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God is Love (not fear or condemnation)

© All Rights Reserved – Free Hugs by MalvaAlcea

The Group in Question:

I had an amazing time with my husband and roommate tonight. We went to the Banyan Tree Thai food for dinner, nom nom nom. We then headed over to the theater to see “The Rite.” As we came out of the theater we were met with a group of “Repent Now” protest types.

“YOU ARE A LIAR!” angrily he yells at the masses coming out of the theater. “YOU NEED TO REPENT NOW!”.. and heatedly goes into a spew about God is fear, fear him now or go to hell. I don’t know fully what came over me, but something did. My body heated up, my cheeks flushed and pulsated… I just KNEW that this wasn’t the way to go. I knew that putting fear into people was not the way to have people listen to you. We’re already surrounded by people yelling their opinions at us every day. My chest, my heart, was telling me I needed to do something. So, we all headed over to the store and bought two poster boards and a sharpie. We wrote on the poster boards:

not fear or condemnation”
***** FREE HUGS *****“

We headed back, signs in hand and compassion on the front. They just stared at us at first. We just stood there silently. Then this female representative of their group came up to me and told me I didn’t believe in the word of Christ. That I was going against God. I just looked at her and said, “My relationship with Christ is sound. I have faith in my relationship, and it’s not up to you to predetermine my faith.” She was a persistent little thing she was.

I actually received hugs tonight, it was awesome. I got a lot of thumbs up. The other group didn’t take to kind ot us. At first, they used our boards against us in their holy roller repent speech. Trying to say that God is love, but he wants you to repent. And that god isn’t going to meet you with a hug, but fire and brimstone. This went on for about ten minutes before they realized we were getting more looks and people reading our signs. They reconvened and set out again, using our signs FOR them. About how God Is love, and all he wants to do is show you love, but you need to repent now. Then it went into the whole “we’re liars” blah blah blah.

As they continued to yell at people, I gently said to those close enough walking by, “I am not with them. I believe God was about brotherly love… I’m only offering free hugs.” This guy starts yelling louder. I yelled, “God IS LOVE!” .. “Don’t bring your flock in by fear!!” .. The chick with them came up to me again and said, “No where in the bible does it say anything about us being the flock of Christ.”

W H A T   T H E    H E C K? (Bible quotes below)

But, here’s the things that really kind of ticked me off:

A. “No Buddha, No Hindu, No Muslim will walk with Christ in Heaven…” They were preaching this as children were running around. Just after they started preaching it, two Muslim women came out of one of the establishments… they actually tried to hand these two women their fliers. … I came over and said, “Hey.. why don’t you tell them about how you feel truly.. about their Muslim beliefs”…. Ya, they weren’t really happy about that. .. But seriously, if you’re going to stand out there and condemn others, do it openly TO their face. I never really realized how angry Christian’s are. Seriously. No other religion do you see people standing around yelling at by passers, but for Christianity.

Children and Jesus

B. “All Children today belong in hell. If they’re brats, if they misbehave, if they’re unruly, they’re place isn’t in heaven.” … Wow.. really? As I grew up learning, Children were free of sin until the age of reasoning; “The name given to that period of human life at which persons are deemed to begin to be morally responsible. This, as a rule, happens at the age of seven, or thereabouts, though the use of reason requisite for moral discernment may come before, or may be delayed until notably after, that time.” According to Luke: “Luke 18:16 >>> But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” … CHILDREN DO NOT BELONG IN HELL!!

C. Finally, the irony that fell upon their shoulders. As a passerby walk through their group, one of the individuals leaned into him and said, “Don’t listen to her, she’s lying about the word of God.” (Mind you, I wasn’t even talking.. just holding a sign for free hugs)…. He actually LIED to get a “follower.”… HE LIED .. while pointing fingers about liars.

Passages about Love:

1 John 4:18–  There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

2 Peter 1:5-8 – 5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you
from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 13:1-8;13 – Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.

But the greatest of these is love– 

Colossians 3:11 – Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all. (in regards to muslims, buddhist, Hindu<

Passages in reference to us being God’s Flock:

Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers–not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve;

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