Sunday, March 31, 2013

Christians: The Popular Kids

It hit me, REALLY hit me today...Easter...that the American church is reeling not from the pain of the loss of holiness of its home country, not from figuring out what it means to be Christian, but instead what it means to be "American". I think I further cemented this realization watching the debate on Gay marriage and the sheer panic that some (definitely not all) Christians are experiencing. There are basically two reasons to freak out in this situation: People haven't accepted that God is in control, or there's a different crisis of public identity going on. I have come to believe, primarily due to the complete absence of the discussion by those against marriage equality of discussing applying Biblical marriage principles to heterosexual unions and couples, that the Bible is not the true motivation behind the religious Right's fight to legally institute semi-Biblical marriage.

 Being what most would describe as a progressive Christian, and one with an intellectual bent at that, I am constantly on guard of trying to rationalize my way to God, be it because of natural tendencies or some latent need to not feel at odds with the smart-kids. There's always a teeny part of me that worries that I'm missing the mark when it comes to public application of morality.

Today, I ran across this quote by Billy Graham, which surprised me a bit (and not just because of its contrast to his son's recent efforts to re-write his father's history).

“I don’t think there’s any conflict at all between Science today and the Scriptures. I think we have misinterpreted the Scriptures many times and we’ve tried to make the Scriptures say things they weren’t meant to say. I think that we have made a mistake by thinking the Bible is a scientific book. The Bible is not a book of science. The Bible is a book of Redemption, and of course, I accept the Creation story. I believe that God did create the universe. I believe that God created man, and whether it came by an evolutionary process and at a certain point He took this person or being and made him a living soul or not, does not change the fact that God did create man….whichever way God did it makes no difference as to what man is and man’s relationship to God.” (from a book that's going on my reading list)

He said this back in 1997 and while I was in college and could have easily missed it, I don't remember any huge uproar over it...but then again, Christianity still felt popular back then and there was much less questioning of what it meant to be an American.

...and I'm just adding this video because it's something I know I'll want to come back and watch later, and blogs are good for that.

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