I usually don't stomp on my religious soapbox unless something is weighing heavy on me.
Today, I got a taste of pure hatred when I viewed a YouTube video that has gone viral--a pastor (if you want to call him that) in North Carolina ranting on about homosexuals and what he would like the government to do to them. I was appalled. Maybe you've seen it. I won't go into details, you can pull it up on YouTube yourself. The words spoken sent chills down my spine. I think for the first time I experienced something akin to the horror the people in Europe felt the first time they heard Adolf Hitler rant about the Jews. What this pastor (again, the word used loosely here) said he would like to do to gays and lesbians brought tears to my eyes and made my skin crawl.
All I could think about was the love of God, that He is the judge of sin, and only He determines what is sin and what is not. Not us. Not any pastor. Or anyone who calls himself a pastor.
I like to quote Pastor Matt Idom from 1/28/2011 in his online post entitled, Worshipping God, not the Bible. He said, "We preachers are notorious about moving in and out of scripture like it is some worn out back door, ever struggling with the temptation to use it to prove a point or leverage a position ..."
An old hymn we used to sing in Sunday school has been running through my head all day. It's by Frederick M. Lehman, 1917.
The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star,
and reaches to the lowest hell;
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled,
And pardoned from his sin.
O, love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure--
The saints' and angels' song.
This next verse was penciled on the wall of a narrow room in an insane asylum by a man said to have been demented. The profound lines were discovered when they laid him in his coffin.
Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Through stretched from sky to sky.
I think that old buzzard in North Carolina who calls himself a pastor is going to be shocked someday at who really makes it to Heaven.
Just my humble opinion.
Blessings to you and yours.