The disintegration of the Christian faith saddens me.
Where is it going today?
It is lost in some need to relate to the culture at hand. It is beset with shallow ideas of celebrity status and wealth, of a theology so flimsy it barely supports a life much less a nation.
Someone posted on Facebook the other day a video of a bumbling, vulgar, oahfish Baptist preacher from North Carolina saying from his ornate pulpit that he’d had a vision of what to do with all of the “lesbians, the homosexuals and queers.”
He said to put them all in an electric fenced in area, drop food in there, and then let them die off.
Listening to his obscene rant, all in the name of God, made me think of a book my friend Danny Redding suggested to me, Charles Kimball’s “When Religion Becomes Evil.”
For a minister, like the North Carolina man, to say such things from a Christian pulpit is evil. Plain and simple. It is an inexcusable evil.
Dallas minister Ed Young who pastors a huge congregation of young professionals has now started a fashion blog. He says ministers and Christians need to be cool and hip and dress the part. I visited his blog. What a waste of time and energy as he provides video clips of him trying on designer shirts and talking about never dry cleaning your suits and what amount of starch to use in your clothes.
This is Christianity? Pathetic.
Forget the terrorists out there plotting to blow up things. Forget those nasty prostitutes the church has always been so afraid of and offended by. Forget even the Wall Street crooks deranged by dollar signs and cheating the country out of billions. What many in the Christian faith today are doing is worse than all of that. They are dismantling an entire belief system by making it silly, mean-spirited, political, or materialistic.
John Lennon of the Beatles predicted it years ago. He said, “Christianity will go. It will shrink and vanish.” It appears he was right.
The Christian faith has been taken over by a radical political ideology of greed and selfishness and a goal of making society work only for a select few. It has been hijacked by the pettiest kind of power urges. Its mission has been shriveled down to little more than a few meaningless clichés.
Christianity is dying. It will not be saved by mirroring a chic culture as Ed Young seems to believe. It will not be saved by the North Carolina preacher’s deplorable ignorance and hatred of gays.
If it has any hope of surviving it will need to guide us into going deeper in our search for human meaning and how to serve the diverse community of brotherhood and sisterhood we all live in.
If the Christian faith does not help us do that then it has lost its purpose. And it will shrivel and die. Maybe something new and better will replace it.
© 2012 Timothy Moody