April 1, 2017: Day 91 – Psalm 91

Do you remember who used this Psalm in an argument against Jesus?  Just a hint, it is a really, really bad guy.  Go ahead and read Matthew 4:6, actually read the whole beginning of Matthew 4 and I think you will have your answer.  It is amazing how over time people have used Scripture to try to prove points that simply are not ethical in the best cases, catalysts to horrific tragedies in the worst cases.  I can run through the atrocities just to put things in a historical perspective.  

We can begin with Constantine who was the first to rule the land under the Christian banner and who persecuted those who would not convert to Christianity.  That continued all the way through the Middle Ages with the conquering of lands in the name of Jesus and even through the inquisition against those who were not Christian as they ought to have been.  But lest we think that the Roman Church has a monopoly on persecution and violence in the name of God, we think of the Nazi regime which was supported by Protestant thinking.  We think of apartheid South Africa which was propped up by the Reformed Church.  In our own country we see slavery was very much supported and encouraged within the institution of the churches.  We think of the Oklahoma City bombing which was carried out by one who professed to serve God and did this act in the name of God.  The list could go on.  I think we are often inundated with images of radicalized Muslims and think they are the only ones who commit atrocities in the name of their god, but if we look at history it tends to be a common them for those who serve their god in a radical way.

These historical examples serve as a warning to us that we should never see Scripture as a weapon to prove our point, but rather as an opportunity to exhibit the love of God to those around us.  I pray that this will always be our motive whenever we read Scripture and whenever we try to use it in discussions.

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