The following is a letter I wrote to someone I love intensely. This person has been angry at Christianity a lot lately. The letter:
I can tell you’re angry.
Because, you’re right. Religion sucks. People hurting each other sucks. Self righteousness evolving into a self-other dichotomy sucks. Turning a loving message from “God for us” to “Us for God” to “us FOR them” to “us VS them” sucks. Raping a divine romance by turning into an elitist country club mentality sucks.
I hate it.
Jesus did too.
Have you ever gone to the state fair? On an actual fun scale I would rank the state fair about as high as seeing the theatrical trailer for the Justin Bieber movie. I’m glad to know what everyone is talking about, but now wish I didn’t at the same time.
After walking 3 miles in the dust to get into the actual fair, you see ten or twenty ATMs, ticket counters, 400 funnel cake stations, and a police tower. There’s food, horse poop, and human vomit. The rides are … bad. I mean they are just awful.
Jesus enters the big Jerusalem temple, the one people would come from the ends of the earth for worship and sacrifice, and here’s what he saw: The state fair. There were all these sleaze-balls making loads of money of the temple by selling doves and other sacrificial animals, exchanging currencies at steep rates, all the while ignoring the plight of beggars and crippled folks around them.
And this was at a really busy time for the Jews and the temple. It was passover week. Imagine if Christmas was still this big, but only had one really big church building for all of america. That was the temple in Jerusalem.
So it is in front of these huge crowds that he begins flipping the money changers’ tables and destroying the little venues for making money. He chases them out shouting that they have made his father’s house into a “den of robbers.”
Anyway, I wanted to let you know that you aren’t the only one who thinks it sucks. Wherever religion sits, there also gather the robbers. Don’t let them steal the truth from you.
Robbers tried to tell me I didn’t believe the right way when I was telling them what the Bible says. Robbers framed Jesus and nailed him to a Roman torture display.
Christianity has messed up a lot. But to be fair, there are a lot of robbers. We can’t just burn out all the weeds without also destroying the wheat.
Don’t give up on us.
What would you say to someone who is rightfully furious at Christianity?