Maybe you clicked on this blog because you saw the title “Westboro Baptist Church.” You’ve likely seen them on the evening news picketing major events like funerals of fallen soldiers. They carry around their signs saying “God Hates Fags” & “God Hate America” etc. Whether you’re a Christian or not, you’ve likely looked on in disgust. Westboro Baptist Church claim to be Christians. People know that I worship Jesus, so they often ask what my opinion is about Westboro Baptist Church. I thought of a simple and short analogy to explain it.
Think of a kid who is a bully. On the playground he pushes other kids off of the monkey bars, calls them names, makes fun of them, spits at them, and even hits them. He is a typical bully who all the parents know as the “bad kid.” The other kids don’t like being around him because he is so reckless and hurtful.
This bully is always getting in trouble. He is constantly distracting and gaining the attention of the whole class by his actions. He spends a lot of time talking with the teacher and getting sent to the principal’s office. The more he bullies, the more attention he gets.
Compare this kid with the “good kid” in school. He plays with the mentally challenged kids on the playground, picks the handicap kid first for his team in gym class, often gets bullied because he stands up for the other kids who are getting bullied. He does not distract his classmates during class time and makes his classmates feel loved. He does not act this way so that people will recognize his good deeds; he does them out of the goodness of his heart. He’s not perfect, but he’s no bully.
Does the teacher ever single this child out to thank him for his kindness? Does he get sent to the principal’s office and thanked by the principal? Is he ever honoured or recognized by anyone for his love, grace, service, and humility at the school?
No. Why? Because people don’t have time to appreciate him. They’re too focused on the bully kid.
Suppose that the bully kid gained more attention around the school district. Would it be fair to say that the bully kid represents the entirety of the school? The whole school is full of bullies because of this one problem child? Certainly not.
I believe that the bully in the story is Westboro Baptist Church. I think the reason they are as offensive as they are is because we let them get all the attention. We put them all over the news & the internet. I hate to be writing about them in this blog because I’m bringing further attention to them. Please realize this is only a response to the constant questions I get asked about them (mostly from non-Christians).
Just as the bully does not represent the whole school, Westboro Baptist Church does not represent all of Christianity. People often wear cheesy bracelets that say “What Would Jesus Do?” In this case, would Jesus really be picketing these funerals and walking around talking about how much He hates everyone?
While I agree that Jesus hates sin, we don’t often see Him holding up signs and picketing funerals. We see Him weeping with those who weep and showing compassion for those who lose loved ones. We see Him eating with tax collectors, prostitutes, and sinners.
Westboro Baptist Church are just bullies, not faithful representations of what the Bible says to do. There are Christians out there who do great things for Jesus & you will rarely ever see them on the news because they are too normal, not crazy, and very loving. That kind of stuff does not exactly gain the viewing numbers that the news sources hope for.
Next time you see Westboro Baptist Church in the news, please ignore them and remember that their misrepresentation of Jesus does not make all of Christianity or Christians bad/wrong/not true.
– Tyson Bradley