God, Guest Blogger, Life, The Gospel

Baskin Robbins Christianity Part III

A well-known, intelligent “Christian” drops out.
Read how she describes “Christians”.

Anne Rice lived for decades as an atheist. Raised as a Catholic, she rejected the church early in her life but renewed her faith in recent years and in 2008 released the memoir Called Out of Darkness: A Spiritual Confession. The best-selling author of 28 books is probably best known for her Vampire Chronicle series. Twelve years after she converted from atheism to Christianity, she quit being a Christian.

“Today I quit being a Christian,” the best-selling author said. “I’m out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being ‘Christian’ or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten years I’ve tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.

“My faith in Christ is central to my life. My conversion from a pessimistic atheist lost in a world I didn’t understand, to an optimistic believer in a universe created and sustained by a loving God is crucial to me. But following Christ does not mean following His followers. Christ is infinitely more important than Christianity and always will be, no matter what Christianity is, has been, or might become.

“I didn’t have to know why people suffered agony and died in pain. He knew. I didn’t have to know how He was going to save the unlettered and the unbaptized, or how he would redeem the heathen who had never spoken His name. He knew.

“It was his knowing that overwhelmed me. His knowing that became completely real to me. He had complete control of it; His justice, His mercy—was not our justice or our mercy. He wasn’t going to let anything happen by accident. Nobody was going to go to hell by mistake. This was His world. All this.

“And why should I remain apart from Him just because I couldn’t grasp all this?”¹

Does that square with you? If you’re a non-believer are you saying, “Amen” now?

So what are we to do now? Somewhere along the line the word “Christian” caught on. Now every earnest church goer, every follower of Christ calls themselves Christian. The word outsiders once used to criticize followers of Jesus is now the signature phrase for all believers and followers of Christ. But is it the right word?

In the final post in this series, we’ll explore what Jesus called the men and women He entrusted to carry on His work after His resurrection.  It’s so much better than Christian it’s frightening.  Don’t miss it.  Click here to finish this series and answer for yourself a very important and defining question that may define how you think of yourself and your relationship with Jesus forever.

Be sure to visit my good blogging friend, Amanda’s blog today on Pursuing Holiness. Today she writes on Retaining The Word In Our Hearts. You will be blessed.

¹From Andy Stanley video series, Christian. And Out of Darkness, A Spiritual Journey, © 2008 by Anne Rice, Published by Knopf Publishing Inc., New YorkCopyright © ©2010 Anne Rice. All Rights Reserved. And from statements made by Anne Rice on her Facebook page April 7, 2010.

Copyright © 2010 Anne Rice. All Rights Reserved

15 thoughts on “Baskin Robbins Christianity Part III

  1. I agree with you and your comments about terminology. Keep it real! Amen! I can see Anne’s disenchantment with Christianity. I have some of the same reservations as she does about the effectiveness of the “church” today.

    Like

  2. Steven, some food for thought from you and I would agree that at times other terminology might help, but are bigger issues ti worry about? We worry about terminology, while the lost remain lost. We worry about our image, forgetting to look at the perfect image of Christ. And we use terminology in Church, most from outside cannot understand. I hope we all remember to ‘keep it real,’ focus on Christ and assist those who don’t know Him to know Him better.

    I am also very sad that someone felt the need to walk away from Christ’s body, and even more sad that she made such comments public.

    Like

  3. I understand that we are all at different stages and walks with the Lord. I have to say however that these comments concern me. I am concerned on a number of levels. One is that a Christian is referring to the Church as if they are able to separate themselves from the body of Christ; as if they are a separate body or persons.

    Another reason for concern is that the premix of being a Christian is love. The reason why love for one another is such a fundamental theme in the NT is that we won’t get on; otherwise we wouldn’t need to ‘love.’ We come from different backgrounds and are all on different walks with the Lord, we are destined to fine it difficult to get along. What He requires is love. How can we say that we love the Lord whom we haven’t seen, yet cannot love our brother whom we can see?

    I know it is difficult, I have every reason to walk away from the body of Christ, as many do. What we cannot say however is that we are part of Christ, yet not in the body. We cannot say we are in the body, unless we are part of a functioning body. The hand can’t say to the rest of the body, ‘I love the head, but because the arm never appreciates me, I’m out of here!’

    Being a Christian is being part of the body of Christ. Being in the body is to forgive those who will hurt you. I know it’s the hardest thing we often have to do, but it’s none negotiable.

    Like

    1. Mark,
      These are excellent points and I agree with you 100 percent. “What we cannot say however is that we are part of Christ, yet not in the body. We cannot say we are in the body, unless we are part of a functioning body. The hand can’t say to the rest of the body, ‘I love the head, but because the arm never appreciates me, I’m out of here!’

      Being a Christian is being part of the body of Christ.”
      Her response, dropping out, is something I would not have done. It would not have been my response. However, I have grace concerns, as Anne Rice does, about the state of Christianity today. I think, if you keep reading this series–one more post next week, you will better understand my concerns. I am already planning some posts that will further express my concerns. I put a survey on my Facebook page today you might want to visit. I’d like to know what you think.
      Thank you for responding in such an enlightening and candid way. I really appreciate your comments.

      Like

      1. Steven, I’m only sorry I didn’t have more time to comment. I know the ‘drop out Christian’ is something the Church I belong to has looked at. The numbers that had started strong and are now not part of any body, is measured in the thousands. Many sight fall outs with other Christians as the reason why they stopped attending. For this reason we now have a strong discipling structure, of which I am blessed to be a part (my wife and I have a group focusing on strengthening marriage).

        I look forward to the next instalment. Would you object to me covering my thoughts on this subject on my blog?

        Mark

        Like

      2. Absolutely not. I will look forward to reading it. Let me know when you publish it.
        The discipleship structure is the only way to grow members, in my opinion. And I don’t mean grow in numbers. I mean grow in Christ the members you have. Sounds as if you are on the right track. In fact, I may want to learn more about your discipleship program. I may want to blog about it in my series on the church. Sounds as if your group would be a positive aspect of the church today.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.