Everlast Lyric and those Judgmental Christians

And then she heads for the clinic and she gets some static walkin’ through the doors
They call her a killer, and they call her a sinner, and they call her a whore.
–Everlast from “What it’s Like”

This song by former House of Pain member Everlast was huge back in my college days. No doubt about it the tune is catchy and well vastly different from anything that came from Everlast during his House of Pain days (wincingly I recall dancing to “Jump Around”).

When I first heard the song I was not a Christian and naturally assumed that Everlast was referring to them in the lyric above (the girl in the song is going to get an abortion). After all I was certain that all Christians were about, was looking down their collective noses at all the sinners right?

How could I not think that when the villain in one of my favorite movies, “The Shawshank Redemption”, was a hypocritical prison warden who had the Bible in one hand while laundering money with the other. Then there was the religious fanatic of another favorite of mine, “Se7en”.

It’s easy to set up caricatures of people you are naturally inclined to dislike, and who naturally likes those who are proclaiming that the only way to realize our purpose is to die to self and to live for God?

Unfortunately, many Christians (or at least those professing to be so) give folks plenty of ammunition to formulate and nourish this stereotype. Admittedly, in my worst moments I will do so as well, only to go rushing back to seek God’s forgiveness for besmirching the Name of His Son.

Speaking of whom, there is something Jesus said which is a favorite of people who dogmatically hold that Christians are nothing but hypocrites,

“He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” — John 8:7

Of course this is defensively cited anytime Christians assert that some particular vice is prohibited by God. The list of vices seems to shrink with the passage of time, and one can only wonder when people will start killing their children because they’re an inconvenience, oh that’s right, they call that choice.

When such people cite Jesus I’m sure they have the best intentions but it seems to me that they take the phrase out of context (I did) and omit the last thing Jesus told the adulterous woman, who was being treated unfairly and thus led Jesus to make the above statement.

Here’s what happened after Jesus uttered the bit about casting stones,

Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground.

When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court.

Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?”

She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either Go From now on sin no more.”]

Yes, Jesus did not condemn her, leaving us the model for treating the “adulterous woman” of our times (like the girl in the Everlast lyric). Yet Jesus, while not condemning, told her “From now on sin no more”.

I wonder if the omission by the good-intentioned folk mentioned above is on purpose?

5 Responses to Everlast Lyric and those Judgmental Christians

  1. curtismchale says:

    Of course the omission is on purpose. We Christians are very good at using parts of scripture to justify our own actions. If we let someone off we don’t have anyone to look down on.

  2. Laz says:

    Curtis, I was referring to omission on the part of non-Christians (though not to say that yes Christians are also selective).

  3. curtismchale says:

    I don’t tend to hold non-Christians to the same level of knowledge regarding the Bible. I know that there are many who know more than I do but really our lives are deeply intertwined with scripture not theirs.

  4. Laz says:

    True enough, but some still sit there and pick and choose the bits that “support” their condemnation of Christians.

    Do you really think those unbelievers that use John 8:7 are ignorant of Jesus’ last recorded words to the woman?

  5. curtismchale says:

    We all pick things to say that prove our point. I am sure that I am guilty of not taking it into account. Really ontop of Jesus last words in that passage one should look at the movement on the treatment sin throughout the whole bible. That is not the only passage where Jesus deals with sin. What about eating with and forgiving Zacheus? He forgave his sins and inspired him to a new life.

    My personal belief is that often non-Christians cite thiings that reinforce their own ideas about what the Bible, and Christianity, are all about. I think that they, and even Christians, do this so that they don’t have to really change their behaviour because they like doing what they are doing. Again I know that I have been guilty of that.

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