You can't be hateful and christian at the same time.
That's the plain truth.
There has been a lot of hate going around, about a lot of different things. Prejudice against political candidates because of their religious beliefs. Racial slurs of prominent figures. Anger at people for being too old, too young, too famous, too rich, too poor... the list goes on. And on. And on.
One of the hot topics is the LGBT movement. Talking about it seems to be the current fad. And much of the anti-gay hate has come from "christian" communities. People who are supposedly following the example of Jesus. Who claim to have Him as a leader and guide in their lives.
Guess what... Jesus didn't hate people.
Unlike Him, we're not perfect. So sometimes we mess up. Sometimes we get angry, or say something that hurts someone else. It happens. And that's normal. But the main point of being a christian is that we do our best not to let that happen. Ie. to "love your neighbor as yourself".
The same goes for any of the major religions. Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish... all of them teach the same thing. (See page 2 of here.) All of them teach that loving your fellow man is the ultimate goal.
So why is there so much hate?
There are some particular church groups that (Like Westboro Baptist. Again, see here.) have been picketing and rallying on national tv. Is there anything wrong with that? No. I firmly believe that it's not just our right, but our duty to stand up for what we believe in, especially in the political process.
Are they working for the passing or blocking of laws? Are they rallying to inform the masses of the issues? No. They are meeting together to throw hate slurs at gay people. They insult. They demean. They crash funerals with picket signs. They slander.
Is this christian?
No. No it is not.
The issue in question here is not whether being gay is right or wrong. I know where I stand on that question, but it isn't relevant. Not to this discussion. And I'm not going to go into it.
The issue here is that all of the major religions teach us to "love your neighbor as yourself." To "judge not, that ye be not judged." "why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?"
The point is that hate is un-christian.
"Love the sinner, hate the sin."
Isn't that what we're taught? That without approving of immoral actions, we can still give love and kindness to the human beings around us?
I think most people would agree that stealing is wrong. And we have governmental laws against it. But when we come across someone who has stolen in the past, we don't shove them into lockers at school. We don't blackball them in the work place. We don't call them horrible names and make them feel like they are truly alone in the world.
We try to help them.
We can love people who make mistakes without agreeing with their mistakes. And without becoming "enablers" in their doing it again. Addicts. Thieves. Bums. Bullies. These people can be hard to love. But they're just as human as we are. And they need love and help just as much as everyone else.
Why is this such a difficult concept for everyone? And why should the reaction be different for gay people?
It doesn't matter if being gay is wrong. Because they are still people. Still human beings. They still need love and friends. They still deserve respect and kindness.
If you call yourself a christian, it's your job to love others. To help them through life. To be kind. To serve. NOT to shun. NOT to bully. NOT to hate.
No one is perfect. Least of all me. Least of all you. We all make different kinds of mistakes. Big or small, we all have problems. If you expect others to overlook your frailties, and love you anyway, you should do the same for them.
Love is all you need.