Dan Popp
December 21, 2013
Redefining Christianity
By Dan Popp

Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession.... – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

The recent dustups over remarks made by Pope Francis and by Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson reveal a common theme: The left's longing to redefine Christianity.

It's the common leftist response to everything. They can't change reality and they can't face reality, so they redefine it. But it's funny in a pitiful sort of way when they try their redefinition strategy on Christianity. I, as a non-Muslim, don't try to tell Muslims what they believe or how to interpret their scriptures. That would be laughable, and maybe dangerous. But non-Christians are constantly telling Christians what Jesus "really" meant or what Christianity "really" is supposed to be like. And there's no way they could get it right if they wanted to.

The Pope's remarks about economics were seized-upon by the left as a sign of "progress," a word that in their mouths always means "degeneracy." They're eager to see him as a "reformer" who will usher in a new era of "modernity." They want the Roman Catholic Church to OK "gay marriage," to ordain women priests and probably even to bless abortion. I suppose they would like every church to give a big Bible-burning party where all the pajama-clad metrosexuals dance around sipping cocoa and singing songs about the goddess.

In Phil Robertson's case, the attempts at redefinition are cartoonishly shallow. I saw one spokesman for the "gay" lobby tell a TV audience that the gospel is all about "doing unto others what you would have them do unto you," not about "hate" and "intolerance." Excuse me for pointing out the obvious, but the person telling you the hard truth is the person who loves you; the one feeding your self-destructive delusion doesn't care; and the hater is probably you.

The predictably doltish Piers Morgan called Robertson's remarks "vile." But at least some of Robertson's comments were a reference to Scripture. You know, the Holy Bible? The book upon which Western Civilization was built?
    Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11, NAS95)
That's a list of things that are "vile."

Even outsiders who are friendly to our faith sometimes chime in to redefine Christianity. Conservative commentator Michael Medved defended Mr. Robertson by saying his comments didn't imply that homosexuals are "going to hell." Mr. Medved is Jewish, so he may not be familiar with New Testament phraseology, but I assure him and you that the words will not inherit the kingdom of God are the functional equivalent of "will go to hell."

Christianity does not need to be redefined. It cannot be redefined. It is what Jesus, the Founder, says it is.

And here I must add that Jesus cannot be redefined, either. He is a real Person, who once walked on earth. He will do so again. What He said is certain, and He has not changed His mind about sin. The Ten Commandments are still valid; sex is still confined to married couples; and marriage is still between one man and one woman for life. You may not like it that Jesus insists on those things, but you can't redefine Him to suit your sins.

Heretics have been trying for thousands of years to confuse people about who God is, and what He requires of us. Oh, they've had pockets of success here and there, for a while. Right now I'm sure the forces of darkness sense weakness in American Christianity, so they're personifying Einstein's definition of insanity by trying to make one more knockoff version.

But that weakness is only in the outward, cultural form. It's the skin created by the living organism, which is now dead and in the process of being sloughed off. Leftists, heathens, Communists, cultists, listen to me, for your own good: You can never touch the invisible organism that made that skin. You can rail against it, but you cannot prevail against it. In the end your efforts to corrupt and crucify it will only make it more pure and more powerful.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

© Dan Popp

 

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Dan Popp

Dan Popp is a Christian, a husband, and a small-business owner. Writing has been part of his profession since the late 1970ís. He and his wife of more than 30 years, Vicky, live in Ohio.

On Twitter: @FoundationsRad

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