“Burn Couches, Not the Quran”

The current story over the burning of the Quran by a Gainesville, FL church is troubling on numerous levels. It is disturbing that they are planning this, and it is also disturbing that a handful have drawn such attention when the many seeking to represent Christ and the Gospel are ignored.

The question for many believers is “What is the best way to respond?” This issue is addressed in an excellent article by Andrew Lisi at the Gospel Coalition. He writes:

It seems to me that the best road for a gospel-saturated Christian to take is not standing on the one side of the road with all-exclusive hate or on the other side with all-inclusive love. Both are ultimately extremes that do not address the heart of the issue. The middle road seems to be the only-exclusive love that Christ offers through the Cross, which rejects hating enemies (Matt. 5:43-44) and loving the the world (1 John 2:15-17) while embracing love of enemies and hating sin. The response we must have as Christians is to reject the utter hatred of people like Pastor Jones and the Dove World Outreach Center, while at the same time not making the mistake of being purely reactionary by standing on the other side of the road, united only in protest, not in love.

This balance is hard to find.  What are your thoughts on responding to this issue?

Read the entire article here: Burn Couches, Not the Quran.


7 thoughts on ““Burn Couches, Not the Quran”

  1. I’m honestly not sure what I think on this issue. If anything, this controversy is a media-hysterical controversy, and not much more. On a more philosophical level, I do think Islam is an anathema to the west, and incompatible with a Judeo-Christian society, or even a post-Enlightenment western society. If you have some time, I recommend watching this video:


    That being said, a publicized Koran burning in today’s pluralistic and media-savvy environment is most likely counterproductive.

    • Hayes,

      Thanks for sharing. Haven’t had time to finish the video, but what I’ve seen so far is intriguing.

      I think this is a complex situation, and, as such, should cause Christians to stop and think carefully through their response.

      • You’ll have to let me know what you think when you finish it! Apparently the Pastor has backed down because of a deal involving the mosque (supposedly), so we’ll how that ends up. Either way, I still hold Islam to be completely incompatible with western heritage, be it Judeo-Christian, Classical, etc…

  2. Cameron, Do you think anyone would be bothered by the burning of the Holy Bible? One thing about it; and that is the Word of God cannot be destroyed.
    Great thoughts you and Lisi give above.

    • Pastor Tim,

      I think Christians would be bothered by it, but the reaction you would see is nothing compared to what we see, and will see, from Islam. Interestingly, the very expectation of violence by practically everyone is itself an indication of the nature of Islam.

      It disturbs me less that they MIGHT burn a Bible than that they DO burn Christians. That atrocity causes less uproar than a threat to burn the Qu’ran.

  3. Excellent thoughts! When we discuss the subjects of “love” and “Islam” in the same context, we are not talking about loving Islam, but about loving Muslims. There is a huge difference. We are commanded to love people and Muslims are people. Their beliefs or religion should have no bearing on our obedience to that command.

    • Ken, that’s the key – remembering that the love of our gospel responsibility is greater than the fear stemming from our desire for self-preservation.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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