Eugene Cho

god hates nerds.

Ugh. Our friends at Westboro Baptist Church is in the news again. If you remember, I publicly (via my blog) asked them to leave Seattle and return to headquarters in Kansas.

But today, I read about how this very small “community” planned a 45 minute protest and rally at the San Diego Comic-Con. In their words:

If these people would spend even some of the energy that they spend on these comic books, reading the Bible, well no high hopes here. They have turned comic book characters into idols, and worship them they do!

Isaiah 2:8 Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made: 9 And the mean man boweth down, and the great man humbleth himself: therefore forgive them not.

It is time to put away the silly vanities and turn to God like you mean it. The destruction of this nation is imminent – so start calling on Batman and Superman now, see if they can pull you from the mess that you have created with all your silly idolatry. [source]

Seriously, what’s the lesson that we can learn from the Westboro folks?

I’d love to hear both your real and/or FUNNY answers!

My thoughts:

We often live as people who are defined by what we are against and not necessarily, what we are for. Imagine how our lives can be an agent of change when we live FOR truth, beauty, meaning, and causes. Deconstruction is clearly, more fun and draws larger crowds & venom. Creating and constructing new culture is much more difficult but imagine the possibilities.

But then again, I’m glad that the Westboro folks are protesting comic nerds rather than spewing out vitriolic anger against the gay community. Good job, nerds, for distracting these folks.


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40 Responses

  1. your friend says:

    I have lived long enough to notice what Christians once said in hate, they later ate.

  2. jchenwa says:

    I have 4 words. Revenge of the Nerds!+

  3. Dan Hauge says:

    Three thoughts:

    I find the choice of Romans 9:13 pretty funny (“Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated”) since Esau was the burly guy running around hunting, and Jacob was the quiet guy who stayed in the tents (NERD!).

    Since a large percentage of nerds are straight white males, I guess there’s at least something novel about them getting their own small little taste of prejudice-speech.

    More seriously, as a bona-fide comic-reading nerd myself, I can attest that in some cases it can indeed be a waste of energies that could be used elsewhere. Fortunately, I do not believe God hates me for it 🙂

  4. Jeff Stewart says:

    This merely caps the long known conclusion that these people are just nuckin’ … never mind.

  5. Danny Bixby says:

    I’m also glad they’re being distracted by comic-con. Mostly because I feel the people at comic-con would take it lighter than WBC’s regular targets.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if a good amount of people from comic-con went and picketed alongside WBC for a gag.

  6. Rob Morris says:

    I think Anne Lamott says it best: “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”

  7. Adam Lehman says:

    If WBC spent as much time reading the bible (i’ll even compromise and let them read the 1611 KJV) as they do protesting….

  8. Lauren Rimkus says:

    Really? Then we’d have to protest any and every non-biblical interest or hobby. Sports, movies, art, the outdoors, etc. People can take interests and make idols in every area.


    I so often feel that people desire to stand strongly against something because they are insecure with what they are for. It seems easier to tear down another and rip them apart than stand strong in the truth of what you love. Even with other faith, I personally have no place needing to prove them wrong but more so have interest showing the truth of my God and letting that speak.

  9. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Adam Lehman, Adam in Columbus. Adam in Columbus said: God Hates Nerds? Huh, I wouldn't have guessed that…. […]

  10. David says:

    Won’t be the first time I’ve been told God hates me (the most recent was because I’m a stay-at-home dad–Mark Driscoll said that one).


  11. Derek says:

    comic con is next week, so i guess that pic is from last year’s protest? those idiots just wanted to go to comic-con on the corporate dime… i’d do the same if my company would pay… j/k


  12. BlondFlyboy says:

    Maybe they’re just angry because they’re not geek-chic.

  13. brambonius says:

    “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image, when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.” (Anne Lamott)
    Are you aware of the google ad I see underneath this blog post? ‘Ancient Rome sim-city’ with some weird bikini-clad agressive woman with a sword… Looks like something for nerds…

  14. The Chiz says:

    I’m pretty sure that some day their understanding of God’s wrath is going to come full circle, and they will be standing outside their own church with “God Hates Westboro Baptist Church”, thus closing the depravity loop. Until then, may they never run out of poster board and Sharpies.

  15. Paul Glavic says:

    I want Steve Carell to show up to join them for one of their rallies and just keep yelling “Loud noises!!” (a la Anchorman).

  16. Mickey Gallagher says:

    If you haven’t heard the brilliant (and constructively church-bashing) Derek Webb, check out his song to Fred Phelps, “Freddie, Please” at this link (the song’s about a third of the way down the page):

  17. Maia says:

    “We often live as people who are defined by what we are against and not necessarily, what we are for”
    – Eugene Cho

    I’m going to quote this to no end.

    • /Choose your enemies carefully, ’cause they will define you/
      /Make them interesting ’cause in some ways they will mind you/
      /They’re not there in the beginning but when your story ends/
      /Gonna last with you longer than your friends/
      Cedars of Lebanon – no line on the horizon – U2

  18. Jeff Stewart says:

    Rick Warren made that point pretty well a few years ago when he said that we’ve cut the legs and arms off of the body of Christ and become one big mouth.

  19. Ben Richardson says:

    I guess now we know why all of their signs are hand made…because if God hates nerds then computers must be the devil!

  20. jchenwa says:

    Romans 9:13, just looked it up. Hahahaha, so funny!

  21. JNJ says:

    I always wonder, where in the Bible Phelps read, that he should send this “sort of message” to
    unbelievers? In Luke 24:47 it’s witten “that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name to all the nations beginning at Jerusalem” – repentance and remission of sins, not concentrated hatred. In my view Phelps is nothing moore than another self styled false prophet, who has never understood that the Old Tesatament times are over and that’s why he brings shame on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ by denying the grace of God.

  22. Taylor says:

    If these people would spend half the time they devote to hating various children of God to earnestly reading the Bible then maybe they would come to understand that God loves everyone. Furthermore that as Christians we are called not to judge one another but to love.

  23. Kevin says:

    Does it strike anyone else as very Pharisee-like behavior from WBC to condemn a group of people with the accusations of idolatry when it seems pretty clear they have idolized the protest? If they were really concerned about the nerds they would follow the example and engage them on their level, finding the unique way to relate the true story of God to comic book stories.

  24. Brad Melton says:

    I’m with ’em. If I’m gonna rot my teath I want sumth’n with chocolate.

  25. jeff e. says:

    they’ll likely be protesting the 2nd coming with signs that say, “God hates Jesus.”

  26. Bill B says:

    I wish you would ignore this group altogether. Condemnation of Westboro Baptist Church is a waste of time. You are ‘casting your pearls before swine’. Ignore them and take solace in Matthew 7:16.

  27. Austin says:

    I always knew Esau loved Dungeons and Dragons a little too much

  28. Ronnie says:

    Sorry to crush the spirits here, but that picture is just a sad Photoshop job that is stirring up fake news. The ‘nerds’ is clearly a digital typeface–Arial to be exact.

  29. Jeff Stewart says:

    Sure enough Ronnie. Good eye! We’re all busted. 8-\

  30. […] hates jesus” during the second coming).  but eugene made the point that WBC is way more known for what they’re against than they ever will be for what they’re for.  i guess it is a decision they made, and as […]

  31. Steve says:

    I Love WBC

    And Because I do, I pray they repent…for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand, and I don’t want them to remain outside…as they seem to be determined to do

  32. mo says:

    As a nerd, I’m now feeling very insecure about my faith. Maybe watching akira will make me feel better.

  33. BlondFlyboy says:

    Check out the awesome counter protest by the Comic-Con attendees. My favorite is probably the pic of the Star Trek officer holding the sign saying “God Hates Jedis!” 😀

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One Day’s Wages

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Everyone loves the idea of  reconciliation...until it involves truthtelling, confessing, repenting, dismantling, forgiving, and peacemaking. Charlottesville. So heartbreaking and infuriating. We weep and mourn over the hatred in the hearts of these white nationalists. We weep and mourn but we can't be defeated.

As I stare at this photo that's making its round on the internet, I'm reminded of the utter importance of showing up. I'm grateful for the news media, law enforcement, clergy, and peaceful protesters that are currently there to report, protect, pray, and protest.

And this is an invitation to us. May we not be mere bystanders. May we keep pressing forward. Seek justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly. Commit to truth-telling, justice, reconciliation, peacemaking. Follow the ways of Christ. Every day. And it's important to note that we don't have to go to Charlottesville to do this. In fact, it's more important that we do this exactly where we're at. May we live out the call to reconciliation in our churches, workplaces, neighborhoods, schools, and around our dining tables. Lord, may it be so... We don't have to go to Charlottesville to do this. We have to do this wherever were called to be.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” ~ Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. /// Thanks to those who let me know that the photo wasn't actually from today but rather from last month in Charlottesville. - Grateful for a spontaneous, last minute trip with Minhee to my old stomping grounds - San Francisco. 48 hours of visiting this special city that I called home for so many years.

Pic 1: Went to the Cliff House restaurant where we got engaged about 21 years ago to make out. Oops, sorry, I reflect on God's faithfulness over these many years.

Pic 2: Walked across the Golden Gate Bridge because it's such an iconic place - with some of the most incredible views.

Pic 3: Enjoyed a glass of some Cabernet Sauvignon and pretended to be wine connoisseurs at a vineyard.

Pic 4: Had lunch at my favorite Chinese restaurant, Sam Tung, which boasts some of the best chicken in the country. And of course, we ate at In-n-out.

Pic 5: And finally, celebrated with the good folks at @thefreedomstory where @onedayswages received their annual Freedom Award. What an honor.

Grateful. Thankful for this sabbatical. Breathe.

Show yourself some grace.

We can't do everything for everyone in every situation. Do what you can and do it with a joyful heart.

Amen A family that eats sushi together stays together.

Seriously, I don't ever remember eating so much as a teenager but these kids eat and eat and eat. Perhaps, the reason why this kid is pushing 6 feet tall. Grateful for a special treat with the family at @JaponessaSeattle. I'm sharing an obligatory, "I love and appreciate my wife, she's amazing" photo. Also...because I did something naughty...or brilliant. ;) Seattle is in the midst of a crazy heatwave. Near 100 degrees, hazy, and humid. An excessive heat advisory warning has also been issued.

So, Minhee and I needed to run some errands. It waa horrible but sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do. It's also known as adulting.

So, I'm driving and the air conditioning seems to have minimal effect. Minhee is in the passenger's seat and umm, when she's not paying attention, I turn on her seat heater to 5 - the highest level. All along, she's complaining about how hot she is...for nearly an hour...until she finally realizes what I did.

Bam. Boom. Gotcha.

Minhee, I love you!

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