Glenn Beck has been talking on his television show about how Tea Party members are not to pick up guns and fight against “the system”. He mentioned the other day that the radical hippies that threw bombs in an attempt to take down “the man” are now the people in power. Now, the roles have reversed. The decent people who were once in power are now the ones protesting with signs, while the radicals who want to take down the government are now the people in control. I thought about what he said, and it was very depressing. How do you win against a corrupt government in power? I’ve been thinking about Jesus in the last couple of days, and about how God would want us to react.
The Obama administration and radicals in power are trying to provoke the Christians and other moral people that make up the Tea Party movement, according to Beck. First they pass massive government spending, then they pass health care, then go straight to immigration. Beck claims that they are trying to bait us into throwing bombs. They call us racists and hate-mongers. When they were dope-smoking hippies in the 1960s, and they were being dismissed as dope-smoking hippies, they felt like they were being provoked. They wanted to throw bombs. They think that we will feel exactly the way that they did back in the 1960s. They expect us to react in exactly the same way.
The only problem is, we are not the dope-smoking hippy types that they were. Most of us Tea Party individuals are Christians, or at least have a strong moral code. As a result, we won’t necessarily react in the same way. Personally, a little name calling doesn’t want to make me try to hurt someone. They can think whatever they want about me. I don’t need to hurt someone. Jesus wouldn’t want us to hurt someone. What would Jesus want us to do? They would want us to forgive the people that are hurting us. They would want us to pray for them… not for their evil plans to succeed, but for their hearts to be turned away from their evil plans and towards good.
This is radical Christianity. To be in a position where we are in a powerless position, to have the people in power calling us names, passing laws that are unjust and will most likely hurt us, and to not lash out in violence. Not only that, but to react in kindness, and even prayer, for the people that are trying to hurt us. That is what Jesus would do. That is what Jesus did.
Violence does not work. I think back to the early Jewish people, in the Roman days. The Jewish people didn’t like to be controlled by the Romans. Some of them rebelled. It didn’t work. It doesn’t work.
What happened during the American Revolution? We won, right? We did, but not right away. The Stamp Act was passed in 1765, 11 years before the Declaration of Independence was signed. In those years, there were so many events that passed. The colonists tried to use everything in their power to resist nonviolently. Even during the Tea Party of 1773, the colonists used morality throughout. They cleaned the ship after they threw the tea into Massachusetts Bay. They accidentally broke a lock on the ship; the next day they returned and replaced the lock that they broke. One man tried to steal some of the tea, and they were about ready to throw him into the sea; they probably would have if he hadn’t been elderly.
We still have options. We can vote people out in November. That would be the most logical place to start. The states can also sue to have the bill declared unconstitutional. We can pray. We can be the people of 1765, not the people of 1776.
The Bible was right when it said “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.” (Romans 12:14) It’s the only way that we as Americans can make it through the attack on our liberties without becoming France under Napoleon.
Violence didn’t work for the hippies in the 1960s, and it won’t work for the Tea Party today.