To my surprise, I’ve seen relatively few comments from any mainstream Christian denominations about the burning of Bibles by extremist demonstrators in Portland. What’s more, I note that Twitter and other outlets are systematically deleting and/or making unavailable all video evidence of it happening – almost as if they’re aware that the demonstrators crossed a line by doing that, and want to cover for them.
Well, I’m not a representative of any denomination, but I am a Christian: so let me put in my $0.02 worth. When I see someone burning a Bible, I see that person rejecting what I believe and stand for, not just in terms of beliefs, but in terms of the moral foundation of how I try to live. It’s also the foundation of most of our legal system, no matter what anyone might try to deny. Almost all Western laws and jurisprudence stemmed from Christian dominance of Europe, and spread from there to European colonies in the New World. That’s an historical fact that can’t be denied.
I’m not personally offended by Bible-burning; nor do I think God, as I understand him, is personally offended. Rather, I’m saddened by the lack of tolerance shown by the demonstrators. If they expect me to accept them as fellow citizens, and tolerate their beliefs, shouldn’t they be extending the same courtesies to me? Clearly, they’re not: therefore I have to believe that their intolerance extends, not just to what I believe in, but to me as a believer as well.
So be it. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” They’ve just done that. Their behavior marks them as my enemies. They need not be surprised if I view them, and respond to them, as such – with as much mercy as possible, sure, but nevertheless with determination that they will not intimidate me, and will not deter me from living my life as I believe God requires of me.
What say you, readers?