A Case of Mistaken Identity
Here’s a disclaimer: One thing that atheists tend to leave out when talking about Christianity is the immense diversity of it, either because they don’t know, or because they are attempting to focus on one aspect of it. You can see Christians out there like Ray Comfort talking about why evolution is false because bananas, and that is ridiculous indeed, or Donald Trump, most recently seen proposing a ban on all Muslims entering the US, but there are also Christians who are openly queer and fight for equality, like my friend Eliel Cruz, or people like my friend Stephen Erich, who works in Cambodia because he uses his faith to mobilize himself to help others.
I believe these are different kinds of people, while some still may overlap. But here’s the problem: They both call themselves, and each other, “Christians”. Let’s take a look at what that means.
If an accurately broad description of the word “Christian” is not, “a person who, insofar as it is possible and reasonable, implements the characteristics or principles of the teachings of the first century philosopher Jesus in their life”, I don’t know what is.
So I guess my question to Christians (the awesome kind) is: Why do you continue to call these people Christian? They clearly haven’t earned that title as nothing in their character is at all similar to Jesus. He was busy giving away free healthcare and getting crucified rather than call down a legion of angels to save him.
Furthermore, many country leaders, including Barack Obama, have said that we should not view something like ISIS as in any way indicative of Islam, and really, not even think of them as Islamic. Well, if ISIS isn’t Islamic, then Donald Trump surely can’t be a Christian. On multiple occasions, he’s tried to remind us that he’s worth 10 billion dollars (he’s worth 4), and I seem to remember Jesus saying something about it being really really really hard for rich people to get to heaven.
Why do you continue to call these people Christian? They clearly haven’t earned that title as nothing in their character is at all similar to Jesus.
One final example would be The Westboro Baptist Church. This would be a job for them. You know why? Because, hate them as much as I do, they would have the strength to strip some C-cards. “Oh, you’re gay? NAH, SON! Gimme dat C-card!” I feel very uncomfortable right now saying that other Christians need to follow the example of The Westboro Baptist Church, but that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
You don’t get to just have any old values and say that you follow a person that exemplified the exact opposite values, because that’s not how words work, and the longer moderate or progressive Christians keep these people around, the more it makes you look uber bad. Keep in mind, religions are much different than nationalities or races. The religious community gets to decide what being a Christian is, and it can decide when someone is no longer that thing.
So, Christians, I would appreciate it if you thinned the herd a bit and started stripping some C-cards. You will thank me for the suggestion later. Feel free to start with yourself if you happen to be a billionaire douchebag pushing war and preaching hate…don’t see any of those around here.
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