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“Too long have I lived among those who hate peace. I am for peace; but when I speak, they are for war.”
Psalms 120:6-7 NIV
These verses are as appropriate and applicable now as in the era when David wrote them. I’m about to go deep here, folks. Are you ready? Let’s go!
We have people who claim to be spiritual, religious, and God-loving, yet they are filled with so much hate that you have to strain to see and feel God’s Light within them. There is no peace in them. They have placed so many walls up and deflected and rejected God on so many levels, in so many instances, that you wonder why they even claim to be a servant of God.
It’s the twenty-first century. We have not learned much about history except how to repeat a lot of it. We are surrounded by hate, fear, greed, lust, and pain. This is when we must pray more, remain focused and determined, and continue to strive to do better and be better servants in our daily walk.
It doesn’t matter if you call yourself a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Buddhist, or anything else—if you are unloving and oppressive of others, then your religion means absolutely nothing. Heck, if you’re a Christian, then you should already know that Jesus despised corrupt pseudo-organized religion for the very reasons why we see the turmoil in churches today. Congregants are too self-absorbed to serve as Jesus did.
What Christians Can’t Keep Doing
If people who call themselves Christians want to be fully aligned with Jesus, and want to be chosen as righteous or redeemed on Judgment Day, then they have to stop repeating the sins and offenses of the past. Stop denying and perverting the truth.
Stop being racist, sexist, classist, and xenophobic. Stop lying about your actions; the intensity of your denial doesn’t make it the truth. God knows our hearts. He sees, hears, and knows everything. Oppression of others is a sin against God. If we hate His creations, then we hate Him. There is no peace in hate, oppression, and sin.
We justify it by saying we’re Christians, and we wave our Bibles, crucifixes, and “WWJD” (What Would Jesus Do) keychains proudly, as though we’re honoring God and Jesus. Forgetting that Jesus was a Palestinian Jew, his family were Aramean, all the way back to Noah, how can someone say they love Jesus but hate his people? [And people like his people?]
Christians think that Jesus is exclusive and solely theirs. He didn’t create the formal religion of Christianity. His followers organized and created groups as part of what is considered a Second Temple Judaic sect in the 1st century. They expected his second coming, and that helped with the mass conversion of other Jews. Then after attracting gentiles, they began to distinctly separate themselves from Judaism after AD 70.
Somehow as it spread throughout parts of Europe, hundreds of years later, Christians and Catholics tried desperately to Europeanize Jesus and his family; they tried blotting out the Jewish and Aramean cultures clearly present in the Bible. Some of you have no cultural context in the translations you read. They have been so watered down and Westernized that it’s sad. But no matter how much you try, you can’t change the truth. You also can’t change the principles, practices, and laws of God that Jesus and others taught and lived by. God will prevail.
The Hypocrisy of the U.S. & “The West”
People have verbally, emotionally, and physically attacked others in the name of God, Jesus, and Christianity. Some even stoop desperately low and attempt to create legal ways to attack people of various races and religions. The United States was formed as a nation out of fear and lack. It has operated ever since out of fear and in a constant state of lack. That is why we are the biggest consumers of everything. It is also why we don’t feel and experience peace and joy, and thereby also the reason we have the highest rates of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s-Dementia, obesity, and other diseases. We are struggling with dis-ease.
Sadly and quite obviously, God is not the foundation and center of this nation. Our nation picks and chooses when God is part of us. When we’re doing good, coming together during natural disasters, working to restore our homeless—God’s Hands are all over it. When we’re doing evil and claiming it’s for God, He has no part in that. You have to know that it breaks His heart to see the ways we align with Satan. We have a conditional relationship with God, and that’s why we have no peace.
What God is Not
God doesn’t operate out of fear or lack. He doesn’t lie, steal, or oppress. He doesn’t enslave. He never has and never will condone the enslavement that took place on this and other lands, the mass incarceration that continues to take place—modified to look as though it’s not slavery, and that also includes the children and adults who are forced labor or sex slaves.
How are we following God’s commands when we’re too busy making up our own rules as we go along? The Bible tells us we are not to serve as judge and question the faith of a person who declares to be a follower of Christ, for it is their actions and character that is most important in proving their walk and devotion to God. We are to be reconciled to and by God, not man. We are to answer to Him, not His creations.
Why People Are Turned Off by Christians
Supposedly we want people to be Christian, yet we act like savages waiting to attack anything that doesn’t look right to us. Christians travel the world trying to convert people to Christianity. Thankfully, learning from the past not to do it by force (like they did for hundreds of years). But let’s be honest with ourselves and each other.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Who would want to be affiliated with a group that hates and oppresses others because of the color of their skin, religious beliefs, gender, or name?
- Who would want to be affiliated with a group that wants to convert people to their religion while still hating and oppressing people who are of the same religion?
African Americans, for the most part, are Christians (made up of several denominations), yet look at their continued mistreatment, exclusion, and oppression.
Let’s look at the Irish, Scots, Poles, and others who were mostly Christ followers. What did they do to deserve ridicule and humiliation? Nothing. They were just different than the British. And maybe because the Irish, Scots, and Poles were Catholics while the Britts were and mostly still are Protestant Christians (which reject many tenets and practices of Catholicism). Other than that, only a classist mindset of superiority could be the reason for seeing them as inferior.
And since the US was founded on British culture, norms, laws, and practices and led by Protestant Christians, it carried on the discrimination of differences—while using God as the flag they waved, until they found some substitute flags they would later choose to die for (the nation’s flag and battle flags of the confederacy).
One thing is clear, God is not in the hearts and minds of anyone who walks around with evil intent or acceptance of evil consequences.
Some so-called Christians are walking around spreading hate in the name of God and Jesus. They’re obsessed with symbols and flags and re-translating the Bible to fit their narrative and purposes. Remember, that flag you give so much power to becomes your idol, and you know what God thinks about idols.
Over the years, and especially most recently, we have seen some folks blatantly telling and spreading lies, covering up sins and crimes, and committing evil acts—yet they have the audacity to call themselves followers of Jesus and recite God’s Word without flinching.
Idolatry and Deification
Study your Bible. Some of those Caesar’s and Herod’s of ancient times started believing the hype and said they were gods, and the statues, art, and currency depicted these claims, and people began to treat them accordingly. Those who rebuked these claims were enslaved or killed. Plenty of Jews refused to worship these men because they believed that they were to only worship God, and for that, they lost their lives.
The Bible shows us, yet we ignore it. We repeat the offenses of the past and then are shocked and outraged by the consequences. We have to be careful how much we invest our attention and power in people and things.
What does God think of our world? What does God think of the racists, child molesters, abusers, thieves, slave traders, religious zealots, false prophets, and pretend followers? What would you do if you were Him?
Thank goodness you’re not responsible for reconciling that burden. Thank goodness you know your role, and you stay in your lane, letting God handle what only He can and being obedient to Him when He tells you to align to Him in all the ways expressed in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
God is love. Recite verses 4-8, swap out “love,” and put in “I am,” and measure where you are compared to where you need to be for full alignment with God.
We must pray, family. Pray for each other and pray for ourselves. Pray that God continues to show us mercy, grace, and favor. We can live in this world but not be a product of it. Let’s do our part each day to walk in love and to reflect God’s Light through our words and actions.
Father, I pray for Your children who spew hate from their lips yet claim to be Your faithful servants. Father, heal them of their infliction for they are blinded by ignorance and fear.
Father, heal those who stand proudly in hate, and those who hide when the light shines their way. Heal those who always seek war and vengeance, and those who do so in Your Name.
Heal those who conditionally want to acknowledge You and use You for personal gain, but then reject You when in their twisted mind the moment doesn’t serve them. Help them to see the Truth. Touch their hearts Father, and touch mine any time it isn’t aligned with Yours. This I pray humbly and sincerely. Amen.
And with that family, I pray that you are blessed, that you see and embrace your blessings, and that you are a blessing to others.
Copyright 2011-2023. Natasha L. Foreman. Some Rights Reserved. All Prayers and Reflections are Copyright Protected by Natasha L. Foreman. BreakingBreadWithNatasha.com
Music: Climb by Shane Ivers; Quiescent In Time by Shane Ivers – https://www.silvermansound.com