When the Bible is used as a political or power advantage…beware…
The person who is willing to use religion to control people is not a person who speaks for God, but a person who uses God’s words like a sword. Do not be led astray.
Know the difference between good and evil, even when they are cloaked in matching coats.
For simply to follow power because it commands your attention, does not mean it will call you to the right path.
I am deeply concerned by much of the media we are hearing today. When someone uses religion to justify nefarious actions, we should question their motives, their intentions, and their personal needs. Simply because a person claims religious affiliation does not at all mean they are a particularly faithful or righteous person. I believe most of us know this, theoretically, logically – but do we practice questioning? There is a preached taboo against questioning God…one should simply ‘have faith’, ‘believe in the higher power’, follow His word. But I don’t believe questioning people is the same as questioning God. It means questioning the person claiming to speak for God.
Religion can be an enormously powerful source of inspiration and comfort or a weapon used to control masses of people. The only difference between the two is the intent of the person speaking.
One of the reasons I believe we have so much dissent within the Muslim culture is because there is a group of people committing heinous crimes against humanity and claiming they are doing it for God (Allah). Yet, simply because they claim to be acting on God’s behalf, does not at all mean they actually are. But consider the opportunity they are exploiting? If they claim it is on behalf of a specific religion, imagine how many people begin to assume all people of that religion are terrible people?
In our country, we have many absolutely amazing and wonderful faith leaders – across many different religions. As such, we often assume those that claim to speak for God, in actuality do so for the good of our people – and certainly, most do. But to apply that logic across all situations and all people who claim they speak for Him gives our faith to a human, not to a higher power. And when we do that, we do not worship or follow with purpose but instead follow blindly and not only give great power to anyone willing to use it but we also encourage others to rise up and learn to wield the same faith-weaponry. They are preying on our need to believe the world is safe and people who claim to be of faith, are good.
Do not be fooled. When religion is used to justify killing, defilement of children, judgment of others different than oneself, righteousness, or the denigration of women; question the person speaking. Question why they feel the need to prove their superiority over others. Question their need for power. Question the person, the message, the intent…because if you don’t, you are not honoring God with your blind faith but instead willingly giving your faith to an earthly being using it for personal gain.
Always remember: Religion should not be used as a weapon but instead as a source of comfort and inspiration.