America’s Christians – Ashamed and Afraid
By David Jolly
The state of the Christian church in America today is nothing like it was when I was young and the change is not a good one.
When I was young, many Christians boldly stood up for Jesus Christ and their faith in Him. They weren’t embarrassed to pray over the meal when eating in a restaurant or in front of other people. They weren’t afraid to stand up against the social recognition of sins and perverse lifestyles.
Sadly, over the past 50 years, millions of American Christians began to compromise with the decaying secular world. Rather than continue to stand up for their faith, they didn’t want offended anyone and they wanted to be inclusive.
Believing they were witnessing to perverse sinners, they opened their doors to them and then began catering to them. Afraid that hearing the truth that they were sinners living a life that God calls abominable, many churches watered down their teaching of God’s Word.
In my late 20’s, I was sick one Sunday morning and stayed home from church. I turned the television on and found the church service of a well-known pastor of a huge church in California. As I sat and listened to him, I was absolutely shocked when I heard him tell his auditorium of several thousand that he was intentionally compromising the Word of God so that they (his parishioners) would feel better about themselves. He repeated telling them how he compromised the Word of God for their sake and the audience applauded him. I later found out that he refused to preach about sin because he didn’t want people to have a poor self-image. He also stated that when Adam fell, he lost his self-esteem and that when we are saved by Jesus Christ that we regain our self-esteem.
I was appalled to learn that this preacher was leading thousands of gullible people to eternity in Hell by teaching them a false Gospel, and sadly, he wasn’t nor has he been the only preacher to teach a false Gospel. Jesus warned us about such false teachers in the following verses:
Matthew 7:15-16: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?”
Matthew 24:10-12: “And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”
Matthew 24:23-25: “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.”
There are other warnings about false teachers and false prophets, but what I want to know is why so many people who claim to be Christians are embarrassed and/or afraid to stand up for what the Bible really teaches?
We’ve all seen far too many examples where a Christian will remain silent or refuse to confront false teaching or preaching. When a Christian stands up and defends homosexuality, they are sharing a false Gospel. When someone stand up and says that everyone who leads a good life will go to heaven is teaching a false Gospel and the list goes on and on.
There is far too much emphasis in our culture today about not offending others and being all inclusive, but that is NOT what the Bible teaches and it’s not what Jesus taught. Far too many Christians are afraid to be a true follower of Jesus Christ, especially when He warned us:
Matthew 10:17-22: “Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”
Are you willing to endure the hatred and treatment of the secular world for Christ’s sake or are you one of those who is afraid of offending someone or losing everything you own? Be honest!
If Christians lived their faith the way Muslims live theirs, America would still be a Christian nation and many of the problems we see in our nation today would not exist. America is the way it is today because too many Christians are afraid or embarrassed to stand up for and live their faith.