Christians in the United States have observed both the Supreme Court's ruling in favor of same-sex marriage and the shooting tragedy at a historically black church in the South Carolina city of Charleston. Despite those setbacks, it is worth remembering that true Christian love can change the world and will eventually prevail over all forms of hatred directed at it.
In an op-ed published by the Huffington Post, author Peter Georgescu pointed out that the families of the Charleston victims forgave the alleged shooter for the death of their loved ones. They even urged the young man to repent of his sins.
"Many are still trying to comprehend this miracle of kindness and compassion after the racially motivated bloodbath at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church," Georgescu wrote. "It was awe-inspiring and genuinely humbling to watch these afflicted people speaking directly to their tormentor with a 'peace that surpasses all understanding' manifest in their eyes and the sound of their voices."
According to Georgescu, the families "were trying to save a man who had killed those they loved." He realized that many nonbelievers could find their actions "incomprehensible, maybe even offensive."
"That reaction shows how little Christianity's detractors understand the nature of this faith: it pivots on a radical kind of love for friends and enemies both," Georgescu wrote. "This love transcends all other considerations, because self-interest withers away in the light of what's eternal for a Christian, the chance to embody God's goodness every minute of every day."
Georgescu traced that sense of goodness back to the work of Nobel Peace Prize recipient Dr. Martin Luther King, who "based his preaching, his teaching, and his leadership for civil rights" on Matthew 5:39.
"This is the 'confounding love' on display in the aftermath of the Charleston murders," Georgescu wrote. "This is the spiritual power that altered the social landscape for blacks in America after Martin Luther King walked in the footsteps of Jesus as a leader."
The author of The Constant Choice contended that the heart of Christianity was "utterly selfless."
"The force for good that has emerged in Charleston is what drove the emergence of civil rights in the 60s set in motion the changes that led to the election of a black President today," Georgescu wrote. "That spirit was fundamentally, essentially Christian."
Georgescu added that "King won the Peace Prize for his unyielding love for all people, good and evil, black and white."
"King's faith rested on an assurance that Christian love was the only power that would bring his people the freedom they deserved," Georgescu wrote. "As a result, they have moved closer and closer to that freedom ever since. The power of that love has emerged, once again, in all its glory, in Charleston."
The theme of Christian love was also covered by John Velisek of Communities Digital News. He argued that in a world pitting good against evil, "Christians will always side with God."
"Christianity teaches, 'Hate the sin, but love the sinner.' This implies that those of differing opinions can disagree but still love one another," Velisek wrote. "The Bible teaches respect for others, for the family, and for the social norms by which we must live."
Velisek focused on the Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage to make his point about Christian love. He highlighted that there are many supporters of same-sex marriage who want to punish both Christians and churches "socially, legally, and economically" for their opposition to the practice.
"Christianity may have been the driving force behind Western civilization for two thousand years, and it may have been a force against slavery and for civil rights, but all that matters to its enemies is gays and marriage," Velisek wrote. "Embrace gay marriage or be sued, lose your tax exemption, be forced out of business."
Velisek admitted that "the anti-religionists" correctly pointed out that "the founding principles of this country were not specifically Christian." However, he contended that Christian principles "had a profound impact on the Founding Fathers and their idea of America."
"Christians sin, and the Founding Fathers were often far from perfect exemplars of the principles they endorsed," Velisek wrote. "No Christian claims to be perfect, but that does not negate the principles he espouses. It is through God's grace and mercy that we grow, and ascend to a rightful place with God."
Velisek pointed out that both atheists and same-sex marriage activists "have never changed a true Christian's mind, and are angry when a Christian stays the course of his faith."
"Libertine sophisticates expect Christians to quietly crawl into oblivion and leave their betters to live their self-centered lives uncriticized," Velisek wrote. "It fills their desperate need for approval to force their brand of tolerance on others in the name of equality and to play the forever victim to the words of God."
According to Velisek, there have been "incongruities" from those in the United States who attack Christians and their beliefs.
"The same anti-religion crowd that goes after Christians is uncomfortable with Islam. Christians tend to retire before attacks; Muslims will behead you," Velisek wrote. "Christ in a jar of urine, or a Pope made of condoms will draw angry op-eds, but pictures of Mohammed will draw gunfire. Christians are harder to offend, and no one cares if they are offended."
According to Velisek, many of the anti-religion activists were in favor of socialism. He warned about its dire effects should it ever be implemented in the United States at full strength by proper socialists.
"I have helped people living under a socialist system and have learned firsthand from them what it means," Velisek wrote. "Homosexuality? Banned. The environment? People are dying of poisoned water. Labor Unions? Crushed."
Despite the bullying and attacks from academia and the elites, Velisek pointed out that Christianity continues to grow around the world, especially "in Africa, in the Indian subcontinent, and in the Philippines."
"A Christian revival is enveloping the globe," Velisek wrote. "It is this love of their faith that drives and lifts these people, the belief that the Lord will help them and help others to assist them. And it will be other Christians who help them, without fanfare, without public acclaim, who will lift them spiritually and materially."
Velisek pointed out that people of faith have been ridiculed and denigrated since the days of ancient Rome. However, he reassured Christians that God eventually wins the battle of good and evil.
"Christians will always side with God, and with God they will be victorious," Velisek wrote. "Maybe that is what makes the anti-religionists so angry and fills their hearts with hate. But love will win, and justice will reign."