“Christian Author Leaves Christianity Behind” That was the headline that I read last week.
Recently a famous Christian author and pastor announced that he was “no longer a Christian”. If you read his post, you will see that this is a somewhat vague statement and he does not go so far as to denounce God. I am not writing this to address what he said and the apologies he made but I am writing to address what we as Christians can take away from this event.
1. Prayer We must be in constant prayer for each other. As Christians, we should never seek to see another Christian fall and we should not celebrate anyone’s failures or trials. Undoubtedly, I am sure the secular world is rejoicing at the fact that a well-known Christian influencer who was a role model for so many has come out against Christianity and in support of their causes. I do not know this person or what they have been through, but I know that he needs our prayers in a very big way.
2. Measure Everything Against Scripture: As I am writing this blog, I am trying to avoid putting the person’s name out there as I feel it is out there enough and many of you will already know who I am talking about. The book that made this person famous started a major movement in the late ’90s, the book taught that dating was somehow not biblical and should be avoided if you wanted to have a successful marriage. As a young adult when this book came out, I did not get on board with this train as I never saw the spiritual backing for these claims. Many young adults did and for some, I am sure it was a positive thing and for others not so much. Here is the catch, in stepping away from the faith this person has asked that all these books be taken off shelves because they no longer feel that those teachings were correct. As Christians, our measuring stick is the Bible, the entire Bible. Not everything that gets published, even by Christian publishers, is fundamentally sound doctrine. Even if there are biblical claims and verses to back up their claims, are you sure those verses are not taken out of context? That is our duty as Christians to take everything we are taught and measure it against the wholeness of Scripture. It does not matter if it is a Sunday School lesson or a book that sold over a million copies; it must be measured against Scripture.
3. Don’t Get Lost in The Noise: Here is what I mean by that; Continue searching after God. Continue striving to be a better Christian. A Christian should never stop learning and growing. Unfortunately, it is the nature of the beast that with crowds come popularity and even some type of celebrity status. With that status comes a whole new set of temptations and trials. I have to admit; sometimes my flesh looks at some of these Christian pastors that have large crowds and are on tv and the radio and think it would be nice to have all that but really I am not sure I want all the trials that come with it. As you grow in Christ, you must always strive to remember where you came from – a lowly sinner – and that although your worldly status may change you are no different than the beggar on the street.
4. Romans 3:23: My fourth and final point is this; none of us are above sin. Not one person alive today or in the history of mankind, other than Jesus, has lived a perfect life. Now it should not surprise us when sin is found in someone’s life that has been put under a microscope. Most days, you don’t even need a microscope to see mine. The devil is a powerful adversary to Christians and what better way to bring us down than to attack those that are the most visible. Although I would love for more people to ready this blog, sometimes it scares me to think of how the devil would attack if this was getting in the hands of more people. The more people our message starts to reach the more it is going to stir up the devil and that means the attacks on us will grow stronger. There are no Christians that are so great that they cannot fall into temptation at any given time. It is only God that gives us the strength to avoid those temptations and to continue pushing forward for Him.
In closing, I want to say this:
Continue to pray for one another; don’t ever forget where you came from and don’t think you are ever so close to God that the devil cannot strike.