In which I tell you how your religion works

christianity_versus_other_religions_blog-horngsawI am not a Christian.  That fact has probably been perfectly clear for a very long time; it doesn’t take a whole lot of reading around here to figure it out.

What may be less clear to non long-time visitors: Chances are I know way more about Christianity than you do.  Is that a guarantee?  No, not at all.  But most of you don’t have a Master’s degree in Biblical studies.  I do.  And I got it from one of the best divinity schools in the country.  So chances are I know more about Christianity and Western religion in general than you do.

I’ve been thinking about Jesus a lot in the last few days.  Maybe I should go full wanker here and call him Yeshua, or something, to rid him of some of the cruft that’s accumulated over the past 2000 years, but the point is I’ve spent a lot of time in the last few days thinking about Jesus.  And also, in those last few days, I’ve watched an awful lot of people who not only call themselves Christians but tend to openly boast about their Christianity— in and of itself, an unChristian act— completely pervert the meaning of their own religion.  To a degree that, frankly, should be physically painful along with spiritually.

All religions concern themselves with charity.  All religions concern themselves with the poor.  But I don’t think I’m going out on too much of a limb when I say that, of the three major Western religions at least (I’m hedging on Buddhism, mostly, which I know little about) there is no figure who is so concerned with the poor and dispossessed as is Jesus.  Treatment of the poor is very nearly the whole of Jesus’ ministry.  And his feelings on the matter, despite 2000 years and who knows how many translations (well, okay, two) of his original words, are perfectly clear:

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33 and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34 Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38 And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39 And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ 40 And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family,[g] you did it to me.’ 41 Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44 Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

That’s Matthew 25, in case you don’t recognize it.  The translation is the NRSV, which I generally find to be the most accurate translation available; there was a time where if it was the Hebrew Bible I would have translated it myself but my Hebrew is terribly rusty and my Greek is virtually nonexistent so I have to trust the translators.

That said, though, this is really, really, crystal clear.  It is unambiguous and open.  It is not a matter for debate and not a matter of opinion, a word American Christians are really fond of tossing around.

Just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.

There are reasons to oppose bringing Syrian refugees to America.  None of them are good reasons.  Most of them are sickeningly racist.  And all of them are deeply, obviously, blatantly and clearly unChristian.  You cannot object to helping these people and call yourself a Christian.  Jesus himself would rebuke you.  He already has, in fact.  Reread verses 41-46 if you need to.  If you refuse to help the sick and the destitute and the needy, you are going to Hell.

There is literally no way to make that any clearer.  Christians are commanded to help those who are in need.  Not requested.  Not asked.  Not begged.  Commanded.  In plain and clear language.  By Jesus.  There’s no way to wriggle out of this, folks.  You either help these people– or, to do the absolute minimum, get the hell out of their way– or by the words of the man you consider the son of God you are going to Hell.


Let’s change the subject a bit, and talk about cowardice.  I have grown desperately tired of fear being the sole criterion by which every political decision is made in this country, particularly by the same people who are so hungry to convince you of their own toughness in every other set of circumstances.

I do not fear terrorism.  I do not fear “terrorists.”  I do not fear being blown up.  Neither should you.  Yes, even though it just happened in France.  Neither should you.  I am tired of living in a country where people openly advocate leaving children to die because they are terrified that one or two out of thousands of people who desperately need our help might be bad people.  Or, to be slightly more Biblical in my choice of words, people who openly advocate letting widows, and children, and orphans die horribly because of their own fear.   America is truly a nation of cowards if we allow this to happen, and the loudest voices for cowardice among us are also, somehow, the loudest voices for their own toughness.

We live in a country where grown men are terrified to go to the mall without their guns.

We live in a country where people living quite literally in the middle of nowhere are afraid that a tiny militia group on the other side of the world might notice them and come to blow them  up.

We live in a country where those same people are so proudly ignorant that not only are they unable to distinguish any one brown-skinned person from any other, they have the gall to be smug about it.

If we were to let some number of Syrian refugees come to live among us– for the purposes of this conversation I don’t even care about the number– we are certain to import some of them who are bad people.  Some of them might even be deserving of capital letters; Bad People.

I don’t care.  At all.

America has had one of what we like to call “terrorist attacks” in this country since September of 2001.  So two in this century, I suppose.  The Boston bombers killed three people and injured a couple hundred others.  In that time we have had thousands upon thousands of our own people killed by guns wielded by our own people, and we do nothing.  In fact, we insist that nothing be done.  A certain segment of our population is literally ready to go to war to protect their right to own weapons that are virtually guaranteed, if they are ever used at all, to hurt one of their friends or family members and not some half-imagined “attackers.”  And I note with some irritation that since Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev were/are white, there is an entire movement of people dedicated to proving that their attacks were either fabricated by the government or justified.

If the French attacks had happened in America, and had involved white people, an entire political party would be insisting we do nothing about it right now, and impugning the sanity and the patriotism of anyone who disagreed with them.  Guns in America alone kill several multiples more people every year than terrorist attacks in Western countries have killed this century.  

So forgive me if I do not find your fear convincing or important.  You are so much more likely to be killed by the gun you keep in the glove box of your car than by a “terrorist” that I literally cannot take you seriously.  If you live anywhere outside of the five or six largest cities in America and you genuinely fear terrorism you should seek mental help, and I say that as someone who actually sees a mental health counselor at the moment.  It is not a flippant statement.  It is roughly akin to fearing shark attacks while living in Nebraska.  If you do live in one of those five or six cities, your risk is slightly– very, very slightly, because the total number of US cities affected by terrorism this century is currently three– elevated, but you’re still being an idiot.  And you should stop.


I was made to memorize this poem, or at least the last five lines of it, in fourth grade.  I typed it from memory, although I will admit double-checking to make sure I got the words right:

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

This is, of course, The New Colossus, the Emma Lazarus poem that is currently mounted on a plaque inside the Statue of Liberty.  It also has the advantage of rather exceptional clarity.

It is unChristian to keep these people out.

It is unAmerican to keep these people out.

It is inhuman to keep these people out.

And it is foolish in the extreme to allow fear to dictate our actions, especially– most especially– when that fear is not only rooted in our worst impulses, but is exactly what our actual enemies want us to do.

Enough.


Comments on this post are now closed.  If you enjoyed reading it, you can still hit “Like” and you can still share it.  Or you could buy a book, which would REALLY be awesome.

125 thoughts on “In which I tell you how your religion works

      1. Nanette Bergman

        Magnificently stated. I wish you were around when some Congressman from Mississippi voted to keep 20,000 Jewish orphans out of the U.S. During WW II. Ge said something to the effect, that they were Jewish children now, but in 15 years they will be, Kikes!” Just another Bible pounding fool who sent 20,000 children to the gas chambers. Oh and let us not forget Congress sending the ship called the St. Louis to Europe, most all of them got a go to you death pass at the death camps.

        The U. S. Is not the only country guilty of this, Mexico, Cuba, England. Imagine a world where people are free to learn, work and contribute. Please let the Syrians out of the dark ages, it might even lead to peace in the Middle East!

        Oops the arms on tractors might suffer a financial loss…. How sass for them😦

        Liked by 4 people

        1. Thank you for mentioning these situations. I remembered reading about them but as an Australian, I couldn’t remembered the details though I very much remember being completely shocked.

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          1. Kathel

            One of the many wonderful things about being adults is that we’ve grown out of the tyranny of others’ ethical choices determining our own. So while this question may be interesting to some, it’s not terribly relevant to the point of the post.

            Liked by 4 people

          2. Dina Barzilai

            Like the poster below mentioned, your question isn’t really relevant to the post. But since you are wondering what a tiny country the size of New Jersey is doing–as its citizens suffer daily terror attacks and deaths–Israeli doctors/hospitals have been secretly (so the patient won’t be killed by his countrymen) treating Syrians free in the years since their civil war started. Israel is a hot spot for refugees from Africa and the Middle East. In spite of her small size, they offer humanitarian aid in almost every disaster. Re: the Syrians, the following article is just one example of what an Israeli NGO is doing for them. Google how Israel helps the world. Or go to Wikipedia and read the list of Israeli inventions that make your life better. You’ll be reading all day. http://www.jta.org/2015/09/22/news-opinion/israel-middle-east/how-israeli-volunteers-on-the-ground-in-europe-are-helping-syrian-refugees

            Liked by 3 people

          3. Christiana

            I’m fairly certain they aren’t accepting any, which is truly shameful. They have allowed some into hospitals on their borders, but their policy is pretty much to lock their doors and hide behind a wall. Like this post said, that pretty much means they are all going to Hell. Israel is hardly a country we should be looking to for moral decisions, given their treatment of refugees and the conflict with Palestine. Israel cares about Israel, and that’s pretty much it. One person I spoke to about this said that Putin should be accepting refugees, not America, which is only slightly more ridiculous than waiting for Israel to step up. We should not be making moral decisions based on the behavior of other countries. That’s just childish. That’s the equivalent to doing whatever the cool kids are doing, simply because they are cool.

            Liked by 1 person

  1. Reblogged this on Contrafactual and commented:

    Please read this. If you are a Christian please read this. If you are a non-Christian please read this. If you are a human being please read this.

    And once you have read it, please, please reblog it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Syrian refugees and Christian values? | See, there's this thing called biology...

  3. It could not be clearer. I think a good case can be made that Jesus was not turned into a religion by himself. It is fantastic to think that a strict believing Jew should universalise the golden rule.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Doug Keffeler

      Mark 16:15. And He said to them “Go into all the world and proclaim the Gospel to all creation.”
      Seems like He wanted to start some sort of a movement. Maybe not a religion but He definitely wanted His teaching spread around.

      Like

      1. The teaching was dangerously revolutionary ; hence Jesus was quickly crucified. Such teaching was impossible for the vast majority as a life style so the Apostle Paul adapted it into a practical religion.

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          1. You figured it out. Just put in the URL to the .gif, .jpg, etc. and WordPress / your web browser handles the rest.

            For Vimeo videos the URL also works.

            For YouTube you need brackets included.

            Finding good animated gifs is another issue …

            Liked by 1 person

  4. You’ve certainly put into beautiful words exactly what I’ve been thinking. I am not a practicing Christian, but I was raised in the Christian church and I know the answer to WWJD: feed the hungry, heal the sick, house the homeless, take from the rich to give to the poor. Not that our politicians are even willing to do such socialist things for white Christian Americans down on their luck…
    Oh, and cars. Cars kill and injure even more people than guns. So don’t drive, people. Demand good public transportation. You’ll be helping the environment too! (K)

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Thank you so much for this. I am so disgusted with the way refugees and immigrants are handled in this country. Back when immigration issues were focused more on Mexican immigrants, at the Republican headquarters near where I live, there were several sign on the lawn repeating Trump’s “They’re bring drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some I assume are good people” rhetoric. When I saw it, I immediately thought “so much for bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free.”

    Liked by 1 person

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  7. I follow your blog because I know you will say, honestly, what needs to be said, and that others (including myself) fail to say. I am an atheist who thinks that Jesus got it about right. Here in the UK I am in dire embarrassment at our government’s failure to accept more than a piffling number of refugees. Keep talking.

    Liked by 1 person

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  9. Your thoughts make sense to me. Coming from a Christian background I was made to learn the last five lines of this poem– and sing them as part of our church’s children’s choir. The lines, and the tune that goes with them, are permanently embedded in my mind and I’ve been thinking of them all week. You can’t teach kids one thing, then turn 180º when the time comes to put your good words into concrete actions. Or at least you shouldn’t do that. But I’m a lapsed Presbyterian, so what do I know? sigh

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Well don’t I just suck! My post looks like a second grader wrote it compared to yours! Beautifully written. I am going to reblog this.
    I do consider myself to be Christian and I think what this country is doing is so wrong. I am so angry about it. The terrorists from 09/11 came here on student visas. It is MUCH harder to get into this country as a refugee. I am not worried about bringing them here. I do feel that by turning them away, we are just adding fuel to the fire. Not to mention, it’s just plain f**king wrong.
    I hope you don’t mind me re-blogging this. Thank you for sharing this with us!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Kara Libby

    Love love love! I agree with everything but 2 points! First, NYC, Washington, DC and Boston were all attacked (3 cities vs 2) and, if we want to be ‘technical’ the town where the other plane went down in PA (Shanksville?) would make 4. It’s a small, yet meaningful, point. My final is that there have been numerous ‘false flag’ accusations about the Boston Marathon attack. So, nuts are nuts. Thank you for a well reasoned and passionate response to fear and hate.
    Best-Kara

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re absolutely right, and I’m a bit ashamed that I forgot about DC, which technically got hit TWICE because of the anthrax attacks. Modifying that part of the post. Thanks for the catch.

      Like

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  13. van

    Hey, I wish you ‘God speed’ as you and your social group sponsors a Syrian refugee family in the near future…. as the Christian church we belong to did.

    Like

    1. I would love to! My governor, who makes a loud show of his Christianity, has been expelling Syrians from the state, which is part of the reason for this post. Thank you for your help and I am proud of your church.

      Like

  14. https://saymber.wordpress.com/2015/11/18/18-nov-2015-the-syrian-refugees-and-anyone-displaced-and-suffering-by-war-and-poverty-christians-its-time-to-read-your-bible/ – I do believe we are on the same page friend…literally in a Biblical sense! Matthew is my favorite book of the New Testament even if I too am no longer a “label” in the realm of religion. Reblogging — may be your “language” will reach those I did not. Every message has a language and the same one may have to come from many different orgins in order to be received.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Reblogged this on As I see it and commented:

    This is the message from my https://saymber.wordpress.com/2015/11/18/18-nov-2015-the-syrian-refugees-and-anyone-displaced-and-suffering-by-war-and-poverty-christians-its-time-to-read-your-bible/ blog in a different “language” that might resonate with those who didn’t “get it” the way I presented it. Every message has many different messengers so that there is a greater chance more will receive it.

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  16. This post is so spot on! As a Christian, it makes me livid to see other “Christians” going off the deep end over this. And not just the refugees, but the poor in general. It’s like they’ve never even thumbed through the Gospels.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Pingback: The Week’s End // A Round-up of All Sorts of Interesting Stuff | ZEN AND Π

    1. Guilty; I got dinged for this upthread as well and the closest thing to a defense I can offer is that I was trying to think like an asshole and “Foreign” and “Muslim” trumped “white.” That said, I did apparently get the truthers part correct. I was unaware they existed.

      Like

  18. Thanks so much for putting all this together, Luther. The next day, we experienced a severe hailstorm and lost part of our roof to think about and as an Australian, it’s also interesting to gain some American insights not put out by the mass media.
    To be perfectly honest, I’ve felt like hiding myself, husband, 2 kids and 2 dogs under my desk and staying there, keeping each other close. This isn’t just because of terrorist attacks but a week ago we had 4 Army Black Hawk helicopters doing laps of our beachside town and that was a bit scary because I didn’t even think we’d rate an Army exercise here. The next day we had a severe hailstorm and lost part of the roof. I was out in the car at the time and hail was pummeling against the car and I expected the windscreen to shatter any minute. Then, Paris Saturday.
    However, Monday morning came round again and we had to get on with it.
    I don’t believe the old rules apply anymore. Perhaps, you’ll be okay if you’re in the middle of nowhere but who knows? The random nature of the attacks and the actions of lone wolves, mean that civilians are target and no one is safe. However, no one ever was. It’s just an illusion. Living with a chronic, life-threatening illness, I’ve been conscious of my own mortality for awhile and would be considered a “likely target”. However, we had quite a few friends die suddenly and there were few to no warning signs.
    This doesn’t mean we should be living in fear but instead fully embracing life and carpe diem seize he day. Make the most of every minute.
    Thanks for coffee and the mental-philosophical workout xx Rowena

    Like

    1. Ron

      I respect anyones right to choose to believe or not to believe in Christ our Savior, which is exactly what the Bible teaches. I also believe that nobody has the right to suppress the 1st Amendment Right to publicly profess their Christian Beliefs in any Forum where anybody else is allowed to publicly profess their different beliefs. After all, the Bible teaches that all humans can choose wheather to spend Eternity in HEAVEN, with our Lord and Savior, or in HELL, in misery. In the case of those who don’t share a belief in GOD, I guess you will return to that molecular ooze in the ground. Good luck with that.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. “Matthew 24:21 For there will be persecution such as the world has never before seen in all its history, and will never see again.” The times Jesus spoke of in this chapter of the Bible might be here.

    I appreciate the time it took to compose your post and express your views. I hope to always try to understand the point of view of many, even if I don’t agree with their conclusions. I think most Christians are like me and are not advocating abandoning our fellow men and women to torture, persecution, starvation, etc. We want to help, we want to remove them from peril, but in our attempts to aid, we want safeguards in place to keep the aid from facilitating the evil of those who disguise themselves as refugees in order to further the reach of their ideologies.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Yes, lowliest of minions here. I eventually made it down to this comments box after reading through the literally dozens of messages people have already left. They seem between them to have covered all the clever new angles and witty follow-ups that I might eventually have thought of given time, so I guess all that’s left for me to say is how much I enjoyed reading your post, how much I agreed with it, and how depressed I am that it will be sneered at — or worse, ignored — by those who most need to read it.

    Like

  21. Mickey Phoenix

    Thank you for writing this.

    And thank you, as well, for the link to your book at the end. I read it and enjoyed it greatly, and have purchased your other SF books as well. Assuming that they are as well-written and entertaining as the first, I’ll be recommending the lot of them to my friends.

    Liked by 1 person

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  23. Amanda W.

    I’m just so delighted that other people feel just the way I do, and can eloquently express themselves in an intelligent manner. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for this post.

    Like

  24. Cory

    Great post, man! I do happen to know quite a bit about Buddhism, and I think it has a great deal to teach the West, and to learn from it as well. I highly recommend this lecture by David Loy, a buddhist scholar, practitioner, and teacher. The vid was uploaded in 2012, but is still incredibly relevant. I think you would really enjoy his take. Check it out if you can find an hour to kill! Peace!

    Like

  25. Betty

    Bottom line, will you and I and all of our neighbors invite a refugee into our own homes? Our opinions on this matter don’t count for anything unless we put out the effort to be a part of the solution. So let’s get a sign up sheet going and stop conversation about whether or not to allow them in. That’s where the rubber meets the road.

    Like

    1. How do you house people who aren’t allowed into the country? That’s putting the cart before the horse. The first step HAS to be getting the process moving in the first place.

      Also, the number of people who seem to think that “refugee resettlement” means “somebody puts a Syrian family in my basement” is kinda shocking. Maybe take a look at the State Department’s website?

      Like

      1. Yeah, that’s a weird argument. Refugees have been taken in by all countries and especially the USA for ages, they all require long, extensive background checks, and they all require a long-term, focused effort by the state department on helping them integrate into society — a process which usually doesn’t require living in volunteers’ basements, any number of whom may be more crazy than actual terrorists.

        “Unless you want a refugee living in your house you’re a hypocrite!” is just an odd counterattack.

        Liked by 3 people

  26. kesoze2

    It’s funny, I just today posted on Facebook Emma Lazarus’s plaque on the SoL and then two hours later I see a link to this post. Guess ten days is the magic number for people to have thought ahead this far.

    Speaking of thinking, I think one thing we need to carefully consider is why someone who considers themselves a ‘Good Christian’ would operate so hatefully. I guarantee you that none of the Trump-supporting fearmongers would change their tune one iota if they read this great article. You cannot talk these people into seeing how, by creating this deep divisiveness, they’re giving ISIS exactly what they’re looking for. You can’t explain to them stats about how the refugees go through extensive 6-12-month background checks, and you can’t tell them how no refugees to date have terroristed any Americans, nor that Steve Jobs’ dad was a Syrian refugee, so hey, they actually integrate pretty well.

    They won’t listen to you.

    Why won’t they listen to fact or rational argument? I don’t know, but this is what’s wrong with American, even more so than the racism and the anger and the love of horrible candidates.

    Until we can get our masses to learn to ignore fear-mongering television news, to be able to reason for themselves, to constantly consider new ideas and discard old ones, and to have the self-confidence to realize that facts matter and guns are bad and kindness is good, we’re never going to have the Greatest Country In The World that we all wish so much we had.

    I don’t know why you can’t reason with so many people without them starting to scream back at you but if we can figure that one out we’ll have saved the world.

    All the best, brotha.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. DannyJane

    OBSERVATION: Before he stopped talking to me, my hyper-conservative son commented on my support for the Syrian refugees. He pointed out (in many cases quite correctly) that historically Syria’s attitude toward Jews has been, at best, unfortunate.

    It’s true that as a person of Jewish heritage, I have reason to be ambivilant toward any group of people–meaning a large chunk of the Arab world–whose stated objective is to drive my group into the sea, but these people? I don’t know them. I can’t speak for who they are or what they believe. I know only this, monsters drove them out of their homes and their country and they have no place to go. Much like my forebears throughout history.

    Maybe they are all anti-Semites. Maybe some of them are. Maybe none of them. It doesn’t matter because in the moral sense I cannot call myself an American; I cannot say I uphold American laws or what I was taught were American values if I turn my back on any innocent person who just happens to dislike me or disagree with me.
    .
    It’s easy to lend your support to an oppressed people who all agree with you. It’s much, much harder to defend those who do not.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Amen! And thank you! I’m absolutely heartsick at the hatred and fear that is so prevalent now. I am religious but try not to hide under the label of Christian, instead trying to be a follower of Jesus. Sometimes I am successful and often I fail. One thing I do know is that one of the top commands Jesus repeats throughout scripture is, “Fear Not”. He also states that the greatest commandments are to, “Love God” followed by “Love Others”. There are also many scripture references that command us to care for widows and orphans. It is really pretty simple, certainly not rocket science. There should be no question as to what our response should be. Even for those who are not religious or Bible readers, these just seems like human decency. Thanks for sharing – very well stated!

    Like

  29. Robin Jones

    I am a Christian, and I thank you for writing this post. All I keep hearing over and over again in my mind and heart is,”and what you do to the least of these, you also do to me.” I know what Jesus would do, sadly, obviously there are many who are not interested in what he would do. Great read!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  30. branden

    i mean at first i dident know what to think about bringing the refuges in i mean most of them i feel bad about there homes and no food or water but at the same time we dont know who is bad and whose not and now reading this i feel as if we should take them in because they need out help and and if we needed help some one would help us and i think war is just so stupid its pointless men and women die for stupid reason because other country’s want to feel like they are better than each other and that’s so stupid god wouldn’t want war he would want peace and love for each other not to try to be better than each other i feel as if each time innocent people die and others go to war i think that makes him sad because he feels like that’s not what he wanted god loves us all….

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  31. Jesper Kehlet

    This just made me want to go back and read Mere Christianity again. C.S. Lewis did not read theology, but his philosophical musings I can only think you appreciate.

    And no, I’m not a Christian either…😉

    Thank you for a great read and a fantastic humane, moral and ethical perspective on this!

    /Jesper

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Daibach

    I do agree with your sentiment, and applaud it, unfortunately I feel it falls on deaf ears.
    I also wish to point out that as a text, perhaps any of those you have studied may be unreliable…..
    All history is written by the victors and this can and does lead to falsehoods.
    I fully believe your studies to achieve your masters have given you a position to help others and fully appreciate the intellectual effort this takes, I also know that you are pushing a positive message. I hope that this can be done by appealing to people’s humanity, but I am not sure that that is actually possible without removing the ‘stabilisers’ from the populace by removing the problem of religion.
    [as a side note the biggest man on man killer of man, has and always will be religion- amen!]
    Removing modern religion may be up there with the extinction event but I do fervently hope we might get there!

    Like

  33. Bailey

    A large part of this is that humans are not good at assessing risk. Michael from Vsauce did a good show on this.

    Someone mentioned cars earlier. About a hundred people die a day due to motor vehicles. Yet not many people are interested in reforming what it takes to get a license in the usa.

    People fear things by how scary they are not how likely it is to occur. That is why the majority of people who talk to me are more afraid of terrorists, lightening, and sharks than canoe accidents.

    Which is actually on par with motorcycles. Also the personal opinion thing. The mainstream non specific methodist use this for everything.

    The other day someone told me that Spanish being a romance language grouped together with French, Portuguese, Romanian, etc was a matter of personal opinion.

    Basically they understand little of why things occur in the world so all of their opinions are personal ones and thus not based on ideas that can be tested, measured, or compared to relevant historic events.

    So they conclude everyone else does it the same ways based on preference and whim. Making their opinions as viable as anyone else’s.

    Also fear media sells. Maybe America as a while needs an adrenal reset. Fear media also makes people more susceptible to suggestion, so they are more likely to buy the stuff in the commercials, so it brings in more money.

    Liked by 1 person

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