One of the things that really aggravates me is Cultural-Christianity, or Near-Christianity. This kind of Christianity has given up conservative views and is adapting to the culture.
I read a very good article about this subject in The Baptist Messenger called True Christianity by Dr. Anthony L. Jordan. As the article states, this “liberal mainline Christianity stands for nothing, and thus, offers nothing”. This kind of Christianity is basically a false prophet, one that will lead a person down the wrong road… the wide and easy road that is referred to in Matthew 7: 13-14, which can be read here:
Matthew 7:13-14 New International Version (NIV)
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Just as the old song says: “You’ve got to stand for something, or you’ll fall for anything”.
The first church was formed in the book of Acts. Note that the church was not a building that men built… church is the people, not a building.
Here are a few verses talking about the first church.
Acts 2:42-47 New International Version (NIV)
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
The Apostles preaching was not that “feel good” stuff that is preached so often today by such preachers as Joel Osteen (for one example). I like this quote found in the above linked article “True Christianity” at The Baptist Messenger:
First Century preaching was raw, strong, and confrontative. The preaching of the Apostles is called the Good News over and over again; yet, key elements are sin, judgement, repentance, faith, and baptism. To follow Jesus was to sign up for persecution and rejection by the culture as a whole. The Apostles’ message was not a call to be better liked by the culture or embraced by the people at large, but it was a call to be counter-cultural. This message is the Gospel that changed the world.
According to this article, cultural-Christianity is dying. Which is a good thing, because what we need is true Christianity.
True Christianity is what the first Church taught and lived. You can’t go wrong by living according to what the Bible says. Don’t water it down and make it pretty… tell it like it is…. the way the apostles did in Acts. Better yet, live it.