Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Don't Let Nobody: A Letter from John

Can we, as Christians and Jews, support our largely Muslim brothers of the Arab world seeking freedom by largely nonviolent means? Are they our brothers? Let us think of Abraham, our common ancestor, either by blood or engrafting, and Ishmael, the son Abraham also loved. Imagine how much God loved and Abraham loved and still loves Ishmael and his descendant. Can we imagine what the world would be like now, if Ishmael had been accepted? What if his descendants were accepted today? Accepted by both Christians and Jews?
Can we see God’s love for our brothers in God in their struggle for peace, for freedom, and justice in order to set their identities free, the largely self-appointed, unaccountable rulers, principalities, and powers over them?

To all who struggle in this world, may we say that God loves you? To the rulers, to the principalities and powers who rule the kingdoms of this world, we call you back to the original goodness in which God created you. You have fallen, yet you can be transformed. We, who are Christians, hear Jesus’ cry on the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do”. Rulers, principalities, powers, God loves you as well. Although God can constrain you in an instant by the Truth coming from His mouth, God is so patient to give you time, which seems to be running out now.

I am a follow of Jesus, and I only claim authority if my words are the same as His, but I am reminded, that Jesus tells us, that “Whoever does the will of God is my mother, brother, and sister”. Note that no fathers are mentioned here. Note that God is our Father-- the father for all of us-- and we know, or perhaps have heard, “God so loved the world that he gave his Son, that whoever believes………” Maybe you already know the rest of the story. I would only say, if God is your father, and you seek to do the will of the Father, I am your brother, and I love you, and hope your quest for freedom succeeds by nonviolent means.

I am reminded of the words of an American preacher, perhaps it was Billy Sunday, “Don’t let Nobody tell you god don’t love you, cause He do…” The English is bad, but the meaning remains the same in any language.

Your brother,
John Cooper


  1. If our Muslim brothers and sisters in the Arab world really are seeking freedom (which is debatable), is it fair to say they are doing so by "largely nonviolent means"?

    Are we to excuse the violence in this case because those people have been oppressed?

    What do we do if the numerous violent protests across the Middle East are actually provoked by an organized effort (instead of a spontaneous eruption of oppressed people yearning for freedom)?

    If these questions could be honestly answered in a satisfactory way I'm sure many more people would be glad to support our Muslim brothers and sisters.

  2. Charleston, I agree with your concern over the violence involved in various attempts to overthrow governments and regimes. The USA was certainly founded in similar violence. That said, it is not our place to judge what others do in search of freedom. We can, however, discuss these things and try to find answers together. I hope that you join our book club and bring up this topic at our next meeting.