Faith Is Great! Ignorance, Not So Much.
Although I rarely ever write on faith, I find doing so opens yourself up for a host of conflicts due to the subjective nature of teaching, I felt that this time I had to say something.
Being the child of two faiths, Judaism and Christianity, I have had the unique perspectives of knowing both beliefs, finding that there are strengths and weaknesses in both, but if you look for the bright spots, you will come away much enriched.
One of the things that both faiths teach is faith, this is the root of their core beliefs, so one believes, yet has no faith, is like saying I want to drive my car, but took the gas tank out, I promise, you aren’t going to go far.
The other thing to remember, there is a commandment that both faiths very much believe in, that is not to tempt, or test G-d, yet this is what some are doing in the name of their faith. We were given common sense, not to use it is a slight against the creator, we ignore this, we then can’t wonder why things aren’t working out the way we wish. It is this that I see in the latest crises.
Man prays for deliverance
I remember years ago hearing a story, a man had fallen out of his boat, he was a great man of faith, so he knew if he just prayed enough, he would be saved. After sitting in the water for an hour, a man in a canoe comes by, stops, tells the man, “Jump in, I have room for you in the back!” The man thought for a moment, then told the kind man in the canoe, “Please go on your way, I prayed, I am sure G-d is going to send me help!” The man paddled away.
A little while later, a family came by in a pontoon boat, they stopped, told the man, “Jump up on board, we are having fun, but another is always welcome. Besides, we are cooking food, and you can join in the feast!” The man thought about it for a second, he was hungry, but then he remembered he had prayed, so he told them to go on their way, he watched as they sailed off into the distance.
By now he was rather tired, he had been in the water for 3 hours, soon a large boat pulled up alongside him. They throw over a ladder, told him to climb us, he sure was tired, but he had to stick to his faith, so sent them on their way.
An hour later he drowned, goes up to heaven, by this time he is angry, he gets up and demands of the almighty, “You told me to have faith, to pray, I did lots of that, why did you let me drown?” There is silence, then he hears a voice thunder, “I sent three people to you, you sent them away, I would say I did not let you drown, you did this to yourself!”
This is what I see with some of the different groups out there. We have in Israel, and the US massive outbreaks because rather then stay home, care more about the people then you do in your observance, these ultra orthodox’s went out, celebrated, now they are the fastest-growing population of infected in Israel, have exploded as well in the US, faith is lovely, but we don’t need to be ignorant in our display of it.
The same with the Churches we see that refuse to shutter their doors, like the Pentecostal Church in Louisiana, other megachurches that are keeping their doors open, packing in large crowds, they are inviting a mini pandemic with their members. One would think if they care so much about their flock, they would want them to be kept safe.
With today’s modern tech we can have service from home, not that this is the ideal way to attend a synagogue or Church, but in the middle of an epidemic, it is not the smart way to do this.
If you feel you must pray with a group of people, I am all for that, set up a video conference, or maybe use your phones, so you are connected, pray away, but to go to crowded events to show your faith, we need to be careful least we are tempting the almighty like the man in the water.