That God of Hate has been visible this year too. We talked before about hate in the calls to anti-gay violence from the pulpits especially during the run-up to North Carolina's hate Amendment. And in the aftermath of the shootings in Colorado, we heard hate in the attempts of some to blame liberals , or gays, or progressive churches for the tragedy .Fred Jackson of the AFA:
"The AFA Journal has been dealing with denominations that no longer believe in the God of the Bible, they no longer believe that Jesus is the only way of salvation, they teach that God is OK with homosexuality, this is just increasing more and more. It is mankind shaking its fist at the authority of God. We are seeing his judgment. You know, some people talk about ‘God’s judgment must be just around the corner,’ we are seeing it."Tea Party Congressman Louis Gohmert blames the shooting on atheists and "ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs".
But I think the most hate-filled comment was from an "evangelical spokesman"
who blamed the tragedy of the Aurora shooting on the nation’s loss of fear of God and hell. Discussing the victims, Newcombe argued that the non-Christians were going to Hell.How vicious is that? What kind of person steps up and says "your murdered child is going to burn in hell"?
It is difficult to fathom how these men got from commandments to "Love God and thy neighbor" to a hate-filled and punitive deity, leading them to verbal assaults and even calls for violence on anyone who disagrees. It's a very old-Testament view, which leads one to wonder what part of "Christian" they actually embrace.
UpdateFrank Bruni looks at Michelle Bachman with similar questions in the NY Times today.
What I find most fascinating about Michele Bachmann — and there are many, many more where she came from — is that she presents herself as a godly woman, humbly devoted to her Christian faith. I’d like to meet that god, and I’d like to understand that Christianity.....
Bachmann’s concept of Christian love brims with hate, and she has a deep satchel of stones to throw. From what kind of messiah did she learn that?
... Perhaps we should start noting the difference between Christians of real compassion and those of exclusionary spite.