The President’s remarks at the Prayer Breakfast have been quite popular on social media recently. He, in the eyes of many, compared the brutal recent actions of the Islamic State to the actions of Christians that occurred quite a while ago in world history. I am compelled, therefore, to visit this idea. However, I think it unwise to simply speak about atrocities that have been committed and then cast blame. I don’t see a successful conclusion to this worldwide problem being brought by trying to see who has done the most evil throughout the history of the world. Atrocities have been committed by people of all faiths throughout time. I do like that the President stated that we should not be on our high horse. He is right in this aspect. We should not be on our high horses, because we lose the view at ground level where we can learn what is really taking place. We should be clear here, this high horse idea has nothing to do with accurately judging and deciding what we should do about this significant threat to our God-given freedoms as created men and women. We should not be sitting on our hands when Christians are being murdered for their faith. I think our hands should be doing other things. This post is intended to show the difference between judging Christianity on the actions of Christians and judging Christianity on the actions of Christ. This delineation must be made for us to have any sort of moral clarity that is needed for clear thinking in times like these, and we need moral clarity now.
It is illogical and down right silly to judge Christ based upon the actions of people who claim His name. Who do we look at? The Christian, the Church, or Christ? Scripture teaches that we are to look at Him and not at each other. I think perhaps we should start doing that. A funny thing happens when we do this. We look at ourselves in the backdrop of who He is, and we conveniently have no horse to get upon for a lofty view. We can’t get on a high horse, because we are embarrassed to see who we really are. Christian doctrine teaches that all people have transgressed God. All of us. Every single one of us. This is the appeal of Christ. The curse that is placed upon us as transgressors has been bore by Him because of His love towards us.
When I was growing up, my pastor told a story from his childhood. His mother placed newly washed white sheets on the clothesline to dry, but got busy and forgot to take them down when they were dry. Snow came in the night, and when he awoke he saw the sheets against a new back drop. The sheets against the dirt, clay and grass were pristine white. Not a spot to be seen, no stains and perfect to behold. Then the next morning they were filthy. They were stained and dirty in his perception. The newly fallen, fresh snow had placed a new framework around what they were previously. It is the standard in which the sheets were deemed to be clean or dirty. This is Christ. We compare ourselves to others in such a way that we think we are clean and shiny, only to be filthy when compared to perfection embodied. Again nothing to do with a high horse, it is actually quite the opposite. When we take this into consideration, I think there is a vast difference between one comparing themselves to others, and comparing themselves to God. We must then search for clues of how God would deal with this problem, and allow Him to be on His high horse where He rightfully belongs anyway.
I want to encourage anyone reading this post to not compare evil actions of people with evil actions of other people trying to find the less evil person. This is a ludicrous spiral into confusion and the lack of moral clarity that is needed so much at this time in our world. Let us place all men and women against the standard of Christ, ourselves included.
Our decisions in this time of war are to be grounded not in emotion, but in firm resolve rooted in absolute moral clarity.