“It was clear the terrorists perceived themselves to be Christians.” said DC MPD Officer Daniel Hodges describing the pervasiveness of Christian symbols among those who attacked him and other police officers during the January 6 insurrection. Video of part of his testamony in this link:
There is a major problem in many parts of western (and specifically American) Christianity when it comes to violence. There has been a toxic wedding of nationalism, violence, and political power with Christianity.
Let me be clear:
Christianity and Christ have no need for your nations, your violence, or your perceived power. Jesus is already enthroned as king. The message that Jesus proclaimed was that of the Kingdom of God. It was not one of soul conversion, but of his coming kingdom.
To lose ourselves for Christ is the way to be saved. To pick up our cross means we must follow the example of self sacrificing love that Jesus modeled for us.
We must not use violence against another. We must not impose our values or beliefs upon those who don’t share them. There is no Christian nation, but there is a Kingdom led by Christ. We are always allowed to set aside this world, and begin living into the reality of the one to come. I believe this is the narrow path the Jesus speaks to us about in parables.
May Jesus see himself in the ways we: live, love our neighbors, welcome foreigners, and choose peace over violence.
“May your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”