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By now I’m sure everyone has heard about the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas. It’s the church who hates “fags” and just about everyone else on the planet who does not follow their perverted Christian beliefs even if they are Christians. Locally here in Columbus, we have a similar situation though on a smaller scale.

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Vineyard Columbus asked for a restraining order against the Minutemen, a conservative Christian group who has protested at the Vineyard because they are against the church’s “passive resistance.”

Jim Harrison, one of the group’s leaders, said the members are voicing opposition to the church’s “passive resistance” to abortion and gay marriage. “We want to get the church more involved in the culture wars,” he said…

The restraining order has so far been observed by the Minutemen, but they are fighting it in court.

The Rev. Rich Nathan of the Vineyard says his members are alarmed by the “baffling hate speech” used by the protesters.

What’s baffling to me is why one group of Christians feel it is their duty to tell other Christians how to worship. They all read the same book didn’t they? In the past the Minutemen have been known for their anti-immigration beliefs, but it appears they have added abortion and gay marriage to their menu. While the Vineyard does not condone abortion or gay marriage, their method seems to be one of attraction rather than promotion. It must be working as the Vineyard is one of the largest church’s in the State of Ohio. On the other hand, the Westboro church and the Minutmen use more aggressive tactics designed to seek the spotlight rather than facilitating worship.

I must admit I have several friends who are members of the Vineyard church. They are devout in their beliefs, but do not shove their religion down other people’s throat. I think those Christians who use more coercive means should take heed. They are only pushing those away whom they purport to save. It might do these conservative protesters well to re-read the Beatitudes.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
For they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
For they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
For they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake,
For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

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Originally posted to The Madrigal Maniac on Wed Jul 10, 2013 at 08:40 PM PDT.

Also republished by Street Prophets .

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