If Christian ministry in America is a success, why are there more Atheists and Agnostics coming from Christian families with each generation for the last 50 years? This is not a personal opinion, but a statistical fact proven by many studies by various Christian magazines and denominations over the past few years. Here is a link to a Pew Research article entitled: “In U.S., Decline of Christianity Continues at Rapid Pace.” https://www.pewforum.org/2019/10/17/in-u-s-decline-of-christianity-continues-at-rapid-pace/
In the seven year period from 2007 to 2014, the percentage of adults who identify themselves as Christian have dropped from 78% to 71%. During the same period, the percentage of adults who identify themselves as None have risen from 16% to 23%. That is a 1% respective change each year and if the trend continues at the same pace, the percentage of adults who identify themselves as Christian will hit the 50% mark by 2033 and the percentage of None will be 42%. But here’s the reality of changing demographics, once a trend begins to build, its pace does not remain constant, but accelerates. The decade of the 2020’s will be the tipping point decade for admitted Christianity, because the Pew Research poll only tracks self-identification alone.
We may already have passed the tipping point.
A self-identified Christian may be totally different from a practicing Christian. What do I mean by this? Simply stating “I am a Christian” only proves that I believe Jesus is my savior. It does not mean that I may live a Christian lifestyle or that Jesus is my Lord and center of all I do. A practicing Christian on the other hand is making the conscious effort to live a Christian lifestyle to the best of their understanding. Religion is an important aspect of their life. They may go to church every weekend and give to their church. They may even serve in their church in some manner. They truly believe in their heart that they are serving the Lord by their service to their church. But here again, there is another dividing line. A practicing religious Christian may not also be a truly spiritual Christian that made Jesus their Lord. What is the difference?
A practicing religious Christian is faithful to obey the doctrines and practices of the church they attend. They do all of the correct things that they’ve been taught to do. In this manner, they are able to appear righteous in the eyes of men. They are acceptable in their fellowship and may teach and lead in some function within the church structure. However, if they cannot recognize and obey Jesus’ voice in the spirit, then they are not spiritual Christians. They cannot say that they personally know God!
So it should be easy to see by now that there is a great deal of difference from an adult that confesses Christianity, to an adult that practices Christianity, and finally one that knows they are a Christian follower of the Lord Jesus Christ directly. A Radical Christian is the third description.
So what about the title of today’s blog? It is an indictment against the failure of the first two kinds of Christians. The ones who are truly superficial in their confession and actions. The hardest thing about the superficial nature of their faith, is the fact that it is so subtle that they may not realize that their faith is superficial until it is too late. These Christians haven’t been tested spiritually, or they are following a false spirit of religious obedience to men. They don’t know that they are placing their faith and obedience in the words of men rather than the Word of God. They may even believe that the entire Word of God is written. In this case, there is no need for Holy Spirit at all. All ministry is accomplished through their service and giving to the church and other non-profits that help people they will never meet. This is proxy ministry.
Proxy ministry is when we allow anyone else to do the actual ministering that reaches another man or woman’s life. Proxy ministry places the responsibility of personal outreach on somebody else. We give money to somebody else so they can reach out on our behalf. Unfortunately, most of this money is not used to reach people and bring them to Jesus here in the United States. It is used in third world countries that we believe need Jesus more that we do here. Meanwhile, our children are rejecting the very Jesus that we confess is our Lord and savior.
Honestly, why would our children choose to follow Jesus when they look at the lives of the average confessing Christian? The Atheist is more successful. The Atheist is more acceptable. The Atheist is culturally fashionable and given many more opportunities to advance socially. Why should our children choose to follow a Jesus that they cannot see is any different from the rest of the religions in the world? Why should they follow a church that talks about a spiritual walk of faith, but does not, or cannot display what a walk of faith in the spirit looks like? Our children deserve practical evidence that shows that Christianity is more than a religion of rhetoric. They deserve to know that God is real and powerful. Unfortunately, proxy ministry is teaching our children that God is silent, unpredictable, and generally powerless.
Why should we teach our children to pray to God, when God is no different from Santa Claus? We know Santa Claus is a myth, he’s not real. If God cannot answer prayers consistently, we say that our prayer was not in His will. If God cannot be seen, we say He lives in heaven when the written Word says He lives in our heart. When we have one minister say that the power of God is real, but our own minister says that the power of God died with the apostles, we choose to believe the powerless doctrine instead. Meanwhile, we live in confusion, because one Christian is able to demonstrate a power we do not understand and cannot explain, but other Christians actively deny that power.
In the effort to keep peace in the church, we simply give to the church and silently keep our opinions and questions to ourselves. Our government has removed every mention of God from our schools so our children do not hear of Godly miracles that happened during key points in our history that shaped our nation. They do not know that during the battle of Valley Forge, George Washington ended the battle with 22 bullet holes in his coat. They do not know that the crossing of the Potomac River was aided by a surprise fog that developed at the very time of the crossing. These are details that are simply not taught in school. But they do know that Mary Todd Lincoln performed seances and spoke to the dead.
If we cannot prove the power of God in practical operation on our daily lives, our children have no recourse but to reject the silent, powerless, and religious Jesus taught in church. They only know what they’ve been taught in school and more of our Christian children have learned to actively reject church altogether as a useless waste of time. Why go to church to hear about a silent, powerless, and ultimately useless God? School has already taught them that God is a religious fabrication that ancient men devised to explain scientific events that they themselves could not understand. God has been replaced by science and the religion of science is Atheism.
If you believe in the true God of power and miracles, then you believe in the God of Radical Christianity. If you want to know how to build your faith in the true God of power and miracles, then Rules for Radical Christians was written for you. If you want to experience miracles in your life, Rules for Radical Christians is the roadmap to a miraculous life. It has allowed my family to live when we were unemployed. It showed us how to find a home when we were homeless. We never had to live in a homeless shelter for a single day, and we never had to live without food and a warm shelter. When our church had no answers and gave no help, God was able to show us where to go and who to believe. Our family knows that God is real and powerful. This book was written so anyone else can get to know that the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ is the one true Deliverer who is living and real. He does speak to His children and this book was written so you can learn the process to recognize His voice in your life and heart.
Proxy ministry is an utter failure and we are losing our children and moral culture to Atheism and false liberal doctrines. If you want to restore godliness in our culture, then you need to become actively involved with God in your life. You need to make Jesus your Lord and “Rules for Radical Christians” shows how to progressively make Jesus your Lord. You can be a Radical Christian and God will energize your personal ministry for your own life. Then you will be living in the depth of your calling to save the world around you and the culture where you live.