Sunday, January 26, 2014
If Jesus wrote a memo to the modern church, what would He say? If you think it's really bad, you're absolutely right.
A Memo From Jesus to 'Christian' America
Woe to you American Christians! You call yourselves “saved” when in fact you are lost. You say I'm the "Son of God" and yet you bully and slaughter the defenseless in my name. You launch religious wars in the Middle East against Islam while ignoring my teachings at home. You use legal trickery like the Patriot Act to subjugate your entire nation and revoke the fundamental human rights that my Father handed down to you through His servants. All you pastors and evangelists hoard money from your Sunday offerings to enrich yourselves with fine houses, expensive clothing, and luxury cars and trucks. Do you not see the wrongs you commit when you do these things? Do you even understand the parable of the Good Samaritan? Allow me to refresh your memory.
One day an expert in religious law stood up to test Jesus by asking him this question: "Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus replied, "What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?" The man answered, "'You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.' And, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" "Right!" Jesus told him. "Do this and you will live!" The man wanted to justify his actions, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Jesus then replied with a story which I will paraphrase for you all:
"A Jewish man was traveling on a trip from Jerusalem to Jericho when he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road. By chance a priest came along, but when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. A church deacon walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also continued on. Then a despised Samaritan (the “people of color”in Jesus' time) came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, 'Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I'll pay you the next time I'm here.' "Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by those bandits", Jesus asked. The man replied, "The one who showed him mercy." Then Jesus said, "Yes, now go and do the same."
In case anyone missed the point of that parable, it was that the “theologically correct”, evangelical/Catholic/orthodox super-conservative born-again "saved" person passed by on the other side of the road when confronted with a human being in need. It was the "unsaved" theologically incorrect foreigner, today's equivalent of people of color, atheists, Muslims or gay men and women, the unloved and the outcast, who stopped and did my Father's will and took care of the injured man. Let me put it another way in case you've missed the point: When I said that those who come to me saying "Lord, Lord, we followed you and believed correctly, we performed miracles and cast out demons in your name", it is they who will be the first ones that I will cast out of the Kingdom of Heaven, since they did not care for the least of these such as orphans, widows, the downtrodden, the poor, the sick and the oppressed.
Didn't you get it when I said that the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to the humble, the outcasts, those who mourn, to the incarcerated and to the dispirited? People of color, gay couples and other minorities, as well as non-Christians who are being denied their civil rights are included here. What are you doing to defend them? Who do you think will inherit the earth – the wealthy leaders of your giant churches or the homeless who are scorned and mocked by society? Who's side do you think God is on – the bullied and outcast and other “disposable workers”, or the powerful religious leaders and other Wall Street 1% 'ers with their phony smiles? Who will qualify for calling themselves my sons and daughters – the weak, the long-term unemployed, and those who worship me whether they go to church every Sunday or not, and the poor or those who mourn? Or will you be like the proud who say: "Lord, I thank you that I'm not like these “unsaved” single mothers, or like prisoners and illegal immigrants, and all those lazy poor people who deserve no shelter, access to food or health care (and let's not forget those vilified Muslims)?" You hypocrites! Don't you get it? You have lost touch with reality, the reality that my Father created!
You say you take everything in the Bible seriously and yet you ignore all the many verses about divorce and adultery. But you pastors conveniently cover that up because a majority of America has no problem with divorce, and because you don't want to lose your congregations and the tax-free money that they bring in to your churches. And half your pastors and religious leaders are divorced and remarried. But you stick it to gay men and women because they are a minority and easy to pick on! Why wax moralistic about one thing you call sin and yet stick it to a minority? For instance, I broke the biblical law when I said that the people who brought me the adulterous woman should not stone her to death. In other words I said: "Let he/she who is without sin throw the first stone." Well, no one was qualified so they quit picking on her and left her alone. Here's another example – abortion, which you are vehemently against. You will go to any extreme to protect the unborn, yet you have no problem sending our young men and women overseas to fight illegal and undeclared wars against countries that – by and large – pose no threat to America. You see no problem at all with waging war in the Middle East, Asia and Africa – provided, of course, that it's someone else's sons and daughters getting killed in battle and not your own. Who do you think you are? Does any of you seriously believe that I will not count that against you on the day of Judgment?
Did you get it when I said that if you lust in your heart it's the same as committing adultery? What I meant was that since everyone lusts, the difference between how we think and feel and what we do with our thoughts and feelings is a matter of having sufficient integrity to be able to stand up to all kinds of temptations. The whole point was that we're not to judge other people because we ourselves think the same thoughts. So no one is better than anyone else. You judgmental holy rollers are like banks always making a mistake in their own favor! Why do so-called religious conservative Americans always pick on the little guy, the disenfranchised, people of color, so-called “illegal immigrants”, women, gay people and the mentally ill? I'll tell you why! Because you are bullies looking for an easy target, and because you hoard 99% of our nation's wealth! You are the Pharisees passing by on the other side of the road, those who are so sure they're saved because of some manufactured nonsense that you believe in my name. Wrong again!
You American Christians utterly defaced the name of Christianity with your racism, your slavery and your bigotry, and all your foreign wars while hiding behind the facade of legitimacy. And now you're doing it again in your war against gay people, and in your “drug war” against the poor, the homeless, minorities and the mentally ill who have little or no access to affordable health care. Well, as you judge so you will be judged. Good luck with that! Do you think the Kingdom of God is more likely to belong to a wealthy "Christian" leader who preaches hate and exclusion (even while saying "I love everyone and only hate the sin") or to the least of these, the disenfranchised who want nothing more than to enjoy the same rights of other citizens, like access to higher education and health care without charge, not to mention basics like food and shelter? Do you think I don't see that the poor who have no health care die because your greedy (lying) insurance lobby that has your so-called Congress in their pockets?
You hypocrites and liars! You say you're preaching my gospel when my Gospel never was about political correctness or conservative beliefs. My Gospel was about not judging others, it was about making room for everyone at the table, with unconditional equality, and loving your neighbor as you love yourself. If you display contempt for poor people and minorities, you know that I already commanded you to love them! And if they are asking to be allowed to marry, I commanded you to give to him who asks of you! Besides, you don't own America. This is a democracy and yours is just one opinion. Your own Constitution says that your government has been put into place to serve the people rather than the other way around. How did it come to this? How do those who claim that they serve and represent me in church and in government misuse the Bible to the extent that they make bumper stickers and coffee mugs calling for the assassination of your President Obama by misquoting Psalm 109 verses 8 and 9 completely out of context (“May his days be few; may another take his place of leadership. May his children be fatherless and his wife a widow”)? Do you think I am on the side of those who want to make the First Lady of the United States (who happens to be a favorite daughter of mine!) a widow and the daughters of the President (very lovely children of mine!) orphans as this Psalm is misconstrued to "call for”? You American Christians utterly deface my name with your racism, financial slavery and your bigotry against women and minorities. And now you're doing it again in your war against gay people – who my Father also made just as he did for you – and in your war against the poor, the homeless and mentally ill and the elderly who have no access to health care.
I'm tempted to ask my Father to condemn to hell every last one of you damnable hate mongers! You are like the Pharisees I used to know, who strained out the tiniest speck of others' misdeeds while turning a blind eye to their own wickedness, hypocrisy and lies. Remember my sayings about taking the block of wood out of your own eye before removing the splinter from your brother's eye? Quit worrying about people's skin color, gender, age, sexual orientation – and especially about their financial status or the lack thereof – and start to worry about your so-called churches, those ash heaps of stinking bigotry and hate. The way you hate your first black president is all I need to know about you. So stop worrying about other people's "sins" and start worrying about all the lies you are telling your children in my name! Stop passing judgment on others. That's my heavenly Father's job, not yours! Stop condemning the sexual behavior of others when you yourselves marry, divorce and remarry as if you were changing clothes. Who do you people think you're kidding?
Oh, and one last thing before I go. All your talk about patriotism and “God Bless America” will do you no good unless you love every American within it just as you love yourself – including gay Americans, poor people, the disenfranchised, the sick, widows and orphans and yes, women who have abortions and the “illegal immigrants”. My Father made them too. So who are you to question the handiwork of my Father? There is no such thing as an illegal person. All these various peoples want from you is to ask mercy of you, and to get a fair shot at improving themselves! Give it to them! Give them a chance to reboot their lives. Or did you miss that part of my teaching too? Do you really think I'm on the side of those who hate the "other"? You are killing me all over again!
The point is to have a chance to sanctify love in every generation. If I walked here on Earth again with you, you'd kill me again, just as you are going to kill all that is good in my name, just as some of you are praying for the death of your president who you even call "Antichrist." Let me tell you who is Anti-Christ: Christian "saved" America. Depart from me, you evildoers! Please come up with a new name for whatever you think you are. Drop the word "Christ" out of your name. You've destroyed my reputation.