Thursday, September 9, 2010

Burning Man

Terry Jones, Pastor of Dove Outreach

I'm tired of hearing about the so-called "Dove Outreach" pastor from Florida who wants to get folks together for an old-fashioned Koran burning on the site of the World Trade Center attack. And on September 11th, no less. I guess I'm tired of it because it's just one more thing to make all Christians look stupid.

National leaders and religious leaders all around have been calling for a cease on the action. The Koran, the holy scriptures of Islam, is not the driving force in Islamic terrorism. To burn a religious book is, in effect, to show a visible sign of hostility to an entire religion of people. The Pope called such an action "outrageous and grave".

The Koran is not our sacred scripture. Although there are some teachings in the Koran that we, along with Jews, would agree with (i.e. there is only One God, who created the heavens and the earth, etc.), the Koran is not an account of salvation according to the belief of Christians. However much our differences, we still believe that one has a right to worship as they desire. The Church has stated that we respect Islam and it's history. We also seek to bring all people to know Christ.

What makes me proud is that Christians all over are against this action. Sadly, it shows that some people can co-opt the name of Jesus and do things that aren't in our Christian list of "acts of mercy".

If someone believes that burning the Koran is a Christian duty or a command from God is probably less like the Christ they profess than they think. We can express our anger and outrage at terrorist activity in reasonable and peaceable ways. If we play with fire, we probably will end up just getting burned.