03 February 2010

Sunsets, Wiccans, and a Cross: Controversy at USAFA

A few weeks ago, during our training session on the LZ, we found some strange new rocks in a circle at the top of the hill. I thought nothing of it, figured someone had made a firepit.

When I went back later, I discovered it's actually an earth-centered religion/Wicca worship center. That's rather ironic, because it was one of my favorite places to pray last year, and I know some of my friends have gone up there to worship under the stars. It's a great place to watch the sunset - God's sunset.

Apparently, there's a pretty big controversy about a cross that was placed up there, leaning on one of the rocks. First of all, I'm pretty sure I saw crosses there - like the one described - long before the earth-centered religious people set the rocks there. Second, it's entirely possible that the cross-placer didn't know it was an earth-centered worship center. It could just as easily be a God worship center, like it was before for me and others, without the rocks.

So, I think Mikey Weinstein's comment comparing the cross to a swastika in the Jewish chapel is a little over the top. Crosses and swastikas stand for entirely different - indeed opposite - things.

But, if - that's an if - the cross was placed there to spite the Wiccans, it's the wrong approach. Jesus did not shove his cross in the face of those who did not believe Him or even opposed Him. He bore the cross for them. He died for them. He loved them.

And that is what we should do. Placing a cross on the hill will not change anyone's heart, "for the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing" (1 Corinthians 1:18). Love will change a man's heart.

So, instead of placing crosses at earth-centered worship sites, we need to love earth-centered worshipers and Wiccans and those who follow similar belief systems.

Because "We don't have a belief system. We got the truth."

"And the truth will set you free." (John 8:32)


  1. I feel the same way. Thanks for putting it into writing.

  2. Wow....Sounds like someone needs to look at reality. Remeber, at about the age of thirteen, Jesus went off the deepend on the tax collectors. They were taking care of business in his fathers house instead of worshiping. The Native Indians of the Americas worhiped many things. They were an earth loving, neighboring humble people unless you were a rival tribe or the U.S. Cavalry. I don't know much about the Wiccans. When I do hear about them, it's usually in this context. Maybe I should do some research on them. If someone truly put a Cross in/on their Sanctuary it appears it was done out of ignorance or malice. Whoever did this forgot about the Commandment, "Love thy Neighbor as thy self."

    About John 8:32 "The truth will always set you free." The next line should have read, and someone will always get hurt.

  3. Ok, let's look at the facts: Jesus was about thirty when he cleared the temple, and the Bible doesn't mention tax collectors in the temple - just merchants and money changers. These were Jews, men who knew what the temple was and what it stood for, but defamed it anyway. Jesus' righteous anger burned against them because they knew better.

    Tax collectors, like Matthew and others, didn't know better until they met Jesus.

    I'm not sure what your point is about the Native Americans... but we can see that the most effective way to reach them was and is with love. From Bartolome de las Casas to Jim Elliot, the most effective missionaries to native tribes have gone in love.

    The truth Jesus is talking about in John 8:32 isn't a truth that hurts people, and I don't think - I know - we should not tell Jesus what He should have said. Jesus is talking here about the truth of the Gospel, and the next few paragraphs are all about freedom from sin.

  4. Well said, Nathan. I think it comes down to love and the truth that Jesus teaches and is- a truth that saves and heals. And if the cross was placed there in spite, like you said, then it's not standing as a reminder of His love and truth...it's almost the opposite.

    Anyways....good post. Very good.

  5. Well done, son.

    "These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own." — GK Chesterton

  6. You have an admirably mature perspective, both as a Christian and a member of the military. Keep it up--you'll need that perspective on active duty as well.