Watch Aaron in the film Holy Wars

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Rosie's fears

Recently, I received an e-mail from the American Family Association harshly criticizing Rosie O Donnell for her comments on ABC's The View in which she said that extreme Christians on the religious right are just as much to be feared as the Islamic jihadists. My first reaction was strong offense. How could Rosie equate peace loving Christians with bomb throwing jihadists? At the outset, the idea seems completely ridiculous, and it is-to a degree. No, I do not know of any Christian in America, even fundamentalist Christian (with the exception of the cross-burning white supremacists who claim to be Christian, but who takes them seriously?)who believes that killing innocent civilians is an appropriate means of social change. So, in that sense, O Donnel's fears are largely unfounded.

There is, however, a theological movement in America known as Theonomic Reconstructionism that seeks to establish the Law of Moses as the supreme law of the land. I can see why Rosie might fear this, since in the Law of Moses, homosexuality is a crime punishable by death (by means of stoning if we apply the strict interpretation)! Thankfully, this view is a very small minority within American evangelicalism. And for good reason. If Jesus were a reconstructionist, instead of saying "He who is without sin among you, let Him cast the first stone", He would have personally presided over the stoning of the adulterous woman in John chapter 8. The fact is, neither Jesus nor His disciples advocated starting a political kingdom to impose theocratic rule over the nations, and neither should we. Rather, we should let the Scriptures guide our consciences (especially New Testament Scripture), and then as the gospel spreads throughout society, the collective conscience of the Christian community informs the collective conscience of the nation. Notice I said "inform" not "impose". This is a far cry from theocracy. A Christian conscience informed by the New Testament is just plain good old fashioned common sense.

2 comments:

Pete said...

I don't wish to dispute your any of your points here Aaron, but isn't it amazing how the media affects us? They have thrown out the terms Islamic jihadist and Islamic terrorists so much that we equate being Islamic to being a terrorist. Being of that religion is not the crime, terrorism is. I might not agree with that religion, but we are all entitled to believe what we wish. However we are not entitled to inflict harm on innocent people. The point is that you can add any prefix to "terrorists" and it is still wrong. I don't care if it were "christian terrorist", "nazi terrorist", or "ice cream eating terrorist". So if we take away the prefixes and we are comparing terrorist to terrorist than I agree, but if we are comparing terrorists to people who have never even considered harming an innocent than that is just simply wrong. For myself, I will be focusing on leaving out prefixes when condemning any of these kinds of acts.
Pete

Aaron D. Taylor said...

Thanks for your comment, Pete. I partially agree with you. Of course, I think we should condemn terrorism no matter who does it and we should not equate Islam or Muslims with terrorism as if the vast majority of Muslims were terrorists.

Nevertheless, I do think it is important to call a spade a spade. The greatest threat to the world's security in our day and age is not simply "terrorism", but an ideology that seeks to impose its version of Islam on the rest of the world using terrorism as one of their chief weapons of choice. If we ignore the religious factor, we are only fooling ourselves.