Originally Posted March 11 2017
When hearing from people why Christianity “Is a load of manipulative trash that is meant to control people and teach them to not think for themselves while a select few use the ignorance to grow in power and run the country in hatred and greed for no other reason than they get their kicks from it” I have come to find that it is actually incredibly rare that anyone comes to me with reasons that actually question Christianity.
For the most part, people agree with Christianity! (As long as they don’t know that it IS Christianity) and when they think about it, provided that the facts the bible say are true, the events that it tells are pretty logical as well.
What I do hear questioned, is not Christianity itself, but the Christians who follow it.
“Christians post these stupid overreacting articles to everything!” “Christians watch and support these stupid shows that are obviously fake!” “Well since Christians themselves do ____ and ____ how can they go about saying ____ is wrong just because they aren’t comfortable with it??”
Of the criticisms I hear (which are many, and often quite bitter) I find it breaks down to two main types of problems.
1. The belief that Christians are the models of everything Christianity stands for in angelic form. (PFFFFFT!!!!)
At a level it makes sense. Christians are to shine the light of Jesus to the world, live as an example, God’s chosen people were supposed to lead the nations in how to follow Him…. Here’s the thing though…
CHRISTIANS AIN’T SAINTS!
We aren’t! We’re imperfect, flaw filled, weak, scared, and overwhelmed people.
There is no angelic light that teaches you wisdom and restraint the moment you give your heart to God. We are Christians not because we are strong, but because we know we are weak!
And yes there is growth in the Christian walk. Yes we are not the people we once were, nor should we be. But here’s the thing. We’re people! You’re people! EVERYONE IS PEOPLE! People aren’t perfect.
The validity of Christianity is not tied to how we act as Christians. We Christians act because of the validity of Christianity!
2. The people who stand out in Christianity.
Ever have a loud aunt, uncle, cousin or what not? Or gone to another country and seen someone from your country act like a jerk? You know that feeling when someone posts a pic of a guy catcalling at a girl and says “THIS IS WHY ALL MEN ARE A DISGRACE TO THIS WORLD!” or a girl acting like a jerk and they say “ALL GIRLS ARE *censored*!” …..yeaaaaaah….. this is how I feel in this situation a lot.
I will not say these people are NOT Christian. The same way I cannot say those people are not of my family, race, gender, or more. But there is something I have noticed time and time again.
People are attracted to potential and power.
Be it the loud businessmen who became famous for no other reason than buying startup companies that held potential saying they could help them. Be it the kid in the classroom who befriends the popular student in hopes of being popular themselves. Be it the masses who try to befriend a celebrity in mad hopes that the fame will rub off on them without work…. potential and power attract people like moths to a flame… and most often it attracts those who don’t wish to do the work to reach that height.
In the same way… I feel the loud mouths, the biggots, the proud, the perverted, the warmongers, the selfish, the greedy, the powerhungry, and all those who claim to be leaders of the church in order to grow in fame, power, or influence do NOT discredit the validity of Christianity. If anything I think they justify it! Because if there was nothing behind Christianity, these people would never be drawn towards it! But if you want to reap the rewards without the effort… it will not last… and will turn ugly fast.
So why does God let these people stay? Why doesn’t lightning fall from the sky smiting them from their perch??? Well… partially I think it’s because God cares for even them… I mean technically why hasn’t lightning smited all of us?? We can talk and vent about who is moral and who is not… but are we not all filthily sinful??
The bigger reason though… at least in my opinion… is because those people, as loud and as in the spotlight as they are… really aren’t a threat to God at all.
I mean for one thing. Who can threaten God? Stephen Hawkings, Carl Sagen, and a bajillion others can talk about how we are the generation who “Killed God” but honestly they’re like children who turn their back on their parents and say “I CAN’T SEE YOU SO YOU CAN’T SEE ME!” But moreso… if you’re following after God, why would people like that be a risk?
We are followers of God yes… but that does not make us mindless and on autopilot. We have been given a task. to follow GOD! That is YOUR responsibilty and no one elses. If you are at risk because the person you are following stops following God or turns away from Him…. Were you ever following God to begin with? No! You were following a person who you believed to be following God.
LOOK FOR GOD YOURSELF! HE IS EVERYWHERE! Do NOT let others tell you where God is! Do NOT rely on others for what you believe! GRAB YOUR BIBLE! READ IT! PRAY FERVENTLY! LOOK FOR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART! NO ONE CAN DO THIS FOR YOU! DO IT!
Now this isn’t to say that we don’t listen to council. Or we all walk and decide our own faith. God made it very clear that we need each other to move forward. And honestly, there are times when people are needed to remind us what we may even already know. To get back on the path we are turning from! We are following GOD! Not OURSELVES! Or our opinion of what God wants! Use every thing you can find to chase after Him!
Now, this has been mostly to explain why complaining about Christians does not discredit Christianity, but I think there is still an important lesson in it for us to take as Christians as well.
TAKE YOUR WALK SERIOUSLY!
As I said above, we will never be perfect. We will always sin, and we are so far from what could be considered “pure” or “righteous” and yes… God loves us in spite of all that we do wrong. This is also a true fact. But this doesn’t mean we should just sin like crazy because we know God will forgive us anyways.
It is okay to struggle with sin, but that means that you still need to struggle against it! Don’t give in to it and accept “This is just who I am. It doesn’t matter anyways.” Don’t think you can witness to others of how great following God is when you just walk a path just like them without caring. It is okay to be weak, it is not okay to just give in to your weaknesses! Struggle! Fight it! Keep giving life and your faith your all!
It doesn’t matter how many verses you memorize, how many theologians you quote, how great you are at apologetic debate. You can devote your life to the study of such things but
NO ONE CARES!
They have their place. They have times when they come in handy to explain things. But no one is even going to look at you twice to get to that point until you first and foremost take YOUR walk with God seriously!
Do not take “Witnessing to others” as an excuse to ignore looking at yourself! The greatest witnessing tool you have is YOURSELF! It’s good to have good answers, but you need to be someone worth asking questions of first! And the only way to do that is to live a life so counter to what this world thinks is possible!