Let he who is without sin cast the first stone! In the wake of recent events, this phrase has been taken up like a battle cry by those who wish to defend the sinful actions of a man who (ironically enough) has spent his entire career throwing stones. It’s odd that fundamentalists aren’t concerned with who is pelting the Catholics, the gays, or men-with-Calvinist-looking-beards with rocks. If the rule was that one can never speak out about sin until they themselves are perfect then we can only assume by their proclivity for judgmentalism that fundamentalist pastors are all perfect and rule churches full of sinless people.
Even as we watch them defend the indefensible,however, it’s hard not to feel a pang of sympathy for the people who have believed a lie and followed the Deceiver. When your pastor is the final authority on what God says to the point where he himself attains the status of a demigod then it must be a crushing blow to realize that he is nothing but an idol with his feet stuck in the mire. It is a hard thing to see your Dagon broken to shivers and to realize that you’ve been played for a fool.
All is not lost, however. Perhaps love may win a few at last and two or one will truly begin to renounce their worship of men and their trust in the arm of flesh. Maybe a few will even depart from that place and find a strange and glorious freedom for their souls. But I fear that many will still stand hurling the stones of self-righteousness, and hatred, and fear even as they search for a new idol to prop in place of the one that now lies shattered in the dust.
Christ, have mercy.