theolog shmeolog

URGENT!!!! Did you hear????

I am amazed  often we Christians are misled and lacking in discernment. Specifically, I am addressing how this shows itself in the continual and rapid spread of so many false stories from Christians.

Does anyone remember how often we heard the Janet Reno “Christians are cultists” fabrication? How many times have Christians proliferated stories which started from the satirical website “The Onion” as though they were true? How many emails have you received from your Christian friends that proved untrue? And at the end of the emails they always write something like “if you REALLY love God, country, freedom, blahblahblah…you won’t just delete this–you’ll send it to 10 of your friends!” (BTW, watch their response when you send a kindly worded email to only them, pointing out the truth–it’s wierd, they get quite snippy. As though it was better to be ill-informed, yet loving God, country, freedom, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, blahblahblah, instead of having truth.)

I remember, not that long ago, when some new coin was coming out, and “In God We Trust” was going to appear on the circumference of the coin instead of on the face. You would have thought the Anti-Christ was running the US Mint! When I pointed out the truth of the matter to the promulgators of the email, (while attempting to do so in a humble, even self-effacing way–I hope!) I received quite a cranky response! Funny, now I don’t get those emails any more! Saweet!

Why are we not the examples of discernment, instead of appearing as though we have only a modicum of working grey matter? Why are we so eager to spread stories which prove to be false?

Are any of our motives in spreading this kind of thing bound up in our desires:

  • to see the US “become a Christian nation again”–so-called?
  • to have again the godly, political clout we believed the Christian political Right had?
  • to live in a country where it was safe and easy to be Christian–though, truth be told, we weren’t doing much that told people how to become a Christian?
  • to retain freedoms to which we think we are entitled–rather than seeing them as gifts from God?
  • to believe that we are promoting the cause of Christ by passing on these stories? <i>”Real Christians will pass this on!”</i>
  • to try to get back at those we see as our opposition–where we often confuse our own political urges with the biblical agenda of promoting the Good News?
  • to see America transformed by legislation and regulations–rather than by the Good News?
  • to feel some sort of “fellowship” with other Christians–when actually it is more like “we’re in this political/victim rights group together”-kind of feeling?

Maybe I am overstating the case–I don’t know that I have.  (I know that I have been party to spreading this stuff in the past–and was ashamed when I found out what a rube I was.)

The questions I have for myself, and others are: “Will I spend as much time promoting the Truth of God, especially in the Good News of Christ, as the time I have spent passing on these kind of stories (true or untrue?)

Will I make sure that what I pass on to others is Truth?

What are my reasons for passing this on–do I have wrong expectations about what God has promised for me as a Christian living in America?”

This post was prompted by a short video clip from Penn Gillette, in which  he points out the result of Christians spreading false or misunderstood stories about him.

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