A rant (Day 83/365)

Haven’t really done anything today, but I do have a rant to share.

I’m considering making a bumper sticker that looks like this:

God Bless Al-Qaeda

For those who didn’t grow up Baptist, here’s the citation.

My son immediately urged me not to, because he didn’t want me ending up in Guantanomo Bay. Isn’t that cute? Kids!

But seriously folks, have you heard any major Christianist nutjob, i.e., Robertson, Falwell, Dobson, et al., say anything like this? Have they, any of them, come out and done what Jesus has told them to do?

And more than that, can you imagine their reaction to such a bumper sticker? I would love to hear it. I mean, Christ is fairly explicit here:

King James: 27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, 28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you… 35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

…or…

NIV: 27 “But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you… 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.”

…or…

New Living Translation: 27 “But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. 28 Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you… 35 “Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked.”

…or…

Contemporary English Version: 27 This is what I say to all who will listen to me: Love your enemies, and be good to everyone who hates you. 28 Ask God to bless anyone who curses you, and pray for everyone who is cruel to you… 35 But love your enemies and be good to them. Lend without expecting to be paid back.* Then you will get a great reward, and you will be the true children of God in heaven. He is good even to people who are unthankful and cruel. [*footnote: Luke 6:35 without expecting to be paid back: Some manuscripts have ” without giving up on anyone.”]

Luke and I could go on, and Matthew could join us, but dang, people, could the Man be any clearer?

So how would the Christianists excuse themselves? Why aren’t they selling these bumper stickers on the TV? Instead of God Bless America, which Matthew fairly anticipates here, why aren’t bumpers all over these red United States proclaiming their willingness to ask God to bless Al-Qaeda?

I’d love to hear their answer.

9 thoughts on “A rant (Day 83/365)

  1. Two unrelated comments inspired by your post and sticker:

    Grayson’s right. Be careful. You do not live in a place where people will be so irritated by reading your bumper sticker that they react by heading home, sitting down, and immediately dashing off a scathing letter to the Times. Your New Testament meditations may be unconsciously leading you to entertain the pleasures of martyrdom.

    “Dubia” is some kind of Greek or Latin word referring to…wait for it…falsity. Dubia, Dubya, W. It all makes sense now.

  2. Oh, I totally realize that everyone around here has a completely shaky understanding of the theological concepts here. I know they think that “bless” means “approve of” or “make stronger” or “let win.”

    But imagine what Al-Qaeda would be up against if our reaction had been to ask God’s blessing on them.

  3. I want to say that you are speaking from what I want to call a position of “Enlightened Fundamentalism.” This Fundamentalism believes that at some level to speak of “YHWH” and of “Allah” and of “the Heavenly Father” is to partake of the same Fundamental Thing. Therefore, to ask our Heavenly Father to “bless” Al-Qaeda will have an effect since Christians and Jihadists share a Fundamental Truth.

  4. I don’t know that that’s exactly it. If I believed that the formula “God Bless X” had any efficacy at all, it would be independent of what X’s beliefs were. Sort of like believing that the writ of habeas corpus and the protections of the Constitution would automatically be valid for any person, not just citizens of the Roman Empire United States. It would be like I believed that these Truths were Self-Evident or something.

  5. I found someone who has actually made the same point as this: Jehovah’s Witnesses. A tract left in my door today ranted about “false religions,” and they include in this all leaders of public American Christianity for exactly the reasons I have outlined above. They castigate these men for supporting the violent revenge mode we found ourselves in after 9/11.

    Nice to know I’m in such sane company.

  6. After the murder of the Amish children, the Amish community collected money to give to the wife and children of the man who killed the children. Some people get it.

    It’s hard to believe that the Pat Robertsons and Dubyas actually believe much of what they spew. It’s tragic that so many others do.

    So, is the appropriate title for Pat Robertson Imam, Mullah, or Ayatollah?

  7. As long as you’re asking God to bless Al Qaeda, make sure you ask him to do the same for pedophiles, mass murderers, rapists, and televangelists. I believe that the scripture applies to all of these.

    Inasmuch as “they” (I’ll let you decide for yourself who ‘they’ are) pursue war in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Sudan, North Korea, or anywhere else as an act of retribution or hate and simultaneously claim the righteousness of the Christian church, they clearly lack an understanding of the doctrine they claim to uphold.

    Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not convinced that being a Christian precludes ANY support of war. People a lot smarter than I have struggled with this issue and decided that sometimes its a choice of the lesser of evils (see Dietrich Bonhoeffer). Christ did speak of turning the other cheek when struck, but I don’t know that he went as far as to suggest falling on a spear.

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