I am getting old, but I can still remember when being a "Christian" was viewed in a positive light. Christians were good people who followed the teachings of Jesus, loved their neighbors - all of their neighbors, and were paragons of peace and forgiveness. And while I am certain, or at least hopeful, that most who claim to be followers of Jesus today are still basically very good people, it is the rotten apples of the religion who garner most of the headlines.
Here are stories of three Christian outrages that have been in the news over the past couple of weeks:
First is the tale of Reverend Charles Worley of the Providence Road Baptist Church in Maiden, North Carolina. Worley told his congregation that lesbians and "queers" should be rounded up, put in concentration camps with electric fencing, and left to die. Nice one, Charlie. You're certainly not bothered by any of that "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" stuff, are you?
Another Baptist minister, Curtis Knapp of the New Hope Baptist Church in Seneca, Kansas, is a little more humane than old Charlie. Curtis told his parishioners that the government should round up gay people and kill them. He obviously has strong moral objections to just leaving people to starve to death in electrified pens. And as for that "thou shalt not kill" stuff, why there's probably an exception covering gay people in the Bible somewhere - if you read it in the right way - like standing on your head while the rattlesnake venom slowly makes it way toward your calcified heart!
But the absolute worst Christian outrage of the last couple of weeks is a video clip that is getting a bazillion hits on YouTube. In that cell phone classic, Pastor Jeff Sampl of the Apostolic Truth Tabernacle in Indiana is seen standing behind two small boys, smiling ear-to-ear, as one of the lads (age three) sings a little ditty which declares "ain't no homo going to make it to heaven." Jeff, you've taught your children well. It warms the cockles to know that hate, bigotry, and stupidity will survive for yet another generation. Won't Jesus be entertained when this little child comes unto him!
Where did you three good old boys learn your Christian basics - from Fred Phelps or Anita Bryant? Maybe you should consider expanding your religious teachings to include some of the standards of old time religion - like The Golden Rule or The Ten Commandments. I suspect that it's what Jesus would do.