I read with disgust an absurd posting at AliElhajj.com (link to post). I thought it worthwhile to parody the posting by substituting Paul (as described in Acts 17, 14, and 2 Timothy 4:10). I suggest you read the absurd posting first, and then my parody below, in order better to understand the parody.
Last week Paul, an evangelical Christian, was arrested at or near the synagogue in Thessalonica. Since then Jason, who lives in Thessalonica, and some of his colleagues have been sounding the alarm- calling Christians to voice their concern over the persecution of believers in Thessalonica and the complicity of the Greek Police in denying the rights of Christ's followers.
This isn't the first time we heard this kind of thing. Not long before, Paul visited the nearby region of Lycaonia and was stoned! He and Barnabas described the incident as: "much tribulation."
What is happening in Greece? Are the Jews taking over? Is Mosaic law coming? Are we at the precipice of the Judiazation of the Roman Empire? Nothing could be further from the truth.
What is happening in Thessalonica is the mobilization of a community against a group that is confrontational and aggressive.
Christians are not banned from preaching the gospel in Thessalonica. Consider this: Demas had a booth in Thessalonica this year. He was not escorted to the rulers of the city and the community did not rise against them. Why? The answer is love and respect. Demas listened, conversed, and had an appreciation for the perspectives they were offered. He had a love, and a respect, for their audience and his audience of Jews and Greeks responded in kind.
Paul has a confrontational style. Now, he claims he was not confrontational and that the testimony of certain devout women of the Greeks will bear this out. Let's grant this. The problem is last year's "outreach" to Lycaonia was so outrageous that the apostle wore out his welcome in that region. The community does not want Paul there and his mere presence is considered a threat to the public peace.
You cannot harass and accuse the ones you are trying to reach with the love of Christ- it simply does not work. Headlining your video entries with "assaulted the house of Jason" is alarmist at best and does not accurately portray the events at the synagogue.
Moreover, if you speak to Thessalonica's residents, you will find that the last thing they want is Mosaic Law. Mosaic law is not coming to Thessalonica. I grew up in the Antioch, and in Thessalonica, and have Jewish family members living in Thessalonica. Thessalonica's Jews do not want Mosiac law. Did anyone notice the support the Jewish community offered to the temple prostitutes this year? Is this a community seeking Mosiac law in Greece? How do you think Jews who see and hear about Paul's epistles and Luke's "Acts of the Apostles" react?
Paul is not unwelcome in Thessalonica because of his faith or because of his attempts at evangelism. He is unwelcome because he is abrasive, denigrates the ones he is trying to reach, and inaccurately represents Thessalonica's residents. Paul did not form relationships with his audience and somehow missed the high value Jews place on relationships and respect.
In short, Paul lost the right to be heard.
(End of Parody)