With the coming out this week of the Nashville Statement, my firm belief that we live in a polytheistic society was buttressed.
The God that I learned about in the Bible was a God who loved everyone. My mother and my Sunday School teachers drummed it into me that God is love, that God sent his son, Jesus the Christ, to spread that message and to exhibit the behavior that said “everybody counts, everybody matters.”
The stories of Jesus hanging out with the marginalized were riveting. There he was, talking, sharing and eating with those who society ignored. There he was, touching the “dirty” and the sick, embracing everyone who dared come near him, because it was the way to live life. It was what God wanted.
The God of the Hebrew scriptures deplored the Empire and its determination to turn people away from the One God to the gods they deemed fit and mandatory to honor. I learned, with fascination, that there is honor and power in worshipping the One God, even if it meant being thrown into a fiery furnace or a lion’s den. I learned that the One God would always “be there,” no matter how bad or prolonged our suffering because of life’s challenges or the evil intent of the government.
I learned in the Gospels that God the Father/Mother had a special place for “the least of these;” I resonated with the 25th chapter of Matthew where the stories appeared that said that inasmuch as any of us feed, clothe, give water to and visit those who have been cast away, we do it to God. Those who had ignored them had, in effect, ignored God, too.
God, it seemed, didn’t give a hoot about who was “different,” according to society. God loved all because God was the “father” (parent) of us all. God didn’t discriminate against women and poor people and people with leprosy or those who had developmental disabilities. God held all of us, just like a mother and father love a child of theirs who has been born with a cleft lip or palate or some other devastating condition.
That God didn’t care about any of that; all were important; all mattered, including same gender-loving people.
This obsession with sexuality on the part of people who say they love God, is troubling. It is an obsession which has led “God-loving people” to do heinously hateful things to and against people who love the God I just described. It has caused them to put same gender-loving people out of churches; has forced them to remain quiet about who they are as they have listened to sermons putting them down and convincing them they are going to hell. Religious people, many of whom are “evangelical” and “Conservative,” have been rather like an abusive spouse, beating and bullying people because they could, using God as their justification. “The least of these,” including same gender-loving people, yes, but also black and brown people, women, people with disabilities and illnesses such as HIV/AIDS, have been beaten down, over and over, by these religious imposters who throw their weight around in a bag full of hurtful and sanctimonious theology which is counter to the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Bible.
These “evangelicals” who wrote, signed and distributed the Nashville Statement must be like an offering which is putrid to the very nostrils of God. More than once, an angry God in the Hebrew scriptures has denounced the “offerings” of the so-called “holy” and religious. He has said that their worship is an abomination to Him/Her. The spirit of evangelical self-righteousness has been around from the beginning of time. Their god and what their god leads them to do (little “g” intentional) has never been acceptable or pleasing to the One God. I am purposely not lifting any scriptures at this point, because the evangelicals of this ilk love to get into theological debate about them, to prove and bolster their position. Nobody has time for that kind of banter, not now.
In spite of our claiming to be monotheistic in our beliefs, we need to just “fess up” and say we worship two different gods, that Christianity is not characterized by a uniform belief system, but has splintered into a Christianity which believes in excluding people who do not “fit” human definitions of who is worthy to be loved by God and treated with dignity, and a Christianity which has remained stubbornly aligned with the principles taught by the God in the Hebrew Bible and his son, Jesus the Christ.
We have at least two gods in this country and in this world.
The evangelical god, he/she who allows and sanctions homophobia, racism, sexism and all forms of exclusion, is not my god. The evangelical god sees nothing wrong with denigrating the lives and spirits of people whom God created. My God finds that offensive. The evangelical god turns people away from the One God, and toward despair.
The God of Creation finds that despicable.
The Nashville Statement needs to be damned and rejected by all who believe in the One God. Silence is not an option because the God of Creation is a God of love and inclusion. To be silent is to reject the God who made us all.
That is not a good thing.
A candid observation …
(Rev. Dr. Susan K Smith is available for doing workshops on this topic, as well as for workshops on having crazy faith and preaching. Please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Visit YouTube to see her talk on this subject with Bill Moyers.
2 thoughts on “Two Gods, at Least”
Copy of open letter to (figure)heads of religions FYI:-
11 September 2017
His Holiness Pope Francis PP,
00120 Via del Pellegrino,
Citta del Vaticano,
His Holiness the Archbishop of Canterbury,
London SE1 7JU,
His Holiness the Dalai Lama,
P.P. McLeod Ganj,
Himachal Pradesh (H.P.) 176219,
cc. The Times, London; The Times of India; The Hindu, The New York Times.
A gift for World Peace.
This open letter is to inform you of a gift of Truth from the one God, which I believe this world needs to know about if it is ever to be at peace. You also bear a heavy responsibility for world peace.
I do not need to outline current world problems, ‘wicked’ and otherwise: I am told they are “Beyond your imagination”, even with my formal training in biology and psychology.
They reflect a state of war within religions, in which the one Truth is lost within age-old schisms and overt or covert attempts to dominate on a political or secular level.
This letter directs your attention towards the one Truth, which is above doctrinal arguments.
The gift mentioned is that of temporary at-One-ment with God (Christianity); aka Union with Brahman (Hinduism); aka Nirvana (Buddhism), aka the Sufi mystical experience (Islam). I do not know of any parallel in Judaism, but I am not a religious scholar.
Even so, it is clear that neither Siddhartha Gautama nor Joshua ben Joseph wanted to establish a new religion in which they would be worshipped as individuals. Nor did Mohammed seek to be worshipped. As you may be aware, Siddhartha is not a Buddhist; ‘Jesus’ is not a Christian, and Mohammed is not a Muslim, just as Karl Marx was and is not a Marxist.
Further, God is above and beyond man-made religions, in this and all other worlds.
It is not my responsibility to publicly comment on or resolve those religious beliefs which contribute to war: it is yours. I am for peace; I am certainly not against religion per se.
Messengers are not popular, particularly iconoclastic ones. But the old has to change if the new is to arrive. An Angel has told me I may or may not live to see world peace: I take this as encouragement. But she also said that most people presently working to this end were not sincere.
Nirvana is such a powerful event that it requires months or years to digest: it was given in August 2000 at age 55 and I have been silent on it for some years. But the world needs to know:-
1. God/Allah/Brahman exists.
2. There is a spiritual hierarchy that includes Angels and Cherubs: much is delegated to such beings, some to us as human beings.
3. All men are Brothers and women Sisters, with the same Father/Mother.
4. We are not animals: we all have responsibility for this world.
5. Karma operates (‘Justice is Mine saith the Lord’), including via 6. below.
6. There is no death; there is reincarnation as required.
7. A person’s particular religion is not important. But all is known about us: our thoughts and actions.
I set up a Blog to advertise these truths in 2016. In it you will find objective accounts of various visions and other experiences. In it you will also note I was originally trained in the UK as an objective observer and reporter, and went on to train others in these techniques.
You are welcome to quote from those experiences given to me, all of which are true.
This Blog demands your careful reading of it; and this more than once. Many years ago I was told by Spirit that most peoples’ minds are closed to spiritual truths, so this is a possible hurdle for you all to overcome. I trust that you will.
B.Sc. Biology; B.Sc. Psychology; B.A. Sustainability; Grad. Cert. Entomology; DCH, sometime M.IASK.
Senior Science Administrator, Psychotherapist, and Mystic.
Thank you for sharing this.