Sunday, May 15, 2011

Peace Loving People

by Rev. James Wong

There is one name and one definition for peace loving people. This is how Jesus put it in Matthew 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers,

for they will be called sons of God.”

War divides nations, families and individuals from each other, causing disharmony, tensions and conflicts. Peacemakers are those who use their influence to promote public good and to reconcile contending parties to a state of unity. Peacemakers are known as sons of God.

The latest misdemeanor of fanning strife was the publication of a seditious report by Utusan Malaysia, a Malay newspaper, based on the unsubstantiated claim on “Christian state” conspiracy. BigDog, whose real name is Zakhir Mohamed sparked controversy when he alleged that pastors pledged to make Christianity as the official religion of the federation in their recent meeting in Penang. Such irresponsible publication in the media without stern action from the government in this case has provided the breeding ground for religious tension to thrive, pitting Muslims and Christians against each other in the country. Many political observers have asserted that the whole episode is a political ploy to gain political mileage by someone.

The damage has been done and the religious tension has been created by the lies. Our Bishop Dr. Thomas Tsen, being the president of the Council of Churches of Malaysia and prominent leaders of other Christian organizations, had a closed door meeting with the PM on the 12 May 2011. Bishop Ng Moon Hing of the Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) which represents over 90% of Churches in Malaysia said, "We only said we are very disturbed and unhappy... (over the) irresponsible, potential riot-type seditious words (which) shouldn't be published in the mainstream media, or any media for that matter." He also said, "We even offered our help and asked how Christians can contribute to develop the country together. We are interested in peace, harmony and we are non-partisan in politics."

Yes, as Christians, we are interested in peace and harmony because it is in accordance with the teaching of Jesus who says that peacemakers are children of God. For those who propagate lies, destroy peace and harmony, the Word of God has this to say:

"You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” Exodus 20:16 (NKJV). This is one of the 10 Commandments which is the will of God for his people.

“There are seven things that the Lord hates and cannot tolerate: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that kill innocent people, a mind that thinks up wicked plans, feet that hurry off to do evil, a witness who tells one lie after another, and a man who stirs up trouble among friends.” Proverbs 6:16 (TEV). Let us be peace loving people.

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