Thursday, September 9, 2010

What Would Jesus Say? ... by Bob Orr

From my good friend and fine writer, Bob Orr ... written in reflection on the possible burning of a Quran at a Florida Church.

What Would Jesus Say?

The Jesus I know from the Gospels was a friend to all and demonstrated in his actions God's love and forgiveness to men and women especially the ones we would condemn and count as unworthy.   This Jesus calls us to live in community with one another.  Jesus was a Jew and his disciples were Jews.  As a  man of his time Jesus would have spoken  and understood Hebrew, Aramaic, and probably Greek.  Where he was born, grew to manhood and conducted his ministry  was a cultural stew and a cross roads of trade and beliefs. 

 The United States is a pluralistic nation made up of many religions - Christianity is one of them.  We pride ourselves in the freedom of worship.  It's one of our cherished values.   Just last week in my home town of Canton, MI we joined a Hindu community in celebrating the dedication of their new temple.  Their center can accommodate a thousand worshipers.  Down the road from where I live  is a Sikh temple where we visited a few months ago to better know our neighbors.  Dearborn, MI  (just 15 miles to our east) is home to the largest Arab community outside of the Mid East.  Islam is their religion.  We're all citizens of the United States, we're all neighbors and we all fly the same flag.  I don't appreciate hate speech, fear tactics, or race baiting.  When times are rough like they are now  we search for someone to blame.  This divides us and drives us apart.  We're weaker as a country as a result.  

What would Jesus say?  I think Jesus would cry over our fearful bickering with one another.  Jesus would meet hate with love.  Jesus would meet ignorance with knowledge.  Jesus would extend an open hand to the neighbor and not a clinched fist.  Jesus would speak a kind word and offer a generous embrace to the stranger and the different among us.  That's what I think Jesus would do.  --Bob Orr

1 comment:

  1. Burning the Koran is very dangerous,disrepectful of peaceful muslims and stupid. This act would have endangered Christians living in muslim countries as well as increased the danger level our troops have to deal with in iraq and Aghanistan. It would not be good for American/middle eastern relations.People have been burning things(books, flags, records, works of art, dummies of leaders and controversial people, people themselves) over the ages. It never accomplies anything productive.

    If this preacher and his followers are concerned about Islam threatening the U.S. way of life and the islamic center near ground zero then he and they should write their congress people, New York officials and the Iman behind the building of the center.

    I myself think that it should probably be moved further away from ground zero. Islam is currently suffering from a lot of terroism in its name. Moderate Islamic people need to come forward and denounce this plight upon their religion. Many have but not enough. I would protect Islamic people with my body if they were ever threatened in this country.