Perhaps the greatest difficulty for a Christian wanting to interpret the cosmos is to figure out why there is so much evil done in the name of the God of the Bible – specifically in the name of Jesus, which name is the highest of all names, as we see in Philippians 2:
9For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (NASB)
So then we ask: if Jesus is the high and glorious God of the universe, if He is all powerful, if He desires His name to be exalted and feared as holy, then why does He allow so much evil to be done under the banner of “Christian”?
Does the reality of the wickedness done by professing Christians mean that the Bible, the gospel of Christ, and His promises are not really true? Aren’t these tragic, pervasive realities proof that Christ is not truly able to subdue wickedness done in His name? Should we look for absolute truth, hope, and light in another religion? Most self-professing atheists (with which I have interacted) seem to be so because of the (at least perceived) hypocrisy and horrors committed by Christians. I am constantly confronted with the regretful resentment and personal barriers of non-Christians who have been scandalized by those who claim to be believers in Jesus.
Because this is so serious and horrific…
For at least the next month, I want to deal almost exclusively with the topic of “Christian hypocrisy” and how we as Christ’s followers can answer for it without pretending it isn’t there. We must explain what it means; how this greatest of evils could be so very… real, present, persistent, destructive, and then (to my utter chagrin) downplayed by Christians who would try to wash it all away and move on to another topic.
We will look at, among other topics:
1) “Holy” Wars like the Medieval Crusades
2) Splintered Church: thousands of denominations all fighting against each other?
3) Pedophiles in the pulpit
4) Adultery and homosexuality in the pulpit
5) Holier-than-thou attitudes
7) Prosperity pimps on TV stealing grandma’s social security money
8) Anti-Muslim rhetoric
9) Poor stewardship: Christians carelessly harming the environment
10) Westborough Baptists and the blistering hatred of sign-holding preachers
(if you have a suggested topic, email me or leave a comment!)
How do we interpret this cosmos of ours – a world filled with the evil of men who claim to be following Christ, who at the same time create chaos and injury in every corner of the globe? This is a… maybe the stumbling-block of them all in people refusing to hear the gospel and follow Christ alongside the people of His Church.
I’ll do my best to deal with this issue from a number of different angles. I may even feature a guest writer or two. Please watch for these posts and leave comments which add to the conversation.
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Interpreting the Cosmos because there is freedom and joy to be found in the truth.
Thanks for reading,