Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Quran burning violates Jesusí teachings

As Christians, our thoughts and actions are to be formed by obedience to the commands of Jesus. I, with many other pastors and people of faith, find the proposed actions of a pastor to burn copies of the Quran indefensible as someone who professes to be a follower of Christ.

In God's name, this pastor is abusing his constitutional rights to freedom of expression as a citizen of the United States. Under the pretense of Christian liberty, this pastor is engaging in inflammatory, racist behavior. The outcome of his proposed actions will be to damage and destroy, rather than to uphold and preserve one another.

Jesus teaches that "in everything, do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets." The burning of the Quran to the conscience of a Muslim is blasphemy. So is the burning of a Bible to the conscience of a Christian. Both violate the holiness and righteousness in which we are to live before our God all the days of our lives. Both violate the respect that is due everyone. Therefore, both are condemnable acts against our fellow man.

Furthermore, I, again with many others, am concerned that the thoughtless, selfish action of this one individual and his tiny group of followers will further intensify the perceived racism in America against Muslims worldwide. Jesus declares, "You shall know them by their fruits." Clearly these actions are intended to stir up enmity and strife. They are contrary to the teaching of Christ that says, "You shall love your neighbor as you love yourself." Therefore, these actions are contrary to the Spirit of Christ.

Bob Henley

Senior pastor

Presbyterian Church of the Big Wood

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