Yesterday BUGB published short letters, signed by General Secretary, Lynn Green, that it has sent to leaders of Muslim and Jewish communities in the UK. You can read more here. It was for me, and for many, a moment that made us glad to be Baptists... Sadly for others it was not, and some serious proof text trading has been seen on social media which I find deeply disappointing. When Christians start proof-texting from the Quran, in English translation, to support what sound to me islamophobic perspectives, that is deeply worrying.
I withdrew from social media debate - I dislike conflict, I hate proof-texting and I felt that a few dominant voices were drowning out others.
I so nearly added, and then didn't these two famous quotes, from Thomas Helwys and Martin Niemoller. Yes, both are taken out of context, and yes, both men were flawed, but it seem their words deserve another hearing...
Let them be heretics, let them by jews, turks or whatsoever.... (see it in context here)
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.