Are Christians Even Christian Anymore?

39891-HolyBible-Bible-read-ThinkstockPhotos-585291064.1200w.tn

I can’t be the only one who sees that present day Christianity is just more and more of a watered down ego stroke where every Christian is loved, is god’s favorite, is blessed, and god is their own personal force in the universe orchestrating every tiny detail to make them happy. Excuse my language, but this is total bullshit and completely unbiblical. Today’s Christian does not have to go to church to ‘know Jesus’. They don’t have to have read their Bible cover to cover before teaching their kids from a biblical homeschool curriculum. They know just enough to feel like god has their back, but not enough to be revolted by the biblical god. After all, Noah’s ark themed Christmas ornaments and nursery decorations are just precious, aren’t they? It’s hard to think about the extermination of like 99% of the human race as well as most all of the animals on earth (who did nothing sinful). Nope, the little zebras and giraffes walking in two by two are just too cute. Christianity is ‘comforting’ and the imagery familiar. There’s no need to question it.

And yet, many ARE questioning it. Christianity is losing numbers every day and the ranks are shrinking. Personally, I would attribute this to casualties of the war between the religious right in Washington and the growth of progressive ideals in popular culture. It becomes more difficult as time goes on to stay aligned with a religion that actively works to oppose the rights of others. It think it is this tension has caused many to take a look at their faith and distance themselves from it. Some individuals, like me, reject the faith entirely. Others reject only the “church” as a corrupt organization, but keep on loving Jesus because it’s a relationship, not a religion. Others adopt a “New Testament only” mentality wherein they just completely ignore the Old Testament or actively reject it because Jesus eliminated it for them. They are no longer bound by the law. Many have and continue to “cherrypick” the Bible, just focusing on the happy verses while explaining away ones that we know to be untrue, immoral, or bizarre as contextual or a product of the time period. (Why would god be bound by cultural norms of a specific group of people in a specific region of the earth at a specific time in history?) But, the oddest adaptation yet that is entirely new to me is people who categorically reject the Bible in its entirety, but still call themselves Christians. I won’t address what is theologically and logically problematic about these various approaches here. I simply want to acknowledge that while at one time, it would be unheard of to take any of these approaches to Christianity (except cherrypicking, that’s been around for a long time) – there is a new breed of 21st century Christian that is a stark departure from the fundamentals of Christianity.

I think it was easier to accept the premises of the Bible before the advent of the internet. Now, our understanding of the world around us far surpasses that of the Bible. So much so that many of us have been able to ‘break the spell’ so to speak and see it for the primitive text it is.

21st century Christians are the exact type of followers the Bible warns will be spit out of his mouth – lukewarm Christians. But if you are a Christian who has never fully read the Bible, you never have to face this reality. If you spend all your time repeating Jeremiah 29:11 type of verses to reinforce the idea that somehow this whole world and everything in it are all for you his most precious and wonderful child – then yah you aren’t going to see it.

Instead they may attend church on Sundays and hear over and over that they have been chosen by the one true God who loves them and provides for their every need (to the degree that their socio-economic status can provide for those needs). They are all to happy to hashtag #imhisfavorite or brag about god showing off for them by providing a beautiful sunset while completely unaffected by the suffering and torment in the world. Now, of course no one is going to walk around thinking about the world’s suffering every minute of every day and yes we are going to have moments of appreciation in our lives, but the idea of being god’s favorite speaks to a level of narcissism that is disgustingly arrogant. WHY would god ignore the pleas of a child asking that her mom’s boyfriend not find his way into her room again tonight or the heartfelt prayers of a million kids at that very moment asking that god end their suffering due to war, abuse, hunger or any number of unthinkable situations they may find themselves in. Do you not think that children who have been abducted, raped and murdered did not PRAY for help? Why would god ignore them and yet rearrange the sky to look like a beautiful canvas just for his one little favorite white middle class American adult? How do they reconcile all the cruelty going on at the very moment that god is making their day just a little bit brighter? It’s simple. They don’t. If confronted with the question, they content themselves to say the horrors of this world are a product of free will. After all, they can’t help it if there are sinful people out there doing sinful things. God doesn’t intervene because he respects the free will of his children, even the bad ones. Wait. This logic suggests that god respects the freewill of the rapist more than the body, dignity, or life of the child he is raping. (Funny how these are often the same christians that would do the opposite and deny a woman her free will but prioritize the life of a blastocyst to ‘save’ it. Weird.)

Either god intervenes or he doesn’t. Does he only intervene to bring about the good fortune of a happy Christian’s life but doesn’t intervene to save a child (even a christian one)? What kind of god would pick favorites like that?

If the christian god, the god of the Bible is up there watching all of humanity, what does he think about the partial or entire rejection of his holy book by those that claim to worship him? Do they actually worship him or the idea that the earth and everything in it has been created for them and that this all powerful being does them special favors precisely because he loves them soooooo much? Today’s christianity really is more like a security blanket, a stroke of ego, a constant reminder that each individual is truly the center of the universe.

If the Bible is no longer a requirement for christianity because it is wrong, unnecessary, or has gone out of date, what does that say about the god contained within it?

That is probably not a question that today’s Christian would waste time thinking about.

 

9 thoughts on “Are Christians Even Christian Anymore?

  1. Really nicely put. I was raised in a cult and made to study the bible every day for over 20 years. I probably read the bible back to back, verse by verse around 15-20 times studying the Hebrew and Greek translations of words. Knowing the bible so well and escaping the cult and being open about my atheist views finally has really opened my eyes to other Christians beliefs. That is that not many people actually understand what they believe and what the bible teaches. Which to me is absolutely nuts. People dedicate their lives to god but yet when you ask them on why they believe certain things they have no idea.
    The other day for example I challenged someone on their beliefs on homosexuality. I asked them why they didn’t agree with it, they responded with ‘it’s against god’s will.’ I asked them why they believed that – ‘it says so in the bible.’ When I asked them which passage they were referring to they had no idea and told me to ‘google it.'(?!)
    People have such strong beliefs based on absolutely nothing other than they’ve heard someone else say it. How can you have such strong opinions and beliefs when you haven’t even read it for yourself. It absolutely blows my mind!
    Really enjoying reading through your blog at the minute, glad I came across it.

    Like

    • Yes exactly! In some ways I think the only way one can really continue being a christian nowadays is to NOT read the Bible but just “know” that it’s good and that god is on your side no matter what. God’s will amazingly always coincides with whatever it is they want, need, or hate. They have no biblical basis to back them and don’t understand why they should have biblical backing if they claim to know the personality and will of god. I try talking to christians close to me and they are surprised to hear some of the stuff in there. They readily admit to not having read it all the way through. Keep asking and challenging. I have hope because if we were able to break free of all the nonsense, maybe there is hope for the ones that are still stuck in there.

      Liked by 1 person

      • The problem is people who are religious don’t want to hear any of that. People don’t want to not believe because it fits in with their way of life and reaffirms their own prejudices (such as being against homosexuality and abortion). It also gives them hope and it helps them cope with the idea of death. I can understand that part in some ways but I’ve always wanted truth. I challenge everything I hear which is the opposite of what most religious people do. People read the bible to hear what they want to hear. If you do that then you’ll never see anything but what you want to see.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You’re right Alice – the bible says that in the last days the love of many believers will grow cold. But please don’t let this hypocrisy keep you away from finding out who God is for yourself. Yes, a great many people who claim to love Jesus are giving him a very bad name, but God still wants to see your name written in his book of life when you take your last breath. Don’t let the foolishness of others keep you from the gift God has for you. i wish you all the best in your journey in discovering the One who loves you so much and wants the very best for your life.

    Like

      • Hi there, I’m so sorry you’re feeling disillusioned. Yes I am familiar with God’s word and the God of the bible but I don’t say that arrogantly. I respect the fact that something significant must have happened to you to make you feel so strongly against him. I haven’t yet read any of your blogs or About Me page, so I’m ignorant of your life experiences. In answer to your question, yes I do believe the bible is fully true but it has to be:
        1. Read in context
        2. Read with the heart not human intelllect.
        3. Read with humilty so that God can gently explain the meanings and show us that the whole bible is his love letter to us. It is living and active, so each time it is read, a new facet of his compassion can be seen, if we let him speak to us while reading it. I hope one day you will be able to see it the way God intended for you – a powerful work of love, written from his heart to yours. Xx

        Like

      • How do you know what the context is? Or when you are reading with your heart instead of human intellect? Is that to say it’s not SUPPOSED to make sense to our human intelligence? Then why communicate to us in a way that we can’t understand?

        Just curious how you rationalize things like god wiping out every living creature on earth except for 2 of each as compassion or Judges 19:22-29 – the exact chapter and verse I will never forget because the story was so horrifying. How do you explain all the cruelty, slavery, rape, incest, animal sacrifice . . . Verses about smashing babies heads against the rocks. What context could there possibly be that would let us pull compassion out of these verses? We would have to push aside our own sense of right and wrong in order to find a way to be okay with instructions for owning slaves or keeping virgin women after slaughtering a whole town.

        Isn’t just the slightest bit possible that the Bible could have just been written by primitive men?

        Like

      • The context thing is the same as if you were listening to the news and only heard half the sentence. You can’t pick out single verses and make a doctrine out of it. The worst story for me is the one about a man who allowed his girlfriend to be gang-raped so badly that she was dead by the morning. But that is not a reflection of God, but satan – the demonic force we have allowed into this world because of our rebellion towards God. God does not put these horrific stories in the bible because he finds them funny but the total opposite – to show what a depraved creation we are since we let the devil into our lives. The only way we can have any hope of being civil is by allow Jesus to work in our lives or we are all capable of doing the same vile things.

        Like

  3. Pingback: The Bible: Fact or Fiction? | Leaving Wonderland

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s