Thursday, February 09, 2006

Does God Play Favorites?

I'm not sure if most Christians, Muslims, and Jews have ever seriously considered this question and the ramifications of the fundamentalist answer. The Islamic clerics, to cite a timely example, are whipping their followers into a frenzy over those stupid Danuish cartoons, still! This is one of those ramifications that I mentioned. But enough about Islamic fundamentalism. Do any of these ideas seem familiar:

1. God is on our side in the war on terror (Islamists certainly feel the same way about their conflict with the Christian world.)
2. God favors evangelical Christians.
3. God wants us to have (name a country or region).
4. The Jews are God's chosen people.

I have no idea if any of these statements reflect Ultimate Truth and it really doesn't matter does it? Perceptions are effectively the same as reality.

Consider some reasons for the staying power of this particular idea, of God favoring one group or another. Believing in your "special" status can make a group stronger in the face of adversity. Relationships are vital to our survival and we may thus be willing to accept ideas that don't make sense. A culture filled with beliefs and ideas regarding the supernatural creates a perfect setting for "elitist" religious views to take root.

Next time I want to explore the personal and social consequences of this idea. Awesome!


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