July 11, 2014

"Good" Christians

I was having a discussion the other day with a colleague I have known and done business with for many years. A guy I thought I knew fairly well. Our conversations in the past, I guess, had never really ventured into politics, as what transpired frankly surprised me. My friend has never made any attempt to hide his Born-Again Christian beliefs, but to his credit, has never tried any serious attempt to proselytize. In fact, I’m not even sure he knows that I am an atheist.

Our conversation turned to the current situation at the border with Mexico and that’s when stuff got weird. First he started into the old rant about how broke the country was, and therefore could not afford to care for all these children. Okaaay, but doesn’t your Bible tell us to care for others that are unable to care for themselves?* Not, apparently, when those others should not be here in the first place!

His solution is that we should finish the wall that would shut down the border. Apparently we have enough money for this. When I pointed out that the existing wall has not yet even slowed the immigration, he exclaimed that illegals should be “shot on sight!” No exceptions. Man, woman or child. No mercy. That, by God would fix the problem!

Frankly, I was stunned to silence, which I suppose led him to think he had won the discussion by the force of his wit. Far from it, what left me speechless was that this man considers himself a devout Christian. Further, that it was obvious that this opinion could not be his alone, but was likely shared by his Pastor and the other members of his church. I have no idea which church this man attends or the size of its congregation, but I wonder how many others out there share those views? How can these people possibly consider themselves to be Christians? I may be an atheist, but I was raised in a Christian family, attended church until my teens, and have likely read more of the Bible than most. Nowhere in it do I recall any discussion of borders with guard towers and machine guns murdering any that dare try to cross.

*1 John 3:17-18

But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.

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