memorial day

Today we honor the men and women who gave their lives to defend the constitution of the United States.  I once pledged the oath to do the same. I’ve struggled with that pledge since.

I must confess that 10 years into my enlistment I began to see that my patriotism and nationalism did not reconcile with the good news (gospel) of God’s kingdom.  It didn’t mean I wasn’t grateful for being an American.  However, being part of Sunday services where flags were in full display next to a cross and patriotic songs were sung with great pride left me wondering if God was pleased.  I came to the realization and found it to be blasphemous of the Church to try and coalesce humanistic doctrine for governing a nation with the good news of God.

Since I can remember church leaders have taken the war stories of the Old Testament to justify their support for going to war.  It’s the conflict I’ve faced in my heart since the Cold War.  Many of you will disagree with me and that’s fine.  Nonetheless, whether I agree or not with our politics and foreign policies, I still honor those who made the sacrifice for our nation.  They must not be forgotten.

Two articles worth reading:

The United States Flag at the Front of the Church is Blasphemous

The Tragedy of Patriotic Worship, or: We Have a Different Memorial Day

 

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