Are you a “Positive Christian”?

“Adherents of ‘Positive Christianity’ argued that traditional Christianity emphasized the passive rather than the active aspects of Christ’s life, stressing his miraculous birth, his suffering, his sacrifice on the cross and other-worldly redemption. They wanted to replace this doctrine with a “positive” emphasis on Christ as an active preacher, organizer and fighter who opposed the institutionalized Judaism of his day.”  Author to be announced

Does this sound familiar to what we often hear taught at many modern evangelical churches across the land?  “Deeds not creeds” is the thrust of Rick Warren and the Purpose-Driven churches, as well as the countless churches that model themselves along the same lines.  Is this what a sermon at your church focuses on?  Does the pastor teach about what Christ’s virgin birth and many miracles mean, and what they say?  Or is this something only brought up once in a while (maybe around Christmas time)?  Does your pastor explain the justice of God and why atonement was necessary?  Does the core of most messages revolve around Christ and what He has done, or does he instead teach on what you must go do, holding Jesus’ earthly deeds up as an example to follow?  What is the general theme of the sermons you hear?  Is it what Christ has done, or what you should go do?  What about religion?  Does your pastor endorse an organized church, or shun such outdated modes and teach that instead we should each be a free-spirited Christ follower living a life of good deeds?  Do you hear sermons like the people being discussed in the above quote, or do you hear sermons covering the meatier doctrines and teachings put out by Christ and the Apostles?

It seems that in most places I look, doctrines are being completely ignored.  They are labeled as being irrelevant and part of an antique and organized religion whose days are long past.  I find this odd since an incredible amount of the New Testament is devoted to teaching doctrine.  In fact, I find it incredibly puzzling that the majority of professing Christians know that they must believe, but don’t want to do any serious study into exactly what they are to believe.  The message in these modern times is to “believe in Jesus” – whatever that means – and then go start doing good things.

Like in the quote above, modern Christianity tells us to be positive, or active.  We are told to mimic Jesus rather than to rest in what He has done.  Pastors present good works as a driving force in Christianity, rather than recognizing the Bible’s stance that good works flow naturally from a true Christian after they have been made into new creatures.  Although “salvation by works” is denounced from the pulpit for at least 10 seconds, the remainder of most sermons then focus on what we must do, with very few ever proclaiming the forgiveness of sins in Jesus name for all who repent and believe.

So are you curious about where the above quote comes from, and who it was about?  Here I must take great pause before telling you.  This quote is about a specific group of people in history.  It is a group of people that if anyone dares to discuss, or to hold them up in comparison with modern teachings…well…. the person discussing them is branded a nut-case and an extremist.  Do I want to be held as such in your eyes?  Not really.  Yet, the comparison is accurate.  The modern Christian church is preaching a message very, very similar to these folks.  Minimize the miraculous, focus on Jesus’ deeds and those of the apostles, ignore atonement, avoid doctrine and promote living life together as a positive thinking forward-minded community.  These are all undeniable similarities between the two groups, and they are at the very core and foundation of their faiths.  I have studied both these groups of professing Christians, and can tell you without hesitation that the above quote is accurate.  So who is it about? Okay, I relent.  I will tell you.  The above quote is from Wikipedia, and it is about the official Christian profession of the Third Reich.  Yup.  A “Positive Christian” is what Adolf Hitler professed to be.  And now you must decide if I am a radical wing-nut publishing extremist blog posts or if the comparison is sound.  I assure you, dear reader, these things are true, and there are many, many more similarities between the two groups than just the few I have mentioned here.  And given these facts, what does that say about the modern message?  What does that say about the messages and style of the church that you are comfortable attending?  I will leave that for you to ponder on for yourself…

 

If you would like to read more on the Christianity of the Third Reich, I would recommend these books:

Hitler’s Cross by Erwin Lutzer

Twisted Cross by Doris Bergen

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4 Comments on “Are you a “Positive Christian”?”

  1. The Master's Slave Says:

    It’s a plain fact of life that we all use God for our own advantages and the only real difference between me and Rick Warren, is he has a following and I don’t. My only following is my family, and I will be held accountable for how I lead them. I believe it is a life long process of being molded, humbled and held under the heavy hand of God to be brought to the place where we look to His interests instead of our own.

    We have all looked to God as a means to our ends and this is the basis for most if not all of organized religion today. Jesus only did that which He saw His Father do…may we follow this example instead.

    Reply

    • ChurchSalt Says:

      I truly hope you are wrong. Rick Warren preaches a “gospel” of works, or as he puts it, the good news we get a “mulligan”, that being another chance to get it right. I hope that there is a difference between this message and the hope to which you cling. As far as followers, I think it better to preach truth to a small following than to preach lies and heresy to millions.
      Indeed, we will be humbled and molded throughout our lives. Should we not strive to study the Words of the King that we might become more like Him in a quicker manner, and to believe what He actually said to believe rather than the soft teachings of men?

      Reply

      • The Master's Slave Says:

        Our only saving grace in this world and in the world to come is Christ’s work on the cross, right? Other than that, when was the last time you truly had an unselfish thought? We are selfish people, through and through, and whether we are scamming millions out of their hard earned money, or we are trying to convince God that we are truly sincere, the sin is the same.

      • ChurchSalt Says:

        In light of how saturated we are with sin, the grace of the Cross is incomprehensible and unbelievably amazing! If it weren’t stated in His perfect Word, I would never dare to imagine He might care, let alone take my place of punishment. The truths found in sound doctrine are incredible. All the more reason to study them and proclaim them from the mountain top!

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