I was watching the ABC special “The Path to 9/11” the other evening as it showed two Arab men talking in a restaurant in the U.S. They were planning the plot on the World Trade Center. One of the terrorists was telling the other that he had been in Germany and began talking about spiritual matters with a Roman Catholic priest. The terrorist says: “In Hamburg, I met a Christian priest and we spoke of religion. He told me how to make peace with God. He spoke of making peace with God and the afterlife: Accepting God’s word, turning the other cheek. As if that was enough. I told him that I do much more for my God. I wage war for him.”
There is the basic difference between Christianity and other religions of the world. The way of the cross is a scandal. For this man, and many others, it is a sign of weakness. An all-powerful God would not come and become vulnerable and die at the hands of his creation. It is unthinkable. And neither would he ask his followers to love the enemies of God, and their personal enemies as well. God would want them to be strong, not weak. He would want them to overcome their enemies, not turn the other cheek. God would want his followers to be victorious.