I have, as stated in past posts, been around the Evangelical sub-culture for the past 28 years. I have participated in a multitude of Christian “outreach” programs. Protesting abortion clinics, writing in a college paper against pre-marital sex,picketing movies (The Last Temptation of Christ), doing door to door evangelism (memorizing a script via Evangelism Explosion), pontificating from my fount of wisdom concerning the “facts” of a six-day creation,evils of sin. and the soon to come Rapture (disappearance of all “true believers”) and the seven-year tribulation. I lambasted anyone that disagreed with me, discounting them as ignorant unbelievers, thanking God that I was being persecuted for holding forth truth. I loved Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, and so many other televangelist because they were the defenders of all that was true about God and Country. Oh yes. I became the most patriotic Christian even flying Old Glory outside my house every day. The flag was the first thing I bought after I buying my Bible. I was smug. Arrogant. Self Righteous. Overbearing. But I knew that I was right because I was taught that this was Christianity. To hate sin (and in the process the sinner), to argue and defend what I thought was God’s view. I read my Bible and prayed faithfully, following the rules, becoming a good Christian.
I realize looking back in retrospect I must have hurt a lot of people, but more than that, I hurt the Gospel message. I was wrong in my approach, I was wrong in how I treated and viewed people. I was not living as a reflection on Christ, rather a reflection of my own perceived moral superiority. I am truly sorry for that.
But God began to change me and open my eyes to that idea that quite a bit of Evangelicalism is not Biblical, and in the process some in the church have become angry, and hostile to me and the new message.
More on that next time.