Sharon Stone on China’s “Karma” and lessons we can learn

Sharon Stone got herself into some hot water on the red carpet:

“At first, I’m not happy with the way the Chinese are treating the Tibetans …,” she said on camera Thursday at the Cannes Film Festival, referring to the country’s alleged human rights violations. “And then all this earthquake and stuff happened and I thought, ‘Is that Karma, when you’re not nice that the bad things happen to you?'”

Now, please note: Sharon Stone is to conservatives and Republicans what . As an example, here’s one of her remarks to illustrate:

Basic Instinct star Stone, 46, was keen to enjoy an intimate moment with Oscar-winning co-star Halle Berry, but believes a puritanical streak running through the country put an end to any potential girl-on-girl action.

Stone says: “Halle’s so beautiful and I wanted to kiss her. I said, ‘How can you have us in the movie and not have us kiss? That’s such a waste.’

“That’s what you get for having George Bush as president.”

Now, the question is, is Sharon Stone a hater? Is she just so full of intolerance that… well, that she’s as morally reprehensible as Christian bigots such as Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell?

You might recall the outrage and furor over the two Christian leaders saying that 9/11 was God’s judgment as a consequence of the United States’ embrace of paganism, abortionists, feminists, and homosexuals.

It is important to note that Jerry Falwell (and Pat Robertson) quickly apologized, unlike Jeremiah Wright – who merely defended his anti-American statements all the more vigorously when confronted with them.

And let me further point out that liberals were quick to claim that fundamentalist Christians – in claiming that 9/11 was divine judgment – were every bit as evil as the terrorists who flew the planes into the buildings. That’s an incredible claim, tantamount to saying that a kid who says, “My brother will beat you up for taking my lunch money!” is just as despicable as the kid who knifes another kid for a pair of desired sneakers. I mean, get real!!!

The issue of Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell came up again in the aftermath of Jeremiah Wright’s views, with liberals – scrambling to defend Barack Obama – saying that what Wright said in his “chickens coming home to roost” for Hiroshima and for American terrorism and racism – was no different than what conservatives like Robertson or Falwell said. I’ll come back to that comparison later.

Do you think that there’s such a thing as “karma,” or “divine retribution,” or “what goes around comes around”? Is a person evil for thinking there is?

Or is it better, less judgmental, more “politically correct,” to argue that no matter what someone does, or no matter what a nation does, there are no punitive consequences and there should be none?

If we see another Nazi Germany arise, should the country get off scott free? Or should the wheels of cosmic judgment turn upon them?

As a Christian, let me explain my perspective.

One of the things God ultimately does is ensure justice in the universe. God cannot be loving unless He is just. In illustration, consider the following story:

A family is rudely awakened in the middle of the night by a gang of violent predators. They tie up the father, and then take turns repeatedly raping the wife and daughter until dawn, and then they take all the valuables and leave. The next day, the father hears that the thugs have been captured. He storms into the police station shouting, “Where are they?” And the police say, “We let them go.”

“You let them go? Didn’t you have any evidence?”

“Oh, yes. We confiscated several of the articles that were stolen from your home, and DNA from the men matches the semen found in your wife and daughter.”

“Then why did you let them go?”

“Because we’re a loving police department, that’s why.”

A world without justice is a world without love. A universe that wouldn’t even in theory punish a China for brutalizing Tibetans is a universe that frankly doesn’t care. If there are no consequences for evil, then there is no real difference between a “good nation” and an “evil nation.”

And the same is true of individuals that is true of nations. I would argue that if there is no God, and if there is no immortality of the human soul, then there is no moral difference between a Mother Teresa and an Adolf Hitler – because they both die and are gone, and their ultimate end is exactly the same. Without the consequences of ultimate judgment, the only conclusion is that people and nations alike ought to be as self-centered as they can possibly be.

If the leaders of ethnic China want to seize the land and resources of ethnic Tibetans, and force them to live under whatever brutal conditions they wish to impose, who are you to say it’s “wrong”? And if a man tries fulfill his evolutionary biological destiny and propagate his DNA by force, who are you to label it as “rape” and condemn it? Who made you God? Who made this particular society “God”? If the universe itself doesn’t care enough about such behaviors to enforce consequences, then why on earth should you?

We are told repeatedly in the Bible that God judges the nations. Psalm 82:8, for instance, says: “Arise, O God, judge the earth! For it is Thou who dost possess all the nations.”

We are also told throughout the Bible that there are consequences for sin and depravity. Jesus Himself – who is frequently perverted by non-Christian religions and philosophies – spoke and taught more about hell than anyone in the Bible. One of the most quoted verses in Scripture – John 3:16 – says: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life.”

Having said all of this, I think that Jerry Falwell was wrong for claiming that 9/11 (or Hurricane Katrina) were acts of divine judgment. Here’s why:

I believe in individual human sin, and I believe in the corporate sin of nations, and I believe in divine judgment. But I am not so quick to claim that I know when God will act in judgment.

Genesis 15:12-16 records an interesting event regarding divine judgment:

Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him. And God said to Abram, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years. But I will also judge the nation whom they will serve; and afterward they will come out with many possessions. And as for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried at a good old age. Then in the fourth generation they shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet complete.”

God says to Abraham that one day his descendants will inherit the land He has promised, but not until the fourth generation, “for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet complete.” By the time of Moses and Joshua, the measure of iniquity was full, and God gave the Hebrews the land and used them as an instrument of judgment. But note: not until that iniquity reached a certain critical threshold.

So I would be asking Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell this: who told you that the iniquity of America is now complete? And of China, how do we know that the cup of its sins is full? I would argue that they don’t know, and neither does anyone else other than God and His angels.

Now, is it possible that China is being judged for its sins with this catastrophic earthquake? Sure it is. God has used earthquakes (Zechariah 14:5; Revelation 11:13). And is it possible that God used the terrorists as an instrument of judgment against the United States? Sure it is. God frequently says He has used nations to judge nations (read the Book of Isaiah).

But I don’t know when a particular earthquake, or when a particular enemy attack, is an instrument of divine retribution. God did not make me one of His prophets. I am not busily carving away on the parchment roll that will one day be known as “the Book of Mikey.”

2 Peter 3:9 says, “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” And so I know that God is not just waiting to stomp on every sinner and on every sinful nation. God is not arbitrary or vindictive in His judgment. He brings it in His wisdom, and in His time.

What do I do? I humbly pray that God does not judge me for my own sins. When I am being consistent, I put aside the tendency to call upon God’s judgment to fall upon others as well. And so when a calamity befalls someone or some nation, I can recognize that God did not call upon me to be an instrument of His judgment (He can take care of that department Himself), but rather as an instrument of His grace. Because another thing the Bible tells us is that even in judgment, God practices grace, and is willing to bring restoration.

Now, what’s the difference between what Jerry Falwell said and what Jeremiah Wright said?

Both men suggested that America was getting it’s just desserts. I would submit that the key difference is that Falwell was basically being “pro-Bible” and “pro-biblical morality” and Wright was basically being “anti-America” and “anti-greedy-racist-white-America.”

For those who want to compare Jeremiah Wright with Jerry Falwell, I would say, “Fine. Anyone who spent 20 years in Jerry Falwell’s church shouldn’t be president, either.” Keep in mind, liberals and Democrats savagely attacked Jerry Falwell for his remark: if one can compare Wright’s statements with Falwell’s, then one at least ought to savage both men evenly. But the liberals who frequently make such an analogy (such as Alan Colmes, who has made it often on Fox News’ Hannity and Colmes) aren’t willing to actually criticize their side’s guy, just the other side’s guy.

The terrorists who attacked us were personally carrying out “Allah’s vengeance” upon their enemies.  And in hateful act after hateful act, terrorists have attacked and bombed and murdered in the name of their God.  Christian fundamentalists, by start contrast – who passionately believe in God’s divine vengeance – are waiting for God to do His own judging. Big difference.  Muslims believe that God is too transcendent, too grand, to care.  Humans are like ants to Allah.  But Christians believe that God is intimately involved with His creation, and involved with justice and judgment.  And so every Christian who takes God at His Word waits for God to take His ultimate divine judgment into His own hands.

The Bible assures me that God judges sin.  It doesn’t tell me when, or how.  That is up to God.

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3 Responses to “Sharon Stone on China’s “Karma” and lessons we can learn”

  1. Dave Says:

    Actually I think she is quite correct, the earthquake was the result of bad Chinese karma.

    Of course, the rest of us still need to help the victims whether the suffering was because of bad karma or not.

    For more info on group karma see http://www.sentforlife.com/karma.html

  2. VANNA Says:

    GOD DOES NOT JUDGE YOU FOR YOUR SINS !
    YOU CHOOSE YOUR ONWE PATH !

    I THINK SHARON STONE IS TOTALY RIGHT SAYING THIS EARTHQUAKE IS KARMA !
    SORRY BUT THERE IS A LAW CALLED KARMA !

    = Karma means “deed” or “act”, is the universal principle of cause and effect, action and reaction that governs all life. Karma is not fate, for humans act with free will creating their own destiny. If we sow goodness, we will reap goodness; if we sow evil, we will reap evil. Karma refers to the totality of our actions and their concomitant reactions in THIS OR PREVIUS LIVES, all of which determines our future. The conquest of karma lies in intelligent action and dispassionate response.
    “According to the seed that’s sown,
    So is the fruit you reap there from,
    Doer of good will gather good,
    Doer of evil, evil reaps,
    Down is the seed and thou shalt taste
    The fruit thereof.”

    “I am the owner of my karma .
    I inherit my karma.
    I am born of my karma.
    I am related to my karma.
    I live supported by my karma.
    Whatever karma I create, whether good or evil, that I shall inherit.”

    Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A person reaps what he sows.
    (Gal. 6:7)

    Since the chinese people have no spiritual education , of course they will not understand !

    Chinese people are one of the most evil people to animals, as the bilis bears, cats, dogs and animals for fur ! What they do is pure HORROR !They treat animals with total cruelty and even humans because they work so hard as slaves, have no freedon of speech and dont have humans rights. All this horror and pain they give to others comes back the same way.
    Dont think that you can hurt and be very cruel to an animal you will not suffer the same pain ! YOU WILL FOR SURE ! Animals fell the same we do , love, afection, pain, fear, hurt, hangry, thisty and horror too….
    THE ANIMALS ARE PRISIONERS WITHOUT FOOD, WATER, NOTHING AND THEY ARE FISICALY HURT AS THE PEOPLE IN THE EARTHQUAKE.
    Also china is one of the most causes for polution and global warming and this is the result, the planet is screaming because is being destroied !
    Sharon Stone and everybody else is free to think and say what they want !
    We have freedon of speech ! I think we must !
    = Of course is very sad what happened to the people in China. Everybody is extreamely broken heart about this situation.
    But it is karma and people have to understand that karma rules your life and is a universal law of action and reaction and acept and be better souls ! We cannot scape from it !
    This life is likened to a field in which our Karma is the seed. We harvest exactly what we sow !
    About the animals just check here and much more !
    http://br.youtube.com/watch?v=xf6Ab8nNRgI
    many animals are Skinned alive too so look for : Bloody fur market in China ! and so much more , just go to search at the internet ! CRUELTY TO ANIMALS IN CHINA ! you will find hundreds of pictures, videos and more information about this shooking reality …

    China has a Culture of Cruelty to animals, a long history of animal abuse is in the spotlight as Chinese county indiscriminately massacres animals for ages …

    SO CHINESE PEOPLE AND EVERYBODY IN THIS PLANET !
    IT IS TIME TO LEARN
    = if you do evil , evil will come to you
    = if you do good, good will come to you

    TO PEOPLE, TO NATURE AND TO ANIMALS TOO !
    WE ALL HAVE THE RIGHT TO SPEECH !

    why we have to hide the true ?
    WHY ?
    EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON .
    You are not a body !! You are a soul !
    The Soul uses the body as a vehicle for manifestation in the fisical world as a driver uses the car to go around !
    So ! There are much more beyond your knowlodge !

    We all are living by the law of karma !
    BELIVE IT OR NOT !

    THE PROBLEM IS THIS PLANET IS THAT MOST PEOPLE LIVE IN
    IGNORANCE !

    What is the cause of Karma?
    Ignorance (avijja), or not knowing things as they truly are, is the chief cause of Karma. Dependent on ignorance arise activities (avijja paccaya samkhara) states the Buddha in the Paticca Samuppada (Dependent Origination).
    Associated with ignorance is the ally craving (tanha), the other root of Karma. Evil actions are conditioned by these two causes. All good deeds of a worldling (putthujana), though associated with the three wholesome roots of generosity (alobha), goodwill (adosa) and knowledge (amoha), are nevertheless regarded as Karma because the two roots of ignorance and craving are dormant in him.

  3. Michael Eden Says:

    Vanna,
    I am writing as a Christian. Christians believe that we have a personal Creator who is actively involved with His creation, rather than an impersonal force like Karma.

    A few passages of Scripture from a search of ‘God judges’:

    Job 21:22 “Can anyone teach God knowledge, In that He judges those on high?

    Psalm 58:11 And men will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous; Surely there is a God who judges on earth!”

    Psalm 82:1 (A Psalm of Asaph.) God takes His stand in His own congregation; He judges in the midst of the rulers.

    Revelation 18:8 “For this reason in one day her plagues will come, pestilence and mourning and famine, and she will be burned up with fire; for the Lord God who judges her is strong.

    And I agree with the sentiments of Dave, who says that we help the victims whether the act itself was judgment or not.

    What I really wanted to say in this article is that we are not in a position to declare that X deserves Y in the cosmos. I as a Christian know that God judges, but I do not know with certainty when or how He judges. God is patient. He judges in His time, and in His way. The prophets who wrote in the Old Testament prophetically declared God’s judgment before it was enacted. We’re not doing so much of that today.

    And yes, ultimate judgment is in the hands of a just and holy God. We are not called to be agents of God’s retribution. We are called to be gracious, and help pick up the pieces in the name of Christ.

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