Christianity Is in Grave Trouble: Our Best Arguments Are Two Thousand Years Old

It grieves me to have to pass this news along to you, folks.  But Christianity is in deep trouble.  The Christian church is only moments away from being completely and utterly irrelevant.  And that is because our best understanding of what is right and true and pure comes from documents that are two thousand years old.  Our best understanding of what constitutes Christianity comes from antiquated writings that were penned, not in this millennium, nor even in the last millennium, but nearly two millennia ago!  Mark my words—the church has never been in a deeper crisis.

But thankfully, prophets have risen up to call our attention to this crisis.  And one of these prophets, with a word from a different god than the one Christians have traditionally worshiped, has declared that for Christianity to be relevant to the times in which we live, it must surrender its slavish adherence to the God revealed in its two-thousand-year-old literature.

This past Sunday night, in the midst of one of the holiest of all weekends in the Christian calendar, Valentine’s weekend, this prophet took to the airwaves to address the question of spirituality and sexuality.  He declared, with uncanny prophetic insight, that the church is only moments away from embracing gay marriage, and that, indeed, the church must embrace gay marriage, because it is perfectly normal.  When asked by the host of the show on which this prophet appeared, “When is the church going to get that?” he replied with the following words:

I think culture is already there and the church will continue to be even more irrelevant when it quotes letters from 2,000 years ago as their best defense, when you have in front of you flesh-and-blood people who are your brothers and sisters, and aunts and uncles, and co-workers and neighbors, and they love each other and just want to go through life.

Indeed, my brothers and sisters, truer words have never been spoken.  When the best teaching, the best understandings, the best advice, the best arguments, the best message that the church has for the world comes from documents that are two thousand years old, the church cannot help but be hopelessly irrelevant for the times in which we live.

Thank goodness we have prophets like Rob Bell, who are courageously willing to sound the alarm and give the church a wake-up call.  But not only prophets, but also the wives of the prophets.  Bell’s own wife, the prophetess Kristen, appeared on this show with her prophet-husband, and read from a book which they had co-written:

Marriage, gay and straight, is a gift to the world because the world needs more not less love, fidelity, commitment, devotion and sacrifice.

And then, in further support for what her prophet-husband had declared, said this:

There are churches who are moving forward and there are churches who are almost regressing and making it more of a battle.

So there you have it, brothers and sisters.  Our Christianity is in trouble precisely because our Christianity comes from two-thousand-year-old documents:

Two-thousand-year-old letters of Paul
Two-thousand-year-old lives of Christ
A two-thousand-year-old New Testament
And an even older Old Testament

We must forget that the God, and the Christ, and the prophets, and the apostles in these two-thousand-year-old documents never gave even the slightest nod to the idea that gay marriage is a gift to the world.

We must put forever behind us the Christ of the New Testament who declared, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple.”  For, you see, this new prophet has told us that the teachings of this Christ and of these two-thousand-year-old documents are now trumped by “flesh-and-blood people who are your brothers and sisters, and aunts and uncles, and co-workers and neighbors.”

We must completely get rid of the completely outmoded and outdated idea that we are in a warfare with this present evil age.  We must move forward and jettison this battle-oriented mentality. We must put out of our mind that we are engaged in holy war with the world, the flesh, and the devil.  Because, you know, these ideas are all contained in two-thousand-year-old documents.

If the Christian church is going to be relevant in this day and age, it must surrender its two-thousand-year-old concepts and allegiances:

Christ is God
Christ is King
Christ is Lord

Instead, to be relevant, to progress forward, to keep in step with the spirit of the age, we have to have new concepts and we must pledge new allegiances:

Culture is God
Culture is King
Culture is Lord

Long live the new King!

Wake up, O sleeping church, rise from your dogmatic slumbers, and Culture will shine on you!

However, Christ, I am sure, no longer will.

Jerry Shepherd
The night before Ash Wednesday
February 17, 2015

3 thoughts on “Christianity Is in Grave Trouble: Our Best Arguments Are Two Thousand Years Old

  1. Hi Jerry, thanks for the article. Whenever I hear the words of those who supposedly represent Christianity, as they distort, debase and discredit the word of God, I often think of the words of Habakkuk at the beginning of chapter one, “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save? Why do you make me see iniquity, and why do you idly look at wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise. So the law is paralyzed, and justice never goes forth. For the wicked surround the righteous; so justice goes forth perverted.”

    The Lord’s answer to Habakkuk, “Look among the nations, and see ; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.”, makes me wonder at what God will do to protect His name and His word today. While I wonder, I must also remind myself continuously that, “the righteous shall live by his faith.”

    Yet while we live by faith, what else can we, who hold to the truth of Scripture, do? Of course we will pray and acknowledge God’s sovereign rule and providence but do we lie down and take it? Do we get our own “people” on the talk shows for equal time or do we let sleeping dogs lie? Do we officially cast out Rob Bell from fellowship and give him over to Satan to be sifted? How do you root out the cancer from the Lord’s church? Why has the church ceased to discipline those who have gone astray? Do we need a “grass roots movement?” Maybe another synod would be in order in much the same way the early church solidified its beliefs so that we can once again be on level ground.

    While Paul and the other apostolic writers warn against false teachers within the church, and our constant need to guard against them, do they address how we are to deal with these “teachers” who are in the world but claim to represent Christ and His church? My initial thoughts would be that those who are in leadership in churches teach the word day in and day out to those who are the Lord’s, so that we might not be deceived, and to preach the Gospel to those who are not His so they might repent and believe. Would this be the best and most biblical solution?

    • Hi Dan; thanks for the response. Yes, it’s hard to know what to do. Part of the problem is that the church is so factionalized that authoritative pronouncements or excommunications would be more for show rather than having any real authority behind them. Taking Bell himself, for example, I don’t know if he currently belongs to a particular church or denomination, or if there is anyone who is officially in authority over him such that would he would be formally accountable. I suppose the best we can do along those lines, as you suggested, is to “teach the word day in and day out.” And, of course, as the heretical teachings of these leaders are very much out there in full view of the public, then it is entirely appropriate for those in positions of some authority/responsibility — pastors, theological educators, and denominational leaders — to also make very public their denouncement of such heresies. Thus, at least part of what I was trying to do in this blog post. Of course, such denouncing is not very popular, and there may be a cost involved — but what else is new?!

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