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Tag: True Christian

Bruce, You Never Knew the REAL Jesus

who is the real jesus

I have been accused hundreds of times over the years of never having been a True Christian®. The gist of this accusation is that I met, worshiped, and followed a counterfeit Jesus. If I had encountered the REAL JESUS and put my faith and trust in him, I would have become a True Christian® and would still be a follower of Christ to this day. The Bible gives cover for this argument when it says:

For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works. (2 Corinthians 11:13-15)

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. (I John 2:19)

According to Evangelicals who say I never met the REAL JESUS, the angels of light in my life — parents, pastors, professors — were actually tools of Satan used by him to deceive me. And true to my training, I then became a false angel of light too — deceiving the churches I pastored and pulling the wool over the eyes of my colleagues in the ministry; that is, if any of them knew the REAL JESUS themselves.

The fact that I no longer profess to be a follower of Jesus is further evidence that I never met the REAL JESUS. Had I met the REAL JESUS, I would have continued in the faith; I would have continued pastoring churches. That I now stand in opposition to Christianity and the teachings of the Bible is clear evidence to Evangelicals that whatever Jesus I followed over my fifty years in the Christian church, he was not the REAL JESUS.

A good example of this thinking can be found in the recent blog comments by Rod Rogers [all spelling and grammar in the original]:

Yes, but you now claim that you are not a christian and therefore you never were a christian, right? You have painted your self into a corner. Either you were a liar for years or you are lying now; but you have to choose. My point is that God is always God or there never was a god. You have claimed both. Very sad.

Bruce, you don’t go from preaching God’s word, studying and praying daily and then wake up one day and say God never existed. That never happens. Somewhere you came to a place where God didn’t meet your expectations. I don’t know where that happened but it happened.

“Each aspect of my life must be judged in its context.” Ok, YOU said you were a Christian, said you were a preacher. In that context, were you preaching the truth or preaching a lie? Preaching a lie makes one what? “All I am saying is that I once was a Christian just like you, and now I’m not.” And all I am saying is that by your own admission you believed in once saved always saved. Now you don’t believe in God at all. By you own theology you yourself believed either you were not saved to begin with or you preached a lie. You are in a corner.

Matthew 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? Matthew 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Either you never were a child of God or you still are.

Bruce, it doesn’t matter what happened when. The only thing I am assuming is that you are telling the truth when you say that you were an IFB. If you were ever IFB then you believed in OSAS. You just don’t want to admit the truth. Your comment, “It’s like saying, I’m divorced now, so that means I never was married”?”, has nothing to do with my comment; its Non Sequitor.

I’m 64 years old and have met a lot of people and you are the only one who claims to have lived at the foot of the cross and woke up one day and renounced it. Sorry, I don’t believe that.

Rod is an Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB). As such, he believes in the doctrine of “once saved, always saved.”  According to this doctrine, once a person is saved, he can never, ever fall from grace; never, ever lose his salvation. Built upon a foundation of intellectual assent to a set of theological propositions, most proponents of “once saved, always saved” believe that I am still a Christian; that I am just backslidden or out of the will of God. I say most, because some “once saved, always saved” believers can’t bear to fathom that someone who has trodden under foot the Son of God, and has counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and has done despite unto the Spirit of grace (Hebrews 10:29) can still be a Christian. If I am not now a Christian, in their minds that means I never was a Christian; that in decades of pastoral experience I never came in contact with the REAL JESUS.

Calvinists fall into “once saved, always saved” crowd, albeit they believe that a person must endure to the end (death) to be saved; and even then, some people who thought they were saved will wake up in Hell, realizing that they never were one of the elect. What a con job, right?  Much like many in the “once saved, always saved” IFB crowd, the Calvinists who knew me have concluded that I never met the REAL JESUS. If I had met the REAL JESUS, I would still be in church, availing myself of means of grace. That I am now an outspoken opponent of True Christianity® is proof to them that I was a false Christian.

In 1994, I was the co-pastor of Community Baptist Church — an independent Calvinistic congregation — in Elmendorf, Texas. While at Community, I became friends with Jose Maldonado, pastor of Hillburn Drive Grace Baptist Church. I had met Joe in the fall of 1993 when he and Pat Horner — my soon-to-be co-pastor — came to preach a conference at the church in Ohio I was pastoring at the time.

I resigned from Community in the fall of 1994. You can read more about that debacle in the series titled, I Am a Publican and a Heathen. After leaving Community, I had no further contact with Maldonado. Imagine my surprise, then, to hear that Maldonado, sixteen years after our last contact, took to the pulpit to let people know that I was now an atheist; a man who never knew the REAL JESUS.

Here’s a short audio clip of Maldonado “exposing” me as a false prophet:

You can listen to Maldonado’s four-part sermon series or read transcripts of his sermons here.  You also might find interesting the post titled, Gone but Not Forgotten: 22 Years Later San Antonio Calvinists Still Preaching Against Bruce Gerencser.

The hilarious thing in the whole “Bruce met a false Jesus” saga, is that “once saved, always saved” Baptists and Calvinistic Baptists bitterly oppose one another, each believing the other preaches a false gospel. In other words, each side believes the other has never met the REAL JESUS.

As you can see, the core theological problem for both groups is that True Christians® are eternally saved. The Bible says in John 10:27-29:

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.

Those who hear the voice of Jesus and follow after him are given eternal life and are held safe in his hand. No man is able to pluck Christians out of the hand of Jesus. The problem with this argument, of course, is my life as a Christian clearly shows that I heard the voice of Jesus and followed after him. There’s nothing in my storyline that remotely suggests that I was following after a false Jesus; that I was a wolf in sheep’s clothing; that I was a false prophet. Yet, here I am today, having safely jumped out of the hand of Jesus, an out-and-proud apostate. “How can these things be?” Evangelicals ask themselves. Zealots such as Rod refuse to accept my story at face value, suggesting that there is some part of my story I am not sharing lest I give away the “real” reason I am no longer a Christian. This leads people to concoct all sorts of conspiracies about my loss of faith.

How about we let Occam’s Razor tell the story here. Occam’s Razor is a philosophy which suggests that if an event has two possible explanations, the explanation which requires the fewest assumptions is usually correct: I once was a Christian and now I am not; I once was a follower of Jesus and now I am not; I devotedly loved Jesus and now I don’t; the telling of my story is an honest, forthright reflection of my life as a Christian and an Evangelical pastor — theology be damned.  Christians holding to Arminian theology believe followers of Jesus can and do fall from grace. In their minds, I am just one more sad example of someone who chose not to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Works for me.

Here’s what I know for sure, I once was saved and now I am not. It really is that simple. It is not up to me to help Evangelicals square their theology with my testimony. Can’t make my story fit in the narrow confines of your rigid theological box? Tough shit, not my problem. I have no doubt I met numerous times the REAL JESUS. A mythical being, to be sure, but I most certainly had a torrid love affair with this Jesus for most of my adult life. Just as I would never doubt a sincere Christian’s testimony of faith, all I ask is that Evangelicals grant me the same courtesy. This will never happen, of course, because their theology bars them from doing so. Their intransigence reveals the real truth behind this discussion; that the question has never been about meeting the REAL JESUS; that what really matters is believing the right sectarian doctrines; that Evangelicalism is inherently a text-based system; that what really determines entrance into Heaven is checking off the right boxes on the Beliefs Checklist. The Evangelical gospel is this: BELIEVE THESE DOCTRINES AND THOU SHALT BE SAVED. It’s never been about the REAL JESUS.


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen 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.

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Robin Schumacher is Dead Wrong About the Number One Reason “True Christians” Leave Their Churches


Recently, Robin Schumacher wrote an article titled The No. 1 Reason True Believers Leave a Church for The Christian Post. Schumacher’s bio states:

Robin Schumacher is an accomplished software executive and Christian apologist who has written many articles, authored and contributed to several Christian books, appeared on nationally syndicated radio programs, and presented at apologetic events. He holds a BS in Business, Master’s in Christian apologetics, and a Ph.D. in New Testament.

Schumacher thinks he knows exactly why “True Christians” are leaving leaving Evangelical churches in droves:

True Christians leave a church when they’re unable to properly worship God.


These folks are solid, mature believers who prioritize God in their lives and aren’t ruffled by trivial matters that go on in a local body.

For them (and me) it’s all about being enabled to submit to God an acceptable form of worship while they’re present in the assembly. When that can’t happen, the Spirit within them demands action.  


While the juvenile come to church for what they can get, mature believers attend for what they want to give, which is true worship to God. And when they’re disabled in that pursuit, they’ll seek a different setting.

Thousands of former “True Christians” read this blog; people who loved Jesus and followed his teachings; people who gave their time, talent, and money; people who attended church every time the doors were open; people who daily read the Bible and prayed; people who evangelized others and worked to advance the Kingdom of God; people who lived and breathed Jesus, the church, and the Bible. Yet, scores of them walked out of their churches and never returned. Some moved on to mainline churches, while others stopped attending church altogether. Many of them embraced agnosticism or atheism. What happened?

Schumacher would have us believe that these conscientious Christians left because they couldn’t “properly” worship God. As a poster child for people who were once “True Christians” and are now unbelievers, I can confidently say that most people who walk away don’t do so because they can’t “properly worship God.” This seems to me to be a shallow, superficial answer to a deeper, systematic problem. Of course, this is what Evangelical talking heads do. They rarely have extensive, thoughtful discussions with people who exit stage left. Evangelical churches don’t do exit interviews. Instead, they often take a “don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out” attitude.

I certainly understand becoming disillusioned with church. I was part of the Evangelical church for fifty years. I pastored Evangelical churches in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan for twenty-five years. Evangelicalism flowed through my veins. I was all in, a true believer who loved Jesus with all his heart, soul, and mind, and who followed his teachings and commands. Years ago, a woman who had known for years, upon hearing of my loss of faith, said, “If Bruce isn’t a Christian, nobody is.” Countless Evangelicals tell me that I was never a “True Christian.” However, they will search in vain to find one person who knew me as their pastor or colleague in the ministry who is willing to say, “oh, I knew Bruce was never a real Christian.” Not one.

That said, my wife, Polly, and I went through a period of several years when we became disillusioned with Christianity. By this time, I was done with the ministry. Whether tired, sick from my increasing health problems, or burned out, I decided that it was time for me to move on to a new chapter in life. I pastored my last church in 2003, Victory Baptist Church in Clare, Michigan. In the spring of 2005, I decided to reenter the ministry. I sent my resume to several Southern Baptist area missionaries in West Virginia. I quickly received numerous inquiries from churches with open pulpits. I decided to candidate at two churches: New Life Baptist Church in Weston and Hedgesville Baptist Church in Hedgesville. New Life demanded that I only use the King James Version. I quickly said no, knowing that I wanted nothing to do with people who put Bible translations above ministry. Hedgesville was a wonderful church, positioned in an area that was growing by leaps and bounds. The church paid well and owned a nice trilevel parsonage. I thought the church would be the perfect place for me to reestablish my career. The church had an interim pastor, a man who was a police officer. They were not considering him because he lacked the educational requirements they were looking for. Besides, he never said he wanted to pastor the church permanently. After spending two days with the man, it became evident to me that he wanted to pastor the church. The pulpit committee expressed interest in me becoming their next pastor, but I declined and told them they needed to talk to the interim pastor. They did, and the church decided to make him their permanent pastor. This was the right decision for them to make. I preached a couple more times for friends of mine, and by the summer of 2005, I officially “retired” from the ministry.

Polly and I wondered, “now what?” We had celebrated our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary the year before. We had spent every waking hour in the ministry. It’s all we knew. From 2002-2008, we decided to find a church to attend; one where we could serve Jesus and lend our support. During this time, we attended more than 125 churches, everything from Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Methodist, and Lutheran to Baptist, Mennonite, Church of Christ, and non-denominational — and other sects in between. (Please see But Our Church is DIFFERENT!) Our goal was to find a church that took the teachings of Christ seriously. We took a minimalist approach, willing to jettison secondary matters for a church that loved God and loved their neighbors; a church that oozed devotion to God. Sadly, our search came up empty.

I call this period of time our “disaffected years.” We were still committed followers of Jesus. We still believed the Bible was the Word of God and lived our lives according to our interpretation of its teachings. By the time we reached the fall of 2008, it was evident that we were in serious trouble faith-wise. We started doubting and questioning our sincerely-held beliefs. Our nightstands and end tables were littered with books written by Bart Ehrman, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and other contrarian authors. I started reading books written by Emerging Church authors and liberal/progressive theologians. The more I read, the more questions I had. And then it happened: I came to the conclusion that the Bible was not inerrant and infallible. This led to more and more questions about my beliefs. I finally arrived at the place where I had to admit that the central claims of Christianity could not be rationally sustained; that many of the claims found in the Bible were false. On the last Sunday in November, 2008, Bruce and Polly Gerencser, and their three teenage children walked out of the doors of the Ney United Methodist Church for the last time. At the age of fifty, I was done with Christianity. In early 2009, I sent out my infamous letter, Dear Family, Friends, and Former Parishioners to several hundred family members, friends, ministerial colleagues, and former parishioners. This was my (our) coming out letter. I said to all who knew me that I was no longer a Christian. Not long after, I publicly embraced atheism.

I suspect my story resonates with many ex-Evangelicals. We didn’t leave Christianity, as Schumacher alleges, because we were “unable to properly worship God.” Our problems with Evangelicals were much deeper and more extensive than the inability to worship God as we pleased. What bothered us was indifference and incestuous behavior that focused on feeding fat, lazy sheep instead of ministering to “the least of these.” What bothered us was all the attention paid to the man of God instead of the needs of the congregation and those outside of the church. What bothered us was the constant demand for loyalty, obedience, and money. Damn, it all seemed to be about money. And most of all, what bothered us was the inattention paid to our doubts and the shallow, cliche-driven answers to our questions. We read, studied, and prayed, desperately seeking ways to hang on to our faith. In the end, what bothered us the most was the silence. When we stopped attending church, to put it frankly, no one gave a shit. Or worse yet, our pastors sent us stern, judgmental letters or preached about us. They couldn’t be bothered to talk to us, choosing instead to use us as sermon illustrations or warnings. Once out the door, we were abused and marginalized. Even if our questions could have been answered, why would we ever want to return to places that treated us like shit?

I am sure Schumacher means well, but I encourage him to actually talk to people who left the church, never to return. Read their blogs and listen to their podcasts. The real reasons “True Christians” divorced the church are there for all to see. Seek and ye shall find. Of course, Schumacher might think there is no need to do this; that people such as I were not the “True Christians” he’s talking about; that “True Christians” would never walk away from Jesus and his church. After all the Bible says, “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.” (1 John 2:19)


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen 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.

Connect with me on social media:

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Unpacking a Meme: Who Represents True Christianity?

This meme is often posted by progressive or liberal Christians. They want people to know that Evangelicals, conservative Catholics, and Mormons — the religious right — don’t represent Christians. They also want people to know that their brand/flavor/shade of Christianity is true Christianity or the religion of Jesus. Much like Evangelicals do today, progressive/liberal Christians appropriate the Jesus of the Bible for their own religious, political, economic, and social use.

Jesus was a practicing Jew, not a Christian. There’s no Biblical evidence for the claim that Jesus was the founder of Christianity. If anything, the Apostle Paul (and to a lesser degree, James and John) was the originator of Christianity. Jesus left no writings, nothing that gives us a record of what he actually said and taught. The red words in the gospels are the words of unknown authors writing thirty-five to seventy-five years after the death of Jesus, not the actual words of Christ. The earliest manuscripts of the gospels date back to the second and third centuries, 120-150 years after the death of Jesus. All we have, then, are the words of unknown authors written decades after Jesus was executed by the Roman government.

Whatever Jesus might have said (or done) is lost to antiquity. Any claims to the contrary are wishful thinking. While I understand why various sects of Christians want to claim Jesus as their own, the fact remains that Jesus was not a Christian; that he likely would not recognize the Christianity of today. Nor would the Apostle Paul, James, Peter, John, or a host of other early church leaders. Every sect wants to trace its lineage back to AD 33. I have even seen church buildings with cornerstones that arrogantly say, BUILT AD 33. This is nothing more than ahistorical nonsense.

Christianity has been evolving since the first century. Every generation is confronted by its own version of Christianity; a version shaped, molded, and influenced by culture, social beliefs, and politics. Any sect/church/pastor that says their denomination or church or pastor practices first-century Christianity, and follows the teachings of Jesus, lacks understanding and self-awareness.

I was part of the Evangelical church for fifty years, and a pastor for twenty-five years. I am now sixty-five years old. The Evangelical Christianity of my youth is very different from the Evangelicalism of today. Better? Worse? Who’s to say? The best response is “different.” Religions change and evolve with time, regardless of where they fall on the Christianity spectrum. When Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) Christians say that they are practicing “old-fashioned’ Christianity, what they really mean is that they are practicing white, American, 1950s, Fundamentalist Christianity. When Frank Viola and the house church proponents say they are practicing “first-century” Christianity, what they really mean is that they have extracted from church history a form of belief and practice that best fits their theological, social, political, and economic proclivities. In other words, they fashioned and crafted a religion in their own image. Liberal and progressive Christians do the same. Does anyone seriously believe Jesus, Paul, and the early church were pro-LGBTQ and egalitarian? Only by torturing the Biblical text can one conclude that First United Methodist Church of Jerusalem celebrated Pride Month or had female pastors.

Christianity would be better served if its adherents admit that their Christianities are human creations; that whatever Jesus said and practiced lies buried with his body somewhere outside of Jerusalem. Instead of countless internecine wars over who is the real Christian (the No True Scotsman fallacy), Christianity would be better served by focusing on practicing the teachings of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount or devoting oneself to evidencing the fruit of the Spirit. Or better yet, how about practicing the two great commandments: loving God and loving others (including self)?


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen 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.

Connect with me on social media:

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

“False Christians” Such as I Am Never Had a Love for the Things of Christ

head not heart knowledge

Several years ago, the late Ken Silva, a Fundamentalist Baptist pastor, and discerner of all things truly Christian, posted the following quote from C.F.W. Walther on his Apprising Ministries website:

A person may pretend to be a Christian while in reality he is not. As long as he is in this condition, he is quite content with his knowledge of the mere outlines of the Christian doctrines. Everything beyond that, he says, is for pastors and theologians.

To perceive as clearly as possible everything that God has revealed is something in which a non-Christian has no interest. However, the moment a person becomes a Christian there arises in him a keen desire for the doctrine of Christ.

Even the most uncultured peasant who is still unconverted is suddenly roused in the moment of his conversion and begins to reflect on God and heaven, salvation and damnation, etc. He becomes occupied with the highest problems of human life. An instance of this kind is afforded by those Jews who flocked to Christ and also by the apostle.

What about the increasing number of atheists and agnostics who were, for many years, pastors/evangelists/professors/denominational leaders; men and women who spent years delving deeply into the Word of God?

For thirty-five years, I had a keen desire for things of Christ. I read the Bible from cover to cover numerous times. I spent thousands and thousands of hours studying the Bible. I read hundreds and hundreds of Christian books, magazines, and newspapers. I listened to countless sermon tapes, attended Bible conferences, revival meetings, and mission conferences. I did my best to put into practice all that I read and heard. Jesus was the way, truth, and life to me, the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I was as deeply immersed in the things of Christ as one could be.

In Silva’s world, only Christians who think like he did are really Christians. Silva thought that most people who profess Christianity are false professors. They professed Christ, but never possessed Christ (Christian cliché 101).

These days, I know a lot of Christians-turned-atheists. Almost every one of them was a conscientious, serious person who believed the teachings of the Bible and sincerely desired the things of Christ. To suggest these people didn’t really have any interest in the things of Christ is laughable. Most Christians-turned-atheists I know understand the Bible quite well. Of course, according to the Ken Silvas of the world, they have a head knowledge and not a heart knowledge (Christian cliché 102).

All that we ex-Christians can say is this: we know what we know. We once were saved, and now we’re not. Can’t wrap your unimaginative, dull Christian mind around this fact? That’s your problem, not ours.


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen 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.

Connect with me on social media:

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

The Intolerant Christian God as Found in the Cult Classic Mars Attacks!

mars attacks

There’s a scene in Mars Attacks! — one of my all-time favorite movies — where the Martians meet with the President of the United States. The President, played by Jack Nicholson, says to the Mars ambassador:

Why… are you doing this? Why? Isn’t the universe big enough…for both of us? Ha ha ha ha. What is wrong with you people?

We could work together. Why be enemies? Because we’re different? Is that why?

Think of the things that we could do.

Think how strong we would be. Earth…and Mars… Together.

There is nothing that we could not accomplish. Think about it. Think about it.

Why destroy…when you can create? We can have it all, or we can smash it all.

Why can’t we…work out our differences? Why can’t we…work things out?

Little people…why can’t we all just…get along?

“Why can’t we all just get along?” The ambassador, with tears in his eyes, shakes hands with the President, only to have the hand disconnect and stab the President in the heart, killing him instantly.

Video Link

Prior to killing the President, the Martian Ambassador and his entourage met with Congress. The Ambassador gave a rousing Ack! Ack! Ack! speech, concluding with him and his support staff whipping out their ray guns and vaporizing Congress. Where are the Martians when you need them, right?

Video Link

Quite intolerant, these Martians. Every time I watch Mars Attacks! I can’t help but think of the Christian God and his intolerance towards any religion but his own. Jesus — who is God — is the Martian Ambassador in this story. Any other religion but the Christian faith is false, an affront to the thrice-holy God of the Bible. Instead of practicing the time-honored art of toleration, God the Father, and his son Jesus, command their followers to murder everyone who worships other deities (or no deities at all).

Christianity has a deep, vibrant, antisemitic, anti-Islamic stream running through its body. Evangelicals, who increasingly support President Trump’s anti-Muslim bigotry, justify their hatred by pointing to how Muslim extremists harass, attack, kidnap, and murder Christians and other non-Muslims. I don’t disagree with their assessment of groups such as ISIS, Boko Haram, Al-Qaeda, and numerous other Muslim extremists.

However, in becoming so fixated on Islam, Christians forget their own religion’s violence, their God’s command to slaughter all unbelievers, and the rise of violent (and deadly) white Christian extremism in the United States.

The inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God says in Deuteronomy 13:1-16:

If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,

And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;

Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the Lord thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;

Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;

Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:

But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.

And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is among you.

If thou shalt hear say in one of thy cities, which the Lord thy God hath given thee to dwell there, saying,

Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;

Then shalt thou enquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you;

Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.

And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for the Lord thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again.

But, Bruce . . . Don’t bother. Whatever attempt you plan to make to defend your God won’t work. This passage of Scripture is quite clear. No ambiguity here. The intolerant, genocidal God of Christianity commands his followers (the Israelites, at the time) to slaughter anyone — men, women, children, the unborn — who doesn’t worship him. It’s in the Bible, buddy, and you just need to own it.

So much for the uncondtional love of God. So much for God loving and accepting people where and how they are. No, God commands his followers to whip out their ray guns and vaporize anyone who doesn’t bow in fealty and devotion to him.

Time to sing, What a Mighty God We Serve.


Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen 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.

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Bruce Gerencser