Making the rounds on social media in the past week is a fascinating post by Russell Williams, a Southern Baptist minister at McCormick Road Baptist Church in Apopka, Florida. While too many “Christians” have been rolling their eyes, waving their arms skyward, and cursing the Big Bad “Homosexual Agenda” and Big Bad Government for the “persecution” of Rowan County (Kentucky) Clerk of Courts Kim Davis because she claims to love Jesus, this man of the cloth lays it out perfectly.
As the far-right fundamentalist Taliban continues to hoist this lawless clerk onto the lofty perch of Christian martyrdom, finally a true person of faith takes her down where she belongs. In a perfect world, she would be practicing a bit of self-evaluation and humility right now instead of demanding her 15 minutes of infamy for a lost cause that was never really a cause to begin with. Perhaps she needs to brush up on her Sunday school lessons of days past, you know, the ones that talk about rendering to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.
Reverend Williams is a Christian pastor who gets it. This is a man who understands that religion and spirituality are deeply personal, not political. This is an evangelical who knows that the goal of the devout individual should be to strive to be a better person, not to force his or her own beliefs onto everyone else in an effort to justify said beliefs. This is a minister who can make people realize that sitting in a church pew on Sunday mornings doesn’t make you a real Christian anymore than sitting in the garage makes you a Buick.
Thank you, Pastor Russell Williams! Thank you for being a sane and reasonable voice in this sordid mess. Thank you for words that reflect the true message of an ancient Jewish philosopher from Galilee whom so many consider their savior and guiding light.
“Since I am a pastor of a southern Baptist church please allow me to weigh in on the case of Kim Davis, the lady in Kentucky who refuses to issue a marriage licenses to a same sex couple.
First: This is not a case of the government forcing anyone to violate their religious belief. She is free to quit her job. If she quits her job to honor God surely God would take care of her.
Second: This is not a case of someone trying to uphold the sanctity of marriage. If she wanted to uphold the sanctity of marriage she should not have been married four different times. If she is worried about her name being affixed to a marriage license that goes against a biblical definition of marriage, she should not have her name on the last three marriage licenses given to her.
Third: This seems to be a case of someone looking to cash in on the religious right. Churches all across the south will throw money at her to come and tell congregations how the evil American government put her in jail because of her faith in Jesus.
This is why we are losing.
This is why people have such disdain for evangelicals.
Not because we disagree but because we don’t take the bible seriously. If ever there was a case of “he who is without sin cast the first stone”, this is it. If ever there was a “take the log out of your eye” moment, this is it.
We must stop looking to the government to make America a Christian utopia. Our kingdom is not of this world.
We must abandon all thoughts of fixing others and let Jesus fix us.
If we want sanctity of marriage then stop cheating, stop having affairs, stop looking at porn, stop getting divorces. That is the way for the church to stand up for the biblical definition of marriage, not by someone martyring their self-righteous self.”
Can I get a chorus of “AMEN!” all around?