A clean sheet of paper….
I spent many years attempting to preach a reformed view of Christianity. I focused on the basic teachings of Christ and some of the teachings of Paul. I believed the early church fathers corrupted the teachings of Christ and of Paul by bringing back portions of the law and then by adding cultural views.
For example, was Jesus a hypocrite when he treated the Pharisees with anger but told us to love our enemies? Was Paul truly one who encouraged women ministers or did he say that women should be silent in church? I choose to believe in the Jesus who preached love and compassion and the Paul who believed that there was no “male or female” in Christ.
This worked for me, but it could not be sustained because it was simply a philosophy and not what Christianity is today. Eventually, I could no longer, in good conscience, consider myself a Christian. However, in the back of my mind, I still wonder if my view of Christianity is consistent with what the founders really intended.
I tend to believe that they were in a very similar situation to mine. They struggled with the religion of their day (Judaism) and attempted to, like I did with Christianity, create a gentler, kinder version they could follow. However, the religious quickly hijacked it and recreated a religious system very similar to the very religion being reformed.
The reality is, we can go on forever attempting to bring reformation to a flawed system only to create a more progressive flawed system that will quickly revert to its original state. At some point, one has to go back to the drawing board and realize that it’s time to start with a clean sheet of paper.
Why are we so focused on the religion of a small group of desert nomads who created a God to justify their wars, genocides, and culture? It’s time to end this and focus on what really matters – living lives of compassion and kindness. Instead of trying to do this within the context of Christianity, I’ve decided to do this without the baggage we call religion.
I still hold to the philosophy, but I no longer attempt to cling to the archaic system of religious mysticism.
- The de-Convert