to humans, to animals, to our environment, to our economy, to our education, to our finances, and to our health
By: Mary T. and Frank L. Hoffman
"Christian" Trophy Hunters Cause Emotional Harm to Compassionate Believers
Almost every day, we hear from believers who has been emotionally hurt by the unchecked cruelty of professing "Christians". The following letter from Juli is just one of these cases:
.... I just felt strongly compelled to share this with people I know would feel as I did upon seeing this. This week's Sunday morning newspaper (Daytona Beach News Journal) had a front page headline that read: "Your State Attorney: Man of God, Man of Law." Beneath this headline is a huge color photograph taken of a meeting room where men are seated around a long table. The camera is angled from the ceiling, from a position right beside a large mounted deer's head, which serves as the foreground on the left side of the entire picture.
The caption reads: "State Attorney John Tanner, center, leads a staff meeting recently in his office at the Justice Center with one of his bow-hunting trophies on the wall looking over the proceedings." I would not be surprised if this "man of God" requested inclusion of this proof of manhood in the photograph, and would be even less surprised that few people will even consider the contradiction involved.
I know I should no longer be stunned by this kind of thing, yet I suppose after 55 years and counting of still being stunned, I will continue to be. It's only one small example of the reason we are so easily discouraged again and again, and why it's so incumbent upon us to make every effort to trust in God's ways and not man's. There's just an endless stream of callous disregard for the lives of God's creatures by people who clothe themselves in God's name.
We strongly believe that the church has a moral duty to speak out against the ungodliness of trophy hunting, for if they did, the newspaper would never have referred to this State's attorney as being a "man of God". The church's silence, and even support of such activity puts them in the same position as those that lead their children astray; of whom Jesus said that it would be better for such a person to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck and that he be drowned in the depths of the sea (Matthew 18:6).
The intent of this series is to wake up and encourage the Church to greater works of love and compassion (John 14:12). It is not to condemn the Church, in general, or any individual, any more than Jesus condemned the woman caught in adultery. Jesus said to her, "...go your way. From now on sin no more." (John 8:11) And this is our message to the Church: Recognize our sins of the past and go forth seeking to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect (Matthew 5:48), correcting the sins of the past, for that is the only way we can truly show the world that we love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, might, and mind, including the whole of creation, which includes our neighbors whom we are to love as ourselves.
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