Tuesday, February 05, 2008

The Problem with Christianity

"The problem with Christianity is we made it into a religion about Jesus rather than a commitment to be like him"

In my readings, I came across this statement and it is one that has been bouncing around inside my head. I think that the reason that it rings true is with some fundamentalist christianity reading that I have been doing lately. I think that we have misplaced the purpose of the message that Jesus came and delivered.

It is followed up by this quote:

Wether the people lived the way of Jesus became irrelevant to some and seconday to many. Salvation became a status, easy to achieve and verify. This understanding persists.

Too many times, I hear the message of salvation is boiled down to fire insurance. To me, that is sound. Individuals want to break salvation down to making the right steps and saying the right words. That was not the point of Jesus.

11 comments:

Doorman-Priest said...

Hi Jeff, I have been doing a lot of work on mission styles recently. Not initially out of choice, but for college, although I did get into it. I was staggered at the various minifestations and developments of mission style down the ages. I was able to identify myself as post-modern, (which seems to be a very dirty phrase in some areas) but I can't fully leave behind my evangelical roots.

Much that passes for modern - or fundamentalist - evangelism is based on the early apostolic style of filling the lifeboat before the last times hit.

There's nothing much new in evangelism.

If you are interested in knowing more I would recommend a very readable book: "Christian Mission" by Stephen Spencer (scm press)

Nator said...

Great post. I truely believe this statement. This fire insurance mentality is turning Christianity into something that can be done, like buy insurance, instead of something to do, like model Christ. If everyone modeled Christ, then we wouldn't have to worry about gettting the insurance policy. It is a different mentality I guess. More post-modern instead of modern. Of course the modern mindset says that it can be proven (science) and measured and when has Christianity ever fit into that catagory?

By the way, get post over at Brian's place. It is nice to not be the only one getting shot at :")

Lori said...

Great quote! Sadly, it's too often true.

Jeff Greathouse said...

Nator:

is it get or great :) thanks, i see he shut you down.

Lori:

Thanks and it is sad that it

Nator said...

It was great, but my keyboard is starting to go out and I am not the best speller! I am shut down. I sent a reply asking why, when I wasn't being rude or using foul language, but i haven't, nor do I think I will, recieved a response. I guess some people can't have a conversation.

Jeff Greathouse said...

I believe that from his comments that he beliefs you have Satan speaking through you.

Your insights and thoughts on the passages and the context of Scriptures are right.

Fundamental Christianity, however, will not listen to another voice.

Nator said...

Isn't that sad? That you can point out something from the scriptures, which they are quick to quote, and they ignore you and shut you down. As I said on a post yesterday, everyone has an agenda and some have to ignore parts of the scripture in order for their agenda to work.

Jeff Greathouse said...

Nator:

In case you did not check back, he did give the explanation of why you were blocked.

He also blocked me for my heretic remarks. Here is what I tried to add for the discussion:

About Jesus:

Didn’t bring a lost person to decision

He offered forgiveness without confession of sin

Failed to ask about the prospect’s spiritual background

Didn’t use healing as a bait for decision

Failed to get the prospect into a Bible (Torah) study

Failed to communicate the urgency of the encounter

Forgot to assign a spiritual person to do follow-up

Nator said...

Yeah, I did follow up. But as I said to him, I didn't do anything except to point out how Jesus actually used that encounter to elicit belief. It seems to me that the favorite passage is John 4 which has been thrown at me a few time for evangelistic purposes, but when examine it, really, instead of quoting the Way Of The Master tracts and tricks, you don't find what they are saying. Interesting huh? Unfortunately the fundamentalist view point is very unforgiving! And it seems that Jesus was very forgiving, even before it was asked for.

Nator said...

here is my latest response to brian. don't think it will see the light of day.

"If you think I mocked repentance, then you weren't reading the post correctly. Jesus never asked for repentance, he elicited belief and left the village with them in that state. I believe the villagers were saved, but where we differ is that no where does it say they asked for forgiveness. Now you can say that is of the devil, but it is straight from the Bible. I know, even the devil quoted scripture to Jesus, but this is an account of what Jesus did, not twisting the words of the Bible. Read it again."

We will see what happens.

Jeff Greathouse said...

Nator:

I wish that I saved my thoughts on the woman at the well, plenty of scriptures, because I doubt that he will let it throuh.

I may have to try to recapture it and use it as a post.

I just wish he would let the comments go through, they are big people and the others comment and do not see our whole story, becausour comments do not go through.

Oh well. We tried to have dialogue.