Tag Archive: Holiness

Getting Right with God: The Endless Pursuit of Holiness and Perfection

cs lewis perfection

Evangelicals believe that humanity can be neatly divided into two classes: saved or lost; in or out; Christian or not. There’s no ambiguity. Either a person has been born-again (born from above) or he is lost, dead in trespasses and sin (Ephesians 2:1), the enemy of God (James 4:4). Either a person is on God’s side or he is a follower of Satan (John 8:44). Either a person is headed for Heaven or he is bound for Hell. Granted, Evangelical fight amongst themselves over what exactly is required for someone to be saved, but once the deed is done, new converts enter an exclusive group of humans — the redeemed.

Most Evangelicals believe that once a person is saved, his salvation is forever; that there is nothing that can separate him from the love of God. Romans 8:31-39 says:

 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In John 10: 27-29, Jesus allegedly said:

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.

According to this text, it is Jesus who gives to sinners eternal life, and once this is given to them it can never, ever be taken away. Calvinists and Arminians endlessly bicker with each other over what these verses “really” mean, but both sides agree that Jesus grants salvation and eternal life to all those who “confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead.” (Romans 10)

Once a person is saved, he begins living out an endless cycle of being in and out of the will of God; of being on-fire and lukewarm. Evangelical preachers spend countless Sundays encouraging Christians to do the basics: read/study the Bible, pray, attend church, witness to unbelievers, and financially support their local churches. Sometimes, preachers try to guilt congregants into doing these things. Remember what Jesus did for you! Surely, you can do these things for him! Jesus is portrayed as someone who gave his all to save lost sinners, and if he was willing to die on the cross for them, surely his followers can devote themselves to the basics of Christian faith.

I came of age in the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) church movement. Saved, baptized, and called to preach at the age of fifteen, I was a devoted follower of Jesus Christ. I attended church three times on Sundays and once on Wednesdays. I also attended youth group after church on Sunday nights, and participated in extracurricular youth activities during the week. On Tuesdays, I went on church visitation, hoping to either evangelize the lost or encourage Christian deadbeats to get back into church. On Saturday mornings, I went on bus visitation, contacting bus riders to remind them that we would be by to pick them up the next day and canvassing for new riders. Once a month, area IFB churches would get together and hold a youth rally, one of my favorite events due to the larger pool of dateable girls it afforded me. And if this wasn’t enough to keep me busy, the church held a week-long revival meeting several times a year, an annual missions conference, and periodic two- or three-day preaching meetings. One week each summer was devoted to youth camp, a time when church teens were assaulted with Bible preaching morning, noon, and night.

The goal of this immersive religious indoctrination was two-fold: to evangelize the lost and to reclaim backsliders. As I mentioned above, once a person is saved, he begins living out an endless cycle of being in and out of the will of God; of being on-fire and lukewarm. In most Evangelical churches, out-of-the-will-of-God, lukewarm Christians vastly outnumber those who are on-fire. Most Evangelical congregants are passive church attendees. The bigger the congregation the more this is so. Pastors will try all sorts of methods, programs, and vaudeville gimmicks to motivate congregants, but they rarely, if ever, result in long-term, lasting change. Revivals, youth rallies, and youth camps were used as tools to stir the emotions of those of us deemed “not right with God.” And these tools worked — for a while.

I attended countless services where I felt Holy Ghost “conviction” over “sin” in my life. Evangelists — who were experts at emotionally manipulating people and extracting outward demonstrations of repentance and contrition — focused on sin, calling all those not right with God to come to the church altar and do business with God. I responded to countless such altar calls during my years in the Evangelical church. I sincerely believed that the Holy Ghost was speaking to me and convicting me of my sins. I’d kneel at the altar, weep and pray, and then arise feeling cleansed from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9) These moments were oh-so-special. Why? Because at that moment I felt close to God. I felt that everything was right in my world and between me and my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Alas, much like taking a bath, this feeling didn’t last. Sometimes, I didn’t even make it out of the church building before sinning again.

I tried really, really, really hard to maintain a holy walk before the Lord, but temptations were everywhere. And try as I might to not give into them, eventually I would succumb, requiring me to yet again walk the proverbial sawdust trail, kneel at the altar, and confess my sins. My pastors taught me that Christians and sinners alike sinned in thought, word, and deed. Boy, were they right, or so I thought at the time. In a world where everything matters and sin lists are endless, it shouldn’t be surprising that righteousness and holiness were illusive, if not impossible to find. This environment, of course, drove me to embrace perfectionism. After all, Jesus purportedly said in Matthew 5:48You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. I thought, at the time, that if, as the Bible says, God gives Christians everything we need pertaining to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3) and the Holy Spirit indwells every believer (1 John 4:12-14 and Ephesians 1:13, 14) and is their ever-present teacher and guide (John 14:26 and 1 John 2:27 and John 16:13), perfectionism should be achievable — or pretty close anyway. And so, day after day, month after month, and year after year, I ran the race set before me (1 Corinthians 9:24 and Hebrews 12:1,2), striving for holiness, without which, the Apostle Paul said, no man shall see the Lord.

Several months ago, Polly and I spent considerable time talking about how driven we were as Christians to find the faith and way of life we heard preachers preach about, inspirational books talked about, and Christian artists sing about. We wanted Jesus in our lives 24-7, just like these preachers, authors, and musicians supposedly had. Try as we might, we never reached the peak of spiritual Mount Everest. No matter how much effort and energy we put into reaching the summit, we failed. It was not until the tail end of our time as Christians that we realized that we had spent the best years of our lives chasing after the unattainable; that we were, in every way, just like the unwashed, uncircumcised Philistines of the world. Yes, we were Christians; yes, we loved Jesus, but we were also flesh-and-blood human beings. Once we came to understand this, it was as if a huge weight of guilt was lifted from us. Of course, those who were still chasing righteousness and holiness thought differently of us. We were considered backsliders, out of the will of God; carnal Christians who loved the things of the world more than the things of God. (1 John 2:15)

It was during this period of my life I started blogging — circa 2007. I was drinking deeply from the emergent/liberal Christian/Thomas Merton well. My writing attracted Evangelical and IFB preachers who wanted to set me straight about my new-found “sinful” way of life. One man, a Christian Missionary and Alliance preacher, endlessly hounded me, questioning whether I was even a Christian. This preacher, in his life, was where I once was. Fast forward to today, this man is now divorced, remarried, and no longer in the ministry. This story has been repeated over, and over, and over again by countless preachers, evangelists, and other Christians who thought it their mission in life to correct, condemn, or chastise me. Few of them have been able to keep on the straight and narrow. Oh, they might give the outward appearance of godliness, but they know and I know that their lives are little more than a charade. How do I know this? Experience tells me that endlessly striving for perfection leads to psychological and physical harm; that such motivation harms those you love and care about the most. Even Fundamentalist Baptist John Piper, a proponent of Christian hedonism, found he couldn’t practice what he preached, leaving the pastorate due to marital “problems.”

If atheism has done anything for me, it has freed me from the endless pursuit of righteousness, holiness, and perfection. Abandoning the Bible and Christianity as my authoritative standard for morality has allowed me greatly reduce the number of behaviors I consider “sins.” As a Christian, my sin list was pages and pages long. Today, my sin list messily fits on a 3×5 index card and is getting smaller every day. So many of the “sins” I spent countless hours weeping and wailing over, were, in fact, normal, healthy human behaviors. Much of the preaching I heard focused on sexual sins. Preachers reminded me and I later reminded congregants that Jesus said in Matthew 5:28: But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Imagine how freeing it was to learn that sexual want, need, and desire were normal, and that considering a woman who is not your wife as sexually desirable was not necessarily wrong. I learned the same about anger. I spent most of my life holding in anger, only to have angry outbursts towards my spouse and children when no one but they could see me. As a Christian and a pastor, I was never allowed to be angry. Of course, this only led to me living a double-faced life: “always in control Pastor Bruce” while in public, and “angry out of control Pastor Bruce” when behind closed doors. Imagine how refreshing it was to learn through counseling that anger was a normal, healthy human emotion and that the important thing was what I did with my anger. I have learned over the past decade that most of the behaviors called “sin” in my Evangelical past were, in fact, anything but. And that instead of constantly striving for perfection, it was okay to just be Bruce Gerencser. Now, this doesn’t mean I never act inappropriately. I do. I am, after all, human. If you doubt this, just ask Polly. She will set you straight on the matter. When I find that I have harmed someone else with my words or deeds, I try, if possible, to make restitution. My goal as a humanist is to be a good person, to love and respect others, and treat them with kindness. Simply put, I strive every day to not be an asshole.

How has your life changed post-Christianity? Please share your story in the comment section. I would love to especially hear from former fellow perfectionists.

About Bruce Gerencser

Bruce Gerencser, 62, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 41 years. He and his wife have six grown children and twelve grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist. For more information about Bruce, please read the About page.

Thank you for reading this post. Please share your thoughts in the comment section. If you are a first-time commenter, please read the commenting policy before wowing readers with your words. All first-time comments are moderated. If you would like to contact Bruce directly, please use the contact form to do so.

Donations are always appreciated. Donations on a monthly basis can be made through Patreon. One-time donations can be made through PayPal.

Living Life Through a Lens of Godliness, a Guest Post by ObstacleChick

godliness

A guest post by ObstacleChick

Growing up in an Evangelical environment, I learned that we are supposed to assess everything through the lens of godliness. That means we should discern whether our thoughts, actions, movies or television shows we watch, songs we listen to, articles of clothing we wear, relationships we have, and articles or books we read glorify God or detract from godliness. This is a large task that requires a lot of attention.

Many Christians I knew at my Southern Baptist church or at my Evangelical school went through the motions of religious practice without taking it to extremes, but some people took it quite seriously. I always found it overwhelming to pay the necessary attention to every single aspect of life to determine whether it met the standards of godliness. My grandmother, who had her own library of Christian concordances, history books, and books by Christian apologists, as well as Christian novels, spent large amounts of time trying to live up to what she considered her God’s standards for godliness. Everything was intently scrutinized to determine whether each was godly enough.

Our family loved watching “The Sound of Music” when it was broadcast on TV each year. We could sing along with all the songs, and we all cheered when the naughty nuns stole car parts from the Nazis’ cars so they could not pursue the Von Trapp family as they fled through the mountains to neutral Switzerland. However, one year, my grandmother determined that one of the songs, “Something Good,” taught an ungodly doctrine. This song was sung by Maria and Captain von Trapp after they declared their love for each other. Here are the main lyrics:

“Something Good” by Richard Rodgers

Perhaps I had a wicked childhood
Perhaps I had a miserable youth
But somewhere in my wicked, miserable past
There must have been a moment of truth
For here you are, standing there, loving me
Whether or not you should
So somewhere in my youth or childhood
I must have done something good
Nothing comes from nothing
Nothing ever could
So somewhere in my youth or childhood
I must have done something good

First, my grandmother said good things in our lives come through the grace and mercy of God, not through anything we do ourselves. Yes, our actions have consequences, but all good things come from Heaven above. The second issue she had with the song was with the line “nothing comes from nothing, nothing ever could.” In her mind, God created the heavens and earth and all therein from nothing, so therefore everything came from nothing and God made nothing into something. And technically there wasn’t “nothing” because there was God (yeah, I don’t get it either). I must admit, I thought she was nit-picking a fun, wholesome, uplifting movie, but I don’t think she watched it again until she started suffering from dementia.

Grandma believed that God developed hierarchies for us to follow. She believed that wives were under their husbands’ authority; that children were under their parents’ authority; that everyone is under God’s authority. She ran the household this way too, but in a loving way. At one point, we were a four-generation household, with my great-grandmother, my grandparents, my mom, and me. Eventually, my mom married again and moved out, but Grandma adhered to her hierarchy. Grandpa was head of household, so he could do whatever he wanted and was to be catered to at all times. Grandma’s mother was next, as children are commanded to honor their parents, and my great-grandmother’s whims were catered to as well. Technically, I was lowest on the totem pole, but Grandma considered herself God’s servant and put herself in the lowest position, eventually to the detriment of her health.

The hierarchy was amusing with regard to television. My great-grandmother was barely mobile, so using her walker, she would go from her bedroom to the table for breakfast, then to her chair where she watched television all day. (My grandma served my great-grandmother’s meals at her chair on a TV tray.) In the morning was news; then “preaching shows” (typically Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker whom I thought looked like a clown with all the makeup); then “The Price is Right,” followed by noon news and an afternoon of her soap operas; then evening news and a full slate of prime time shows and/or a movie. My great-grandmother controlled what we watched. Grandpa bought another television so he could watch sports or movies in another room. Grandma didn’t approve of a lot of the programming on television, but because she considered herself submissive to Grandpa and to her mother, she rarely said anything. I loved being able to watch movies and shows with the word “damn” or “oh my god” (which Grandma considered blasphemous). Grandpa’s favorite movie was “Patton” with George C. Scott in the lead, and even the edited-for-TV version was unacceptable by Grandma’s standards. The only time Grandma intervened was one day on my great-grandmother’s soap opera there was a male stripper and my great-grandma got a little too excited about it. Grandma said, “That’s it, I’m not having that filth in my house anymore,” whereupon my great-grandmother had a tantrum, hauled herself out of her chair, and took five minutes to go twenty feet down the hall with her walker to her bedroom where she sequestered herself and sulked the rest of the day. About a week later she was allowed to watch television again. Grandma herself didn’t watch much television outside of the news and Billy Graham Crusades, and she only listened to Christian radio talk shows like “The Christian Jew Hour” or shows by pastors such as James Dobson.

Grandma did not believe we should play games with regular playing cards because they were a “tool of gambling.”  She would play Rook because those were not playing cards. She did allow me to play solitaire with a deck of cards, but only because I was not playing with another player and gambling, and because her beloved father had enjoyed solitaire so much when he was alive. We weren’t allowed to play rummy in her house — I had to play it at my mom and stepdad’s house. Grandma wouldn’t allow me to play with dice either, because they were also tools of gambling — so games like Yahtzee and Monopoly were forbidden as well. Grandma never understood that literally ANYTHING could become a tool for gambling.

There were a couple of extremely pious girls who attended my church and school. They could, and often did, judge other people’s words and actions “in love,” “correcting” their peers in their testimony to others. During the 1980s, certain television shows such as “Magnum PI” and “The A-Team” were popular. Mr. T was known for saying, “I pity the fool….” A lot of us kids would quote Mr. T, and the word “fool” became a part of our vocabulary. Of course, one day on the school bus, I said “fool” and one of these lovely girls took it upon herself to let me know that it was ungodly to say “fool” because of this verse:

But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. (Matthew 5:22)

What I didn’t consider at the time is that it may have been Wednesday. On Wednesdays, one of the pious girls was required by her family to fast at lunchtime and to give the money her lunch would have cost to charity. So she may have just been hungry.

The pious girls determined that the only music they would listen to included “Beach Boys” songs, classical music, and any music played at our church and school. They were suspicious about the music played on the Christian radio station. It was too “worldly” or “liberal” because drums and electrical instruments were used in some of the songs. Their exclamatory word of choice was “fudge.” My Grandma used to say “I’ll Swanee” as her exclamatory word until one day (who knows how) she determined that saying “I’ll Swanee” was ungodly, as it was a replacement swear word. Thereafter, she stifled any response other than “Oh.” Grandma allowed me to listen to classical music or to gospel music and anything by the Bill Gaither Trio, but all other music was considered ungodly. (Please read Christian Swear Words.)

This level of discernment made me anxious and took up a lot of energy while growing up. Honestly, I couldn’t keep up with it all. A lot of it was confusing, and I longed to be free to enjoy life without worrying about every single word, action, or situation being godly enough. When I stayed at my mom and stepdad’s house, there was a lot more freedom of speech and action, but I would have to switch back into high-vigilance mode at my grandparents’ house and at school. It was a relief to let it all go as I moved further away from Evangelical Christianity. Interestingly, as my grandmother succumbed to dementia and no longer remembered all the religious strictures, she became a lot happier, childlike, and fun. There was a lot I missed about her intellectually, but as she became more forgetful, she enjoyed a lot of things again like movies and baseball (we never knew she was an Atlanta Braves fan until she suffered dementia, and I have no idea when or why baseball became ungodly). Don’t get me wrong, my grandmother was a very loving and caring person who did a lot of things to help others (as anonymously as possible), and I loved her dearly, but some of her standards were a lot to handle.

Did the home you grow up in have a code of godliness or what Baptists call “standards”? Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comment section.

Robert Lyte: Worldly TV, Music, Sin and the Pursuit of Pleasure

robert lyte 2015

Robert Lyte, near the Jordan River, the place where Jesus was baptized. 2015

As I was searching the internet for quotes on the evil of watching television, I stumbled upon the writings and videos of a man by the name of Robert Lyte. Lyte, a self-published author, had a come-to-Jesus moment in 2008. Lyte describes his conversion this way:

…in 2004, I started going to church. Here I noticed a few others who were serious about Jesus and this spoke to me. One day I was touched by the Lord, and broke down in tears knowing the Lord was the forgiver of sins, and that I had to repent and be forgiven. I felt the peace of the Lord that day, and later I was also baptised in water. A peace and joy came on me when I was baptised, which was the Holy Spirit, but I did not continue to walk the way of truth as a disciple of Jesus.

You see, I had heard of believing and baptism, but I had not heard the way of actually seeking Jesus, and living for him fully apart from my way of life. So I was still in sin, and sins got me down into many grief and troubles. I had a lot of trouble with depression daily, and needed help from God.

Then in 2008 Jesus woke me up. I had been in difficulty and I had nowhere to go, so I cried out to the Lord Jesus to please help. I cried out to the Lord, “Help me,” and the Lord gave me peace. But I continued living my own way and then a few months after I had cried out for help, the Lord brought me across the testimony of another brother in Christ who used to be in the occult and who had seen the reality of the demon world. He was also shown how true Christians are, how they are a light in this world, and how they have the joy of Christ around them, and how they walk in the light. I knew that I wasn’t walking in the light. I knew that I was not one of these true followers of Jesus.

At the same time, I also came across the testimony and warning of another brother who had come out of the world, and had turned to Jesus fully. This brother warned that the Lord had told him to prepare for the bridegroom’s return, for his waiting people. This brother was shown by the Lord that time was short and judgement was coming and Jesus Christ was coming back soon. He was shown the reality of hell, when he died of a heart attack, and Jesus saved him to come back from death and live for the Lord and warn others.

….

I knew I was on my way to hell. I realised that I needed to be saved because I wasn’t right with the Lord and not ready for him, and I realised that this was going to be the only chance I was going to get. It was either now, or never. I knew that I had to seek the Lord Jesus and I knew that I had to find him. I knew I had to seek until I found. I knew I had to make the most of this second chance. So I got on my knees and I started to seek the Lord. I decided to repent, because I knew that I was on my way to hell, and I knew that this would be the only chance I would get. I knew that time was short. So I got on my knees and I started to pray to the Lord. I repented of my sin. Then a light came into my life and that very night when I was praying, the Lord started to speak to me and he started to show me things and he started to open my heart to his reality.

….

So even though I knew I should be doing right and I knew what was right, I wasn’t free to carry out my good intentions because I was bound to sin within me that lived within me. And so Jesus set me free from that. It was a miracle. It was the power of my testimony that Jesus gave me a second chance and he set me free from sin. So I am using my second chance to enter the kingdom and walk the narrow way to the kingdom of God following Jesus.

Thanks to Jesus giving him a second chance, Lyte now devotes his life to preaching the true gospel, calling on all who will listen to repent and stop living in sin. Evidently, next to Jesus and Elvis, Lyte is the purest man who has ever lived. What follows is a 2007 video by Lyte titled Worldly TV, Music, Sin Pleasure Pursuit. I will warn you, it is hard to watch. Lyte comes off as a man who has taken way too much Zoloft, but I do hope readers will watch a few minutes of it so they can grasp Lyte’s obsession with sin and “worldly” living. After I watched it, I thought, man, even in my most fundamentalist of days, I didn’t take things this far. Perhaps Lyte is a truer Christian now than I was then. Whatever he might be, he is certainly a perfect example of what happens when a person takes the Bible and its moralism to its logical conclusion.

Video Link

Sadly, there are more than a few Christians who think just like Robert Lyte. What follows are a few of the comments on the aforementioned video:

  • AMEN. I don’t understand why so many “Christians” don’t see this. I am recently saved and I feel the DESIRE and need to flee from secular TV and Music and everything that does not glorify God. My wife has been told that “a lot of new Christians are like this but it will CALM DOWN soon, they all do”… THAT MEANS THAT MOST GET SUCKED UNDER by the pressure of society and the social norm!. Not I, JESUS KEEP ME STRONG!! Praise our LORD, KING, and SAVIOR!!
  • Thanks for informing us, i have being trying by all miss to stop watching things you mention, b/c i see evil in it. Inside i see all as inventor of sin as by apostle Paul. Pls i will like to learn from you God bless you .
  • I love your vids keep up the good work we as believers need these kinds of messages to keep us in check! Its so easy to stray and accept the things of the world. The church is now so full of so much false hood it baffles the mind!. In these deadly times we cant afford to slacken we must make more effort then ever to make sure we are READY. I am even deleting those who are not serious out of my phone book!
  • Jesus Bless you Rob!amen! 2nd thessalonians states that “they all will be damned who believed not the Truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” Jesus also said do not be in (that) darkness that that day will overtake you. (we won’t even see the soon arrival of sudden destruction before it’s too late if we don’t forsake and separate from the lusts of this world before it’s too late. only in whole hearted REPENTANCE can we obtain Full Salvation in Christ Jesus the Controller.
  • Powerful message, brother Robert! May the Most High continue to bless you with the Holy Spirit!
  • Amen brother keep warning and speaking the truth we love you and pray for you and your wife Jesus bless you.“I hate this world,
  • i have separated myself already. I follow Jesus daily. Thank you for this message. Hope more souls come out , separate and repent.

Lyte conducts a live video meeting of like-minded sin-hating Christ followers every Friday at 8:00 pm. I suspect that he is unable to find a church pure enough for him, so he has taken to the internet in hopes of finding people who view God, the Bible, holiness, and the world as he does. Lyte even has virtual communion during his live video meetings. If you would like to check out a previous live meeting, please go here.

Not long ago, I wrote a post titled, Do Evangelical Beliefs Lead to Mental Illness? In the post I dealt with how certain Evangelical beliefs can lead to mental instability. Robert Lyte is a perfect example of this. While his beliefs are certainly Evangelical, he has seized upon the teachings of the Holiness movement and men such as Charles Finney, a nineteenth century revivalist, and taken them to their logical conclusion.

Let’s not forget that the Bible DOES say: be ye (the Christian) perfect even as your father in heaven is perfect. It also says, he that sins is of the devil. While most Evangelicals go to great lengths to explain away these verses, should Robert Lyte be faulted for literally believing the words found in the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God? Perhaps Lyte is part of that remnant of believers who will be alive when Jesus comes back to earth. Perhaps he is the true Christian, and everyone else is headed for hell.

It’s hard to argue that the Evangelical church hasn’t gotten “worldlier” over the past half-century. While Evangelicals still show a voyeur’s interest in the sexual proclivities of others, they have largely abandoned the social fundamentalism of yesteryear. Evangelicals have little problem with drinking alcohol, smoking, getting tattoos, going to the movies, and the like–all things that were roundly condemned a few generations ago. Now, it seems that as long as Evangelicals don’t have sex before marriage, never have an abortion, and vote for God’s chosen candidate, they are free to pretty much wallow in the slime of the “world.” And even here, we now know that Evangelicals engage in premarital sex and get abortions just as their counterparts in the world. Perhaps, the only true sign one is an Evangelical is that he or she votes Republican every four years.

I have long believed that the internet, with its ready access to anything and everything, will prove to be the undoing of Evangelicalism. While hardcore Fundamentalists will draw away and join up with fellow world-haters like Robert Lyte, the rest will increasingly become a part of the world that their Bible tells them is evil. There is nothing like “worldliness” to cure the disease of Christian Fundamentalism.

Note

Robert Lyte has a Facebook page. As of this writing, 3,803 lovers of God have LIKED his page. His latest entry takes Christian pop star Justin Bieber to task:

Dear friends, real followers of Jesus, are disciples of Jesus. They are not the Christians of this generation who name Jesus by name, yet walk in the paths of this world. Justin Beiber is a good example of naming and shaming: such claims Christ, and has believing parent, yet, they walk and follow the paths of destruction, that lead to the gates of the eternal fire. Do not be deceived, if you walk an ungodly life claiming Christ in work only, you will SINK into destruction….Either we live as disciples of Jesus and are saved, or we walk the ways of this world (the lusts of the eyes, the pride of life, and pride of the eyes) all of which the entertainment industry represents, and PERISH…..

If you are a Twitterer, you can follow Lyte’s Twitter feed here.

Here’s a comment by a follower of Lyte which I found on the blog of Scott Postma:

Do people still go to churches to seek the true Jesus? I know I left them many many years ago. I have a daily minute by minute connection to Yahshua / Jesus my savior who gives me all I need. I recently had a dream where I was making a movie about all the churches that were closing. I then awoke and The Holy Spirit told me that people who have the Holy Spirit will meet with a few others of which some don’t and that will be the new way. It’s been my way for almost 30 years even though it took me until 2013 to actually get a visitation from ministering angels who cheered and celebrated Me… back into the fold.. They kept me up from 8pm til 2am last may 1st. Since that time satan has not had the hold on me like he previously had and my faith has increased immeasurably. Yes I do go to a online kinda church with one Robert lyte who holds teachings on youtube and facebook. There are a few who go but then again these are the end times and the churches / buildings have gone the way of the dinosaur.. Well the true churches.. the true church today is a body of believers who hold fast to the truth and stay filled with their oil so the thief who comes in the night is surprised we are ready. … Yes there are a few good small churches still teaching the truth. I went to one last year in ickesburg pa. may God bless you all and may you come to the knowledge of the truth.

Postma, I believe, attends the infamous Doug Wilson’s church.

%d bloggers like this: