Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cafeteria Christians

I have noted in previous blogs that while some people think the church is growing by leaps and bounds, the result is extremely shallow. I noticed an article today on Yahoo News that highlights, underlines, italicizes, and bolds my point.
Most US Christians define own theology

In the Barna survey, 71 percent of American adults say they are more likely to develop their own set of religious beliefs than to accept a defined set of teachings from a particular church. Even among born-again Christians, 61 percent pick and choose from the beliefs of different denominations. For people under the age of 25, the number rises to 82 percent.
This article goes on to note that many also pick out some beliefs from non-christian religions!

Christians expressed a variety of unorthodox beliefs in the poll. Nearly half of those interviewed do not believe in the existence of Satan, one-third believe Jesus sinned while on earth, and two-fifths say they don't have a responsibility to share their faith with others.

The most striking divergence from orthodoxy, however, was first revealed in the 2007 US Religious Landscape Survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. That comprehensive survey of 35,000 Americans found a majority of Christians saying that people of other religions can find salvation and eternal life.

And why did Jesus say, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me?" (John 14:6)

The poll confirms a broad rejection of religious exclusivity. Among all religious adults interviewed, 65 percent say many religions lead to eternal life and only 29 percent say theirs is the one true faith. Sixty-nine percent of all non-Jews say Judaism can lead to eternal life and 52 percent of non-Muslims say that of Islam.

Forty-two percent of religious Americans also say atheists are able to find eternal life.

As you might expect, humanists are rejoicing.

"It's just part of a 200-year working out of ideas about personal autonomy and equality that are sort of built into the American experience," says Alan Wolfe, director of the Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life at Boston College. "The notion that someone is going to burn in hell because they have their own beliefs is just not resonant within our larger political ideals."

They might call themselves religious, spiritual, or even Christians - but people with this kind of belief are NOT true disciples of Jesus Christ. They do not believe the basic gospel: All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. The wages of sin is death. The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ.

(John 14:6 NKJV) ¶ Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

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