re: 25 Things That Should(n’t) Scare Christians. {part 1}

There are certain blogs I love to read. There are others I read because they drive me up a wall, and I enjoy that feeling every now and then. This particular post is in response to an article I read on one such blog. Rachel Held Evans – author, speaker, blogger – wrote an article titled “25 Things That Shouldn’t Scare Christians.” What was on the list, however, made me scratch my head and think, “Is she on crack?”

Yes, I’m judging.

No, that was a joke. I’m really not.

Her article generated some 350+ comments, and was updated with a disclaimer the day after it published. So I’m going to take her article and respond to all 25 things about why I disagree with her – not that anyone cares about my opinion. But that’s beside the point. (oh, but lest you think I’m a completely disagreeable person, there were a couple points which I agreed with her on.)

Here’s her list (bolded), and my thoughts on each point of the 25 things that SHOULD scare Christians…

1. Someone leaving the phrase “under God” out of the pledge of allegiance before a golf game. – First of all, I don’t watch golf. I’d rather stick a fork in my eye. Secondly, if I did watch golf and they said the Pledge of Allegiance before the game and left out “under God,” I can promise you that my feathers will be ruffled… greatly.

2. Sharing civil rights with gays and lesbians. – The more tolerant we become of sin, the less tolerant it becomes of Christianity. Regardless of the politics involved, sin must not be excused or embraced – and by recognizing homosexuality as a legit union, we are dooming this country at a quicker pace.

3. Scientists. – I say that all depends on the scientist and what they’re promoting. I personally don’t believe a big bang happened, all life forms emerged from slime, or that humans evolved from monkeys.

4. Target employees that say “happy holidays” instead of “merry Christmas.” – You can say “happy holidays” to me on the 4th of July. But when It’s Christmas time, call it what it is – it’s Christmas. CHRISTmas. The whole reason for said holiday is Christ.

5. Mosques. – Oh, right. Because the religion associated with mosques is all peaceful, rainbows, and butterflies. Hello? I’m scared out of my mind of mosques, what they stand for, and the little middle-eastern people who see no problem with being used as human bombs.

6. The media. – Ehh… again, it all depends on what “media” we’re talking about. I don’t fear Disney cartoons, but I fear some of the news organizations out there and what they support, promote, and defend.

7. Missing God’s will and accidentally going to the wrong college. – I think maybe, Mrs. Evans, you take God’s will too lightly. I remember reading something similar to this statement in Kevin DeYoung’s book “Just Do Something,” and I felt the same way then as I do now. I believe my God is a very detailed God and that He cares about even the most minuscule detail of my life… and yes, that even includes what college I attend (especially if a person feels called into the ministry).

8. Theological differences. – Alright, are we talking Baptist vs. Protestant, or Islam vs. Christian? Because the one I can deal with, speak rationally with, dispute without fear of martyrdom. The other I fear greatly…

9. Suddenly getting asked to explain the religious symbolism in “Tree of Life.” – This one confuses me… in fact, the first thing that came to mind was The Lion King. Don’t ask me why.

10. Mormon presidential candidates. – Oh, I don’t know… I suppose if you take into account the fact that all other religions other than Christianity worship dead people as their gods, it’s not that big of a deal. However, my personal preference is having a president that isn’t entangled in Mormonism or Islam.

11. Yoga. – The only thing I fear about yoga is pulling my hamstring.

…          …          …          …

This is getting lengthy, so I’m going to split it up into  two parts. Part two will publish tomorrow.

What are your thoughts on the above list?
Do you have anything you’d like to add to my thoughts?

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Posted on August 24, 2011, in Re: and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 37 Comments.

  1. What IS her problem? I mean, really? I think I’m gonna do my own list, now. Just for comic relief, you know. Her list is insane, that is, unless you’re French and surrender to every enemy that passes by!

  2. I was one who commented on her post the day it came out, and was very unhappy, not so much because of the items in the list, but because of the word “scared”. I felt then, and feel now, that it’s a cop-out any time you label those with whom you disagree as fearful. It’s the root of labeling people “homophobes”, because “phobe” means someone who has an irrational fear of something. I see the “they do it because they’re afraid” accusation, and it is often groundless.
    By using the word “scared” Rachel is casting people to a caste level below herself.
    That said, my tone when I commented was over the top. So did apologize in a later comment.

    By the way, evolutionists don’t believe humans evolved from monkeys. They believe modern apes and humans evolved from a common ancestor. Still in error, but an important distinction. Just FYI.

      • Heather, I’m a former science teacher. I can assure you that no evolutionist believes that.

        • That’s awesome that you used to teach science! but at the same time, to make a statement like “no evolutionist believes that” is pure foolishness. I have personally met evolutionists that believe that – I’ve heard it from their own mouths as they admit it.

          Just like you cannot take Christians and lump them into one huge cookie-cutter group, or Muslims and lump them into one huge cookie-cutter group, you can’t lump all evolutionists into one huge cookie-cutter group. People all over the world have all sorts of beliefs and ideas — and I know for a fact that some evolutionists truly believe we evolved from “monkeys.”

          • Sorry, I should have been clearer: I have not met a scientist or professor at my college who believes that. These are who I call evolutionists. They believe that all life started with a single-celled organism (which itself was created spontaneously by something like an electrical charge on some amino acids) which reproduced and evolved into multicelled organisms. That these organisms, over time, became more complex, and then things branched out. Plants are one branch, animals another. Humans, being just another animal, are another branch parallel to apes, with both coming off a common branch. The common ancestor that humans and apes share looks nothing like what we’d call a monkey and has been extinct for a long time.

            I don’t believe that myself, but that’s beside the point. Anyone who believes in evolution but thinks we evolved from apes does not understand the theory of evolution. And that includes whoever drew that picture.

  3. By the way, I disagree with you about #4. Let me know if you care to know why.

    • I think I have an idea of what your disagreement may be, but go ahead and share it with us. I’m not opposed to being disagreed with (obviously). LOL.

      • OK, here’s the thing: We as Christians are told that the bible contains the commands and directives from God which we are to follow. I believe that. You believe that.

        The bible tells us we need to do lots of things. It tells us we need to not do lots of things. It never tells us whether or not to celebrate the birth of Christ on an annual basis. If it was important to God that we do so, He most likely wouldn’t have made it so dang difficult to know the birthdate of Jesus.

        That does not mean we are not free to celebrate Christmas. It just means it’s a man-made holiday. The celebration of Christmas is not against what God tells to do. It’s neutral. Like eating mashed potatoes, or wearing a blue shirt. We are free to do these things. But they are not mandated by God.

        Now, if someone told me I couldn’t do something that God wanted me to do, such as pray, go to church, be good to my kids, etc., then I’d make trouble. I’d be defiant, to say the least. Because nobody gets to overrule God in my life.

        However, man-made holidays do not fall into that category.

        My problem with the ones who get upset at the folks who say “Happy Holidays” is that they think their rights are being violated. And that would be true if the celebration of Christmas was something God told us to do. But He didn’t. We decided to do it. It’s man-made.

        What’s funny to me is that some, not all, of those who are upset about “Happy Holidays” want to, as you say, keep Christmas about Christ, but never protest that the same stores have Santa Claus in their decorations. Well, it’s not funny. But it’s inconsistent.

        You want to celebrate your man-made holiday in the way that you want? Great. Just don’t be surprised that someone at non-religious entities such as Target choose not to, at least not in the way that you wish they would.

        • I see where you are getting at . . . but I want to add that some HATE Santa Claus (like myself) and refuse to celebrate him in any shape or form! Christmas is about Christ, man-made or not. It is a celebration of our King’s birth. If the world doesn’t want to celebrate that, they don’t have to. However, that was and is the purpose of it.

          Just a thought! Not meant as a criticism!!!! 🙂

        • I get that. But if I’m a Christian, working at Target (or anywhere), and they tell me that I’m not allowed to say “Merry Christmas” because it offends people… well, them I’m going to be just a little bit offended. I don’t celebrate “Happy Holiday” on December 25. I celebrate my Savior — “Merry Christmas.”

          In an attempt to be “tolerant” of everyone else’s feelings, Christians are getting their rights and their feelings absolutely trampled on. THAT is not right.

          • Ah, so your angle is about how it’s not fair to Target employees. I didn’t catch that.

            Well, I’d still say that if my boss told me I couldn’t do something that God told me to do, I’d defy my boss. But I don’t think this qualifies. There is no biblical command to celebrate the birth of Christ.

          • I would say that we are too place importance on the things that God places importance on — and it’s very obvious from reading Scripture that the Lord places a great deal of importance on the physical birth of Christ.

  4. This lady seems a bit off her rocker! I am not sure if I would use the word scared, but these are things we should separate ourselves from and stand up for the truth of the Bible. If all else fails, we should follow The Recovering Legalist’s advice in his blog and knock them in the head with biggest hardcover KJB we can find! 🙂

    • Rachel is an interesting read sometimes. She’s very liberal, and in fact much of the focus early on was based on the fact that she’s located in the same town where evolution was a huge story (Scopes Monkey trial) nearly a hundred years ago. She is a Christian, but differs from me on many theological issues not related directly to salvation. She is very caring, and in fact, just got back from a mission trip to Bolivia. She is also a facebook friend of some of my facebook friends. I have not interacted with her myself, beyond commenting on her blog occasionally, usually in disagreement.

      • She is most certainly a liberal Christian… but I, like you, enjoy reading a post or two on her blog from time to time. I’ve even commented myself on there before (but it’s been awhile).

  5. I actually agree with her that Christians shouldn’t be scared of any of that stuff for one simple reason – perfect love drives out fear. Should we be concerned about some of them? Sure but not at the expense of the point which is love.

    I will disagree with you on one though and that is mosques and your stereotypical comment afterwards. Let’s remember that a lot of Muslims are peace loving and find the more fundamental among their faith as abhorrent as the rest of us – and surely Christianity could be tarred with the same brush after the many many atrocities committed in it’s name?

    I have to confess to not seeing any major issues in the list but that’s maybe because some are quite general. I do, in general, dislike ‘list blogs’ though and I’m sure the good Lord will address people who use them on judgement day.

    • PS – Great to have you back!!

    • You’re right – of course, I cannot clump all Muslims into one category.

      I guess what came to mind as I was writing this was the violent videos I’d seen, the news articles I read, the arab fair where my friends dad was arrested for handing out Christian literature, the group of soul winners who had to be escorted out by police due to the violent threats by the muslim people. THAT’S what was on my mind as I typed my stereotypical comment. I should have been more specific – I’m sorry.

      Thank you for the comment!

  6. By the way, The Tree of Life was an independent film that starred Bradd Pitt and Sean Penn. It was highly acclaimed, but I don’t know that many people who saw it. The fact that you were confused indicates to me that you were unaware of the film. Don’t worry, I didn’t see it either.

    • Thank you for the information! you were correct in your assumption that I was unaware of the film. :]

      • I totally wish my blog would do pingbacks. I referenced your post in my latest post, but you have no way of knowing that because Blogger doesn’t do pingbacks. Grrrr!

        • I know it’s alot of work, but my suggestion would be to transfer your blog to WordPress. I used blogger a couple years ago with a previous blog I had written. Once I discovered WordPress I despised blogger. WordPress is so much more user-friendly (IMO).

          What you decide, feel free to physically post links as “pingbacks” under any post you reference. That is fine with me. :]

  7. so, for once, i have no words.

    … it’s just so mindless that there is no argument. ya know? sometimes, it’s just not worth the energy.

  8. What sticks out to me is her use of the word “scare.” Should be be in fear over these thing? Do worldliness, sin, mistaken theology, disrespect of God, etc SCARE God? Is he trembling? Should we be? I say NO. God is still on his throne and we know how it all works out in the end.

    Modern American Christianity is WAY too quick to take offense. What good did getting offended ever do anyone? My attitude is more, “Okay, I disagree with that, and I’m gonna pray that it changes, but in the meantime there’s no use freaking out over it. I have more important things to do with my life. Like loving people, for instance.”

    What if we could be known as people of ACTION rather than REACTION?

    That said–should we accept these things (worldliness, sin, mistaken theology, disrespect of God) as hunky-dory and a-ok? Um, NO. However, we cannot expect people living in darkness to live as though they are in the light. Pray for the hearts of our generation, but don’t get up in arms because someone said Happy Holidays to you. That’s a symptom, not the real disease.

    Side note: Although, it also could be easily argued that “Happy Holidays” is just a cultural shift… should I also get upset if I sneeze and someone says “bless you” instead of “God bless you”? Maybe the origins of the shift were to consciously remove Christ from Christmas (or maybe not–maybe someone wanted to be more inclusive because Christmas doesn’t have the same meaning to them. They’re in the darkness–why would you expect them to care about Jesus’ birth?) but your average department store clerk is certainly not going out of her way to offend your faith. It’s just something people say. Instead be glad they’re being friendly to you.

    The way I see it– we live in a fallen world, and we do not wrestle with flesh and blood but against the spiritual powers. I think many of the things on this list are trivial in light of eternity and are NOT things that should “scare” Christians. Perfect love cast out fear, right? Just love the world. Lay down your rights for someone else, don’t demand that the world cater to your sense of not being offended. Just keep loving, keep praying, and choose your battles wisely.

    I guess what I’m trying to say was summed up best in the author’s final sentence: “As citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven, fear need not be a factor in our discussion of these issues.”

  9. No surprise, but I disagree with her (she must have problems) and agree with your comments. While I am not scared of mosques, I am concerned about what they stand for and what some of planning in my own country.

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