You were never a true Christian

I doubt there’s a long-running ex-fundamentalist blog on the internet which hasn’t received a comment along the lines of “You were never a REAL Christian”. I got just such a charming message the other day.

What’s with that? Why are fundamentalists not sniffing around their churches for impostors? There must be a fair few of them around, if everyone who has ever left the faith turned out to be a fake. Why are fundamentalists so intent on denying that I was ever one of them?

It’s all part of the problem I discussed in “Why fundamentalists will never listen to me“. Fundamentalists believe that in order to understand the Bible, and real Christian faith, you must yourself be a real Christian. Without salvation, you cannot understand the things of God.

This has the handy side-effect of meaning they never have to listen to anyone who disagrees with them. People who disagree with fundamentalists are Not True Christians, and therefore incapable of understanding Christianity. It follows that these people cannot possibly make valid criticisms of their faith. Who says fundamentalists can’t do logic? 

In addition, fundamentalists claim that they have a direct relationship with God. All those atheists who claim God doesn’t exist are simply ignorant. They know God exists because they experience him directly on a daily basis. Only believers can have this experience.

But then I come along, and the “You just don’t understand because you don’t believe” gambit won’t work. So the fundamentalists will try something else. Much as they claim there’s no such thing as a true atheist, faced with the challenge of apostates like me, now they take the radical step of also claiming there’s no such thing as an ex-Christian.

You see, I was a true believer, and I did everything fundamentalists say is necessary for salvation. This means, according to them, I was in a position to understand the Bible. I truly believed I had a direct experience of God every day. Now I say all that is bollocks. The experiences I thought were of God were nothing of the kind, and even with the magic goggles of salvation, the Bible still didn’t look like the inerrant, infallible, incontrovertible Word of God. It looked like a very old collection of books written by many human authors who were trying (often failing) to make sense of life, religion, and the universe. Because that’s what it is.

This is a problem for fundamentalism. If I had the same religious experiences they had, and now deny God’s existence, does that mean those experiences are not the foolproof evidence they thought? Could they lose their faith too? Could my criticisms of the Bible be valid?

Of course, doubt must be crushed, because doubt is the opposite of faith, and faith is necessary for salvation.

So I get a comment on my blog like this:

I do not know all of your story, but I presume it was when you left the environment in which you had been brought up, and began to mix with young people who professed no Christian beliefs that your own professed faith totally fell apart. I would also assume that some or all of your grandparents or great-grandparents were Christians.

Such an experience is quite common in the second and third generation. Sociology shows that with the passing of generations, strong beliefs decline, becoming firstly passive, then becoming simply nominal and finally disappearing altogether. A belief that one holds simply on an inherited basis will disappear when faced with any sort of opposition, or with a lifestyle that appears much more attractive – you speak often of girls, alcohol, etc. Obviously these held an attraction for you. However those individuals who are fortunate enough to possess a belief system which they view as fully their own, which is not just inherited but also deeply personal and of immense importance to their lives, will be the only people who will successfully be the moral leaders and characters of this decade.

Jonny, you never were truly a Christian and that is essentially your problem. You have much talent but unfortunately you are jumping onto a bandwagon which is already carrying many disgruntled people who are childishly looking for some way to air their personal grievances. What a pity that, in your attempt to become famous, you have to attack a belief system you never truly understood in the first place.

Sorry to disappoint you, but my faith was very much my own, and I would have been wildly offended by the suggestion that I was just following my parents. I left my faith five years after I started mixing with non-Christians, so it was hardly the case that I left due to peer pressure. I left fundamentalism because it isn’t true.

And the notion of a fundamentalist being a moral leader is a joke. Fundamentalism is a morally repugnant dogma that oppresses women, children, and people of other faith. It fails to care properly for the poor and the needy because of the assumption that these people deserve what they get because of sin. If it tries to help at all, it is to offer them ‘salvation’, in the belief that if they repented of their sin, God would sort the rest out. It acts as a pillar to support the worst excesses of selfish capitalism. It crushes human flourishing with absurd strictures on sexual behaviour and other pleasurable pursuits, and it uses tithe money to further propagate fundamentalism instead of meaningful charitable work.

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About jonnyscaramanga

I grew up as a Christian fundamentalist in the UK. Now I am writing a book and blog about what that's like, and what fundamentalists believe.

Posted on July 15, 2013, in Atheism, Christianity, Fundamentalism and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 37 Comments.

  1. What these comments always make me think is: ok, maybe I wasn’t a real christian, but I sure thought I was. So look around your church next Sunday. How many of those people are real christians? What if you’re the only one? Do you want to count them all at census time?

  2. I tend to think we (former Christians) aren’t the only one’s getting these emails. Ever watch conversations between Christians? Rhetorical question. Some of the most vial exchanges I’ve seen online are between Christians. There’s so much diversity within Christianity that they turn on one another with the “You never were a Christian to begin with.” Then they start going at one another with “the” truth, each possessing “the” truth but never agreeing with one another about “the” truth.

    In my conservative evangelical days our salvation was called into question as a daily concern. “Are you sure you’re saved?” “Maybe you were never truly saved.” “If you are unsure, come to the front and start over again. It’s time to get right with the Lord for sure. Come forward and know that you are truly born-again.” This would go on and on. I never saw so many people habitually doubt their salvation. I guess it is to be expected that when one leaves the faith they were never saved. They do it to each other all the time and they are “saved.”

    • Zoe, your post was spot on. For years I was a Christian counselor, not only in church but on air in Christian radio. I never counseled with an evangelical believer who didn’t question their faith and salvation. As far as the ‘truth’ goes, there are approximately 40,000 Christian denominations with their own interpretation of ‘truth’. Christianity is probably the most divided religion on the planet.

      The “you never were a Christian in the first place” is most likely a defense mechanism. A neurological study showed that the brains of ‘born again’ Christians (fundamentalist) are different than non-fundamental Protestants. In the study, the participants who reported being ‘born again’ had brain atrophy (significantly smaller hippocampus). The hippocampus helps regulate emotion. A decrease in hippocampal volume has been linked to depression, dementia, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

      http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0017006

      • Hi Victoria, I was hoping for you to give your input in this conversation. I’m so glad you had done so.

      • Thanks NeuroNotes (hope I got that right.) Well, I suffer from depression, struggle with short-term memory loss and who knows about Alzheimer’s. Raised in what would be considered a non-fundamentalist church, born-again at age 13, left the faith at age 48 . . . raised our children inside a fundamentalist church, became active church youth church leaders (short story, very involved) suffered spiritual abuse/trauma inside the church, developed social anxiety (prior to this I was a social butterfly) probably do have a small hippocampus.

        I agree with you, re: defense mechanism. I will check out the link you provided.

      • Oh wow, that’s kind of scary. I’m not quite sure if there is a good causative link, but the correlation makes sense to me. It doesn’t surprise me one whit that fundies are more emotional, especially since emotion helps blind a person to any logical argument against them.

    • I know many people who were baptized several times because they ‘realized they weren’t actually saved before’. Then I realized something was messed up somewhere at least in how baptists/evangelicals talk about salvation.

    • Zoe, In my world you were not a Christian if you were anything other than a Baptist. I knew some people who believed if you got “saved” using a Bible other than King James, you were not really “saved”. I am so glad that I never fully bought into that bs, even though I was born into it and tried really hard to believe.

      • Once in giving my testimony I was told in a Baptist church by a Baptist woman that I was not saved because I got saved in what is considered by them as a liberal protestant church. So for them, denomination matters. 🙄

      • I heard a pastor say he got baptized three times, because he kept moving to new churches that said the last baptism wasn’t real. The first church only sprinkled him, and the second church said he had to be immersed. But the second church only dunked him under the water once; the third church said he needed to be dunked three times, in the name of the father, the son, and the holy ghost.

        He said he kept doing it, not because he doubted his own salvation, but because he didn’t want to cause them to “stumble”…

    • I think it’s because they’re selling a product, but they either pretend not to know it or willingly deceive themselves. They are selling a salvation experience. The way they sell this is by using showmanship to manipulate emotions. They have grown quite good at cultivating this powerful feeling of guilt in their audience, guilt which can only be cured by coming down to the front to “come to Jesus.” Problem is, not enough non-believers come to those kinds of meetings. They end up turning the full force of their guilt-beam on people who are supposed to be saved already. Instead of rejoicing that so many are already saved, or you know, actually growing in their faith, they have to just keep playing out the same little emotional dance over and over and never notice how far from a “relationship with Jesus” this is.

  3. I was a convert to Evangelical Christianity, brought up in an agnostic/liberal Christian household where we went to church sometimes and no one much cared what religion we were or weren’t. I joined the Quakers as a teen, which are universalist and extremely liberal and therefore ‘not true Christians’.

    When I went to university I encountered evangelical Christians, fundamentalists, both Strict Baptists (Calvinists) and Christian Brethren (aka Plymouth Brethren), who were anti-Calvinist (they didn’t believe in predestination). They were both fundamentalist, ‘Bible believing’ Christians, but it didn’t seem to phase either group that the other group were just as fundamentalist but held opposite views on some things.

    I threw in my lot with the Calvinists, after a dramatic ‘Road to Damascus’ like conversion, but the Christian Union was very much mixed. I continued being a “Born Again”, sometimes fanatical fundamentalist Baptist for nigh on 20 years.

    Having eventually lost my faith, I now see my conversion experience as a sign of extreme stress – I think I hallucinated or maybe had some sort of seizure (even non-epileptics can, given the right circumstances, have a one-off seizure). But it was extremely convincing, not least to myself, for most of that time.

    People say to me “You were never a true Christian”. But at the same time, my ‘testimony’ still litters the Christian websites. You can’t kill stuff off on the Internet, sadly. It’s morphed over the years, been attributed to different people, but I occasionally come across it, or get an email from someone asking if I still believe (one of the major reasons I changed my email address!). I contend that if it was a pretense, keeping it up to that extent for 19 years would have been impossible. Unless I was mad, but even then, how could they trust any other testimony? How many of those online testimonies are still relevant to the people that wrote them? How many ‘true believers’ are no longer even religious? Experience suggests a lot. The ones who cling on are often those who have the most to lose from renouncing their faith: pastors, pastor’s wives, officers in the church, people working for ‘Christian’ companies etc. But can a faith be sincerely held if losing it has such dire career and relationship consequences?

  4. It is standard Calvinism, that “once saved, always saved.” Given the clear evidence of dropouts, the only way to protect this belief is to assert that those who dropped out were never really saved. Hence the “no true Christian” claim.

    Back in my religious youth, I never did accept Calvinism because I could see this as a logical inconsistency.

    • So true, Neil. Those are the same Christians (usually Baptists) who say things about us non believers like “Well they didn’t have a relationship with Jesus, they had religion.”
      Funny, because the people who usually say such things are the most legalistic, and ritualistic Christians I have ever known!

  5. The companion criticism (leveled against atheists) is “The God you don’t believe in isn’t my God.” But in the same way there seems to be no coherent answer to what exactly describes a true Christian (before someone leaves the faith, that is, but apparently easy to identify after the fact), there is also no coherent answer to what exactly constitutes a Christian’s God (a generic kind widely shared prior to any criticism, but a whack-a-mole pop-up kind in response to criticism).

    Funny, there’s a never a True Scotsman about when you need one.

  6. I wish there was a resource like this for American kids who grew up in fundamentalist households. I left fundamentalism but I don’t believe I was ever really a Christian because I always had trouble taking everything they said with faith. My parents believe that the bible has supernatural powers and when I try explain to them how I feel I have had them say I stopped being a Christian because I stopped reading the bible.

  7. Jonny, thank you for this clearly written post. Here’s my run down:

    Parents who both had religious backgrounds, and conversion experiences, married young, had me, and were Jesus People when I was a baby.

    My family was consistently faithful in all things church and Christian. All the while, horribly miserable in their marriage, and abusive and neglectful towards their children.

    My mother led me into the sinner’s prayer at three years old, and the baptismal of the Holy Spirit at eight, both times at home. Around the latter experience was when she also began to thoroughly and regularly tell me about her and my dad’s marital problems because his constant bitching, and abuse weren’t enough I guess. I think it was then (1980) or soon after that dad became a regular subscriber to Charisma Magazine, and continued to be one for the next 30 years. He may still be one now. It was also around this time that my younger sisters and I began to have head lice and many of us would have it off and on, more on though, for the next 20 years!

    A few years later my parents were still very much into the whole worship movement. So much so, that they were in the Integrity Hosanna music club, and received every cassette tape as it came out for years.

    In the following years I went to three different Christian schools, the last one was for two years during my pre-teens where I studied stupid Lifepacs.

    My parents were so into church that as we attended an Assembly of God church I had to go to youth choir practice, and youth group the same day that I had all four of my wisdom teeth pulled out in my early teens. It was during spring break, I had grandparents who were visiting from almost a thousand miles away, and there I am trying to sing and talk with bloody galls in my mouth!

    Because of all of the parental and religious drama I began to seriously date at 17 years old. I often dated very hateful men who didn’t treat me nicely at all. This went on for many years.

    I went to Christ for the Nations in Dallas after high school, and even from my first semester I dealt with perverted fellow male students, controlling R As, a dean of women staff who drilled Proverbs 31 into our heads to us good girls, and room mates who were holier than thou tattle tales! I went out of my dad’s choosing, but ended up paying for at least 90% of all my books, tuition, housing, and food, etc. I had an intensely, sexist dress code to follow, was not allowed to watch TV, was not allowed to ever walk on the grass on campus, but yet, knew of a guy who attempted to rape a girl got kicked out for a year and came back to complete his last semester for graduation. During my first semester at 18 years old I seriously began doubting my faith. I remember hearing how it’s normal for kids to question their belief system when they leave home, but now that I think about it I was told that kids are like that because they’re at a liberal college with extremely liberal professors. I was at a very religious school with very dedicated teachers and yet, I was doubting away.

    Over the years I have been baptized, fully emerged in water, twice. I even worked for the 700 Club’s second prayer counseling phone center off and on while I lived in Dallas. I moved all over primarily to be ministered to and to even minister to others. I often prayed for people and had people pray for me. I blessed my abusers, neighbors who hated me, classmates who mocked me, and Christian leaders who made an example out of me. I often fasted and prayed, read my Bible like it was going out of style, frequently referred to various reference books for many, many years such as Strong’s, Vine’s, many Bible translations, and the Pentateuch.

    I can’t begin to tell you how many Churches I served in nursery, hospitality, choir and the worship team. Most of my time in church was absolutely miserable! I found church goers to either be extremely snobby and or gossipy, and if they weren’t cold and were involved in my life it was out of a hostile controlling attitude. I attended home groups off and on for years, and even went to the UK to minister, twice. Once with a group of 50 plus people for a week or two, the other time with another person, but primarily by myself, for a whole summer. I went on those trips as I came from a revival church you all may have heard of, Brownsville Assembly of God.

    Over the years I have been non denominational, Foursquare, Methodist, Missionary Alliance, Hope Chapel, Assemblies of God, Word of Faith, Calvary Chapel, and even Southern Baptist. I married in a Church where I more less got kicked out for briefly raising a couple of concerns regarding the pastor. Still I stuck it out, kept going to church somewhere, continued praying, reading my Bible, and even had both my boys dedicated as babies in two different Baptist Churches.

    I struggled and fought to hold onto Jesus as an abused child and teen, I began to seriously doubt God, Christianity and religion at 18 years old at Bible College. I struggled with hurt, abuse, and disorders my whole life. Then in 2010, out of nowhere, some things were drawing my attention to 9/11, and my ideas that I often tarried over for years began to find a basis, and facts. I began to truly see how wrong I was as a Evangelical, Fundamental, and Conservative Zionist. The last straw for me was the so called Star of David. I began to study what that symbol actually was spiritually, politically and its relation to morality or the lack thereof. Mind you, this is all very radical thinking for an American, especially one living in the South. I was already well aware of the contradictions in the Bible and in the pious morality of western Christianity culture. I didn’t need atheists, their writings or the study of evolution to draw me out of my zombie state. Christians, the Bible and prayer did most of the work de-converting me, but studying about 9/11 helped me to finally step out of it. At 39 years old I had yanked off that noose around my neck. I am free to think, evaluate, and exist by using my brain not what some misogynistic book and its followers tell me to think and do. My only regret is that I didn’t do it when the doubts began in my early adulthood. However, at least this time I have chosen my path instead of having someone or a whole group of people shove it down my throat on a regular basis to make me and keep me as one of their believers.

    Jonny, I just want you to know that I am so proud of you and those who comment on here. I can tell you that slowly, but surely, Abrahamic religions are dying in the United States. I am constantly bumping into people on line who are gradually coming out throughout this country, even in the South! I know that I know, you toiled with your choice to walk away, as so many of us have. This was not a choice that you took lightly at all. I thank you for this blog and forum, and I am glad to see people like us on the rise in the wonderful worldwide web. I just encourage everyone to know what they actually believe. Pick up your Torah, Talmud, Book of Mormon, Bible, and Koran. Whatever book your faith is based on, really study it, and I assure you that will be more than enough to make you examine the premise of that religion and how you have been duped into believing what you believe.

    • Hi Charity. Wow, thank you for sharing in such depth. The more I read of other peoples experiences, the more I am able to open up myself. I’ve held back for several reasons, until recently. I do believe there are many caring people who are fundamentalist. Not everyone I encountered were self-righteous asses. Research and studying the Bible extensively, including the original languages, played a huge role in my de-conversion and healing. I studied so much that I had one of my Bibles rebound twice. I spent many hours on my knees, and often on my face. I can very much relate to your story, Jonny’s, and others too.

      I was indeed ‘sold out’. My faith was profound, but no matter how much faith I had, it was never enough. “God” always needed to test his ‘faithful’. I never had authentic peace as a believer, though I tried to convince myself I did. As a believer, peace could only be attained by faith, but it wasn’t authentic, and deep down I knew it. Based on my own personal experiences and that of other believers I knew and encountered, fundamentalist are unhappy in general. Fundamentalism is a death cult, a cancer to our species.

      As a coping mechanism, I would repeat this scripture (one of several) to buffer my unhappiness: “Beloved, think it not strange the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you, but rejoice inasmuch as ye are partakers in Christ’s sufferings.” 1 Peter 4:12-13 It’s been 8 years since my de-conversion and yet I can still recite scripture by memory.

      Unlike you and Jonny, I was not raised a Protestant fundamentalist, but I was raised a Catholic. I didn’t become a protestant fundamentalist until after my husband’s suicide. Fundamentalism led to his suicide, but I was too traumatized to realize it at the time. Evangelicals took advantage of my trauma and my late husbands neurological disorder. Any Christian who has the gumption to tell others that they ‘really weren’t Christians’ have been neurologically programmed to believe this. Nothing anyone says to a fundamentalist can convince them otherwise. Like you mentioned, they have to study, study, study and find out for themselves.

      “Study to show thyself approved unto God” 2 Timothy 2:15 — oh the irony. I did just that, and it was my saving grace. Leaving fundamentalism (and religion) was the best decision I ever made. Although I have scares from the emotional and psychological damage caused by fundamentalism (especially as a woman), I have never felt more alive or more in touch with my humanity and that of others.

      PS — Jonny, awesome post. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to share.

  8. In my case I did sincerely believe (and still don’t claim to know that Christianity is false only that creationism is very bad science) but feel completely alienated from God having had a breakdown almost a decade ago. I am not sure whether I trusted God too much, too little, or perhaps both. I feel I received little back from God – whether earthly happiness or (which would also have been useful) help when tempted. I also have had people – over the internet ie people who have never met me now or in decades past – suggest that I was never a true believer. Who knows? I tried to believe. But it became impossible for this saint or ‘saint’ to persevere. Though I can’t rule out re-embracing the faith in a non-fundamentalist way at some future point of need or other stimulus.

  9. I’ve heard this exact thing myself. Technically, I suppose neither of us was, but tha’s only because Christians has defined their faith in just that way. Although Christians that believe that one can loose salvation usually don’t make that assertion, since they think true believers can and do fall away. For those Christians that are persuaded that God’s children cannot fall away, they need to come up with explanations.

    As much as we say we believed, they write us off as those who never really understoode else we would have stayed.

  10. My falling away from fundamentalism had nothing to do with getting out of the fundy bubble and into the world. I went to the school (ACE—-sigh) attached to the church for all 13 years of school. I was still in elementary school when I started rejecting what I was being taught. It was when I joined a spiritual community which accepts all faiths, that I found Jesus. I found a group of people who actually lived the Golden Rule and didn’t preach hate. When I got sick and my world fell apart they came to me offering help instead of letting me suffer. When I was sick throughout high school I was told to read the Bible and pray. The treatment I needed was considered worldly and evil. What kind of church and school lets a kid suffer so horribly for all those years? I was so happy on graduation day, I finally had freedom.

  11. OMG this is So True. They think you have to be a Christian to understand anything that makes no sense. So we say it’s legalistic, and they say, “you don’t understand because you aren’t submitting to God.” Blah, whatever. I’m a postmodernist, so I don’t have problem admitting that faith is insane.

  12. I have heard this myself. I think it is so ridiculous because I was raised in the church and was sent to a christian school. I truly wanted to be a christian as a child. I got “saved” and I tried to live how I was supposed to live but the doubts were always there. I would beg and plead to god to help me not have doubts. Nothing ever happened. The doubts always stayed. After years and years of begging and pleading, I gave up. Nothing was there to help solidify my faith so I started wondering if it was all just a trick.

    I find it fascinating to read stories of evangelical pastors and missionaries that are now atheists. How can these christian people claim these pastors and missionaries never were true christians??

    It just makes me shake my head. They have no answers to anything, so they just make stuff up to make themselves feel better.

    • Some Christians say that the Bible teaches that a true Christian can lose his or her salvation through eg gradually or even suddenly ‘giving up’ on their faith due to eg persecution, theological compromise, giving into temptation etc or simple disobedience to the word of God.

      Both Calvinists and Arminians (the latter group who think salvation can be lost) can find Bible verses which appear to confirm their position.

  13. I for some reason felt honored to be attacked as it must mean I’m hitting a nerve. 🙂 My “critique” (on a post on my spiritual blog http://www.notjustablonde.com) was as follows:

    “Do you even read the Bible? So many of your posts and beliefs are completely against the Bible. Do you think the Bible changes? It doesn’t. No matter what you say or think. The Bible doesn’t “evolve” as you say you are doing. The Bible was written by God through his Apostles and is the same today, forever and always. I shudder to think of the people you have influenced and possibly turned against the truth, and I shudder even more to think the punishment you will pay for that someday. I urge you to read the Bible, not decide stuff on your own. Or at the very least for goodness sakes stop spreading this crap if you insist on believing it.”

    Is it bad that I actually was flattered? To think that they thought little ol’ me might actually have an influence over others! 😉 And, of course I DO read the Bible… so that was pure ridiculousness! I don’t worry too much about it as much as it makes mr feel sad for them.

    • You can be flattered all you want, but I am confused why you think this post is in any way about you. I have, to the best of my memory, never read your blog before and I cannot find any previous comments from you on this site.

      This post was written in response to a comment by a user with a different name, email, and IP address from you. I also struggle to see the relevance of any of what you have written to the criticisms raised by this post.

      What I do see, however, is a combination of threats and passive aggression which suggests you care much more about being right than you do about my wellbeing, eternal or otherwise. You show minimal concern, despite your belief that I am going to hell. Think about what that says about you.

      • Oh NO! I’m SO SORRY! I think I must’ve written my response poorly! I do NOT think you are going to hell! The point is I too have been attacked for being un-Fundie as well (I copied and pasted what someone wrote me Anonymously and the above was what was stated about ME… In quotes). I wanted you to know you’re not alone. I love you, your blog and your passion for God. I just was “flattered” by being so unfairly attacked as I thought my un-Fundie thoughts must of hit really hit a nerve to get attacked like that. I am SO sorry for the misunderstanding here. I know it’s not about me… I’ll be MUCH more careful the next time I post.

  14. Jonny,

    In my recent response to your post I simply stated that from what I could gather, you were never a Christian but rather the carrier of a professed belief that fell apart because it had no root. In your response you have accused me of being a bigoted Fundamentalist, who adheres to a belief that abuses women and children, is financially dishonest and holds ‘absurd strictures on sexual behaviour’.

    I have no desire to argue with you or to give you material for future drawn-out rants but I will briefly respond. I am a Christian who simply adheres to the Scriptures, believing it is the Word of God. You may decide I am a fundamentalist – that’s fine. I would like to remind you that many of the social revolutionaries who released our society from the chains of oppression, slavery, abuse and discrimination expressed a belief in God and adhered to scriptural principles – Nightingale, Fry, Mueller, Wilberforce, Shaftesbury, Barnardo, Lincoln, Martin Luther King, etc. Their beliefs shaped their passion to create a society where each person would be treated as equal and unique. Western Europe and the US, two beacons of civilization for centuries, were built on foundations that honored scriptural principles.

    Also, I agree – you say, ‘fundamentalists believe that without salvation, you cannot understand the things of God’. I doubt that this is solely a ‘fundamentalist’ belief. Any, even superficial, reading of the following words from Paul in the book of I Corinthians, can leave one in no doubt as to what the Christian believes about those who are unsaved – ‘the natural man (unsaved) receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him’. (I Cor 2:14)

    Being a Christian is something unique – it is not simply the fulfillment of a list of obligations – you say, ‘I did everything…necessary for salvation’. Anybody can DO the right things, without meaning a bit of it. Salvation is a work of God in you life – not of yourself, not of works, ‘it is the gift of God’, writes Paul again in Galatians.

    You can try to reduce the Being of God to the subject of ridicule on this blog, but God is great and there are many thousands today who are wonderfully fulfilled and blessing in their lives as Christians. I am one of those and I would earnestly warn you against mocking God as you do here. God is not mocked.

    • You seem to miss the point Aisling. All *any* christian has is a professed belief. And from my perspective not one of them has a true root since they are believing in imaginary things.

      But look around your church next Sunday. Can you tell the true christians from the false? If you had a time machine you could see Jonny in church, or me, or many others, and you could not tell us from the “true christians”. Look next Sunday and guess which people will have abandoned christianity within 5 years. I expect you will not be able to tell. You might even need to look in a mirror to see a future apostate.

      I expect you don’t believe you could ever leave christianity. Neither did I. After all, I was a true christian.

  15. The ‘magic goggles of salvation’! You are such an awesomely naughty boy!
    Once saved always saved – so I taught and was taught. So I’m alright Jack? No. ‘Cos if you stop believing you were never a ‘true believer’ in the first place. Even though I sincerely believed and lived my life for God. Typical Evangelical circular reasoning and hurtful judgmentalism. ‘He stopped believing because of sin in his life, so he could live a sinful life’ etc etc. Blah! Self-righteous humbug!
    The End.
    ved,always saved I taught and was taught

  16. I have known Jesus Christ for over 20 years. The bible, church attendance and any other christian programs/literature are tools to help us discover and nurture our personal relationship with Christ. Remember that long before the bible was written, or churches sprang up, or pastors came into existence, people like Abraham, Moses and Joseph were known in the ancient world to have a deep relationship with God. These men confessed that they had a personal relationship with God. God gave these men supernatural wisdom that made them the natural leaders in their time. God will always deposit tokens of his glory (supernatural wisdom) in the hears of those who draw close to him, so that other men will be drawn to him , through them. From my experience, when a man genuinely seeks Jesus Christ, for the purpose of knowing him (not just to obtain provision, protection and peace), Christ will manifest himself to the individual in such a way that the person knows that his encounter with him was not a figment of his own 5 senses (John 14:21-23). The God who made our 5 senses knows how to reveal himself to us in ways that surpass our senses’ ability to produce such experiences on their own. For instance, I doubt that Moses ever thought that the burning bush was a figment of his imagination because when he got close to the bush , not only did the noise of burning increase, but also the heat from the flames got more intense.
    In conclusion, I’ll say that , don’t give up on your pursuit of God. God knows how to reveal himself to us based on our background( educational, social, temperament , love language etc.). I love maths, so God used the number 3, three times, to begin to reach my heart, long before I got close to him. If you are a musician, God will find a way to reach your heart through music.
    Don’t give up, Jesus Christ loves all of us.

  1. Pingback: human fabrication & “true” Christian Science | kindism

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