- Why do people hate/love Christianity?
- Why do so many people believe / disbelieve Christianity?
- Why does it make so much sense / nonsense to so many?
Then forget all about it.
My sermon today is on the teachings of Jesus, but not about belief, truth or whatever.
If you actually read the Gospels and weed out the history, miracles, prophecy what you are left with is the actual teachings. And if you really look at the teachings it is pretty freaking shocking. And really shocking in that it is completely opposite from the way of life our Christian Nation or Religion-less world is supposed to be aligned.
Take the Sermon on the Mount (or plain). It is antithetical to modern, much less “conservative Christian” worldviews.
But before I take off I just want to say the messages in the New Testament are as anathema to non believers as they truly are for the modern Christian believer. They really are “unto Jews (basically the modern Christian) a stumbling block, and unto Gentiles foolishness (the modern non believer)”
Here are the greatest hits
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, - for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” First off, modern society is all about presence and branding and attitude and I defy anybody to find and example in popular culture where humility and meekness is presented in a positive light. From superheroes to pop stars and politicians, it is all about style baby.
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” - Again meekness is weakness. Hats off to Steve Jobs, Donald Trump and anybody in the modern capitalist system.
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” - Any conservative Christian will tell you water boarding is good and criminals deserve more prison time.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor[i] and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous" - I listened to conservative Christian radio today and that is a REALLY angry bunch of people. I don't think they heard the bit about not hating. What's else is there to say, hate rules the day. Christians hate Muslims and Atheists, Atheists hate Christians and Muslims and I don't presume to know who Muslims hate, but the ISIS dudes seem to hate just about everybody.
“And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well.” - Need I say more?
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth”. How about that 401K?
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? “What is American life other than buy more clothes, food or drink?
There is more like this stuff, but what is the point. If you take the opposite of the sermon on the mount you have modern American values, Christian or otherwise.
Basically for the non Christian the above thoughts are crap because they feed an oppressive religion and Christians pay no attention to them because really it is about a social values religiion not a radical change in their way of thinking.
That is all I have now.
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Update: I am again reminded that things that seem obvious to me are somehow considered illogical to others. I admit the fault may be with me. It is a hard truth to accept that my thinking may not be as clear as it seems to me.
To fight this I will try to pare down my argument on this pont to the essentials later.
But to start, I offer that the Sermon on the Mound should be considered as vital to the teachings of Jesus. If someone disagrees then my argument has no weight. Otherwise we may continue.