And Jesus said unto them, "Love thy straight white homophobic neighbor as thyself and verbally and physically abuse everyone else.” The crowds went from there and burned down the house of the nearest homosexual, then praised God for all that they had seen and heard.
If this sounds plausible, it is the product of the twisted culture that has become mainstream Christianity.
Fortunately, the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth contradict the attitudes and actions of many of his hateful followers. Jesus loved all his neighbors from the hated tax collector he chose to be his own disciple to the adulteress he saved from capital punishment. He dined with the sinners and rebuked the religious leaders.
However, one wouldn’t think that from looking at America today. Jesus’ message of love certainly contradicts the hate speech said in his name at Westboro Baptist Church. And while it is unfair to paint all Christians with a radical brush, it isn’t uncommon to see followers of Christ condemning gays or abortionists to hell while ignoring the wealthy adulterer next door.
What causes their poor theology? It seems that a redwood log in the eye wouldn’t warp the scriptures enough to say that Jesus would forgive the bigots who murdered him and then refuse to bake a wedding cake for the couple next door.
No, the root problem lies not in the scriptures, but in the lack thereof. The Bible names all sins as equal, but many Christians don’t know that because they haven’t read their own scriptures. Compared to the 3 out of 4 American adults who identify as Christians, only 1 in 5 Americans total have read the Bible cover to cover. This means that while the American majority professes to be Christian, only a small minority knows what it means to be one.
If Jesus were here, what would he say?
Probably something along the lines of, “My people, my people, why have you forsaken me?”