When people do horrific things to their fellow humans, there seems to be a consensus among a certain element of the far-right Christian sphere that thinks these things are happening because not enough people are praying. Believing that a lack of prayer can set the stage for bad things to happen is one thing, but believing that God allows bad things to happen to guilt people into praying to him is another thing entirely.
This Sunday in the wake of the violence in El Paso and Dayton that left around 30 people dead, Christian author Eric Metaxas took to his Twitter account and posed a question to his followers.
“The spirit of mass-murder is the spirit of anti-Christ,” he wrote. “Instead of pointing fingers at each other & sharing in that foul spirit, let us turn to God in repentance. Can it be that He has allowed this evil so that we will return to Him in prayer & repentance?”
The spirit of mass-murder is the spirit of anti-Christ. Instead of pointing fingers at each other & sharing in that foul spirit, let us turn to God in repentance. Can it be that He has allowed this evil so that we will return to Him in prayer & repentance? #jesus #severemercy
— Eric Metaxas (@ericmetaxas) August 4, 2019
Metaxas’s question begs another: What kind of God is he worshipping?
The comment thread that vomited beneath his tweet had a mix of faithful followers who agreed with his sentiment, while others found the notion of a “loving” God allowing such gruesome suffering just so he can get back some lost adulation to be quite grotesque.
It’s called evil and it’s motivated by Satan himself. This is a spiritual battle we are fighting and we need to use spiritual weapons- starting with prayer. We need to pray for divine intervention and a spiritual awakening in our nation”
— dorothy (@dorth_2000) August 4, 2019
Your tweet is the spirit of nonsense.
— Freo Sceptic (@FreoSceptic) August 4, 2019
That POTUS knowingly and intentionally fans the flames of nativism, racism and division is now beyond dispute. This is who he is. [Matthew 12:34] The repentance required now must be that of those who continue–if only by silence–to enable this profoundly wicked man.
— T. Robinson Ahlstrom (@gw_scholars) August 4, 2019
@RayComfort addressed the cause of mass shootings.https://t.co/gE7GDeoi83
— Linda (@LindaFortWorth) August 4, 2019
This kind of claim makes me glad I’m Buddhist. The idea that any sentient being would allow others to suffer, while still remaining a moral and good entity, is repulsive.
Kind of glad my wife stopped believing in the christian god if this is what it is.
— Nicholas Paschall (@Nelfeshne) August 4, 2019
I have to agree with you Eric. We are turning a blind eye to so many things today and God continues to be patient with us and allowing us an opportunity to repent. Are we going to take hold of the opportunity or think that we are above that? I will choose to pray and repent!
— Nick (@NickOwensnic) August 4, 2019
Ah, good, prayer. That worked SO WELL last time.
— U the Frood (@UberFrood) August 5, 2019
So lemme see if I’m tracking. God is causing us to go on shooting sprees because we are not paying enough attention. Little petulent don’t you think?
— Charles Clarke (@klark_e) August 5, 2019
Writing for the Friendly Atheist, Hemant Mehta says that even if the psychopathic god Metaxas envisions existed, it wouldn’t be worth worshipping.
Consider how demented Christianity would have to be to pretend God is perfectly fine with letting innocent people be slaughtered in order to convince Atheist Annie that she should accept His love? Hell, many of the people who died were presumably Christian already, and it didn’t do them a damn bit of good.
Featured image via YouTube