Posted by: nmontague | August 14, 2010

Freedom of Religion

I’ve seen a lot of discussion about the controversy concerning the Mosque being built not far from Ground Zero. So I thought I’d talk about it tonight.

I’m not a Muslim. I am not really happy about the political statement the people behind this mosque are apparently trying to make. I can completely understand why people are offended and don’t like the idea of the mosque.

But this is the United States of America. We are guarenteed the freedom to worship as we choose. We are guarenteed the freedom to speak in ways that others may find offensive. I think we need to show them what being an American is about and respect their right to worship as they choose. Even if they might not do the same for us.

This is an emotional issue. And rightly so. But we can’t let emotions overwhelm us and ignore principle. Because it’s the principles that are important. If this is a political stunt, giving it attention is exactly what they want. If not, then there is no harm in letting them worship as they please. Either way, we should extend the hand of friendship to them. We need to rise above this us vs them mentality and be friends in the true essense of the word.

Christ spoke in the Sermon on the Mount about turning the other cheek when faced with evil. This isn’t evil, shouldn’t that be reason to turn the other cheek even more?

I think the Lord wants us to reach out to others. especially those not of our faith and be their friends. He has called us to be a light to the world.  We can’t do that if we see the people in the world as our enemies. The more I ponder what Christ was actually teaching us that may seem radical to the way we think, the more I realize He was teaching us to truly have power to influence others and lift them out of the natural man. There is true power and true happiness in the principles Christ teaches. Even if they seem contrary to nature. Because quite frankly, they are contrary to nature. They are teaching us to live a higher level of existance.

Freedom of Religion has been a principle of power since Joshua led the Israelites into Canaan.  “. . .[C]hoose you this day whom ye will serve . . . but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15). The Lord didn’t force the Israelites into the covenant. They Chose to enter into it. Just as we choose to when we make covenants with God.

If we think something is wrong, we need to persuade and discuss matters. We cannot misuse power and try to force someone to comply with our will just because we don’t like something. There is no power there. It just creates division between us. I don’t think the Lord wants that. He loves the Muslims just as much as He loves us. I dont think He wants us to hate each other or be angry with one another. He wants to reconcile ourselves to Him and to each other. He wants our hearts to change. Even if the hearts of others don’t.

I really think we should just let them be. Let them Worship as they choose and build the building they want as long as it’s up to code. In fact, maybe we should even help them. Maybe we should reach out and lift them up. It’s just an idea. If it is a political ploy, then no one will be expecting that.

Ill try to update more. I’ve just been really sick lately. Thankfully my head is starting to not feel stabby.

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Responses

  1. I remember hearing about this and at first being quite offended, but after reflecting on it somewhat and also due to the fact that I do know quite a few people who are Muslim, I think I can understand a little bit in why they would want to build a mosque there.

    When looking into Islam, it is actually a very peaceful religion and those who truly follow it are very peaceful as well. In some odd way I think they would want to build a mosque there to help bring something good to ground zero, not reflect on the bad that has happened there.

    In addition I really don’t like it when people judge the whole religion by the actions of the few. People need to start realizing that just because Al Queda attacked the US, doesn’t mean that all Muslims agree with Al Queda or follow them in any way. With any religion there will be extremists that help to defile the name of the religion, causing stereotypes to arise, so maybe people need to start realizing that just because someone is a Muslim, doesn’t mean they are a terrorist.


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