Bad idea = huge understatement
Someone serving in the Middle East sent me an e-mail today asking me to comment on this whole Koran burning nonsense. She can't comment as she's currently living in a conservative Muslim country in which it would be unwise to even mention burning the Koran and Americans burning the Koran will only make her work harder.
I decided to go directly to the church's website to find out exactly what they were doing and why. The church is called Dove World Outreach Center, located in Gainesville, FL. I read through their reasoning. You can read it for yourself at their website: doveworld.org. Be sure to read "Ten Reasons to Burn a Koran" and "5 More Reasons to Burn the Koran."
Having read the website, I don't know what to say. It's so sincere. I guess that makes it even sadder.
There are probably thousands of Christians working among Muslims right now; giving a helping hand, rebuilding homes, rebuilding lives, teaching freedom - the freedom of Jesus and the forgiveness of sins - and giving a face to Christianity other than American materialism.
And then along comes this little band of Koran-burners fanning the flames of hate between the two religions. And of course, the media is all in a tizzy to cover it.
The best thing we could all do is ignore it, but it's too late for that. So perhaps instead we can focus on those thousands of other Christians who are making a positive change in the Muslim world. The best way we can fight this kind of madness is to support those doing it the right way.
I won't post how here, but I can hook you up with some ways to make positive change by supporting those involved. Just ask me.
Lastly, I would encourage those of you who are reading this who happen to be followers of Jesus to be careful how you respond to the Koran burning church. Don't be fooled into thinking that demeaning them and/or showing hatred towards them sets you apart from them. It doesn't. It sets you on the same wrong side of the debate.
They're not idiots, they're not morons and they're not some sort of lunatic fringe. They are just like many of your neighbors. This is the view that most of the world has of us. Making fun of them doesn't change this opinion. Only giving a positive alternative example can do that.
(Photo: from http://www.doveworld.org/the-sign)