The battle begins
Christianity, for people who dislike Christianity. A palatable form of faith served with a side of post-liberalism and postmodernism belief.
The modern-day battle within Christianity. A war which proposes to separate more than denominational divides, by blurring the definition of Christianity itself.
In contrast to historic Christianity, progressive Christianity accepts that there are multiple ways to connect with God. Furthermore, it renounces that Jesus is the only way for us to connect with God. It declares that different religions are alternative pathways to connect with a Universal Christ.
Interestingly, this ‘Universal Christ’ is nothing like the Messiah foretold for thousands of generations in the Old Testament. Nothing like Jesus.
Richard Rohr, a progressive theologian explains that Universal Christ is God is everywhere – in other people and in creation. He goes as far as to announce that to be a Christian means to see ‘Christ’ in everything.
Progressive Christianity affirms that Jesus’ teaching provides one of many routes to experience ‘god’ (the sacredness, oneness, and unity of life).
Confused yet by this heresy?
Perhaps, you are wondering when Christianity married a New Age belief system and birthed this strange Christian-New Age hybrid?
Deconstruction and demolition
I am somewhat ashamed to confess that progressive Christianity is a phenomenon actioned by generation. Birthed from good church abiding youths who grew into adults fed-up with the hypocrisy of the evangelical church.
Being a generation willing to question tradition, many young people began the task of deconstructing their faith. Many with the opinion that why worship God when you can imagine an even better god.
Although I too believe that there are many benefits to critiquing our childhood faith traditions, I am not in the business of faith demolition.
The deconstructionist movement goes beyond rejecting tradition. It manipulates beliefs fundamental to the Christian faith. It scoffs at historic beliefs which portray humanity as fallen, inherently sinful, and in need of redemption.
Rather, the deconstruction movement denies the reliability of the Bible and encourages people to look inward for the meaning of life.
Apart from being inherently misleading, the deconstruction movement has resulted in many people renouncing their faith – either becoming progressive Christians or agnostic.
The battle as old as time
What progressive Christianity fails to acknowledge is that although there are many quirky and arguably unbiblical traditions in the church, the Bible is inherently the Word of God. Therefore, before we decide to write-off Christianity, we need to utterly understand what we are renouncing – whether it be tradition or God Himself.
The reason why these grown-up youths have become so mislead in their faith is the fact they essentially do not know the Word of God.
They have grown-up going to kids’ church where the purpose was primarily social. Instead of reading the Bible, they have spent their Sunday mornings playing games that differ little to Scouts or Girl Guides.
This results in a generation of biblically illiterate adults. Adults, who now attempt to reform the definition of Christianity?
Where to from here?
Christianity for people who dislike Christianity – is it possible?
Does deducting from the Word of God create a more palatable form of Christianity? Or rather does it create the greatest act of treason again God Himself?
It is time for historic Christianity to step-up and match its progressive counterpart. What we need is a counteracting deconstructionist movement whereby people are challenged to question faith traditions and to seek understanding of who God is.
Kiwi-born with British roots, Jessica Gardiner drinks tea religiously while her dinner table discussions reverberate between the sovereignty of God, global politics, and the public health system. Having experienced churches from conservative to everything but, Jessica writes out a desire for Christian orthodoxy and biblical literacy in her generation. Jessica is married to fellow young writer Blake Gardiner.