This weekend I was curious about a certain aspect about writer and Christian apologist C.S. Lewis’s life. When I sought the information on the internet, I stumbled upon a page and was appalled by the article that was written by a Christian pastor. He basically claimed that because Lewis did not come out and bash Catholicism and deem it to not be a Christian religion that he was a heretic, should not be read, questioned whether he should even be considered a Christian, and gave the impression that the “Chronicles of Narnia” are plagued by pagan myths, witchcraft, and sorcery and should not be considered Christian.
This ridiculous hated and self-righteousness is exactly what turns so many non-believers away from Christ and further tarnishes the Christian name. Are there many aspects of Catholicism that I find to be non-Biblical and apostasy? Yes. But there are also beliefs held by certain Protestant denominations that I consider to be wrong as well. Am I right? Maybe. But it is also possible I’m wrong. To conclude that someone is not a Christian just because they are a Catholic, associated with someone who is Catholic, or even doesn’t belong to your personal denomination of Christianity is a very dangerous and self-righteous game.
I have a big problem with Christians on the far right who use the Bible as a weapon and use it to defend every position they hold. Don’t get me wrong. I hold the Bible in the highest esteem. But just because you believe the Bible is inerrant does not mean that your interpretation is. Let’s not forget that it wasn’t too long ago that people were using the Bible to justify slavery and that those who didn’t hold their view were also “deviating from scripture”. There are literally thousands of Christian denominations in the world. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that not all of them are right. So when these individuals start spouting off about how all their beliefs are right and anything else is “non-Biblically based” the chance that they are right is slim to none. It is likely that all of us have certain aspects of our theology that is incorrect. Your ability to have a perfect understanding of God depends on your perfect interpretation of every verse in the Bible. Just as we all fall and sin, none of us can possibly interpret scripture perfectly.
There is nothing wrong with disagreeing with someone else, respectfully debating someone, or trying to point out their error in love if you suspect it, but to stand upon the roof of a castle built on false pride and declaring everything under the sun except your opinion as wrong is just non-sense and frankly, if anything is non-Biblical, it’s that kind of behavior that frequently fills newspaper stories and the public’s bias towards Christianity.
People, we’ve got enough enemies in the world targeting and persecuting Christians; we don’t need to fight among ourselves. It’s time we set differences aside and agree to disagree on our issues. We need to join together as brothers and sisters in Christ and help each other grow in love. There is so much time spent debating and discussing the Bible, but no action taken. Reading scripture is not the only aspect of Christianity; following Christ is much more difficult than that. What about the poor, the sick, the suffering? What about the homeless, the mentally ill, the starving? Spending your days calling out people and accusing them as not being Christians, is not drawing anyone closer to Christ; it is pushing people away. I believe that we can learn something from each denomination and can coexist without falling to pride and self-righteousness.
The world is tired of dogma. The world is tired of religion with corrupt leaders preaching “my way is better than your way” rhetoric. I am not saying we should fall prey to relativism or deny Christ’s sometimes hard teachings. What I am saying is let’s start spreading that message with love, with joy, with peace and get rid of the constant condemnation. Let’s live in such a way that non-believers know who we are by our shining example of love. Let’s live in a way that really makes the world question their own beliefs and realize that we have a power within us that the rest of the world doesn’t. We are followers of Christ. It’s time we started acting like him.
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Enlightening and relevant for the times we live in today. We do not need more of hatred and divide among Christians, irrespective of the denomination. We’re united in Christ and that’s the foundation on which our faith and lives are built.
Exactly! Too often I think we focus on only our differences instead of our similarities. We share the same Savior, and even though we may not see eye to eye on every issue, he is always the concrete that can bind us together.
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We’d do well to remember that, united we stand for Christ 🙂
Your point is well taken, but if we have no condemnation there is really no need to have a Savior. Many churches have turned to being facilities where the members can feel good and what’s in it for them, rather than a place where the truth of God’s word is taught and where we can thank God, praise and worship him. It isn’t about us. It’s about God.
Thank you for your comment! “There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).” I don’t believe it is our job to ever condemn anyone. We can only try to convict them with love, but ultimately that is the Holy Spirit’s job. I have no problem with people having theological discussions with people of opposing viewpoints, as long as they are not coming from a place of pride or superiority. My issue is that there are many people who believe Jesus to be the Son of God, believe he died and was resurrected, believe in the Trinity, and believe Jesus saved us from our sins, and they are still not considered by many to be Christians because they also don’t believe in x, y, and z. That is religion and not Christianity, which Jesus harshly spoke out against. The Bible is a wonderful gift, but it is simply a manual. If all we do is discuss and read the rules and laws of the manual aren’t we just modern day Pharisees? The Bible should be the driving force behind our love and compassion out in the world. My belief is that we spend way too much time worrying about the Bible and way too little time worrying about helping others. Think if Christians spent half as much time helping the less fortunate as they did arguing and pointing fingers over the Bible and beliefs. Christ spent the majority of his ministry in service work, and I think we should be doing the same if we really want to follow him. I do understand your issue about not letting anything under the sun fly, however, I think those issues should be set on a moral basis and not on theological differences. Appreciate you taking the time to read the article!