Now that all responsible people have had the opportunity to denounce the murder of abortionist George Tiller in his Wichita church on Sunday, maybe it's time to raise a question about this tragedy.
What was George Tiller, notorious late-term abortionist, doing in church any way?
Not only was he in attendance, reports indicate he was a member of the Reformation Lutheran Church.
Not only was he a member of the church, reports indicate he was an usher.
Not only was he an usher, reports indicate his wife was in the choir.
It makes me wonder what is going on in the church in America where someone with such an openly, public anti-Christian record can find a home without conviction, without repentance, without condemnation and finally disfellowship.
Whatever happened to the idea that we as the Christian body are not knowingly to allow open sin into our tent?
The Bible is replete with judgments when God's people make that mistake.
I suspect many would say I'm being harsh. I suspect many reading this would say the church is supposed to be open to all – given that we are all sinners. I suspect many would point to Jesus as an example for this kind of tolerance and suggest the churches would be empty if not for the sinners in the pews.
But I don't think Tiller's pastor did his congregant any favors by providing him with a church that did not require him, at some point, to follow God's laws. I think the torture and killing of fully developed human babies for profit would definitely qualify as falling well short of the mark and behavior in need of correction.
Is America's church no longer in the business of offering correction?
If not, whose job is that?
I don't mean to single out the pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church for condemnation. That's not my point. However, I think we have to admit, this is a pretty extreme example – one worthy of consideration by all pastors and all churchgoers.
Is there anything a church member could do that would warrant expulsion from the flock?
Would that activity have to be pronounced illegal by the civil society to qualify?
What do you suppose Jesus would say to George Tiller hanging around with him while sacrificing babies?
Before you answer, remember what Jesus said in Matthew 7:16-20:
"Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."What do you suppose the Apostles would say or do about someone like this attempting to be part of the First Century church?
Before you answer, keep in mind what happened to Ananias and Sapphira. (Acts 5:1)
So what's changed since those days?
Is today's anything-goes church wiser in its own eyes?
Is it loving to let sinners sit next to you in worship without ever confronting them on their sin?
It seems to me that is a misguided love – the kind that would love people right into hell.