I have a deep respect for those wearing their country’s uniform. I have a deep, personal revulsion for those thoughtlessly critical of those in uniform; people like John Murtha, John Kerry, Richard Belzer and others.
One group, above all, holds a special place of revulsion: the members of Westboro Baptist Church. I don’t know how many there are. I can’t believe there would be a lot. I only ever see the same ones on TV. For a small group, they’ve become a huge pariah to people in and out of the church. Their message is severely flawed.
God does not hate homosexuals. God does not hate anyone. John 3:16 teaches God loves the world, including gays and lesbians. Christians are commanded to love one another in 1 John 4 because “God is love” and are taught that those who do not love do not know God. Beyond thoughtless, beyond heartless, beyond merciless – the best description of the Westboro Baptists is loveless. God loves them yet they love nothing and no one outside their own circle. They certainly don’t love God as they deny and defy His Word by the content of their message.
God is not judging America. God is not killing soldiers. Yes, God is Just. But He does not hate people. He hates their sin. All sin must be atoned for or justice means nothing. The only payment for sin is the ultimate one: death. This is more than physical death. It encompasses the body, soul and spirit of man. It is existence without God. How can one reconcile Love and Justice? Again, John 3:16 explains it. Because of Justice, someone must “perish” as the verse puts it. Someone must die. Yet due to God’s Love, He steps in and offers to pay the price Himself instead of you and me having to pay it. That’s what happened at the Cross. God died in my place. He died so I didn’t have to. He experienced Judgment so I might escape it. Since then, God’s judgment has been suspended, His wrath having been poured out on Jesus on the Cross. This is the meaning of 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” A final Judgment is coming where those who accepted Christ’s gift will enter heaven. Those rejecting that gift must pay the price themselves. They will die; utterly, completely and eternally separated from Life.
That is what Christians believe. You need not personally believe it to recognize Christians have taught this for millennia. It is the heritage Westboro Baptist Church has abandoned for a false gospel. So deceived are they, they will endure all contempt and animosity and claim they are being persecuted for their faith. They are not. They are reviled because their behavior and their belief is contemptible and a perversion of the truth they falsely claim to abide by.
Their behavior is one other thing: legal. Their proclamation of delight over the deaths of US soldiers killed in action at their funerals is protected by the 1st Amendment. So are their signs and prayers for more IEDs to kill even more. All anyone knows about what they believe is that soldiers are fools and that God is killing them personally because He is mad at America over homosexuality. There is no solution. There is no horror over the suffering. It is easy to picture them dancing like pagans covered in the blood of the soldiers they hate and rejoicing. Yet as revolting as their message is, its content is protected.
And, like a Communist Fifth Column, Rand’s Moochers and Looters, the serpent in the Garden; they use that protection to shield themselves from us. They use our values against us while destroying them. Their announcements of their intent to cruelly abuse the families of fallen soldiers at the height of their grief include the notation that the soldier died so they would have the right to speak as they do.
Fortunately, those rights exist for all Americans. If they may protest a soldier’s funeral, others may protest them. These people are coming to Humboldt, TN this Saturday (tomorrow) to protest at the funeral of a fallen American soldier, PFC David Finch. You can see their notice of intent here. Other Americans will meet them and protest back. You can find that notice of intent here.
Please consider sacrificing a Saturday to honor the sacrifice of a soldier and his family who made that Saturday possible. This is not about the war, theology or even about America. And yet, it is about everything those three things stand for. It is about a family grieving in peace without hateful men with a godless agenda mocking everything our God and Country stand for. The Westboro Baptists conveniently ignore the verses that would warn them off their godless quest. Too bad they will not heed the truth that, “… in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” I don’t envy them their time of explaining to God why they behaved so badly in His name.
In the meantime, let’s all rally to keep these creatures away from one of our fallen heroes and his family. It’s the least we can do to say thanks …