UPDATE 2.0 on 09Sep2010 - Go over to Dan's place - he says it so much better than I do....
You know, it's really a somewhat interesting topic... Frankly, I am of two minds about it, which shouldn't surprise my fellow Christians at all ;-)
For those of you who don't know, there's a "pastor" in Gainesville, FL - Terry Jones - who is planning on having a Burning of the Koran Party (for lack of a better term) on September 11th. I haven't posted anything about it until now, but one of my favorite authors on the whole web, Jay Tea at Wizbang! (who is an agnostic), chimed in on the subject today, and I just had to clarify something.
Frankly, in my fleshly nature (for non-Christians, that means in my natural, sinful, in-rebellion-against-God side), I don't care two pins about the "atrocities" anyone wants to commit on the Koran. Burn it? Sure. Cover it in excrement? Fine. Warp it in bacon and deep fry it? No problem. After all the Muslim hypersensitivity on how WE must honor and be tolerant of their rules when WE find them irrelevant, noxious or intolerant, and after their consistant and extremely over the top reactions to what they perceive as "insults" to their religion or their soi-disant "prophet," I find it very difficult to dredge up anything more elevating than profound indifference.
If I don't bother to dredge up anything edifying, I confess I feel a rather snarky and somewhat gleeful satisfaction... But, as I said, that's my sinful nature speaking.
If I react as a Christian, however, I really cannot condone the plan of Mr. Jones and his church.
Is is because I'm worried about the "Muslim reaction"? No, not at all - except that, in this case, the church is acting in a very un-Churchlike - un Christ-like! - manner. I believe this is deliberately provocative in a way that has no biblical support whatsoever. It is one thing to provoke unfavorable reactions when acting appropriately - Jesus actually promises blessings for that:
Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Taking a hit because of righteous action or righteous provocation is just fine - but smearing the name of Christ because you are taking unrighteous action is, as far as I'm concerned, just blasphemeing His name. Not only that, but this pastor and his church, if they follow through on this, are also encouraging others to tear down the name of Christ!
And that's why Mr. Jones and his church should not burn the Korans this Saturday.
Meanwhile, I'll be over here in the corner, trying to battle my snark and glee into submission....