America’s Secularized Christianity
The Pew Research Center (PRC) released the results of a recent survey that show Christianity is continuing its decline in America. The survey shows that between 2007 and 2014, the Christian share of the U.S. population fell from 78.4 percent to 70.6 percent. The survey has emboldened liberals who long for the day when God is rejected by all Americans, and every person has surrendered to the omnipotent federal government.
Despite what liberals would have you to believe, the decline in Christians is not because American churches are too religious, too bold, or too firm in their faith. In fact, I think the exact opposite is true. I suggest to you that the greater majority of the 70.6 percent of those who identified themselves as Christian are anything but, unless you categorize the nondenominational, feel good, social clubs they attend as churches.
My motivation for writing this article comes from an article on The Blaze authored by Matt Walsh titled: Maybe Christianity in America is Dying Because it’s Boring Everyone to Death. In the article, Walsh describes a church service void of anything remotely close to the Gospel. The following is Walsh’s description of the pastor’s sermon:
The word “Gospel” made maybe one appearance in his message. The words “truth, sacred, reverence, sin, hell, virtue, obedience,” and “duty” were conspicuously absent, just as they’re absent from most sermons delivered in most churches, everywhere in the country. Of course, he did throw in a friendly helping of “friend” and “helping” and “tolerance.” Obviously tolerance. It’s important to only preach the sort of principles we can practice from our couches, you know.
I have visited the same type of church and heard the same sermon. What Walsh observed and heard was secularized Christianity.
I attended a service at a church that was void of God and His Gospel. When I arrived at the church, I was surprised by everything I saw; it was as if I was an astronaut who landed on a planet in a galaxy far, far away.
When I arrived at the church, the first thing I noticed was the nondescript building. There was nothing on or around the building that would lead you to think it was a church. The building looked like any other office building. The people walking inside the building were as nondescript as the building. If you had driven by the building and looked at the people in the parking lot, you would have never concluded by their attire that they were attending a church service. It would have made more sense to surmise that the people were attending a pool party, backyard BBQ, or some festival. I was way overdressed.
Once I entered the building, I could not help but notice the rather large information desk prominently placed in the middle of the lobby. I’m used to seeing information desks at malls, hotels, hospitals, and airports, but not churches. The information desk was where you could get information on spreading the Gospel, just kidding, it is where you can obtain information on signing up for coed sports or various other activities unrelated to God and Christianity.
Once I got past the coffee shop and snack bar, I entered the communal worship area. I thought I might have taken a wrong turn though because the area looked like a sports arena or concert hall. I noticed there was no altar just a stage, a very impressive stage. On the wall to the left and right of the stage were large monitors that provided various types of information, but once the show started, they were used to broadcast the various acts that appeared on stage.
The audience was treated to a variety show of singing, dancing, and skits. What I was watching could have easily been seen on American Idol, The Voice, or America’s Got Talent. The band was rockin’, and the singers were belting out contemporary hits. The last act of the variety show was a skit about dating that appeared to be a training exhibition on what to do once you have found someone who agrees to go on a date with you. Once the table, chairs, and actors were off the stage, a lady came out and started pumping up the crowd while the band jammed. Her job was to get the crowd excited about seeing the pastor. She introduced the pastor and stepped back so she could give the front of the stage to the middle-aged man in the bedazzled jeans, Ed Hardy t-shirt, and pointy, alligator shoes.
The sermon delivered by the pastor sounded exactly like what Walsh described in his article. He spent most of his sermon telling stories about his life, mainly about how he was blessed with plenty of material possessions. I’m pretty sure the pastor was a disciple of prosperity theology. He did make cool statements like, “Be cool to your bros,” and “When life gets you down stay positive,” and “I’m gonna keep it real.” I waited for him to at least mention God, but he never mentioned Him. The pastor was focused on making sure the people in the seats thought he was cool, and that they knew this church is about having a good time so don’t be scared.
The church I visited has become commonplace in America. It is a microcosm of the decay of Christianity in America. These churches are exactly what liberals envision when fantasizing about an America where God and religion no longer hold sway over people’s lives. If churches become social clubs, they are no longer a threat to the ever-increasing power of the federal government. God is replaced by the gods in Washington, D.C. once the church is no longer religious.
Walsh wrote the following to describe the new Christianity:
It often has no edge, no depth. No sense of its own ancient and epic history. There is no sacredness to it. No pain. No beauty. No reverence. Or I should say Christianity has all of those things, fundamentally and totally, but many modern Christians in every denomination have spent many years trying to blunt them or bury them under a thousand layers of icing and whipped cream and apathy.
There is nothing serious about most churches/religions in America. The Americans who attend the secular churches have surrendered to modernity. They have opted for a religion that is convenient and painless. They have voluntarily become milquetoast for liberals. In Suicide of the West, James Burnham wrote:
Liberalism is a doctrine that begins by proclaiming its emancipation from all prejudice, superstition, and dogma, from all beliefs sanctioned by time, habit, and tradition, that opens up every question to free inquiry by every questing mind, that declares its total readiness to follow reason, science, and truth wherever they may beckon: it is this doctrine that, we discover at last, is so fixed an absolute that no possible happening now or in any conceivable future could trouble its eternal certainty by so much as a surface tremor!
The fundamental underlying principle of American liberalism is that the past must be jettisoned to progress. Human beings cannot be perfected if they are mired down in crazy superstitions and dogma. Once religion is removed from the public square and people’s lives, it will be possible for your secular leaders to create utopia. The secularization of Christianity has paved the way for the utopia that exists in the minds of American liberals.