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  • ivanildotrindade 9:40 am on February 9, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Adolf Hitler, bad thingsGod's name, Crusades, hitler, hitler's religious ideas, Inquisition, , love your enemies, Mein Kampf, stupid things   

    God didn’t tell you to do that! 

    People have done bad things in the name of God. But that doesn’t mean that they were instructed by God to do such things. My God, for example, would not approve of the Crusades, the Inquisition, all the burning at the stakes, blowing up abortion clinics, protesting at the funerals of gay people, etc.

    So just because someone says he is acting in the Name of God, that doesn’t mean that his license to kill came from the Almighty. It may surprise you, but even Hitler thought he was acting in the service of God. His words about the importance of religious beliefs are famous:

    “This human world of ours would be inconceivable without the practical existence of a religious belief. The great masses of a nation are not composed of philosophers. For the masses of the people, especially faith is absolutely the only basis of a moral outlook on life. The various substitutes that have been offered have not shown any results that might warrant us in thinking that they might usefully replace the existing denominations. …There may be a few hundreds of thousands of superior men who can live wisely and intelligently without depending on the general standards that prevail in everyday life, but the millions of others cannot do so.”

    • Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, Vol. 1 Chapter 10

    This, however, does not mean that Hitler was a Christian, as many have claimed. His actions definitely didn’t illustrate the teachings of Christ. But if he was not a Christian, what was he? I think he was simply someone who used religion to advance his political causes. He was not deranged. He was very conscious of what he was doing. He was not crazy, he was crazy with power.

    And that is one way to test one’s religious claims, isn’t it? How do them stack against the teachings of the founder? Jesus taught us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. That means that anyone who hates anyone is not advancing God’s causes.

    Christ loved the last, the least, the lost of this world. He was a friend of the poor, the sick, the tax collectors and prostitutes. That means that anyone who hates the poor and is not reaching out to the destitute is not on God’s side. In fact, the book of Proverbs says, “Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.” (Proverbs 14:31).

    Yes, Jesus said “go and sin no more” to the woman caught in adultery, but many Christians seem to say “sin no more, then go.” I think the order is important. Jesus didn’t expect perfection before he releases us into the world. That is a huge difference and one that probably assumes many bumps on the road. But I am glad that Jesus also lay down what the standard to live by.

    Maybe I should write about great things people have done in God’s name. The list is also endless. We will see what comes next.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

  • ivanildotrindade 6:53 pm on February 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Anti-defamation League, bishop eddie long, Crusades, embarrassing God, rabbi ralph messer, stupidity, Torah, torah ceremony   

    Stupid "Torah Boring" 

    So today I start a short series on the stupid things people do in the name of God. Short not for lack of material. The list is long so I will have to be selective. From “Christians” who protest at the funeral of soldiers killed in the Iraq War to pastors who promote a Koran-burning ceremony to bombing abortion clinics to starting the Crusades to wrapping someone in a scroll purported to be the Torah and proclaiming him “king,” there is no end to this!

    This last week was just too much. Bishop Eddie Long, at one time pastor of a 25,000 member congregation, got himself wrapped in a lot more than the Torah when he decided to be part of a bizarre ritual declaring him “king.” Read the story here and watch the CNN video.

    Now, mind you, this is a man who should be quietly ruminating on the implications of the recent developments in his life and ministry. Four young men accused him of sexual coercion and before the case went to trial, he settled out of court. Why did he settle? We have the right to ask. His wife asked and apparently didn’t get satisfaction. She filed for divorce last year.

    So why would you subject yourself to a ridiculous pageant which was bound to evoke strong reactions from everyone with even a bit of common sense about their head? Maybe because the man is dying to cut the slate clean. He wants to turn the clock back and once again be the man of power and reputation that he once was. He wants to get all the little pieces of the broken vase, glue them together, and by a stroke of magic make the vase whole again. But is this how God sees him?

    The “Rabbi” who did the shameful did seems to think so. This man is born again, he proclaimed. He is a king. But the king in the Old Testament was supposed to be a servant to the people. Sure, God warned the people of Israel that the king would place demands upon them, but God’s king was supposed to be humble. And Jesus’ model of piousness was to put the interests of others before your own. And the Bible is full of injunctions about how even though God forgives sins, there are always adverse consequences to rebellion.

    “Bishop” Long is wrong and he ought to be ashamed of himself. He apologized to the Anti-Defamation League and the apology was accepted. I am glad for that, but if I take his apology seriously, it means that either  he is stupid or he thinks all the rest of us are.

    I still wonder: how can these self-proclaimed “servants of God” live with themselves? I wish they would know how much they are embarrassing God and how much people like me and others have to come after them and try to clean up the mess they have left behind.

    Here is a possible contribution Bishop Long and his favorite “Rabbi” made last week: because of their stupidity, several people may have turned away from the God of the Bible. Shame on you both!

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

    • ivanildotrindade 7:00 pm on February 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      do u have your own list of stupid stuff people do in God’s name? send it to me. i normally don’t do that, but will make an exception: i will hoard stupid.

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