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An interesting exchange today

Hoplite

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I got a phonecall today from a good friend of mine. She was upset and wanted to talk.

She had just got back from an outing with her church. She's very active in the church, very devout, and I think exemplifies what Christ was probably most like as a person. I have a lot of respect for her because she really does live her beliefs. The outing was to preach in public at a farmer's market we have locally.

Early in the day, she was talking to someone who told her "I'm not Christian and I dont want anything to do with Christianity. When I came out as gay, my ostensibly Christian family disowned me, my Christian friends deserted me, my church told me not to come back. I feel like I was treated so badly by people who identify as Christian that I dont want anything to do with Christianity in general."

My friend thought about this for a while and she said she started talking to people during the outing. She'd ask people who were not Christian why they werent and she said that of the 60 or so people she talked to who were not Christian, about 35-40 gave a similar answer; for various reasons, they felt that they had been badly treated when they dealt with Christians in a way that violated the way a Christian is supposed to act.

She called me in tears and basically said she wasnt sure what to do, she felt like any good work she tried to do would just be undone behind her by people who called themselves Christians but didnt try to do anything Christians are supposed to do.

I dont know if there was an actual point to this post beyond me sort of thinking out loud, but I kind of wonder what answers she would have received if she'd talked to more people and what the Christian community in general would do if this sort of thing became widely known.
 

Anarcho-fascist

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Most people are Christian because their friends and/or family are, and since a minority of people are jerks, a minority of Christians are also jerks. There's not really anything keeping inconsiderate people from self identifying as Christian except some passages that, if they don't ignore them completely, they either pay lip service to, or apply intermittently. Preachers and other authority figures that promote bad parts of the Bible as good can also skew the beliefs of people who wouldn't have given those passages any credence.
If one is consistently told that a certain group of people are moral, or a certain belief is moral, then one can believe oneself to be moral if they belong to that group, or hold that belief, regardless of any harm those beliefs cause.
 

Cephus

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Most people are what I call "social Christians". They only profess to believe because they think it makes them look good to the neighbors. They have no clue what it is that they're supposed to believe except what they hear on the one or two occasions a year they go to church, they don't read the Bible, they don't practice their religion in any meaningful way. They just live their lives and act pious. If we only counted people who actually understood and followed Christianity, Christians would be a tiny minority.
 

Psychoclown

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I got a phonecall today from a good friend of mine. She was upset and wanted to talk.

She had just got back from an outing with her church. She's very active in the church, very devout, and I think exemplifies what Christ was probably most like as a person. I have a lot of respect for her because she really does live her beliefs. The outing was to preach in public at a farmer's market we have locally.

Early in the day, she was talking to someone who told her "I'm not Christian and I dont want anything to do with Christianity. When I came out as gay, my ostensibly Christian family disowned me, my Christian friends deserted me, my church told me not to come back. I feel like I was treated so badly by people who identify as Christian that I dont want anything to do with Christianity in general."

My friend thought about this for a while and she said she started talking to people during the outing. She'd ask people who were not Christian why they werent and she said that of the 60 or so people she talked to who were not Christian, about 35-40 gave a similar answer; for various reasons, they felt that they had been badly treated when they dealt with Christians in a way that violated the way a Christian is supposed to act.

She called me in tears and basically said she wasnt sure what to do, she felt like any good work she tried to do would just be undone behind her by people who called themselves Christians but didnt try to do anything Christians are supposed to do.

I dont know if there was an actual point to this post beyond me sort of thinking out loud, but I kind of wonder what answers she would have received if she'd talked to more people and what the Christian community in general would do if this sort of thing became widely known.
So called Christians are often the worst enemy of Christianity.

I can't stand the judgmental, bigoted, close minded a-holes that go around claiming they represent Christ. The best thing your friend (or any Christian) can do is show that person that not all Christians are like that. And in fact, explain (or even show if the person is willing to look at a Bible) that Christians who do act like that are not following the example and the teachings of Christ. One Christian who genuinely shows an exmaple of God's love to another person can begin to undo the harm caused by those other judgemental bastards parading around in Christ's name.
 
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