View #1: The Torture View

I recently attended a church service where the preacher gave a seven minute presentation of the gospel. It was the standard fundamentalist evangelical Protestant version of the gospel which I had not heard for a while. My involvement with Catholic teaching and the study of early church history has changed my perspective so this gospel message sounded pretty weird. Here it is in a nutshell...

This gospel message does not present God as loving, merciful, gracious, or even sane. No wonder so many reject this gospel.


View #2: My View of the Gospel 


We have free will to accept or reject eternity in God's presence. Ultimately, at our death we will come face to face with Jesus and he will finally present us with the truth of it all (and the wacky things taught in the name of Christ will be exposed for their errors). Those who have habitually rejected doing good while alive might choose to reject the offer of redemption. Those who received Christ as Lord and Savior while alive will gladly bend the knee in worship.

Preliminary: before humans...

Humans created, instructed, and tested...

The fall...

The human condition...

God's view...

The incarnation of Jesus...

Our responsibility and role...

Salvation through Jesus...

Final judgment...


My unique views...



Musings

I listen to Christian teaching and preaching on the radio from time to time but find myself unedified and alienated by it (to say the least). In trying to discern the disconnect between them and me I've concluded they aren't talking to me. Their audience is someone who...

  1. They have a turbulent life, rapid mood swings, perhaps symptoms of a mild mental disorder causing anxiety and guilt and worry, needing someone to continually assure them they are OK.
  2. They are unsaved, unredeemed, needing to hear the gospel presented repeatedly with an invitation to ask Jesus to save them and come into their heart.
  3. They are hopelessly addicted to mortal sin needing conversion to God daily — but it doesn't "take" and they must repeat this often.
  4. They are easily duped into clearly false interpretations of the Bible, every passage and image turned into the most wild allegory and having symbolic meaning.
  5. They enjoy listening to sermon-style ranting and pounding, ultra-passionate, being talked-down to like children, hollered at, cajoled.
  6. They understand "Christian-ese" and it resonates with them. To me it sounds like gibberish based on false doctrine.

It all seems cult-like; no wonder the modern culture is put off. For those who don't feel terrible about themselves and who are not desperately seeking relief, looking for someone to patronize them, this false gospel is irrelevant and, worse, condescending and insulting.

No, I do not think of myself as above everyone else; I'm just trying to live a holy life of virtue pleasing to God and to not to be deceived by the cult-like and false gospel rampant in fundamentalist evangelical Protestantism.

(And yes, I have accepted Jesus as my Lord and savior and fully expect to spend eternity in his presence, worshipping him, in the new heavens and new earth; this by faith having repentance from sin and not by works.)