When I was eighteen I got my first tattoo and during that year I was told I needed to repent for having a tattoo. Consider, that year was my gap year, working alongside a church, doing Christian outreach and youth work and that the tattoo was of a cross. At eighteen, I happily identified as a Christian and the tattoo was a significant part of my spiritual journey. In the same way that when I was ten I was baptised as a public demonstration of my commitment to follow Jesus, the tattoo was a public sign of that continued commitment, at the beginning of what I knew was going to be a pretty demanding and challenging year.
Nowadays, I am less comfortable with identifying myself as a Christian, not because I am no longer committed to following Jesus but because of the negative connotations associated with the word. Being a Christian is the same as being homophobic and judgemental and often, quite horrible.
So, I often don’t say I’m a Christian because the God I believe in is very often not the God the vocal TV-Christians believe in.
I do not believe in a God who would condemn me for having a tattoo, or would condemn women who have abortions or people who find that they are attracted to people of their own gender. Sure, in the old testament there are loads of rules and regulations, loads of judgements and consequences but as you read through the narrative of the bible, those things don’t work. People fail. So God decides, to once and for all, sort it out through the incarnation. People mess things up and can’t follow the rules long enough to fix it so God fixed it. He did it all, on the cross, it’s done. There is nothing else that needs to be done. People are not saved by following the rules. They are just saved.
And so, no, I do not believe in your God of hate and judgements. I will never believe in him and if it turns out he is the only true God, I will never worship him. I will not honour that God.