This image was sent to me by a friend via email. I could be mistaken, but I think this is a group of American soldiers in Iraq, having a prayer meeting. It is a powerful image and it got me thinking about the relationship between religion and war.
If God exists, I wonder what he thinks about this picture. Would he respond to this group by saying:
“I have heard your prayers. I will protect you and help you in your cause”.
Is God on the side of the Americans? We know that the Americans invaded a sovereign nation that posed no threat. We continuously hear of all the innocent civilians that have lost their lives and how Iraqi prisoners of war have been tortured. I feel great sorrow for the American soldier who has been sent to this country to die for a meaningless war that should not have taken place, for an ideal built on faulty premises. Is God supporting this mess?
I can’t understand how leaders of a government, who are responsible for so much suffering and death, can believe that the loving God of the universe condones their actions.
If God is the God that Christians truly believe in, I think his response to this group of soldiers would be:
“Haven’t you learnt that I am loving? Haven’t you been taught to follow the example of my son, Jesus, who preached that you should love your neighbour? Why do you pray to me at one moment, and then kill in the next? Why do you follow your earthly leaders so blindly?”