2,000 years later, still waiting

Let me start with this, my statement of beliefs; if your faith or religion makes you a more loving, caring, kinder, and compassionate person to ALL creatures and creation on this Earth then I believe, if there is a heaven, you are headed in the right direction.

If your faith or religion makes you a judgmental, righteous, hate spewing prick to those that are different from you, to those that don’t follow your path, to those that don’t believe as you do, if you spend all your energy and breath condemning and trying to convert rather than helping and loving then if there is a hell I believe you too are headed in the right direction.

We have a very small religious television station in our community. The technology they employ is just on the edge of the 1960’s but in color. Most of the programming they air is infomercials, old black and white television series like the Roy Rogers show and the Rifleman, paid programming from televangelist such as Ernest Angley and my favorite, backwoods church services that look like they are recorded on VHS tape.

I pass these little churches deep in the country when I skip church and ride my bicycle on Sunday mornings. These simple and modest structures with gravel parking lots dot the landscape of the country roads I travel. The message being taught behind most of these doors and the message typically displayed on their marquee out front is of a vengeful God, a God of wrath, of fire and destruction for those who chose a path different than the one this congregation interprets as correct.

Now typically the parking lots of these churches aren’t packed with cars or trucks, maybe ten or fifteen total. So if you figure three people per vehicle, maybe there are 30 to 45 people attending the service hearing the fire and brimstone sermon each Sunday. That doesn’t seem like a lot but these little churches are everywhere, in every corner of this nation and anyone can start a church and it seems at times, at least in my community, anyone does.

2,000 years have passed and it still hasn’t happened. For 2,000 years leaders have been preaching a message of fear, of staying in line, the end is near, we can only save ourselves. Sodom and Gomorrah, false prophets, the mark of the beast, “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

2,000 years and we still haven’t brought the Kingdom to the people here on Earth as Jesus asked. Why is that? Why do so many in the Christian faith community focus on condemning and converting rather than loving and helping? What are the lessons they are trying to impart on the rest of us by their actions and their words? I hear the same argument all the time, that there are more “good” Christians than “bad” ones. It’s funny though, the “bad” ones speak loud, and the “good” ones speak softly. Maybe it’s time you “good” Christians changed that. Don’t wait 2,000 more years.

About ends and beginnings blog

I am a frustrated writer and poet waiting to be discovered. A stand-up philosopher performing on a street corner near you. A Christian with questions but I don’t want to hear your answers. A Buddhist with a bumper sticker on my truck to prove it. A collector of quotes. A grower of lettuce. The Patron Saint of earthworms who name their children after me. A cyclist whose big ass strains the seams of his Lycra bibs. I am American by birth, Southern by the grace of God. My goal in life is to leave an imprint on the lives of the people I love not a footprint on the earth. I am a son, a husband, a father composed of 65%-Oxygen, 18%-Carbon, 10%-Hydrogen, 3%-Nitrogen, 3%-Diet Coke and 1%-Oreo.
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14 Responses to 2,000 years later, still waiting

  1. Marisa Ulrich says:

    As a Christian, I really understand where you are coming from. I do believe in some absolutes, though. I wouldn’t consider myself a person of much conviction without them. Of course, the strongest and best absolute should be love. And it often gets forgotten. Which is tragic. But, I also think sometimes, some want behavior excused under the umbrella of that love, and that, to me, is not true loving your neighbor.It is a delicate balance and none of us can fully achieve it, honestly, in this life. All we can do is keep humbling ourselves to God.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sugar, Spice, Everything Nice says:

    Excellent post! I’m not religious now, but I grew up in a Lutheran church. After our pastor left, the new one and many of the older members of the church became this way, so our family left as well. It was during the time I was going through confirmation about 14), and I think being taught all of that hatefulness and fear is what really started my loss in faith. My goal in life is to try to be a good person, help others, and judge less; I’m trying to teach my girls the same. I don’t need an organized religious leader or a book to scare me into doing so.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. samanthamurdochblog says:

    I agree, the main tenet of any belief system should be love. How do you move it on to keep up with the 21st century ? Thought-provoking…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Advanced Research Technology says:

    My sentiments nearly exactly. I left Christianity a long time ago, or so it seems by now. There wasn’t too many fire and brimstone services thank goodness, but there were many “you gotta be like us or else” sermons. It took me quite a while to sort it all out. In the end it wasn’t me. The wall of protection that wasn’t there, but that I thought was there, was fully removed. Ouch! That smarts.
    I started to look at the whole equation a little deeper, like a lot deeper. What I’ve found is much broader and more inclusive than I ever imagined.
    It also brings me to the same conclusion: “What are we waiting for?” Are we going to float away, get burned, sit on clouds, or simply come into all of the goodness that that is innate within us and that most of this points to. I’ve chosen the spirit of the latter, wherever I can find it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. hbsuefred says:

    I have been asking myself for a very long time why it seems like many Christians, especially the loud ones who make a VERY VERY OBSCENELY RICH living broadcasting their very narrow opinions, seem to be so rampant and where they derive their opinions that their “way” is the only “way” to salvation, happiness and/or heaven. I have been fortunate, especially recently, to discover that there are educated and inquiring people like you, even clergy members, who start with history which helps put the narrow mindedness of others in context. That still doesn’t make any of these fanatics “right” but at least it helps me understand why they think they’re right (and usually ignorant in the bargain).

    Liked by 1 person

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