Thursday, October 9, 2014

The No True Christian Fallacy

You cannot preach a Gospel of unconditional love and then proceed to lay ideological conditions on the Children of God. The moment you utter, "No true Christian would believe," you negate your commitment to preaching the Gospel.

The accusation that no true Christian would believe

in open theism
that marriage equality is not a sin
that it's okay to support lowering taxes
that it's right to go to war
that God is feminine as well as masculine

whatever ideological enemy you could substitute for that variable, you take away the Gospel from those people. You are telling them that you have figured out that being a true Christian is about who you vote for, how you think the world was created, and not about who you've been forgiven by.

It is painful to be on the receiving end of, "No true Christian would...," but not only does the pain it causes others make it wrong, it's also wrong because it betrays a deeply held sin: that of hubris. Of believing that you have separated the wheat from the chaff, you have sussed out the minutiae of God's law and how it should be applied today, you have reduced the Gospel to a set of doctrinal bullet points.

But there are republicans supping at the table. There are democrats, communists, anarchists, and independents. Same sex married couples, celibates, straight couples, people who oppose marriage equality and people who support it. Evolutionists and young earth creationists. Hardcore traditionalists and liberal revisionists.

To each and every one of them, Jesus says, "Take, and eat."

To think you're anything other than the lowly prostitute or corrupt tax collector who has to fall hard on the mercy of God, to think you're the ideological Puritan,
that is the antithesis to Gospel.

But I won't say no true Christian would do that, because true Christians commit that sin constantly as they fumble through their faith with fear and trembling.

True Christians falter and make mistakes.
True Christians hurt each other.
True Christians believe the wrong things.
True Christians need Jesus.

They need him like they need water because that's all that is left at the end of the partisan bickering and ideological lines in the sand and elevation of certainty over love.

All that's left is Jesus. So fall hard on his mercy, because he welcomes you openly, and we won't give you a test on right doctrine before doing so.

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