Go to any new site on the world wide web, look at your twitter main screen, watch television, listen to radio and you get the idea that there is something wrong with the world. There is something missing. There is something broken. Or at least we are missing some kind of point, something we have been designed for but forgotten.
When we look directly into the intricacies of the trinity we see completion. Unified absolute. Look at the world and you see the opposite. Conflict over conflicts. Competition of competition. Destitution because of destitution. Slavery because of slavery. We aren’t creative about revenge. We aren’t very quick on the uptake in understanding that offense breeds defense which breeds revenge which breeds revenge.
We are broken.
And like that annoying broken toy in the hands of a 5 year old boy, the more we play with our broken-ness the more annoying noises come forth and the more skinned knees we have to band aid.
Enter the people of God.
Enter the communal representation of the perfect community in existence.
The physical rep of one-ness. Of a united front that is slow to speak, slow to offense, quick to listen and be vulnerable and humble, quick to know the other, quick to serve the other.
And what do we do?
We burn witches, we fight wars on the basis of an overt religious agenda with a covert lust for riches and pride fuelled oppression. We judge, we point fingers, we write books about people who are wrong, we mount political campaigns to make sure that desperate mothers feel unwanted and gays who crave commitment are treated as if they not only have no brains but are fighting for a criminal obsession as opposed to God ordained community.
And what did God ask us to do?
Orphans and widows. The defenseless.
In his book ‘stones into schools’, Greg Mortenson reports a meeting with the American defense department about bombs they were dropping on Afghanistan (a nation Greg was building schools in that, as well as other things, aided the education and citizenship of a state oppressively magnanimous with terrorist activities.) My figures may not be 100 per cent but they discussed how one bomb was worth $800,000 and with that kind of money Greg could build 100’s of schools that would completely change not only Afghanistan but neighboring Pakistan as well, if not the greater region. And the army was dropping 100s of these bombs on Afghanistan a week.
Heresy – a Christian nation state would not only refuse to help the helpless but would destroy the helpless in a bid to assume political, economic and “security” superiority. (I understand some would disagree. Some would argue the war was liberating in a bid to spread democratic freedoms to the world. When do we see Christ liberating people with guns and bombs?
In her book Wisdom of Whores, Elizabeth Pisani dialogues about her findings on how the AIDS war would be won n Africa. Instead of giving life saving drugs to people in need (the defensless) the apparent Christian right business community patented the drugs, sold them at a profit and made it so that the development aid money that was given to certain African nations had to be spent on the patented drugs. Did we the church go over to Africa en masse and pray for healing? Did we the people of the Lord, commanded to defend the hurting and the dying travel to the slums and change how we do business so we don’t rape countries that can barely eat?
Heresy – Every time a Christian eats a big mac, buys cheap shoes or products made in sweat shops or birthed out of corn farms ravaging the farming, not only in the west but also the ‘undeveloped world’, WE VOTE. We vote for an economic and political system that shouts from the top of our mountains ‘do whatever you want, as long as it makes a profit and is hidden away in the darkness so we forget about it’ – ignorance is once again blissful. Where are the Christian books about the economy of God? Where are the Christian protest groups outside our political leaders offices demanding justice for those who can barely speak a language let alone speak it to anyone that can change and improve things.
I could go on for hours.
God calls us to unity. God calls us to defend the hopeless and defenseless.
But we are better at pointing at each other and calling heresy.
Why are our heretics ones of pure words. The don’t dot some of their i’s?
Why aren’t our heretics me and you when we are daily gluttonous with every thing we lay eyes on?
Heretics are those who profess to defend the defenseless whilst defending only themselves and setting up security in their own hands.
Heretics are everyone of us that reacts instantly with offense, because we consider ourselves better and more right then the next guy.
Heretics are those of us who harbour bitterness in our hearts. Bitterness that tears us to pieces inside, whose only cure for such bitterness is tearing others apart around us.
Heretics are the good men who do nothing. And I would argue especially those men who have everything at their finger tips.
We were designed less for labeling and finger pointing and more for saying nice things or saying nothing at all.
If orthodoxy is keeping my fences well painted whilst un named children die then I am the heretic I dreamed of being in my youth.
But if orthodoxy is actually loving people as an outworking of the cookie mould we have been made from – perfect relationality, then our current witch burning trend needs to be transformed. Our default positions of disunity because of disagreement needs to die in a fire and our love needs to blind everyone.