ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Christianity - Time For a Change

Updated on October 13, 2013

Christianity is coming more and more into disrepute. The majority of churches view this as the devils attack, and when people leave or don't respond to being hounded about the gospel we generally blame demon's. I asked a person once what turned them off Christianity. He said 'other Christians'. We need to take this sort of comment seriously, and stop blaming the devil.

The term ex-Christian is something many consider theologically impossible, but when it is becoming more and more prevalent is it time to consider that we are doing something wrong. What has happened?

I believe God showed me something one day. Please read on before you make a judgement about that statement.

My husband called me one day from the computer to look at something he had found. He was checking out the e-mails, and like most people we get lots of funny movies from friends. Expecting to see some idiot falling off something, a funny animal or latest joke, I was baffled as I saw a herd of buffalo on the screen. He started it from the beginning, and told me I just had to see it. Trust me it is very popular on You-Tube for a reason, what happens is amazing.

Battle at Kruger

 


It was initially not peculiar, you will see if you watch the clip a pride of about 6 lions chasing a couple of buffalo and take down a small calf. The calf and the attached lions fall into an adjacent river, and the scene gets sad as a couple of crocodiles grab hold and try to fight the lions for a feed.


Perplexed as to why on earth my husband is so astonished by something that doesn’t include humorous subject matter, I humoured him and watched on. It is the most astonishing thing that happens, and I am sure you will watch in shock as I did as the reason for my husband calling me to watch became apparent.


The calf should have been done for. After the lions and the crocodile, and then the lions again after fighting off the crocodiles. You don’t need medical training to work out injuries sustained by lions fighting crocodiles over a calf would make it dead. What the buffalo did is an amazing example of how we can learn so much from the instinctive nature of animals.


If you haven't watched it, the buffalo that had formerly rapidly dispersed reappear with the herd and start to gather around the lions. The herd stand like a wall, packed in tight advancing on them.


Notice at this stage you start to hear the calf bleating for help.


It is at this time as I watched that I had a revelation of how the buffalo was a picture of the church, and how believers need to act.


Watching the calf being savaged by the lions and crocodiles I saw the new Christians, the teenagers, those who have fallen away from church, and people struggling with day to day issues. ‘Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour’ 1 Peter 5:8. I also saw how our churches respond. I am sorry to say, it is generally not like the brave buffalo.


The pregnant teenager, the new believer savaged by alcoholism, the homeless person who comes to church and can’t put a sentence together without using profanities. How do we deal with that as believers? Unfortunately what I have seen is judgement and condemnation. Sometimes people are thrown out of church, never to return putting out the flame that was burning within them to know Jesus’ love.


Imagine this. The Buffalo walk past the calf and say, “stop being savaged by the lion, and get out of that crocodiles mouth we just don’t do that around here”. Ridiculous isn’t it?


Are you a representation of the small calf? Are you struggling with some addictions or attitudes or even circumstances which are being judged by the Christians around you? Have you been told to read your bible more and pray more? Perhaps it has happened in the past and you have struggled with support from the church.


I had a dream the other night. I was in a church and it was huge. There were hundreds of people sitting in rows and rows of seats, then in the row in front of me I saw a lady curled up in the foetal position sobbing. As I put my hands out to touch her someone told me she was homeless. The preacher kept on preaching and everyone seemed to be ignoring me. There was one other person with me who was also showing concern for her. That's right, one person concerned and hundreds looking away.


It was like she just kept crying and I was trying to hold her in my arms. She ran away under one of the chairs and again curled up in the foetal position. The service was over and I was just staring at her hiding as the people left chatting and laughing. Still ignoring her. A couple more times I was told not to bother, she was homeless.


This dream disturbed me. Unfortunately it is a true picture of many churches

 


IT IS TIME FOR A CHANGE


We can take a lesson from the buffalo. Their example from nature is how we can save people. Instead of running away from the homeless for example, we can stand like a wall of strength together. I know there are many believers who already fight this fight of loving people and caring for the poor, lost and broken.


In the video footage, one of the buffalo suddenly comes out and throws one of the lions off with it’s horns, tossing it in the air then runs back to the wall the herd have made. They continue in this manner until there is only one lion left, and the calf gets free and runs into the safety of the herd, who gather around him so he is safe leaving the last lion to flee.


Unfortunately this does not always happen in churches today. Maybe I am making you angry, but I mean no disrespect. If we are not subject to correction as children we make unreliable adults, and so it is with Christians.


Just think about churches you have been to. I know there are some inner city churches which are full of broken people. What about the vast majority? Is your church full of people needing help or righteous looking people? Jesus said he came to call the sinner, not the righteous. Does the thought of prostitutes, homeless people and homosexuals filling your pews disturb you?


If you read the parable of the sheep and the goats, and hold up what Jesus said like a mirror to the churches who will stand up? Who will be like the goats whom Jesus said (Matthew 25:41-43);


...‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’



We tend to blame the devil a lot for people falling away from church, however it is time to face the cool hard truth. The devil doesn't need to put people off church as we do a pretty good job of that ourselves. You might think I am being harsh but look around you. There are testimony after testimony of people struggling, like the calf in the video with all sorts of problems and instead of a wall of support and help they are told to 'read your bible more' or 'stop sinning you are being punished'. This is spoken out of a sincere desire to help the person, but we all know it is possible to be sincerely wrong.


No-where in the bible did God ever treat his people like this. The only people who acted this way where the Pharisees and teachers of the Law.


I love Jesus with my whole heart, and I plead with all believers to sincerely seek him. He said that in the last days 'the love of most will grow cold' (Matthew 24:12). This is what is happening. We forget to love. To just help people how they need to be helped. Just being there, praying for them, loving them as Jesus would.


The church has become like a nagging woman (no offence, some of us do get a bit naggy!). When we nag our husbands and children eventually they just switch off and stop listening. We become just an annoying noise in the background. Perhaps like a resounding gong or clanging cymbol...


If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)



I am not perfect, and have been guilty of all of the above. I have tried to push myself on others. Thought all the thoughts of people needing to do this or do that. I have been so sure of my own interpretation of scripture, only to learn that I was wrong. If anything through all this I have learned that the only way is a deep personal relationship with Jesus. Ready for rebuke, open for correction.


Don't read this and think of all the other churches that do this, and refuse to look at yourself. Change must start with each and every one of us.


Jesus is coming. How many people will we take with us? How many will we push away.


*(All bible quotes are NIV)


Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • insearchof truth profile imageAUTHOR

      Josie Adams 

      7 years ago from Australia

      Yes it is difficult isn't it. I struggle sometimes with the question of sharing my faith, as where would I send them? Yes it would seem strange to many that God would be leading people out of church, but not strange to me.

    • Old Pete profile image

      Old Pete 

      7 years ago from Brighton UK

      You are right - Christianity is falling more and more into disrepute and it's obvious that many more people are thinking along similar lines. It is said that something in excess of 2 million people are leaving the churches of Europe and North America every year. I really began to understand something of what was happening when I became aware in 2003 of what was then often being referred to as the "out of church Christians".

      I have come to the conclusion that there is an enormous difference between the Christian RELIGION and the Christian FAITH. Plenty of people know their Bibles and know ABOUT God. With hindsight I can see that although I have been a committed Christian for over 50 years, that commitment was based almost entirely on HEAD KNOWLEDGE with very little HEART AWARENESS until about 6 years ago.

      Since 2003 I have been able to share with a significant number on the internet who have been drawn away from traditional churches that they may have attended for many years (including a fair number of leaders).

      I would guess that the majority of those who are leaving are simply disillusioned by what they have seen and heard, but from the contacts I have made I am sure that there are tens of thousands who believe that they have been drawn away by the Holy Spirit – people who recognise that there is more to the Christian FAITH – the mystery and paradox that the traditional churches with their doctrines, rituals and traditions cannot reach.

      I am excited by what I’m hearing and seeing despite the fact that my children and grandchildren are understandably non-believers – but then I don’t believe that anyone is condemned to hell for rejecting what they are hearing about the Christian RELIGION.

    • insearchof truth profile imageAUTHOR

      Josie Adams 

      7 years ago from Australia

      One day they may finally realise that it is you who can teach them a thing or two!

    • profile image

      Baileybear 

      7 years ago

      interesting analogy of the buffalo. Yes, I'm used to getting the blame. I still do - even from a total stranger on HP that insists I could never have been a christian, as I wouldn't have turned away. Irony is, people like her turned me away

    • insearchof truth profile imageAUTHOR

      Josie Adams 

      7 years ago from Australia

      Yes I am the same. For some reason it's really hard not to judge someone from where you are, remember where you have been, and how far we still have to go. I constantly remind myself! As to the compassion, when I passed someone begging I used to pray 'please don't let them ask me for money, please don't let them come up to me'. They always did....funny that!

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 

      7 years ago from USA

      This is an excellent hub. I think many Christians (including myself at times) can be judgmental. A good example works better than anything and yes we need to show more compassion.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)