Blurring the Lines: The “Christian Continuum”

Our world today is moving in a perpetual state of “grey”. The concept of absolute truth has been replaced with personal truth or as it is commonly referred to as “your truth”. What is your way of looking at life? What is your expression of spirituality? Who is your God? It is within this context that those that name the name of Christ work out their faith on a daily basis. The relativism that has plagued society for centuries has now kicked the doors of the church wide open with guns blazing. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is defiantly being replaced with the gospels of health and wealth, miracle chasing, and secular humanism. Rather than submitting to the truths presented in the bible, some “Christians” are now doing things on their terms. A good way of explaining it is that they pull up to the biblical buffet and pick and choose what they would like and completely disregard what they do not like. This phenomenon creates a Christian continuum in which people sound more like politicians than Christians. “I am a liberal Christian” or “I am an Evangelical/conservative Christian.” Or they ride around town with “Coexist” bumper stickers plastered all over their vehicles.

Today’s Christianity has morphed into a smorgasbord of ideologies from other faith traditions and the culture as a whole. The baseline for being a Christian is not the bible or Christ, but rather the type of religious institution one attends. The essentials truths of mans total depravity, God’s wrath, Christ sacrifice, and God’s adoption of man as His children are not preached in most churches today. People live grace on a continuum. There is the ardent belief that if one is good enough in this life then when it comes to this life or the life to come all will be well. What is right and what is wrong is an afterthought.

It is in this vein that some feel empowered to lie, cheat, steal, sleep around, and do many other things that are condemned in the bible with no remorse. Why have remorse when one pays their taxes, is a friendly neighbor, gives a few dollars to a homeless person, and goes to church every once-in-a-while? As long as the scale of good versus bad falls heavier on the good side, then one is ok. So now we have the situation in which one person can spend their Saturday morning out sharing the Gospel while one person is waking up in a stranger’s bed with a hangover and each calling themselves a Christian.

I am not trying to pass judgment on anyone, but I am trying to illustrate that there are major inconsistencies in the body of Christ. I am also questioning how a continuum can even exist if all Christians read the same bible. I understand that the bible is complex and at times what the bible is saying can be hard to understand. That being said the bible is very clear on many subjects from sex, to money, to who God is, etc. with no wiggle room or space for interpretation. The bible is infallible. The bible presents absolute truth. If God says it, that settles it.

A continuum by definition is a “continuous nonspatial whole or extent or succession in which no part or portion is distinct or distinguishable from adjacent parts”. In other words when you put two things together, one does not look much different from the other. I say all of this to say that if the bible has specific instructions on how we are to live our lives then there should be no Christian continuum. We should not describe ourselves as liberal versus Evangelical/conservative. You should not be able to do whatever you want with no remorse. You are either a Christian or you are compromised. There is no in between. When you analyze the life of a biblically sound Christian, their life should look completely different from one who does not know Christ. Are they perfect? By no means, but a biblically based Christian should constantly be striving to be like Jesus and in that striving not reflect anything but Him.

In John 8:31b-32 Jesus stated the following: “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Holding to the teachings of Jesus is the only way that we can know truth and in that truth have freedom. We see the teachings of Jesus in the bible, the inspired word of God.

So my question to you is are you walking in truth or are you on a Christian continuum?

About the Author: Keith has been writing since 2007. Recently he began sharing his thoughts on life and faith in his blog The Sojourner. As a faithful follower of Christ it is his goal to share the gospel in a way that challenges believers to grow in their faith and compels those that don’t know Christ to follow Him. Keith lives in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia with his beautiful wife Laura. You can find Keith on the web at http://sojourner122.blogspot.com/