Friday, February 28, 2014
Is God/Jesus Too Judgmental?
I have struggled from time to time with parts of the Bible where God takes vengeance on people. Like the time that God destroyed all the people, save Noah and his family, in the flood. Or the times that David and Joshua, at God’s command, killed everyone of the enemy force, sometimes even women and children.
And Jesus, although thought of as the bearer of a new, more peaceful approach, talked a number of times about people being sent to hell. In Revelation 21:8 John had a vision of Jesus saying, “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur.”
There’s a lot of talk these days about sexual orientation, atheism, abortion, and the origin of the universe, and people with religious beliefs being bullies or haters if they do not go along with certain standards. There is much pressure put to bear on people to conform, in the name of civil rights.
But I think there is a much deeper issue in play here. It is where people end up. If the Bible is true there is no amount of campaigning to make people conform to a certain standard that will thwart it.
My goal with this blog post is not to condemn anyone, and it’s my sincere desire to love everyone, as Jesus commanded. My conformation to a standard set by a group of people is not the main issue at stake here. Rather it is where people go at the end of their lives...not to mention what they experience here on earth. (“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10)
We can argue until the cows come home about whose standards are right, and what is God’s will. I only know that I have seen a fairly large number of family members and friends die in my sixty year lifespan, and it is hugely evident that life on this earth is finite.
This finiteness leads me to trying, to the best of my ability, to encourage as many family members and friends as possible, regardless of the orientation or cause they might have, to end up in an eternity with a God that loves them infinitely more than I ever will.
See you next time,