Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Chapter 10.4 The Mean Jesus

Well now that we are done with "Materialistic Christianity" I want to talk about another kind of "Jesus" that plagues the body of Christ in America... The Mean Jesus. This "Jesus" is, in my mind at least, one of the worst versions ever! In this part of the miniseries I want to cover how we make God look bad by making His son be a mean unforgiving person. It really breaks my heart to see people turn away from God because of his followers but most of all because we make Jesus to be a bad guy who is just waiting to deny anyone access to a relationship with him.

Like always I would like to give a disclaimer right off the bat, see with most of the extremest there are spots of truth, see God does not like sin what so ever. I do believe he will judge sin and that there will be punishment for sin. I do know that Jesus did talk about hell a lot more than he did about heaven and finally that we must, as followers of Christ, become renewed in him and not live an unholy life. With all of that being said let us go into the subject at hand "The Mean Jesus".

So what is some of the characteristics of the "Mean Jesus"? Well he is full of hate and dislike toward many things. He loves his followers to spread the message of displeasure of this world. Most of all he only wants a relationship with you if you are willing to get yourself right before you come to Him. He is an all around unlikable guy. You know what is really funny about the "Mean Jesus" is that his followers think that they are safe from him but in reality if they come to find the real Jesus they are now on his hit list. See the people who believe in this kind of Jesus are not just the really loud out spoken ones they are the ones who secretly hate other people and claim it to be okay because God would too. The "Mean Jesus" people make God look bad by simply taking grace out of the equation. The reason that is a big problem is because grace is something that makes Christianity a very unique religion and without it our faith would amount to nothing.

I have brought up to separate kinds of ideas when it comes to the "Mean Jesus" now I want to talk about both of them. Now the first one we all know about cause we can see it all the time on the news. I will try and refrain from naming names but I believe most of you know what I am talking about. When ever a group of people say they are representing Christ and say things like, "God hates fags", or, "Thank God for dead soldiers", or the worst, "God hates you", those people are not speaking for God at all! If you preach a God that hates anyone you are not preaching the God of the Bible. Now I know that the old testament there was a lot of people God judged but nowhere did it say He did so because of his hate for the people. God judged them for their acts of sin. These kinds of people who preach the "Mean Jesus" can not tell the difference and just do a blanket statement of God hating everyone. This is far from the representation of the God of the Bible. God desperately wants a relationship with his people and did literally everything to make that happen so how can He hate them? The easy answer to that is, He doesn't! This kind of Jesus will not win souls nor help people come out of their sin. This "Mean Jesus", it seems like he wants them to be like that so He can judge them and send them to hell. The sad part is that when this Jesus is preached it makes no one want to hear about the real one. The last point on this part of the "Mean Jesus" is that while watching an interview with a former member of one of the churches that preach this way said, "I felt like God hated me", it gets no more sadder than that. Like I said earlier not even the people who follow the "Mean Jesus" is not safe, He rules with fear.

Now the other "Mean Jesus" is sorta of a secret agent. See he does not wave banners or protest He just sits in the hearts of people who claim to follow the real Jesus. This kind of "Mean Jesus" shows His ugly head when His followers are confronted with people they just dislike for one reason or another. This "Mean Jesus" shows up in racism, sexist, bigoted, class wars, and all around selfishness. The reason this "Mean Jesus" is hard to see is because he only comes out when the person who has Him in their heart is confronted with one of the people they dislike. I have a little of a personal story with this kind of "Mean Jesus". I used to go to church, very rarely, when I was a kid. I will leave the church nameless and the people involved that way too. I will just tell you that it was a white church and the other person involved was black. Now this black guy, who is a very close family friend, came to see my dad one day and found out he was at church so he decided to come see him there. Once my fathers friend got into the church he was asked to leave, my dad's friend did not make it any further than the front door. When he asked why he had to leave he was told, "this is not your kinds church and we do not want you here", and right then the "Mean Jesus" shows his ugly face. I do want to say that I do not believe that this was the feelings of the whole church but it was said by one of the ushers. My dad's friend did leave with out a fuss but even so that was very much unacceptable. This is not the Jesus who loved everyone and wanted everyone to come hear what he had to say about the Father. This is not the Jesus who freed a promiscuous woman from being stoned. No this is the "Mean Jesus" who says that if you do not fit in with us you must leave. There really is not to many other things that makes God look bad than making a relationship with him limited to certain people.

We must not stand for any of this in the body of Christ. We know that our God loves and wants people to love also. We can not simply watch people be turned away from the love of God because of this "Mean Jesus". We must teach the gospel and His love to all. We can not and will not back down from these kinds of people who love to share hate to everyone. This "Mean Jesus" does not really exist, except in peoples mind, and we should have no problem showing everyone this. We all are saved by grace through faith because of the love of God and we need to make sure everyone knows of this. He does not want you to have to clean yourself up before coming to Him, no He wants you just as you are so he can change you. God loves all of us and desires for us to come to Him as children asking for our fathers love and help. To sum it all up the "Mean Jesus" is a made up monster and has no power what so ever.

Then what can we do to solve this problem? Just stand up against all of this. So let me ask you, are you standing up? Can you tell when someone crosses the line into "Mean Jesus" preaching? Is there a little bit of "Mean Jesus" in your theology? Are we willing to be the louder voice for the real Jesus or just let these people have the platform to continue making God look bad?

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