Another Example Of How Christians Spread "Hate Speech"

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by GotZoom, Aug 29, 2006.

  1. GotZoom
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    GotZoom Senior Member

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    A Contra Costa Sikh leader is denouncing a pamphlet from an El Sobrante church that tells Sikhs their holy book is wrong and warns them they face eternal hell unless they receive Jesus as their savior.

    "Please Consider These Words of Love My SIKH Friend," by Pastor Kent Brandenburg of Bethel Baptist Church, combines faith-based arguments with the logic that because its prophecies "come true 100 percent," the Bible can be nothing else but the absolute truth.

    The 10 gurus who are the pillars of Sikhism "died and stayed dead," whereas Jesus Christ defeated death, Brandenburg wrote. "His resurrection, witnessed by over 500 people, sealed the fact that Jesus Christ is God."

    "Without believing in Jesus Christ, you, my Sikh friend, will die in your sins, and in so doing, will be condemned to Hell forever," reads the pamphlet, which church members distributed last month at a Sikh Spiritual Peace March through El Sobrante in memory of the fifth guru, Arjan Dev, who was martyred 400 years ago.

    The pamphlet calls on Sikhs to repudiate their religion. "First, admit you are a sinner. Second, admit you deserve Hell for your sin. Third, call on the Lord Jesus Christ to save you from your sin while giving your life to him."

    J.P. Singh, president of El Sobrante Gurdwara Sahib, the Sikh Center of the San Francisco Bay Area, said the pamphlet is objectionable because "it belittles another religion."

    "To coexist in this country in love and peace, I think there has to be an acceptance of other people's religions," Singh said.

    The temple has responded to Brandenburg's missive with passages from the Sikh holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib, on the sickness of ego as an impediment to achieving oneness with God, and on the worship of a common God as reflected in the holy books of many religions.

    "The world is like a flower and God is the gardener. He cares for all and ignores none. Each flower has the fragrance that the gardener has put in it," the Sikh response says.

    Brandenburg said he has distributed the pamphlet off and on for eight or 10 years and that the message it conveys is hardly new. He said he was surprised to receive an e-mail from a local non-Sikh merchant characterizing it as "hate speech."

    "That message has been around for 2,000 years -- now it's hate speech?" Brandenburg said.

    He said the pamphlet is a message of love -- one of "tough love," akin to a stern warning to a loved one to desist from destructive behavior. Disseminating it fulfills the "Parable of the Sower" in Matthew 13 and Mark 4 in the New Testament, in which Jesus tells his followers to spread the Gospel, Brandenburg said.

    The timing -- July 23, a Sunday -- was spontaneous, he said.

    "There was a parade," Brandenburg said. "I didn't know about it until it was happening. Toward the end of our service, there was loud chanting in a non-English language, probably Punjabi, over a microphone going down Appian Way.

    "I have no problem with that," Brandenburg said, "but we also have the right to go down the street and give out our literature. We said nice things to the people as we handed it to them."

    Bethel Baptist Church is off Appian Way, along the July 23 peace march route.

    Singh said the peace march was not the right time to seek converts -- if ever there is one.

    "I feel it would be offensive, if the Christians were having an event, to pass out Sikh literature," Singh said.

    "We don't believe in converting people," Singh continued. "Sikhism ... believes that all religions are equal at God's door. You can achieve salvation being truthful to whatever religion you choose to practice.

    "The Sikh Golden Rule from Guru Granth Sahib is 'No one is enemy. No one is stranger. I get along with All,'" he said.

    The Sikh religion originated in the Punjab region of India in 1469 with the birth of Guru Nanak Dev. The 10th guru, Gobind Singh, died in 1708.

    Sikhism, like Judaism, Christianity and Islam, is monotheistic.

    Adam Kruggel, executive director of Contra Costa Interfaith Supporting Community Organization, which is made up of more than two dozen Christian congregations, said he has met with Sikh leaders in Pittsburg and found that "our faith traditions have so much in common."

    "We are much more interested in working together and acting on our common values than worrying about differences that may divide us," Kruggel said. "We find that understanding and relating to other traditions has deepened people's appreciation of their faith. Our approach is not to put aside our faiths but to put them in context."

    http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/15374292.htm
     
  2. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    Won't be long before sharing one's faith with a non-believer becomes outlawed.
     
  3. mattskramer
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    mattskramer Senior Member

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    I believe in free speech to a degree but I don’t think that it should be treated as an absolute. I think that people should be free to speak about their religion but there is a time and place for everything. After the peach march, the Christians could have given information to the people. The notion that these Christians distributed information at a Sikh Spiritual Peace March just “rubs me the wrong way”.

    Would you think it appropriate to carry a sign saying “God Hates Fags” at a funeral service of a gay person while that gay guy’s friends and mourners are in attendance? Would it be okay for me to go into an Easter parade or outside Christian church retreat or service and hand out leaflets criticizing Christianity and supporting Islam?

    I think that the Christians were being intrusive and inconsiderate to the Sikh while they were doing their thing with respect to their guru, Arjan Dev. I might not have taken the time to fully think about this but something about it, again, just …rubs me the wrong way. That is all that I have to say about it right now.
     
  4. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    But do you think it was HATE speech? When Christians tell others about their truths, it's done in LOVE - because Christians CARE about people, and their souls.
     
  5. manu1959
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    manu1959 Left Coast Isolationist

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    it is not hate speach... but if i do not invite you to share or i ask you to stop sharing and in either case you continue you are simply rude.
     
  6. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    ...but not a crime.
     
  7. The ClayTaurus
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    The ClayTaurus Senior Member

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    When some Christians do. When others do it, it is for selfish reasons; often the line between a Christian caring about people and their souls is blurred with the line about needing to reassure themselves. Especially among those who don't consider themselves Christian.
     
  8. manu1959
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    manu1959 Left Coast Isolationist

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    in mecca but not in the US......
     
  9. roomy
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    roomy The Natural

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    All religious speech should be banned.It is devisive in all it's denominations.Surely if god exists, he/she will find a way to reach mankind, without the chosen few spouting rhetoric and waving their gods word in our faces.Religion should be banned, we should start again, I could be god.
     
  10. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    Those aren't Christians. Those are religious folk. Sad thing is, Anyone can 'say' they are christians - and those w/o the ability to discern lump them together with true believers and junk.

    :-/
     

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