Jesus practised love and compassion

Joseph Bulmer

SIR - I write in response to Tony Olsson’s letter about the Old Testament and psychics. It makes me feel sad because the words he chooses to quote from the Bible can (and are) so easily used as an excuse to cause harm to others and encourage hate.

Between the 14th and 18th centuries, hundreds of thousands of women were murdered because words like those quoted by Tony were used to rationalise cruel and unkind behaviour and make it seem ok because the words came from ‘God’. Today the same thing continues as people use ‘God’s’ words to justtify extremist actions and kill others.

There are so many different religions, faiths and beliefs, it seems crazy to me to believe that there is only one way and that it is to harm others and separate yourself from them. It is not OK to kill people because they were ‘witches’ and it is not OK to quote words from the Bible that encourage hatred and separatism.

When I look at what the Bible says of Jesus, to me it seems he practised kindness and compassion and had love for all his fellow humans, treating them as he wished to be treated himself. Nowhere is he quoted as saying it is OK to put someone to death because of what they believe.

Now I may be wrong, but choosing that as a way of life seems infinitely more appealing to me than hating people and wishing them harm because their views differ from mine. If as a human race we practised a little more kindness and empathy to one another then maybe we would stop seeing other people as separate to ourselves and a lot of the problems of war and greed and hatred would cease to exist as we understand them.

I do not feel scared of God, nor that I will be punished, caused pain or fear for making a mistake. There is no doubt in my mind that God accepts and loves the way I choose to live and it may not be the same way as yours. There is also no doubt in my mind that God will not punish you either because you are different to me. Or because of anything, ever.

Chloe Farrow