Last week I mentioned a blog post written by Bryan Fischer over at the American Family Association’s affiliate Rightly Concerned. He has posted a response as to why his original post on Native Americans was taken down. Apparently it received so much vitriol that he didn’t want it to effect the mission of AFA. He didn’t rescind any of what he said, in fact he continues to hold to the idea that we need to see that what Europeans did to the Native Americans was a good thing so that we don’t think badly of America’s founding and settling. He feels it is important to defend America’s actions because the president is always running around the world apologizing for all the evil we do and gosh darn it we are better than everyone else!
he also stated that his posts are his feelings and not that of AFA. But in reality a cursory reading of AFA material will confirm they and Bryan Fischer are on the same page.
Other Christian sites and individuals share many of the same ideological thoughts and although they claim not to hate anyone, they go out of their way to condemn a myriad of individuals. Here are a few others that parrot the same rhetoric. Yes, I am naming names….
American Research Counsel
Focus on the Family
American Center of Law and Justice
Pat Robertson….and others to numerous to mention
They, along with Jerry Falwell before them took the message of the Gospel and inserted politics, and a “culture war” mentality, driving a wedge between the church and the world. Thus creating an us vs. them mentality, and closing the door to many the opportunity of sharing the Gospel of reconciliation.
Today quite a few evangelicals cannot relate to the “sinner” because their heads have been filled with disgust, anger and fear as this false message mixing politics/culture war/religion trickles down to the pews across america. We have vilified people.
Back to Bryan Fischer for a moment. His concern about how the we and the world view america has overshadowed loving all people, and thinking of them as better than ourselves. His concern about saving America, as with all the others I have mentioned completely disrespect people from virtually every walk of life (except white, conservative evangelicals). If you doubt my words look at their websites, read their thoughts, watch them on Youtube and try for a moment putting yourselves in the shoes of the other and ask yourself how they would feel reading/listening to their verbal vomit. Would it draw them to the only ONE that can give them what they truly seek and need?
These “religious” leaders and organizations are wolves in sheep’s clothing, they are cracked cisterns, they are whitewashed tombs full of dead mens bones, they are a brood of vipers…
Why do I sound angry? Because the message of Jesus has been transformed into something that no longer resembles the real thing. We are to be reflections of the love of Christ to the world, We are to be ministers of reconciliation, we are to embody the fruit of the Spirit which is love, joy, peace, patience, self-control. We are to love others as we love ourselves, to put others in a higher place and to honor and respect them. We have The Message the no one else has but we trade it for a flag, and a political party, and turn true freedom in Christ into a moral mandate for non-believers that we ourselves cannot keep.
I weep tonight.
8 thoughts on “Brood of Vipers”
There is no excuse for the treatment of the Native Americans. To me, they espoused true Christian ideals long before the white man came and showed them “the way.” (I’m saying it too nicely – forced, tortured, killed, raped, and brainwashed into “the way” – there that’s better.) Native cultures were respectful to the earth, wasted nothing, were deeply spiritual, empowered women, respected their elders, held generations of brilliant and valuable knowledge, and were much more honorable in their morals and behavior than the people who slaughtered them. Anyone who has half a mind to dig into history has to know that genocide is not something Jesus was down with. There are whole tribes that were EXTERMINATED. (Look up the Hunkpapa for example.) The white men killed their men, and after they raped their women and before they killed them, they cut out their genitals and wore them on the horns of their hats like trophies. Tell me how ANYONE deserves that, Mr. Bryan Fischer. People like Bryan Fischer make me NOT even want to call myself a Christian – because that garbage is NOT Christian. Why to people like Mr. Fischer feel qualified to make the statements he does. I think he needs to take a good look at the 2X4 in his own eye.
“We (the organizations you condemn) have vilified people”. Have you not just vilified ALL of the people affiliated with ALL of these organizations? You seem quick to wholly condemn entire groups of people. You angrily condemn them for being hateful and too condemning. I have mentioned this before and you said “I do not condemn individuals, I condemn the hateful words and actions of those who claim to be followers of the God who is Love.” I’m not so sure the very real people working for and affiliated with these groups would see it that way.
the “leaders” of these organizations and the individuals I specifically have mentioned have corrupted the Gospel message, and they have convinced others that bigotry and hateful angry words are the “right” of the Christian in the face of the pagan. They have elevated themselves above the Message and have put their particular views on par with the Gospel. I have seen too many people turned off to the Message, not because of the message, but because of the words or actions of the person presenting the message. I have seen many believers walk away from the church because the attitudes and actions of those claiming to know Christ not matching up to what they SAY they believe about unconditional love and grace.
I am one of those who is just now coming back to Christ, but very carefully. Focus on the Family and a few of the other groups you mention are very guilty of being so judgmental that they drive many away. I’ve got the Facebook friends to prove it.
I do want to add that I have never heard of Bryan Fischer or the American Family Association prior to your posts but I have heard of Focus on the Family and American Center of Law and Justice. I don’t necessarily support either group and I do have concern that they are sometimes guilty of looking for changed behavior before there is a changed heart. But, it seems unfair to wholly condemn all of what they do and stand for because of that. I also think it right and Biblical to look for changed behavior as evidence of a changed heart.
I agree with you that there must be heart change first…and only God can do that through the Cross of Christ. But then it is God, through the Holy Spirit, in His time that brings behavior change, and He deal with each person differently. It is not up to me to make people change, that is His job alone.
the more I study Christ, the harsher his words are to those who consider themselves on God’s side. We American Christians need to hear the harshness of Christ’s words to the pharisees fresh and apply them to our attitudes and our actions. The pharisees were religious and law keeping because they wanted Israel to return to her glory days under King David and Solomon. But God’s Kingdom was not about raising one nation above others but drawing all to God. The Pharisees were focused on self preservation and self glorification. God’s Kingdom was about losing everything in this world to gain Christ. The groups listed in this blog may be well intentions and the people who work for them may have good intentions but they are spreading another gospel. Paul’s words in Galatians are strong about what to do with those who spread another Gospel.
Constitutional monarchy documented rights that were to be recognized by the government. It improved the potential for representation, but it did not eliminate tyranny. If it had, the colonies would not have made the Declaration of Independence. Constitutional democracy eliminated the institution of a royal family; added freedom of religion and documented other rights (often enough after European developments; slavery was outlawed in the US quite some time after it had been in France and Great Britain.)
When Jefferson sent Lewis and Clark out to map a route to the Pacific Ocean, he sent supplies and instructions to establish trade relations with Native Americans. Those Americans who respected human rights did well with the natives (and visa versa). It was when military force was used to take territory for natural resources and settling that treaties were violated and the inclusive promise of constitutional democracy was cast aside for genocide.
John did not preach the rejection of civil government. He preached civility in direct constrast to his insulting rhetoric. Freedom of religion is to be valued as a civil liberty. A state that establishes an official religion as the choice for the people is not respectful of representation. A religion that seeks to dictate policy with the state as its enforcer does not respect freedom or the God that made it part of natural law.