Christians should recognize from our national experience with radical Islam that morally and ethically reprehensible theology cannot be justified by referring to a sacred text. That is precisely what the terrorists generally do; and, of course, we proclaim that to be insane.
Why then do Christians turn right around and continue to justify in their own minds equally reprehensible doctrines citing the Bible as their authority for doing so? Can’t they see the inconsistency? If Islam’s doctrines of exclusiveness and conflict are evil, then why are the Christian doctrines of the same type so righteous? If the difference is merely a matter of whose book is being read, that is not much of a distinction to many. If our book causes us think about them largely the same way they seem to think about us, then the only real difference is the extent to which we or they internalize and act out the message of exclusion and opposition inherent in our respect theologies.
We might feel more righteous because we no longer kill and enslave in the name of God, but the right-wing rhetoric of many church goers often sounds like they would be very happy to return to those bygone days of more “dramatic Christianity”. You will notice that the “law and order” crowd is largely the church crowd. They relish punishment, justice, and segregation as the ultimate answer to many of society’s perceived ills. Ironically, it is not uncommon to hear these same folks extol the virtue of a system like they have in
To the extent we invoke God as our national protector and cite our sacred text as the foundation of our government and justification for our national policies we better be prepared grant the same right to others of another persuasion. To do otherwise is arrogance in the eyes of rest of the world and that inescapable fact leads to right where we find ourselves this very day.