Hi! My Name is _____, and I’m a non-believing Pastor!?!
I have addressed the growing disconnect in America between the label of Christianity and the practice of Christianity. They are NOT one and the same. Roughly 2000 years ago, Jesus Christ, upon whom the Christian faith is built, began this week with cheering crowds and finished the week with jeering crowds that demanded his crucifixion. But as the old saying goes…. YOU CAN’T KEEP A GOOD MAN DOWN! Jesus Christ rose from the grave on that Easter morning and set the Christian faith apart from every other. Christianity has a RISEN, LIVING SAVIOR….not a dead founder.
Those early Christians were literally taking their lives into their own hands to become a Christ-follower. To be identified as a Christ-follower, a Christian, could cost them their very lives. It was a label not to be taken lightly. To become a Christian meant believing something enough to die for it.
Apparently, we’ve come a long way from those early days and that definition.
There is a new book out about PASTORS who no longer believe the faith. I read about it in this article. According to the author of the book, Daniel Dennett, an atheist himself, there should be a new interpretation of theological liberalism because:
“many modern people claim to be Christians while holding to virtually no specific theological content. Dennett suggests that their mode of faith should not be described as “belief,” but rather as “believing in belief.”
Based on the research of this book, this theology of “believing in belief” rather than a true faith is beginning to permeate the pastorate. Several pastors were interviewed regarding their lack of belief. Each minister admitted they no longer truly believe, yet they continue to minister. One, a Presbyterian minister summed up his position this way:
“I reject the virgin birth. I reject substitutionary atonement. I reject the divinity of Jesus. I reject heaven and hell in the traditional sense, and I am not alone.”
WOW!!! How and why would you even call yourself a Christian minister? This flies in the face of everything that IS Christian. The guy has no business being in a pulpit or ministry. However, just as troubling, I find it incredibly difficult to comprehend, or even believe, that a congregation cannot sense the complete disconnect from what their minister is saying and what he believes. It would seem to me that a congregation in this situation has decided to accept a watered-down version of faith (or in this case, a complete lack of faith) from their minister. This is a growing and deeply troubling trend within many churches across America…. easy, non-committal faith. As I contemplate Easter and the teachings of Jesus, nothing could be further from the example he has given us and called us to.
The writer of the linked article comes to this conclusion:
“In other words, some theologians and denominations have embraced a theology so fluid and indeterminate that even an atheist cannot tell the believers and unbelievers apart.”
In a week where we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and become deeply aware of his sufferings on our behalf, my heart is heavy that Christianity is becoming for many people nothing more than a job, or a convenient way to make a few connections. Where are the Christians who truly want to lift the name and the banner of Jesus Christ? Is it even possible to reclaim the depth and true meaning of the word or is it a lost cause?
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- Rejecting Falsehood (new.exchristian.net)