoke screen for the politically correct media.  What you are in fact doing is taking a stand against ALL Islam.  And you have the right to do that.  But just like the Mosque at ground zero…just because you have the right, it’s not always in good taste. 

If you want to take that stand, fine by me,  but don’t lecture the people of this country about Freedom of Religion as you commit an atrocity like burning someone’s sacred scripture.  Your logic is inconsistent, and shows the world the heart of your teaching.  Evil, Mean Spirited, and definitely not in line with Jesus’ message here on earth. 

PLEASE, for those of you in foreign places, PLEASE KNOW THIS IS NOT THE TEACHING OF THE BIBLE!

3.)”What about turn the other cheek?” the reporter asks.

“Most of the time Christians are to turn the other cheek, but every once and a while we have to stand up…just look at Jesus in the temple.” Mr. Jones once again distorts the truth. 

Most of the time?
MOST OF THE TIME?

I suppose Most of the time it’s a good idea I don’t commit adultery on my wife.
I suppose Most of the time I shouldn’t murder.
Maybe Most of the time, it’s a good idea that I pray.

MOST OF THE TIME?  What planet did you come from sir?  What seminary dare give you a degree?

Jesus didn’t come and destroy different pagan faiths.  He knew there was only one God, one Truth, and One way.  He was confident enough in the power of God, that he didn’t have to go around proving it to others.  The people he was most angry with were the religious officials who were distorting the truth to meet their own personal agendas, The same agenda that you, Mr. Jones, are trying to promote.  

Christianity is not about trying to meet the evils of the world head on with some sort of book burning.  The implications of what Mr. Jones and his church are about to do will throw us deeper in the Dark Ages of Understanding. 

If Mr. Jones wants to take a look at Jesus, maybe he should see that Jesus bowed His right and authority at the feet of the religious leaders, and ultimately the Roman Empire.  He went to the cross and died a bloody death to show the world God can live with you and He can die with you and for you.  Jesus came to start new life in God’s family, He didn’t come to judge.  That’s another whole part of the story, and to be quite Frank, a part you have NOTHING TO DO WITH!

He didn’t start burning the sacred texts of the Roman Gods.
He didn’t go into the pagan temples and turn over the statues.
He didn’t try and argue His way into power so that other religions would be led to repentance. 

The Jesus message is clear.  Love trumps Evil.  Caring for the needs of others gives you the right to speak.  Paying attention to real time problems, and meeting people where they are, helps gain ground in your effort to share the Love of God with them. 

This, “I can beat you up” attitude is not of the Bible.  In fact, Paul says it like this…

If you have any
encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his
love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and
compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
 Who, being in very nature God,
      did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
 but made himself nothing,
      taking the very nature of a servant,
      being made in human likeness.
 And being found in appearance as a man,
      he humbled himself
      and became obedient to death—
         even death on a cross!
 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
      and gave him the name that is above every name,
 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
      in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
      to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:1-11

You see Mr. Jones, the counter intuitiveness of the Bible is, as you humble yourself, God raises you up.  But the prideful are the one’s that incur God’s wrath.   

Mr. Jones, if you want to fight the nation of Islam, run for office, join the military, go be a warrior.  Enjoy doing the duty of government, which is primarily to protect it’s citizens from harm both domestic and international. 

But if you’re interested in knowing the heart and mind of God, if you’re interested in teaching the heart of God, it’s time that we together concentrate our efforts not on burning books and insulting people, but rather; if you truly want to invoke Jesus, maybe look closer at His words

Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are
blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for
you since the creation of the world. For
I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you
gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

 “Then
the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and
feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’

Matthew 25:34-40

Or Just in cast that wasn’t clear enough…

When asked, what is the greatest commandment, Jesus answered,

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind, and with all your soul, this is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it, To love your neighbor as yourself.

Matthew 22:37-40

The God you are proclaiming is not the Jesus of the Bible.
The teaching you are implementing is not the Way of Jesus.
At the very least, you are putting our troops in danger.
But at the very most, you are misrepresenting the faith I hold so dear.  I pray  you change your mind before the weekend. 

It’s no wonder why the world doesn’t understand the mission of God.

Click Here for Audio Version

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