Nothing Could Be Further from the Truth

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Nothing Could Be Further from the Truth

By Mario Murillo

The only reason we can be outraged by an Islamic prayer meeting in the National Cathedral is that we are Islamaphobic, hateful and bigoted…right? Wrong.  Nothing could be further from the truth. 

Here is the headline: The Washington National Cathedral hosted its first Muslim prayer service Friday in a powerful symbolic gesture aimed at uniting Christians and Muslims at the nation’s most prominent Episcopal Church.

Aimed at unity?  What gesture of unity did we get from Muslims before opening our national church?  What concession or explanation did they offer for the global atrocities in the name of Islam?  What horror do they feel at ISIS beheadings?  We have yet to see any widespread grief and outrage by the  the 3 million Muslims in America over September 11th!

We need to see how ridiculous their logic is.  Presented for your amusement or perhaps dismay is the vacuous logic of one Ebrahim Rasool:  “This is a dramatic moment in the world and in Muslim-Christian relations,” Ebrahim Rasool, the South African ambassador to the United States, who helped organize the event, said, according to the Christian Science Monitor. “This needs to be a world in which all are free to believe and practice and in which we avoid bigotry, Islamaphobia, racism, anti-Semitism and anti-Christianity and to embrace our humanity and to embrace faith.”

September-11-Image-Gallery-2

Here is their giant concession?  Islamaphobia is utterly unjustified and must be seen in the harshest possible light?  They cannot fathom how, perhaps, the most widespread horrors done in the name of Islam are unique to Islam and no other religion is in the same solar system when it comes to such violence?  Maybe, just maybe we should be even a teensy weensy bit phobic?

Here is the other part of their logic that makes my head want to explode: We are supposed to give into their propaganda that they are a religion of peace or else we are hateful and bigoted.  In other words, they are free to call us hateful and bigoted for simply asking them for explanations for their epic hatred and bigotry?

If the massive atrocities done in the name of Islam were done even once in the name of Christ a deafening roar of outrage would explode from the American church.  They would instantly condemn and reject the perpetrators and then take steps to pay restitution for crimes they did not even commit.

Not one Muslim prayed for America at that meeting. Not one asked God for forgiveness for the towering crimes against humanity that saturate the Muslim world.

It is time to stop lying to ourselves and admit where the real hatred is coming from and if we want use the term phobic then let’s talk about a religion that is phobic to any part of the human race that does not agree with them.

Evangelists Gather At Franklin Graham Festival

We should be most outraged at wispy liberals who fell for such an obvious publicity stunt.  We should be outraged that our leaders behave like battered wives who blame themselves for their husband’s abuse. For their part, they blame America for Islamic violence.  How sick is that?  When we bowed to their propaganda we also bowed to Allah.

Franklin Graham summed it up this way: ‘ “It’s sad to see a church open its doors to the worship of anything other than the One True God of the Bible who sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to earth to save us from our sins,” wrote Graham.  “Jesus was clear when He said, ‘I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me’ (John 14:6).”

This Is What Heretical, Counterfeit Christianity in Action Looks Like.

This Is What Heretical, Counterfeit Christianity in Action Looks Like

The Very Rev. Gary Hall
The Very Rev. Gary Hall (Vimeo)

“We must now have the courage to take the final step and call homophobia and heterosexism what they are. They are sin. Homophobia is a sin. Heterosexism is a sin. Shaming people for who they love is a sin. Only when all our churches say that clearly and boldly and courageously will our LGBT youth be free to grow up in a culture that totally embraces them as they fully are.”

These aren’t the words of an outspoken gay activist at a rally. Or, well, maybe they sort of are. These words came from the lips of Rev. Gary Hall, the dean of Washington’s National Cathedral, in a recent Sunday sermon. Hall was speaking during a weekend that honored lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth and commemorated the 15th anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s death. Shepard was tragically murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in 1998.

But Hall’s sermon wasn’t an isolated instance or any sort of departure from his standard theology—and it wasn’t taken out of context. Earlier this year, Hall announced the Washington National Cathedral would start celebrating same-sex marriages.

“It’s more than tragic—in fact it’s shameful—that faith communities, especially Christian ones, continue to be complicit in putting our children at risk and abetting the attitudes that oppress them, thereby encouraging the aggressors who would subject our children to pain, humiliation and violence,” Hall said, claiming that churches opposing homosexuality produce a culture that harms children.

Consider the significance of his words in the context of the setting in which he preached them. The Washington National Cathedral considers itself a “spiritual resource for our nation.” But many may not know that it’s also “an indispensable ministry for all people of all faiths and perspectives.” The National Cathedral’s vision is to be a catalyst for spiritual harmony in our nation, renewal in churches, reconciliation among faiths and compassion in our world. The funerals of 21 presidents and the inaugurations of five presidents of the United States have been held there. The fact that Hall stood in such a place and uttered such words is more than telling about the spiritual state of our nation.

Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, a nonprofit group dedicated to exposing the homosexual-bisexual-transgender activist agendas, told the Christian News Network that Hall’s comments reflect a nation that is playing out Isaiah 5:20, which states, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”

“Gary Hall of the National Cathedral is sinning when he claims that opposition to homosexuality is a sin. This is counterfeit Christianity in action—transferring the guilt before God from those who are committing sins (of which homosexuality is one) to those who oppose those sins,” LaBarbera said.

“Obviously, ‘hating’ homosexuals or being so fearful that you fail to offer the hope of the gospel to people caught up in homosexual sin is wrong, but that’s not what Hall is talking about here. He is ‘redefining Christianity’ and sin itself in a way that flips the truth of the Word of God on its head. … The danger is that this new heretical ‘sin-affirming Christianity’ is spreading in the evangelical Church.”

This sort of deception still shocks me. How can the Very Rev. Gary Hall, who has served as an ordained minister for more than 35 years—which means he was following God long before our nation’s Christian culture deteriorated to this point—hold such beliefs? And what does it mean when the chief ecclesiastical leader and executive officer—a man who works closely with the bishop of Washington and governing bodies to shape and support ministries to the city of Washington, the nation and the world—perpetrates these beliefs? And, moreover, what does this say about the state of Christianity and the times we live in?

I believe LaBarbera is spot-on. Christianity is slowly (or maybe not so slowly) being redefined into a religion that affirms sin. We see this manifesting in several ways, from the hypergrace message that condones sin among Christians to uber-liberal denominations that ordain gays into ministry and beyond.

But there is yet good news: God is still on the throne. God is giving even the most heretical, deceived ones a space to repent. Our job is to discern heresy, refuse to align with it and pray for the captives to be set free. If one of your family members was caught in a snare, wouldn’t you try to rescue him? Many Christians are caught in the snare of deception, even heresy. If you can see clearly, then I urge you to intercede for those the enemy has blinded. Let’s not just sit by and watch the problem get worse. Let’s drop to our knees and petition the King.

Jennifer LeClaire is news editor at Charisma. She is also the author of several books, including The Spiritual Warrior’s Guide to Defeating Jezebel. You can email Jennifer at jennifer.leclaire@charismamedia.com or visit her website here. You can also join Jennifer on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.