Advance warning here. Other than the fact that a “conversation” I had with a fellow company driver brought it on, this post has very little to do with trucking. It does have to do with the intolerant and sometimes violent reputation that Christians are getting nowadays. Please don’t tune me out yet. This isn’t a preaching lecture. I’m not qualified for that. I’d just like to explain to you how the Bible says Christians are supposed to act in today’s world. These are just my views from what I’ve learned. Take them or leave them out by the street with all the dirty diapers and empty pizza boxes.
Real Christians don’t picket military funerals and shout at funeral processions. Real Christians don’t scream about damnation to tornado victims. Real Christians don’t yell that gay people are going to hell. Real Christians don’t verbally abuse women coming out of an abortion clinic. And real Christians don’t spit on you when they talk. And that brings me to the driver I spoke with the other day. Let’s call him Bruiser. Just because he looked like his momma might’a named him that.[box]Listen to the audio version above and subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.
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In all fairness, Bruiser never actually spit on me. But trust me, that was only because there was elevation and a truck door between us. At first, Bruiser seemed like a normal trucker. He was big fella. Probably 6’3″ and 260 pounds. He had a bald head and was wearing a U.S. Army baseball cap and a big ol’ salt and pepper goatee. I made a mental note to thank him for his military service before we parted, but I didn’t much feel like it by the time it was all over.
The conversation started out normal. He asked what the sign in my passenger side window was. He was happy to learn that the Colorado scales wouldn’t pull you over every time if you put the last 8 digits of your VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) on the passenger side of the truck (there’s my trucking info quota). But the conversation changed when my hatred for e-logs came up. That’s when he started talking about the government wanting to control everything. You can imagine the Obama rant that followed.
Now I’m not a fan of big government, so I was actually agreeing with some of what Bruiser was saying. But then he started to get excited and the spittle started to show itself. He started to get a lot louder too.
Turns out he was a Christian. Or so he said. Within about 15 minutes, he said, “I’m not a racist, but…” about 5 times. I figure that means he’s probably a racist. He basically said that the black communities in America were suffering the highest rates of violent crimes because they also have the highest rates of abortion and children out-of-wedlock.
He went on to say that as a Christian he was called to “rebuke” the wicked. His word, not mine. He said that if a Christian politician had the gonads to stand up and boldly “rebuke” all the homosexuality, abortion, and black people’s sin, that he or she would easily be elected the next President. That’s when things started to get out of hand. I told him I was a Christian too, but that I didn’t agree with him.
I told him that anyone who spoke out like that wouldn’t stand a chance of being elected. Politicians have a hard enough time getting the opposing party’s votes as is. Start getting radical like that and everyone would back away from him, even their own party. I also told him he’d never win any non-believers to Christ by yelling at them. It was immediately apparent that this guy was not the kind of guy that liked opposing views.
Well, I’ve gotta tell you that Bruiser lost it. I mean, he went bonkers. Spit literally started to fly out of his mouth. He started talking about nations saying “yea or nay,” and he’d pause at the end of a tirade and say, “Praise the Lord!” Now I may not be the brightest LED in the tail light, but I’m not a total imbecile either. But I can honestly say that from that point on I had no earthly idea what he was talking about. Especially with that whole “yea or nay” thing. I’m certain he understood himself, but I was at a total loss. After a couple more heartfelt “Praise the Lord’s,” he went about hooking up his trailer. I couldn’t help but notice he was breathing hard from his verbal workout.
It was too bad that I had to be at my shipper in 30 minutes. I had so many things to say to him, although I realize it wouldn’t have done a lick of good. You really can’t talk reasonably to zealots, especially spitting ones. So instead, I’ll tell you what I was going to tell him.
First, real Christians aren’t supposed to be racist. Jesus said to love one another (John 13: 34-35). That’s pretty clear. You can’t love someone and hate them at the same time. Heck, Jesus even said to love your enemies (Matthew 5: 43-48). Now to be honest, I probably wouldn’t have called Bruiser out on this. You know, because he’d already stated that he wasn’t a racist… Five times. Still, I thought I’d point that out to any non-believer who thinks Christians are racists. We’re not. Or, we shouldn’t be.
Is there punishment for consequences? You bet. Even a toddler jumping back from the oven screaming a profane-word-he-didn’t-learn-from-you, could tell you that. Pretty much everyone believes in the concept of “what comes around, goes around.” Some people call it Karma, Christians know it as “you reap what you sow.” (Galatians 6: 7)
So, could the black community be suffering from high crime rates because of abortion and the fact that 67% of black children are growing up in single-parent homes? I suppose it could. Could the world be suffering more natural disasters because of some of the biblically immoral choices our society has taken? That just might be the case. Could sexually transmitted diseases be the consequences of a society who commits biblically immoral acts? It sure could. At least according to the Bible it could. The Bible is full of instances where God disciplines his people for their rebellion and their poor choices.
Most non-believers hate the thought of that. They say that God is a vengeful God and that he doesn’t have any right to tell us how we should act. Well, if you’re a Christian, you believe he’s your creator, so he actually does have a say in the matter. I’d also like to point out that God doesn’t punish his children to hurt them. He does it to protect them. Do you discipline your child to protect them from doing stupid things? So does God. Despite what most non-Christians think, God wants what’s best for you. Need some proof? Okay.
First, let me say that I’m not “casting the first stone.” I’m a sinner. I know it and I struggle with it every day. I always will. I was raised in the church, but totally rebelled from my teens until I was almost 40 years old. Why did I rebel? For the same reason I think most non-believers deny God. Because I didn’t want to be held accountable for my actions. No one likes to be told what to do and how to act. But sometimes it’s in our best interest.
For example, if a boy and a girl grew up under the guidance of biblical teaching and remained sexually pure until they married each other, what are the chances of either of them getting a sexually transmitted disease? Well, unless they’re purposefully rubbing their junk on public toilets seats, the chances are minuscule. And before you nit-pickers can attack, yes, I do realize fetuses can get HIV during pregnancy.
If that same couple got married, what are their chances of divorce? According to studies, it’s in the low single-digit percentage. That’s compared to the almost 50% divorce rate the rest of us suffer from. How much emotional and physical damage do you bring into a marriage if you’ve had other sex partners? I’ll bet everyone reading this has suffered a breakup that would’ve been a heck of a lot easier if sex hadn’t been involved. How about teen pregnancy? Pretty hard to get all preggers if you aren’t doing the deed. You see, God is trying to protect you by showing you what not to do.
How about something like murder? God doesn’t want us to kill because he values life and knows that it will be something you’ll deal with for the rest of your life. Now I know what’s coming next. How can Christians be against abortion, but in favor of capital punishment? To that, the Bible points out that governments were established to maintain justice. Barring some freak anomaly, if a criminal is on death row, they’ve done something to deserve it. A judge and 12 jurors said so. These jurors are citizens just like you and me. The same citizens that elected the judge and decided whether their state will enforce capital punishment or not. If you don’t like that, you’re welcome to move to another state where the death penalty doesn’t exist and like-minded people abound.
But what has that fetus done to deserve death? But wait, you say. Is it a life if it isn’t born yet? Well, it’s heart is beating. Is yours? Are you alive? Yes, I guess it’s true that a fetus doesn’t really know what’s going on, but neither does a person who’s in a coma for 9 months. Should we kill them too? Now if the mother’s life is in jeopardy, well someone has to lose and that’s unfortunate. But are most abortions done because of real physical risks to the mother? No. Other than the fact that she just won’t look right in her new bikini. Actually, the stats show that women who have abortions have greater risks in lots of factors. Check out this article for more on that. Once again, God is looking out for you.
What about something as simple as lying? The 9th Commandment says it’s a sin. This commandment also pertains to lying to accuse someone falsely. Don’t you just hate having to apologize to someone when you’ve been caught in a lie? I do. Do you like it when people spread lies about you? If you do, you’re some kinda weirdo. Again, God is your bud here. He doesn’t want you to go through that.
I’d like to address one more controversial issue: homosexuality. The Bible clearly teaches that it’s a sinful act (1 Timothy 1: 10). I’ve heard many gay people say, “Why would God design me this way if I’m not supposed to be this way?” This is a rough one. From what I’ve learned, it’s because this is a fallen world. In the beginning, man chose to rebel against God. We’ve been paying for it ever since. We come out of the womb with a sinful nature. What? You don’t believe that?
Do you have to teach a toddler to lie? No. Now they’re quite bad at it, but they try none the less. Do you have to teach a child to be selfish? How about disobedient? I gotta tell you, my nephews have been pushing against The Evil Overlord and me since the moment they could crawl towards the poor unsuspecting sleeping cat.
Having said all that, here’s something most people don’t know and quite frankly, I struggle with myself. To God, all sins are equal. He hates a simple little white lie as much as he hates me taking an axe to someone’s face. For one person, their sin might be anger issues. For another it might be homosexuality. Whatever your particular poisons are, we are taught to resist them.
Still, we’re not perfect. That’s why it’s so awesome that he’s a forgiving God to those who believe in him. Do I personally think lying or dude-on-dude action is as bad as an axe to the face or cheating on your spouse? No, I don’t. The thing is, I’m not God. Neither are you, and neither is Bruiser. And that leads us to wrap this puppy up.
Some say Christians are not to judge. Bruiser says we are. Who’s right? I’ll go a happy medium with you. The Bible says, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged (Matthew 7: 1-5).” But does that go for both people and actions? Well, in the next verse, it talks about judging others. I mean, if we didn’t judge actions, how would we discern right from wrong? But it God’s job to judge people, so I’ll leave that up to him and you should to.
In close, Christians should try to treat non-believers like Jesus would. He was kind to all sinners, yet firm in his beliefs and standards. I love the story of the woman who was caught in adultery (John 8: 2-11) and was about to be stoned to death. Jesus said, “He without sin cast the first stone.” When no one chucked the first rock at her, he told her, “Go and sin no more.” You see, he wasn’t mean to her because she was being a naughty girl. He didn’t yell at her about sleeping around or cram a Xerox of the 7th Commandment down her throat. Nor did he excuse her sin.
Now pretty much every person in the galaxy (even non-Christians) will acknowledge Jesus as the most moral character in all of history. And if that’s the way he treats people, then that’s how we should do it too. After all, the word Christian does mean Christ-like.
The Bible also tells Christians to teach the truth in love (Ephesians 4: 15), and we all know actions speak louder than words. Therefore, I’m pretty sure that doesn’t include yelling at people, being a bigot or racist, slandering someone, or just plain being a mean ol’ jerk. So for Saint Pete’s sake, you psycho-Christians out there, quit yelling and spitting on people.
I know I probably won’t have to ask for comments on this one, but I will anyway. Let me know what you think and please give this post a rating and pass it on to your friends. Thanks
Well done, you good and faithful servant. 🙂
Well thanks. But I don’t know how good and faithful I am. I’m trying though, so thanks!
I pretty much feel just about the way that you do on all the issues you discussed Todd! It’s too bad there are so many “so called” christians that are giving being a christian a bad name. That “spitting zealot” ought to look up the meaning of being a real christian and show a little tolerance and control…it’s sending the wrong message….I guess he doesn’t even realize that?
Hello, Miss Patty. The only thing I can think is that all Christians seem to pick and choose parts of the Bible that they like. I try not to do that, but I know I’m guilty of that myself. But it appears that he’s leaving out most scriptures. Sad really. And frustrating for the rest of us. Thanks for stopping by and leaving another comment!
Well said! I also agree with a lot of your points. I had religion basically shoved down my throat when I was growing up and rebelled against it. However I still consider myself a Christian today and know that God is there. I am glad I was raised with those morals rather than without them.
Hello Becca. I’m sure that’s why most of us rebelled. I know I did. It was great to have that background to establish good morals, but when it comes to drawing closer to God, I kinda think we have to get there on our own. We have to figure out whether we believe in him or not. I think all the evidence points toward believing. Glad you do too. Thanks for leaving your thoughts!
I wanted to thank you for your post. It’s well-reasoned, and even though I don’t share your beliefs on many issues I absolutely respect your position and your way of living your faith. Bravo.
Thank you. All I ask is that people read the article and learn that the Bible teaches us Christians how we are supposed to act to others. The world would be a better place if we could all respect each others opinions while standing firm in our own. In the end, of course, I’d like to see everyone discover the God that I know, but that’s ultimately between the individual and the creator. Don’t believe in a creator? Well, we’ll all find out in the end. If I’m wrong and there is no God (I DO NOT believe that), then I’m just worm food like you. If I’m right though… well, eternity is a long time to spend in torment.
With God’s love,
I have a neighbor that maybe a relative of Bruiser!
Well said Todd.
Well for your sake I hope he doesn’t have the same super saliva gene.
Yeh!!!!!!!!!!!! Great article. I’m sorry that you felt I was shoving it down your throat. Was doing the best I knew at the time.
Your beliefs are right on! I hope and pray that “bruiser” learns to speak the truth, in love. I believe you did.
Love you much, Mom.
Mom, mom, mom. What am I gonna do with you? There is no need for an apology.
One doesn’t apology to their kid for disciplining him when the discipline is for their own good. Likewise, you shouldn’t feel the need to apologize for bringing me up to know God, no matter how much I hated it at the time. Clearly having that base helped me to come back to the Lord. So well done… and thank you.
Now if you still want to apologize for something, I’m open to groveling for making me eat liver and Brussels sprouts. Although I’m not sure there there will ever be any forgiveness in my heart for that atrocity. 😉
I am so very proud of you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Didn’t know how to reverse and add this, so here I am again.
It is funny how timing works. I just finished a new post to my blog and realized that I had not read you in a while so I popped on over and found a post with thoughts that go with mine. Check it out. PS. Hello Sandy!
Also, very well written!
Great. Now you’ve gone and jinxed me. My next post will be laden with misspelled words and dangling prepositions. Good thing I don’t know the difference. Ignorance IS bliss!!
I guess great minds think alike. 😉
I think of Christianity like a lifeboat.
Some people are in the boat, surrounded by people in the water. A lot of the people in the water don’t know they’re in danger of drowning. Maybe they like the water. Some of us are trying to coax them into the lifeboat.
Unfortunately, some people already in the lifeboat really like throwing rocks at the people still in the water. Rather than focusing on saving people, those people seem really happy to think that “those people” in the water are going to drown and go to hell. Instead of having love for those who need it, they have anger, and seem to be really glad that people they don’t like are doomed.
People like that make it harder to get people out of the water, so to speak.
That’s a great analogy, Kevin. Nice mental picture.
LOVE this analogy! SO true! Thanks!
Awesome job! Very well stated Todd.
Hey …. this was great. I don’t see it on TGMP any time soon but if it gets through, look for the fire storm.
Main stream Christians and people of faith are not the ones that yell and screem, just as you pointed out at the beginning. Yet they are the ones that get the press. Let’s face it, if the media showed who we really are, it wouldn’t sell papers.
Actually Tom, I believe this post is one of the ones they have planned for The Good Men Project site. As a matter of fact, I bet this post is one of the reasons they chose to publish some of my blog posts in the first place. It appears that the more controversial an article is, the more hits it gets. So this one oughta be a doozy.
The thing about this article (and The Road To Smutville, for that matter) is that it shouldn’t offend anyone who is an American. I don’t get offended when someone tells me the Bible is a book full of Disney stories (which they have) because it’s just someone’s opinion about their beliefs and they’re entitled to it. That’s all this article does. It doesn’t condemn anyone or their beliefs, except maybe Christians who don’t act like it. It simply states my Christian beliefs on certain controversial subjects. Subjects that I believe can be backed up by the Bible.
Yet I bet you’re right. There will be a fire storm on this one if it post over there. And just like the Smutville post, the comments will wander away from the fact that I’m asking Chrisitians to start acting more Christ-like, and instead will focus more on belittling my beliefs and falsely accusing me of hating people that I don’t actually hate.
Thanks for dropping by and having a read, Tom. Appreciate your support here (and especially over there).
AMEN! AMEN!! If I remember correctly, the only folks Jesus rebuked were the “zealous spitters”… the ones who thought their good works were good enough and they didn’t need a savior. I never was good enough and never will be good enough, regardless how hard I try. Praise God that Jesus IS good enough and traded His goodness for my wasted efforts! Very well said and couldn’t agree with you more! We should all reflect the One we carry around inside us. Makes you wonder if the zealous spitters have ever truly met Him??
Using that wonderful analogy of the life boat… I think the zealous spitters are deluded into thinking they are resting in the boat when in fact, they are treading water, trusting in their own works to keep them afloat.. and on the day of judgement, they will say, “Lord, Lord!” and He’ll say, “I never knew you.”
You can tell a tree by the kind of fruit it bears… if it’s not love, joy, peace, goodness, kindness, etc., you’re barking up the wrong tree.
Well said, Lisa. For once in my life, I have not one single word to add. LOL Thanks for stopping in and sharing your thoughts.
Hi Todd, good article and insight. I found you on the trackback you linked out to our 10 commandments article at http://www.bible-knowledge.com
I always say Christians like bruiser gives the rest of us a bad name and feeds into the stereotype. My wife is going to be starting to write for our site and I think you’ll really like what she will be writing. Many will be along the same lines.
Keep pressin on!
Sweet! Anything to get out that message is a good thing. Good luck.
Nicely done brother! In my humble opinion you gave an adequate yet easy to understand answer to some pretty hard questions here that most Christians really struggle with! Kudos to you and hats off to the Evil Overlord for putting up with you!
Yea, The Evil Overlord is a real saint. Pshhhhhht. LOL Thanks for the kind words though. That was a tough one to write and there are definitely some things I’d say a bit different if I were writing it now, but for the most part I think it came out pretty darn good. I’m glad you think so too.
Hi Todd, sorry, as you well know from me by now, I don’t share your religious beliefs. Once again, a little preachy don’t you think? And gee, how you managed to even cover all or most of the “Religious/political” hot button topics as well. But, do respect you a ton for standing up for said religious beliefs and convictions.
See ya next episode, stay safe my friend as always.