Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Average American Christian Hypocrite

According to the Barna Group, the United States is approximately 82% Christian.  This clearly makes the United States a Christian nation, despite the Federal government being purposely designed to be secular.  Given that the United States is, by and large, the entertainment center of the world, I would argue that Christians have done a poor job in marketing their values to the rest of the world.  Indeed, the perception of Christians from non-Christians is not a good one and I believe that we deserve it for our own impotence in taking a stand.

Even though I said that the United States was 82% Christian, the truth is that only 16% of all Americans take their Christian faith seriously.  The rest claim to be Christian, officially, but are at best lukewarm in their practice of their beliefs.  In other words, 66% of all Americans claim to be Christian and are either lying about it or are hypocrites.  This is not surprising as even the most devout Christians can act hypocritical from time to time.  But God does not suffer lukewarm believers lightly, as he stated in the opening letters in Revelation.

Our entire culture is sick.  How does this happen when we are 82% Christian?  Why is it that Christians are the ones who perpetuate most of the immorality and abominable practices that we once shunned?  Our collective moral compass is spinning in all directions when it should be pointing us on the straight path toward what is right and wrong.

You see, despite the popular theories, there is a set list of what is wrong.  Everyone seems to agree on most things that are wrong.  There is a natural sense of right and wrong and part of Christianity is acknowledging that this knowledge is from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.  Everyone knows because we have been cursed with that knowledge.  But what most other religions and philosophies do not acknowledge is that evil is merely disobedience to God’s Will.  In other words, we naturally know what is God’s Will (in general) for us and what is not.

But modern Christians have largely fell into the same traps that the Old Testament Israelites did before their conquest by Babylon.  We consider God to be our friend or we merely wear our faith on our sleeve.  We allow incompetent individuals into the clergy while men guide women astray.  We celebrate single moms by throwing them baby showers when we should be encouraging them to find a good man to marry.  Better yet, we should be encouraging young women to remain virgins and to be submissive when they are married, even to submit to the sexual desires of her husband.  Instead we have cobbled together all the things that we liked from the Post-Modern age along with that old time religion to create an environment where women outnumber men in church.  This is because the church does not have offer certainty, but vague concepts of grace, tolerance, and peace.  And while femininity is often prone to emotional impulses and can thereby cope with such messages, masculinity needs standards and order.  To that end, we have wimpy beta males calling their wives their better halves, when they should be referred to as helpers.  There is nothing wrong with this, nor is there shame in it, as women still find fulfillment and enjoyment in being a mother or just a housewife.

It is not just the gender role reversal that has caused this, but also a lack of maturity in the message.  Nobody preaches about how serious Christianity really is.  Instead we get all these wonderful messages of love and grace but forget the reasons behind it and, worse, do not comprehend the magnitude of it all.  I want my fellow Christians, both captive and casual, to understand something: God’s Will is that we have to die for our sin.  God has killed masses of people because of their sin.  He has had people wipe whole places off the Earth because of their sin.

When you comprehend that God is an all-knowing, all-seeing, all-powerful being with the ability to wipe us out instantly with a mere word from His mouth, you begin to understand the magnitude of the sacrifice of Jesus.  This is why the first commandment is to love God above all else.  Doing so ensures that you submit to His Will for you, that you humble yourself before His power.  Not even the fallen ones will say and do the things that we have done to His face.  They know His power and they shudder at the thought of what He will do to them in the end of all this mess.

And when you comprehend that our sin, no matter how big or small, is cause for death and Hell, then you begin to understand the magnitude of Jesus’s ministry and sacrifice.  He came to our world as an example of how we should have been.  Through his life here, we saw what man should have been, what we could have been, and just how messed up we really were.  Because of this, the men in power had him tortured to death.  He did not just simply die on a cross, he was tortured for hours and left to die on that cross, where he have lived for several days.  His horrendous death came about as a means to redeem us before God and to tear the veil that separated us from God.  And so in Him, we have new life to hope for and a new purpose.

But it seems that Christians have forgotten this and instead opt to remain at best neutral when it comes to dealing with sin.  We do not confront the sinners of our churches directly and instead leave it alone.  We gossip behind their backs but never convict them to do what is right and just.  So we end up with a lackluster church and a lackluster faith.

Yes, there is more to Christianity than this, but we have forgotten the most important things.  It is high time we started to make a stand against the evils of this world and confront those who perpetuate it.  It is not an easy thing, since most Americans pride themselves in being right, just like all other people.  It is hard to hear that you are not special or anointed, just normal.  Pride is a hard thing to swallow and I do not see many Christians doing this anytime soon.