Is A “Carnal Christian” Saved? excerpts from page by R Olson
This post by Olson resonated with me (link to it is below).
I keep seeing progressive Christians and some ex-Christians declare on the internet on various blogs and forums that most evangelicals are too legalistic and judgmental. They must be kidding.
I see the exact opposite problem: churches and denominations, both evangelical and others, who look too much like secular culture, too unwilling to condemn sin, and redefining some behaviors to the point those behaviors are no longer considered sinful, though the Bible does.
I agree with Olson that many Christians have abandoned the idea of using outward signs of holy living as a barometer to judge if a person is truly saved or not, so that, as a result, people proclaiming the name of Jesus are not expected by other Christians to live much differently from your average, hedonistic, moral relativistic, Non-Christian.
I do think that actual Christians can and are guilty of some pretty heinous things at times, but other Christians are reluctant to speak out against blatant, recurring sin when they see it in other self professing believers.
I would guess that in part 3 of Olson’s series (which he has not posted yet if I am not mistaken) that he may claim that people who appear to live in constant, unrepentant sin are not “real” Christians – I’m not so sure I would agree with that. Maybe I’ll be wrong and he’ll arrive at another conclusion.
I really have to scratch my head in befuddlement at people who take issue with Christians who do still take a stand against behavior the Bible condemns (though this is not happening as much as it used to). I’m the direct opposite.
The more and more I see a larger percentage of American Christians refusing to call out things like hetero fornication as sinful (and other immoral behaviors as sinful), the less respect I have for the entire Christian faith, for churches, and for Christians in general.
I see no point in being a follower of Christ if everything the man taught (and this includes the rest of the Bible, not merely the content of the Gospels) is considered irrelevant, or if Christians today are going to call good evil and evil good, or to shrug evil off as though it’s no big deal.
When not totally ignoring or arguing away the parts they do not like, Christians today treat the Bible as though it is silly putty, and they can bend and stretch it however they please.
I see little to no point at continuing in a faith whose adherents do not even bother to live up to the minimal rules its founder, and that his book set out (his book = the entire Bible – Jesus is not just in the Gospels: he is present from Genesis to the Pauline letters to Revelation).
(Link): Is A “Carnal Christian” Saved? by R Olson (part 2)
- …. Today, unfortunately, even many evangelicals have nearly totally abandoned such expectations of holiness, or even avoidance of scandalous behavior, and church discipline.
- We have succumbed to American individualism and interpreted authentic Christianity and salvation itself as totally and exclusively a matter between the individual and God. I cannot tell how many times I have heard evangelicals (including Baptists who don’t call themselves that) say about a church member engaging in sinful conduct “That’s between them and God.”
- ….But once a person “comes to Christ by faith” we often overlook their spiritual growth or lack of it—except to encourage spiritual growth.
- … The result, so it seems to me, is that many even “mature Christians” live lives hardly different from non-Christians with little or no intervention from their own Christian community.
- ….Both in the New Testament and in historical Christianity of most traditions, assurance of salvation is and was based at least in part on “signs of grace,” visible Christianity, dedication to the cause of Christ, even at least inward moral transformation over time into a godly personality. Today, I fear, perhaps out of fear of legalism and harshness, we have by and large abandoned that whole idea.
- ((read the entire page))
(Link): Pastors avoid ‘controversy’ to keep tithes up, author says – Confirms What I’ve Been Saying All Along, Re: Churches: Contrary to Progressive Christians, Churches / Christians Do Not Support or Idolize Sexual Purity, Virginity, or Celibacy – they attack these concepts when not ignoring them
(Link): Stop Rewarding People For Their Failure – Christians Speaking Out of Both Sides of Their Mouths About Sexual Sin – Choices and Actions and How You Teach This Stuff Has Consequences – Allowing Sinners To Re-Define Biblical Terms and Standards