They Call It a Crutch
That is what atheists say
It is a statement I have heard many atheists and other unbelievers say. Their view of Christianity is that it is a crutch to those people who are not strong enough to handle life. In these people minds the believer needs some supernatural being to help them through their day and understand life a little better.
There are prominent people who have voiced their opinion on this issue and they have said the same thing Jesse Ventura said “it was a crutch to weak minded people”, then Larry Flynt agreed and stated that “people use Christianity like a crutch” and finally Ted Turner made the statement”that Christianity is a religion for losers” (G.Q., 2019)
I am sure that there are a lot of people out there who would agree with them
Is Christianity for losers
As you can already see that is how some people categorize those who decide to follow Christ. Yet Jesus does not give us that impression when he made the following statement in the Gospel of Luke:
And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me (9:23, NASB)
As you look at Christ’s words, it does not seem that Jesus is calling people to be losers. He is telling people that they have to deny themselves which is not an easy thing to do.
This idea of denial goes against the American dream and other ideology that seeks to have people live well and comfortably. Also, Jesus said the word daily. This means that the Christians is going to have to face trials and tribulations on a daily basis.
Jesus faced these same trials and tribulations as well. You can read about it in the 4 Gospels. He was not calling anyone to a life of pleasure, fun or games. He knew what his followers would have to endure when they make their choice to follow him and he reminded us all of that lifestyle in that verse.
A loser is defined in many ways and one of those meanings is that "a loser is a person who is incompetent and unsuccessful" (M.W., 2019). A person dying as Christian certainly did not fail nor was he or she unsuccessful. They finished their race well and died holding to their faith.
How tough is the Christian life
If you are born outside of the western world, living the Christian life is not as tough as it could be. While it is getting worse as liberal minded politicians seek to ruin certain Christian business people, the majority of Christians can go to church, live their lives in relative obscurity.
Yet outside of North America, Christianity is seen as a threat and Christians as purveyors of that threat. North Korea, according to one former pastor who was jailed in that country, said that the Kim regime feared Christianity as it would ruin their leadership (Showalter, 2019).
Other countries also, European and Muslim, also take a dim view of Christians with the Muslim nations ready to kill anyone who converts to Christianity or blaspheme Mohammad or Allah (BP-Pub-2, 2019). There are well known cases like Asia Bibis in Pakistan (Smith,, 2019).
These few examples show that Christianity is not a favored religion anywhere in the world.
It is not just physical persecution
That the believer has to endure, If you want to see how tough living the Christian life is then take a good hard look at what the Christian has to endure. First, if they come from a non-Christian, home, then they face separation from their family, along with possible abuse for their change in lifestyle.
The Christian can lose friends, be tormented at school or on their athletic teams because they do not participate in the regular sinful activities these people participate in.
They face loneliness when they make a stand and no one will stand with them or support them. These are just the easy things a Christian has to endure. Almost on a daily basis, the believer has to face and resist temptation.
Not just from television and movies but from their friends and co-workers. The Christian also has to avoid false teaching, false counsel and not follow the advice of the unbeliever which can lead to a lot of trouble.
Then the Christian has to be honest when their employers want them to fudge records or do other non-Christian acts. They have to resist at the risk of losing their employment, homes and spouses.
In addition to the human element, the believer must face spiritual attacks and defeat them as God would want. Then the believer must do all of this while implementing the teachings of Christ into their lives.
No Christianity is not a religion for losers
Nor is it a crutch. It takes a strong, dedicated, brave person to make a decision for Christ knowing that the majority of the world will be against them. Sometimes the Christian must face their struggles and trials on faith alone, since they cannot find solace or support from their spouses, parents, families or friends.
Most people are fair weathered minded and disappear as soon as the Christian faces a struggle or two. In those people’s mind the Christian is crazy and not being successful. Yet it is part of the believer’s life till they die.
It doesn’t take much courage to reject Christ and follow the world. Those people have lots of company and lots of support. The true Christian life can be lonely as the believer must endure the pain that comes when their loved ones, strangers and friends turn away from the gospel message.
That pain is very difficult to bear and rarely goes away. It also takes a courageous sole to endure it.
Some final words
People constantly are looking for the fountain of youth. They want to live forever. Yet sadly, they want a human or earthly solution to their quest. They will not find it as none exist.
The only way to find eternal life is to be brave and make a decision to follow Christ and pick up your cross on a daily basis. The Christian life is not for losers or the weak-minded.
It is for those brave people who can live the life without turning back to their old ways. Thankfully, Jesus is there to help if asked.
BP-Pub-2, (2019), Notable Stories Of Persecution Of Muslims Who Converted To Christianity In Iran”, Believers Portal, retrieved from https://believersportal.com/notable-stories-of-persecution-of-muslims-who-converted-to-christianity-in-iran/
GQ, (2019), “Is faith in God a crutch”, Got Questions, retrieved from https://www.gotquestions.org/faith-God-crutch.html
M.W., (2019), Miriam Webster Dictionary, retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loser
NASB, (1995), new American Standard Bible, Lockman Foundation, retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?quicksearch=pick+up+your+cross&qs_version=NASB
Showalter, B., (2019), “North Korea more afraid of Christians than nuclear weapons, says formerly imprisoned pastor”, The Christian Post, retrieved from https://www.christianpost.com/news/north-korea-more-afraid-of-christians-than-nuclear-weapons-says-formerly-imprisoned-pastor.html
Smith, S., (2019), “There are 200 more Asia Bibis': Son of slain Pakistani gov. fears 'complacency' has set in”, The Christian Post, retrieved from https://www.christianpost.com/news/there-are-200-more-asia-bibis-son-of-slain-pakistani-gov-fears-complacency-has-set-in.html
© 2019 David Thiessen