I find it more and more difficult to swallow the wide variety of Christianity that I see in America today.
You know what I am talking about, Willis. In case you are blind to the divide and conquer strategy orchestrated by Slew Foot permit me to provide a brief list of some of the Heinz 57 flavors on display.
Fundamentalist Christians, Liberal Christians, Social Justice Christians, Pentecostal Christians, Charismatic Christians, Orthodox Christians, Red Letter Christians, Apostolic Christians, Bible-Believing Christians, Lutheran Christians, Baptist Christians, Southern Baptist Christians, Free-Will Baptist Christians, First Baptist Christians, Second Baptist Christians, Primitive Baptist Christians, Methodist Christians, African Methodist Episcopal Christians, Presbyterian Christians…you get the drift.
According to my research there are nearly 34,000 denominations of Christianity in the world with nearly 2.5 BILLION adherents. Nearly 75% of American’s self-identify as Christians…that is 280 million souls, spread out over 300,000 churches. For those of you who might be interested here is a list of the 35 largest denominations in America.
Did you know that DENOMINATION is a math term? If you think back to your time spent in the 2nd grade you will remember that a “denominator” is the number by which the “whole” is divided. Numerator and denominator. Jesus said that His followers would all be ONE. (It looks like we need to return to the 2nd grade!)
But, of course this has been part of the Devil’s plan. The oldest trick in the book is divide and conquer. If you wonder why the church is so powerless you need look no further than the division in the “Body of Christ.” No wonder the “church” has become so ineffectual. We can’t even agree on what is or is not truth.
This all came to head with me this week when I had a discussion with a “black” Christian friend. ( I haven’t even gotten into the division of Christians by skin color.) I called him out on his hyphenated Christianity and he seemed to take offense. He blathered on about Trump and how “his” people were burdened by the “racist” in the White House…yada yada yada.
“Hey Dude!” I said to him. “I think I understand what your problem is. You are more “black” than you are Christian. You are far more loyal to your skin color than you are to Christ.”
He didn’t receive it well and went on a tirade about President Obama and how “white” America disrespected him and all that he did for “black” America.
“Dang.” I told him. “You are one of the most racist people I have ever met. If you are a Christian why are you so focused on the color of a man’s skin? Don’t you know that Paul taught us that there was no Jew or Greek…no fleshly divisions? Our true brothers are our brothers by faith rather than skin color?”
He told me I was miss representing the Scriptures and that I only resented President Obama because he was black.
“You’re no Christian, Pal. You voted for Obama because of the color of his skin. You either don’t have the discernment of the Holy Spirit or you are blinded by skin color if you cannot recognize that Obama was either a Muslim or a Muslim sympathizer. For Pete’s sake, he had THREE Muslim names!!
Did you know that nearly 33% of all black babies conceived in the women are killed through abortion? Did you know that abortion is the leading cause of death in the black community? Are you aware that Barack Obama was the most pro-child murder President in history?
Do you remember that when the Supreme Court shoved homo-marriage down America’s throat that our Black President lit up the White House in the color of the rainbow? Are you aware that Obama was the most anti-family President in the history of our Republic?”
He droned on about how “his” people had been oppressed for so many years and that it was about time that one of “their” people was finally elected President. It was important for “oppressed” people to stick together and that everyone in his church supported Obama.
“Is it a Christian church or a black church?” I asked him.
He told me it was “both.”
“Do you think it is a good thing for black Americans to kill their unborn children?” I asked him. “Would Jesus support marriage between two men? Would Jesus be in support of a man who promoted anti-Christian values? If Jesus was only worried about ‘His’ people wouldn’t the rest of us non-Jews be in a world of hurt?”
He told me I didn’t get it and explained to me that blacks had been walked all over for years and that it was time to make things right.
“Didn’t Jesus teach forgiveness? Wouldn’t it make sense for all Christians to forgive each other for past wrongs that had been done to them? Doesn’t the Bible instruct us to love one another and forgive one another of our trespasses? “Don’t black babies’ lives matter to you?”
He told me I didn’t get it because I wasn’t black.
My experience teaches me that those who identify as hyphenated Christians probably are not.
God is a Spirit. We are commanded to be like Him. Spirits have no skin color. There won’t be any hyphenated Christians in Heaven.