Archives For killing

2014-08-26_17-21-49This is going to be one of those posts that jerks at my soul.

I remember hearing the title phrase pretty frequently when I was growing up. It usually meant that the speaker was surprised at what I had done and usually disapproved of it.

Today it seems so many people are doing things, abominable things, in the name of God. Almost every war in my lifetime has been in the name of God. So much hatred is spewed in his name. If God is really paying attention to all of us puny human beings I wonder if he is also say the same thing. “What are you doing in my name???”

They say that Mother Teresa often had doubts about the existence of God. Here is a quote from her about that from Wikipedia

“Where is my faith? Even deep down there is nothing but emptiness and darkness. If there be God—please forgive me. When I try to raise my thoughts to Heaven, there is such convicting emptiness that those very thoughts return like sharp knives and hurt my very soul. How painful is this unknown pain—I have no Faith. Repulsed, empty, no faith, no love, no zeal, What do I labor for? If there be no God, there can be no soul. If there be no soul then, Jesus, You also are not true.”

I am certainly no Mother Teresa but I too have doubts on occasion whether God is really there and involved in our personal lives as they say he is. At times he seems very remote to me. With all this evil going on in the name of God why doesn’t he set us straight and tell us to quit killing each other in his name?  Why does he allow so many radically different beliefs about him to even exist? If there is a God it seems he would put a stop to all this idiotic garbage!

To try to resolve my conflict I spent thousands of hours over a ten-year period studying theological things. I approached the study with a somewhat open mind given the religious baggage I carried into it.  One thing I gleaned from this journey is just how close-minded most are when it come to beliefs. Once we latch onto their favorite religious system we tend to shut down any openness to anything else. Most will never study or give any credence to another possibility. We, for the most part, are convinced that we have it right and everyone else is just plain wrong. This fact is true of every religious brand out there.  Christianity alone has over 40,000 different versions of faith!  Who can figure it out?

There have been millions savagely killed in the name of God. Realizing this fact has caused me periods of depression. I found that the only way I could effectively deal with that was to simply walk away from the conflicting views.  I know that I am no one but I have concluded  that we are all seeking the same God and that eventually all of us will be reconciled with the true image of God. Due to our stubbornness, it won’t likely happen in this life for many, perhaps most, of us but I believe it will happen. If God truly loves us all, and I believe he does, he will eventually bring everyone back to him. This belief changes my view of many things including fortifying the belief that we are ALL God’s children and are meant to love each other as He taught us. It is sad that we can’t seem to do just that….

 

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A Point of Perspective….

February 25, 2012

Killing someone without government permission is wrong!! 

I guess it is just a matter of how you look at things in the world. I ran across the statement above recently and was dumbstruck by it. But after thinking of it a while I realized that from a military and a capital punishment perspective this is how we justify killing the “bad guys”. If the State says its ok to kill then you are justified in doing it! This has to be the primary mentality that allows a military sniper, which by the way is the fastest growing sector of our military,  to blow someone’s head off their shoulder from a mile away and not have a guilty conscience. They have no idea as to why he is doing it!  They are just blindly taking orders. “My government told me to do it so it must be alright.”

It is pretty clear to me that God did not give our civil government, or any worldly body for that matter, such broad power to say when I should live and when I should die. That power of life including its creation and demise and everything in between resides solely in God’s hands.  I know there are a handful of quotes, mainly from the Old Testament, that some interpret as giving life and death decisions to the State. To me those are simply rationalizations for doing something someone already wants to do. I am convinced that the overwhelming words, especially those of Jesus in the new covenant, ameliorate these misinterpreted few instances.

Some people say “God told me to kill.”  “God told me to do it”  This kind of justification has happened many time throughout our history starting with the Holy Wars and continuing in each generation including recently where President Bush said God told him to invade Iraq which resulted in more than 100,000 deaths. They say things like “God is on our side so therefore it is alright to kill the person who sees things differently than I do”.

Shame on us for subverting God’s word for such a destructive purpose…