When the whole Duck Dynasty thing happened, a church in our area put itself on my radar by titling their Sunday sermon: “Duck Dynasty: The Separation of Church and Hate.” Ever since then I’ve wanted to go and see what the church was like. Last Sunday we tried it out. It turns out that the pastor is actually a professor of philosophy and his educational background is in philosophy. To me, that’s really hard to imagine. I sat through a few philosophy classes, but felt completely persecuted, though not as badly as in women studies. I love the logic and the ways of thinking, but it seemed to me that philosophy could lead you to anything. If it was logically the best idea than it must be the moral idea, that is something very hard to grasp for me. As it happens, the pastor was speaking that day about atheism and whether or not God is dead. He declares that in most churches today, God is dead. The idea of an unchanging rigid identity of God creates a dead god, a god who is not involved in our reality. Atheism, he said, is not the threat to Christianity that the church is: a thought that I thoroughly agree with. Though the service was very foreign to me, I really enjoyed the sermon. I’ve never heard a pastor tackle a secular idea like that from a Christian perspective. Usually the ideas start from a Bible verse and move into exegesis.
After the sermon, I talked with the pastor for a little while. he told us that after the Duck Dynasty comment on their sign, people began accusing them of devil worship in their church. I can’t believe the lengths that people will go to to defend their favorite shows even when they are wrong. I purposely did not write about the DD incident because it makes me quite angry that Christians will admit that what he said was offensive, but not condemn him for it. Now I see a church that is isolated by the Christian community surrounding it because they refuse to except hate as a part of their theology. The pastor told me that people are using God wrong in these incidents. I never thought of it that way but it’s true; not just with DD but with FOX news as well. People place God between themselves and the other and use God to keep sinners at arms length. Can someone explain to me how that is Christ-like in any way? As I have said before, Christ was the beginning of an insistence on personal relationships. Where are our personal relationships?
Sadly, I don’t think that we’ll be going back to that church. Gabe didn’t feel like he was in church for spiritual growth, but just because he should be in church. Make that the 112th church we’ve crossed off the list. Is it this hard for everyone? Do I care too much or not enough?