Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Teens Becoming Fake Christians

An article on CNN caught my attention the other day. It was titled, "More Teens Becoming 'Fake' Christians". If you are a Christian parent of a teen or if you are one of my teen readers, it would be worth your while to read through this article as well as the links I've posted below.

What especially caught my attention as I perused the article was the phrase, 'moralistic therapeutic deism." Why would an expression like this catch my attention? Because it is a phrase that I have heard Dr. Albert Mohler use many times on his radio broadcast in describing a disturbing trend among American teens and twenties.

What is happening is that true Christianity is being replaced with something that sounds "christian" but is indeed far from it. And now I see that the trend is significant enough that even a liberal news outlet is picking up on the story.

Has your teen or have you yourself slipped into this belief system? Moralistic, therapeutic deism is basically evidenced by these beliefs:

1. “A god exists who created and ordered the world and watches over human life on earth.”
2. “God wants people to be good, nice, and fair to each other, as taught in the Bible and by most world religions.”
3. “The central goal of life is to be happy and to feel good about ones self.”
4. “God does not need to be particularly involved in one’s life except when He is needed to resolve a problem.”
5. “Good people go to heaven when they die.”

I have to say, as one who works with teens all the time, that this is in fact what most teens believe. But this is not the Christianity taught in the Bible. The Bible teaches that:

1. A God exists who created the world and is sovereign over it. As the king he expects all people to submit to His rule in their lives.
2. God does want people to be good and nice, but He also wants them to be holy, just and righteous in all of their thoughts and deeds. God says, "Be holy because I am holy." (1 Peter 1:16) He also says that if a person keeps the whole law and yet violates any part of it, he is guilty of the whole thing." (James 2:10)
3. The central goal of life is to glorify God -- that means to make him look good in every way possible. (1 Corinthians 10:31)
4. God is involved in every aspect of life and he wants His creature to acknowledge that by being thankful to Him for all that he has provided and to worship Him supremely at all times.
5. Only perfect people go to heaven. And since no one is perfect, all are under the condemnation of God. However, God came to this earth as a man in the person of Jesus Christ and took upon himself the condemnation of God at the cross. As a result, anyone who believes God about this and trusts Christ's substitution on his behalf is granted the righteousness that Christ had as a replacement for his own personal guilt. (2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 3:18; 1 Peter 2:24; Isaiah 53:5)

The religion of moralistic, therapeutic deism is a far cry from the Biblical view that I have just described.

For further analysis of this belief system, let me refer you to an article by Dr. Mohler which you can find here:

The article on CNN that caught my attention can be found here:

Author: More teens becoming 'fake' Christians -

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What Can Save our Souls?

I've been away from blogging for a while because for some reason life has been incredibly busy. I had hoped to be able to post at least three times a week, but haven't come anywhere close. I will be retiring from my job in a few months and so I hope to make it more of a priority to share things that I have discovered in life that can help us be more faithful as Christian men.

Each month I try to focus on a verse that becomes a theme for my thinking and praying. For the month of October I've chosen James 1:21 which says, "Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls."

A few verses later in his book, James tells us that one of the key ingredients of true religion is to remain unspotted from the world. Now be honest. Isn't that a difficult thing? I think we men tend to get stained with filthiness and wickedness. It's tough to keep our thoughts pure. It's tempting to be looking at things we shouldn't be looking at and allowing our minds to be engaged in all sorts of wicked things even when we may look pure and upright on the outside.

This verse is both a challenge and encouragement to me because it tells us lay aside filthiness and wickedness. Paul says in the book of Romans that sin shall not have dominion over us. Therefore we have the ability with the power of the Holy Spirit to lay these things aside. Furthermore, we need to receive the meekness the Word of God implanted in our souls. We need to read, memorize and meditate on it because out of His Word flows eternal life. Think about that last line in the verse. It is able to save our souls! Many people are looking for "the answer" to life's meaning. It's not that complicated really. The Word of God, implanted in our souls has the power to save us.

So let's lay aside all of the junk we've been thinking about or involving ourselves in and take in the only real solution that is available to us -- God's Word.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Memorization Monday - Challenge - Go

John 20:21 Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you. As the Father has sent me, I also send you."