Monday, July 28, 2008

Response to Church Shootings

As you may have read elsewhere, a man with a gun shot seven people at a church in Knoxville, Tennessee, yesterday. So far, two of the seven have died. The church's web site asks for prayer. That's certainly appropriate.

Yet, how shall we pray? The church's belief system is not Christian. Its statement of belief never mentions God or Jesus or the Holy Spirit or the Bible. It says, among other things, "WE BELIEVE in the tolerance of religious ideas. All religions, in every age and culture, possess not only intrinsic merit, but also potential value for those who have learned the art of listening." Thus, they do not believe the words of Jesus, "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except by me." Do they believe Baal-worship and Satanism have intrinsic merit and potential value?

Another part of their statement of belief says, "WE BELIEVE in the authority of reason and conscience. The ultimate arbiter in religion is not a church, nor a document, nor an official, but the personal choice and decision of the individual." In other words, they specifically do not believe that the Bible is authoritative.

My first thought when I read of the shootings was that the shootings were sad, but that the church's beliefs were sadder. When seven people are in imminent danger of losing their physical life, it's national news. When a whole church is on the brink of eternally losing their souls, hardly anyone is alarmed or takes pity on them.

My imperfect prayer for them:

Father in heaven,

Have mercy on the people of the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church. Let them know that you are a personal, just, merciful God who cares about them in this time of their need. Turn around this gunman's evil actions and use them for good. Grant some of the people of the church eyes to see the truth that is in Jesus.


CHARLAX said...

Personal Testimony Taken

Personal Testimony Taken

To come to me from ewe it first comes to me from HIM and HE gives us all HIS love. True religion is to recognize the fact he took it on HIS back and now we can live again the CROSS makes all the monkeyshines of men to seem of no comparison. Let's forget our personal messages and remember HIM who saves us it was this way they took HIM betrayed and led him away there is no comparison to the beating on HIS face to make HE was scarred and marred more than any other man could ever face listen unto me and harken to my plea the will of GOD is LIFE health and liberty freedom and ability Death and Destruction does not come from HIM. The angels carry messages and LIFE and light to shine. When a man is edified it makes him attain health and wealth and happiness but first there is the test of follow me, let go of what you have and just say JESUS. Then all these things are added on this October Day.
This is my personal testimony taken.
Eye am still suffering some from a new beating it hurts to be homeless but eye am still alive.

Jim Swindle said...

May the Lord work in you. You're homeless? Where? (What city?) Why? Did you have a home before the hurricane? I can't fix your life, but the Lord can. He can use people (including me) in the process.

There's a sense in which all of us who trust Jesus have a wonderful home. There's a sense in which we're all homeless here, or just temporary residents, heading toward our home.

"Our citizenship is in heaven."

I'm concerned about you...but realize that it's better to be homeless and to know Jesus, than to be very wealthy and not know him.

Unitarian Universalist said...

The response to the tragedy in the UU congregation in Tennessee, seemed confused about praying for Unitarian Universalists. It is not difficult, pray the best way you know how. Each in UU religion is asked to use all their talents to determine what belief is best to hold. Having a belief in Jesus as the Christ is not unusual in Unitarian Universalism. But the point is to pray as you will for all those in need.

Jim Swindle said...

Thank you, Unitarian Universalist, for visiting this blog. I appreciate that you accepted my post in the spirit in which I offered it.

I believe you're totally sincere when you say, "Each in UU religion is asked to use all their talents to determine what belief is best to hold. Having a belief in Jesus as the Christ is not unusual in Unitarian Universalism."

Yet I'm concerned by the fact that UU churches from the beginning have been Unitarian, rejecting the idea that Jesus is God, and/or have been Universalist, teaching that all people ultimately enter the Lord's kingdom. Both beliefs are rejections of what Jesus taught. He said, "Before Abraham was, I am." He said, "I am the alpha and the omega." When he was accused of making himself equal with God by calling God his father, he did not try to correct the idea. Later, he accepted worship. Jesus is God. He also taught of people going into eternal fire. Look up Matthew 21:41-46, for example.

If the Jesus of the Bible was telling the truth, then the UU churches are badly mistaken. May the Lord open your eyes. It truly is a matter of eternal life and death. I'd like to see you and many others like you in the Lord's kingdom.

As for getting there, I could never do enough good works to offset my sin, but Jesus has redeemed me. I trust in him. See Ephesians 2:8-9.

CHARLAX said...

Walking On Water

Walking On Water

Justified by Jesus sacrifice.
Jesus shed blood , one ddropp for me ,
cleaned all the things that I have done ,
my past is gone , I am set free.
Death it self will NOT hold me.
My works are not the price I pay.
My Lord has a robe for me ,
washed whiter than the snow.
No gloved fist can send me there ,
but I will fly on ^A^ngel wings ,
to Heaven when I go.
The ground beneath my feet feels like a lake
of water turning solid as I walk toward my
Saint Peter from the center of my storm.
Learning to breathe the air again
and live in Jesus love.
I walk on water.