Koran Burning and Loving Enemies

I don't often chime in on current events, but the upcoming "Koran (Qu'ran) burning" that has been on the news every day has been hard to avoid.

Does Jones have the right to burn the books? Yes. We are, as we like to flaunt, a free country.
Should he burn the books? Many have weighed in on this--everyone from Hilary Clinton to Angelina Jolie. Everyone, of course, is trying to talk him out of doing so. They all have valid reasons, but none quite hit the mark. In a country where we allow our own citizens to burn the US flag, why are we that concerned about one man burning a few books?

I think the main reason a church should not be burning the Koran is because it isn't something a follow of Jesus should do. I don't see Jesus giving us an example of doing this. Whenever idolatry is attacked (literally) in the Bible, it is done so when it takes place within the community of the people of God. I don't see examples of Jesus attacking other faiths. The captives in Babylon didn't burn the golden statue, they just refused to bow down to it.

The pastor says he has prayed about it, but I seriously doubt he has prayed about it in community, asking others for discernment with the issue.

Maybe instead of burning the Koran, Jones should actually read. Maybe instead of calling September 11th "National Burn a Koran Day" he should call it "National Befriend a Muslim Day." Isn't that an action that Jesus would be more likely to do? Aren't Christians called to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us? If we want to make radical statements to our "enemies," I think Christ would start with loving them. How radical of a message would that send?


Anonymous said...

Hi, just found your blog tonight through blog surfing.

I stopped watching the news when our country voted in Obama. I just couldn't watch it any more. Too depressing. So my husband made me aware of the koran burning, just this morning.

Let me just say I have been a Bible believing Christian since the age of 14 (39 now), raised in a Christian home all of my life, and love my country with all of my heart.

When the tragedy of 9/11 took place, our country got back down on their knees, crying and praying for the healing of our country. Then turned around and voted in Barack Obama and all those heathens in the house. I'm sure God was not impressed with that.

Our government is making it easy for Muslims to take up residents and have their way here in our country, and get away with...well, murder.

God is a God of love. I understand that. But He was also a God of war. And most of those wars, if not all, were a result of the ancestors of our dear Muslim friends. They've been God hating thorns in the flesh from day one.

As far as the Koran? Well, it's a book filled with hatred to the infidel and the Koran says to kill the infidel. That's me. Because I'm a Christian. That's you. Because you're a Christian. They're God haters. So yeah, I'm all for burning anything that's against God. I don't know that it will do anything but make some Muslims mad. And I doubt I would do it. But I can certainly understand the annimosity and ill will. And I support this Brother's decision. Burning a book is NOTHING compared to the things the Muslims have done to PEOPLE. Innocent women who have had nails driven in their hands and feet and face. Children that have been buried in large ant hills...alive. Men thrown into giant metal shredders...alive. All in the name of Allah, and all because they've professed Christ. So yeah, I don't mind a book burning.

We've buried our soldiers, our friends, our loved ones, our children in the name of freedom and yet, our freedoms are being taken away from a bunch of God haters, one of which is our current President. And quite frankly, I don't care what he says, he's Muslim from his head to his toes.

Jesus was about love and even sat with the sinners. But He went about preaching His Father. Not Allah. And He was very clear to stay away from that kind of mess. My BIBLE says, "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers, for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness." 2 Cor 6:14

I don't trust no Muslim. I don't trust no A-rab! And I certainly have no desire to be friends with any.

North Carolina

Mary said...

I agree. I hope someone can get through to him on these Christ-centered arguments, because I don't think there is any genuine leg to stand on that Jesus would support what he is doing. And to go through with it would be such a blatantly un-Christian and dangerous act, that I can only pray his followers (all 30 of them) figure out they need to get their lessons on God from another messenger.

Rev. Dave said...

Mary, thanks for your thoughts, though I have little hope that someone will get through to Jones.

Krisit, thank you for your thoughts as well. I sense a lot of anger and fear, though. I would argue that God is not a God of war. The wars waged were about holiness for His chosen people. Though I don't fully understand it, I believe God is fully a God of love.

I think Jesus was fully aware of people groups that caused anger and fear. The Jews in Jesus' day treated the Samaritans the same way that many Americans want to treat Muslims (and vice versa). Yet, Jesus spent time with them, and showed them love instead of hate. He didn't tear down Samaritan places of worship.

Yes, Paul tells the Corinthian church to not be "yoked with unbelievers." I don't think that what he was telling that church was meant to counter-act Jesus' teaching of "love your neighbor." What I see Jesus saying is, "love your neighbor," "turn the other cheek," "love your enemy" and "pray for those who persecute you."
I would love to see biblical texts (in context) telling us to burn our enemy's sacred books. The last person I remember doing this was Hitler.

Anonymous said...

Rev Dave,
I really needed to come back and apologize for my comment last night.
First of all, you are right in your comment and I can see that today.
Secondly, we have close ties to the Director of World Wide Baptist Missions, who informed me today that some of their missionaries have been calling in, begging for prayer. That their lives are truly in danger and they fear for their families and converts over there.
Where I still believe this Brother in Florida has the right to burn this horrible book, I also agree that he may be doing more harm than good.
Just wanted to say that to you today.


Anonymous said...

Oh, and one more thing...lol...
Deuteronomy 7:25&26 says "‎"The graven images of their gods shall ye burn with fire: thou shalt not desire the silver or gold that is on them, nor take it unto them lest thou be snared therein: for it is an abomination to the Lord thy God. Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing."

Again, I think this man is doing more harm than good, but this verse was also shared with me this morning and I figured I'd share it with you too. LOL


Rev. Dave said...

Kristi, thanks for humbly writing back. I appreciate the dialogue. First off, I think that by the media giving him the attention that this has become a far bigger issue than it would have been.

The verse following Deut 7:26 says, "Be careful to follow every command I am giving you today" (Deut 8:1). I think when Christians start doing that, then maybe we have room to attack other faiths. But I still don't see where Jesus calls us to do that (Deuteronomy 7 was given as instructions for the Chosen People to live as a holy nation--Christians have tried to apply that to themselves and given the world the Crusades and the genocide of Native Americans and others; I still see Jesus only calling us to love our enemies).

Rev. Dave said...

And you're right--we need to pray for our brothers and sisters in spots where religious freedom is not allowed. I have friends who are missionaries in countries where they could be killed if the government knew why they were really there. They have friends who have been taken away (not Muslim countries, either). Jesus did promise us persecution if we followed Him, not comfortable-living. I'm not all about being overly-tolerant, but I fear us becoming a people who start persecuting others as well.

Donna said...

Rev. Dave,
I'm new to blogspot, but I was fortunate to run across your blog, both the most current entry, which was very informative, and the one to which I'm responding. In the hype of recent days over the Quran burning, it was nice to hear a sane voice (yours!!) in the wilderness!! Thank you so much.

After growing up a Christian (Presbyterian, North Carolina), working in a Muslim country (Saudi Arabia) for 14 years and working in a Jewish synagogue for the last nine years, I can tell you that people are people!! Regardless of race, creed, nationality, religion, color, size, height, eye color, etc.---there is the full range of good and bad in every group. I think our national self absorption keeps us from fully seeing the rest of the world and knowing the full scope of life, which is our loss and may eventually be our undoing. In any case, I would say that when it comes to religious contention, it is time to think less of what "others" believe and more of what oneself believes. If your God is white and speaks English only to those like you, then your God is very limited!! If he may not look so much like you (which he wouldn't, coming from Bethlehem!), also speaks Hebrew, Arabic, Hindi, Erdu, Spanish,etc.(and loves the people who speak those and other languages), then you're getting the full picture.

Many people worldwide morn the events of Sept 11, but it was committed by a few radicals. To blame all Arabs, Muslims, dark-skinned people is equally wrong. We have to reach out beyond our own....people are people and we have to stop fearing "groups" of people.

Sorry to run on but thank you for blogging and for listening.

Rev. Dave said...

Donna,thanks for stopping by & sharing.