Many may have seen this bumper sticker – it’s pretty popular here in Colorado…
It’s a clever compilation of symbols (some religious, some not), used to spell the word “coexist.” The clear meaning is that these belief systems or philosphies should learn to “just get along.” Doesn’t that sound good? Maybe we should all join hands, close our eyes, and together sing John Lennon’s “Imagine.”
But as is typical on this blog, I think this idea deserves a little more thought.
First, how can those who are thoroughly (or radically) committed to Islam (the first symbol) simply “coexist” with those thoroughly (or radically) committed to Christianity (the last symbol)? Radical Islam says that Christians should be killed as infidels! Or as another example: Even some non-radical Muslims don’t believe that Israel (the 4th symbol from the left) should even have a right to exist!
I don’t intend for this to come across an an anti-Muslim rant – those are just some of the more obvious examples of the naive thinking behind this bumper sticker. People simply DON’T just get along… and won’t until the end of time when Jesus Himself returns to set up His kingdom of righteousness.
But perhaps a more important observation… and this one comes from my wife…
She and I were talking about these bumper stickers the other day and she observed that the mentality that creates a bumper sticker like this, the mentality that actually BELIEVES in a bumper sticker like this, is the same mentality that will readily accept the “mark of the beast” foretold in the book of Revelation.
Think about it.
The mentality behind this is a desire to all “be one,” to “get along,” to do whatever is needed to survive in a harmonious way. It doesn’t matter what your individual convictions are, what your faith is, what your life philosophy is, you need to compromise that in whatever way is necessary in order to have harmony with other people. Now I’m all for harmony between people, but I’m also sharp enough to know that it’s not as simple as this bumper sticker implies. People hold to spiritual beliefs out of conviction that what they believe is the TRUTH. That sort of conviction SHOULDN’T be abandoned simply to generate some sense of “kumbaya” here and now. A whole-sale adoption of that kind of mindset can and will end up in disaster.
Here enters my wife’s thought… Scripture says that in the end times, in order to buy or sell (to survive) everyone will be required to take some sort of mark on their person that shows that they have bought into the one-world, “harmonious” system of the anti-Christ. Everyone will be expected to compromise their own perspective for the “one” perspective that’s being handed to them as the one that is acceptable. Sadly, many will do so in order to survive. But some things are worth more than survival – and believing and holding to the truth of God and His Son Jesus is one of them.
I wouldn’t go so far as to say that “coexist” is the mark of the beast… but the mindset behind accepting both is the same in many ways…