Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Christian State won't affect state of Christians

Words escape me. The alleged discussion to plan a coup has certainly exposed to tinted-glass Malaysians that anyone can be quoted out of context whether it be dim-witted cabinet ministers or foolish Christian leaders. With chagrin I have to say that Penang throwing its hands in the air saying "it wasn't me!" sounds a lot like many other factions we complain about. That the Penang Assemble ban Utusan from reporting at the next State Assembly also brings back memories of the sandbox. We have all heard how Utusan's job-on-the-side is making things sound as incredibly unbelievable before publishing. Could the Penang Government not have given written notice to Utusan and revoked Utusan's license over time and recorded wrongdoings? This knee jerk response does not sit well and leaves me wondering whether Ubah can converse like an adult.

Despite the 'outcry' that Christians are being 'matyred' once again (that is actually what you sign up for you know; that Merc in the porch is a bonus), I for one can certainly imagine pastors and leaders praying for a "Christian Malaysia" and mean it in all sincerity and reverence. I myself considered the issue in high school, contemplating whether the "right" government by any Biblical standard had to be a "Christian goverment"; albeit a theocentric but not theocratic one. If Christians and Muslims alike see their creed and religious way of life as the be all and end all then having a "Christian Nation" would be no different to having an "Islamic" one; it would be less of a juxtapose than you really think.

Even more so, we are NOT an Islamic state and non-Muslims are not bound by Syariah. In the same way, even if everything Islam were to be replaced by Christian terminology, references and benefits in the Constitution, non-Christians would not be bound by "Christian Laws." In the spirit of Christ, you would not be able to overthrow governments and evil by changing the externals and/or of infiltrating a corrupt system.

Have you not heard that new wine that fill old wineskins will burst the dam?

I am annoyed by Christian leaders who allow themselves to get carried away without discernment. Those babble like the pagans and dull their mind with mouldy theory of text they do not take to heart. They balk when any breath of "Islamic state" is mentioned but justify themselves in a public spectacle that causes more confusion than peace. Yes, understandably, many things could have been taken out of context but it is one's responsibility to guard one's tongue and to bear the consequences for foregoing that responsibility.

What is most telling is that the Christian leaders at the meeting in Penang betray that there are leaders who are guiding Chrsitians in this country who have forgotten that we do not need a physical state within which we glorify our Saviour. Christians need no geographical pilgrimmage; neither Utah nor Jerusalem nor Meccah and no shrines of Vishnu or Buddha or even Mary. The kingdom of God is only found in islands or coasts or continents to the extent where His people are found. The church is the kingdom of God, not the building or steeple or baptismal pool. There is no explicit mandate to transform governments or remodel tax structures. No mandate even, dare I say this, to say that we are to dissent when our children are forbidden to bring pork to school.

Perhaps the leaders have been taken out of context. There is nothing wrong to pray against corruption, to speak up and out against its follies and vicious effects. What is wrong is when through a wrong understanding of scripture; when interpretation is twisted to run foul of its intention; when meaning is disregarded for popularity; when historical context is denied; when the centredness of the here-and-now takes precedence over God's timeline; that faith is seen to be of little value, to be ridiculed and rubbished as puffery of the human mind.

There is a fine line between legal right and moral right. That your moral right is only upheld where there is a legal right in place is hard words to hear for those under oppression but undoubtedly justified to the hearers of Self, Me, Myself and I which again, lives in each one of us. Then again, there are religious laws that tell us we have no right except the right that we render to God.

Perhaps I could better provoke a response by parading around Bukit Aman with a tee linking Penang to the Pope.

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