Faith on Friday: Not of This World

jesus34I rarely write about politically-charged issues. Especially when they are also religiously-charged. Like the recent Supreme Court decision to legalize gay marriage. When a political conservative—or even a moderate—voices her opinion on Facebook, she risks lots of hateful comments and unfriending. I’ve never understood why some people only want to be friends with people who agree with them, but that’s another issue altogether.

So today I’m going to try to share a different view on these issues. I was encouraged by an article in last Sunday’s Memphis Commercial Appeal by David Allen Hall. Commenting (in Viewpoint) on Bruce Jenner’s very public sex change, Hall says:

Christians have a mandate to love all people and to exact justice and mercy unequivocally. But in no way does this duty position us to accept or conform to a morally confused and politically bankrupt worldview.

That right there will lose him hundreds, if not thousands, of Facebook friends. And then he continues:

To disagree with Jenner’s actions is my right, and to speak out is my obligation…. To disagree does not make me a hater.

Although Hall’s article is about transgender issues and not legalizing gay marriage, he’s speaking from a conservative Christian perspective, which applies to many of these issues.

Christ_the_King_III’ve read several articles and sermons by Orthodox Christian priests since last Friday’s events, and one theme I often see repeated is the old “hate the sin, love the sinner” mantra. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for conservative Christians to hold this position in our muddy cultural landscape. What does it mean to love someone? Can you really love someone and disagree with his lifestyle? I think Jesus did just that. And he also said—to Pilate—“My kingdom is not of this world.”

The United States is not the Kingdom of God. Christians in this country are free to hold whatever political opinions they want, as are followers of other faiths as well as those who hold to no faith at all. But when things don’t go their way, I think it’s important to remember Christ’s words about His Kingdom.

 

6 comments


  • Susan Schepens

    There is an ultimate Supreme Court. I’m going to be summoned there.
    Not everything legal is moral.

    July 3, 2015
  • Nina Gaby

    I enjoy having you as a friend and fellow writer with whom I can possibly disagree with but always respect. I visited your beautiful church in Memphis and was gracefully mesmerized by the art and the peace inside. On the other hand I am totally secular. On the other hand I identify as Jewish but go nowhere without my Virgin of Guadelupe charms, and my St Christopher medal. But then again I would only take my daughter to synagogue when there was a female rabbi. And marriage is not a religious act unless someone wants it to be. And I love reading your Faith on Friday blog. On and on the conundrum goes. There’s room for everyone. Thank you.

    July 3, 2015
    • Thanks so much for reading and for your honest and insightful comments, Nina. I treasure our friendship and love that we respect and don’t judge one another.

      July 3, 2015
  • Susan Schepens

    Dear Nina,
    I’m glad you carry a St. Christopher medal. I hope you have a medal of Our Lady of Guadeloupe as well and not a charm. The story of the Miracle of her apparition in Mexico is one I hold dear.
    Some beholding the tilma of Juan Diego in Mexico City consider it unusual. I believe it to be a photograph of Our Lady.
    Her son’s first miracle was at a wedding. The couple ran out of wine. She whispered to the head steward “do whatever he tells you.” He turned water into fine wine.
    At a wedding

    July 3, 2015
  • Michael Hicks Thompson

    Susan, well said. Well done!

    July 4, 2015
    • Thanks, Michael.

      July 6, 2015

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