J.S. Park: Hospital Chaplain, Skeptical Christian

yinayun asked:

“I don’t believe in Christianity because I believe it’s a selfish religion” what are your thoughts on such a statement? I have so much that I could say about it myself but I would love to hear your thoughts.

As a famous speaker once said, I feel like a mosquito at a nudist beach: Where do I start?

1) First off: Today’s church can be selfish

But people confuse the modern messed up church with the real power of Jesus Christ. I’m certainly dissatisfied with the hoarding American church and its isolated philosophy of Prayer-Praise-Scripture at the expense of Going-Making-Giving. When $10 million megachurches are built while 26,000 children die of starvation everyday, something is wrong.

View original post 729 more words


Author: Bryan Daniels

I am a follower of Jesus, a husband to Jessica, and a father of three boys: Josiah, Gideon and Judah. I teach high school math as a job, read reformed theology as a hobby, and write this blog just for kicks. With the rest of my time I coach football and track.

23 thoughts on “”

  1. Calling Christianity selfish sounds odd to me — it’s not something that would have occurred to me. I wonder what specifically yinayun was thinking of…

    That being said, there may be something to it. It might be someone’s first impulse to say that Christianity is all about saving the lost — what’s selfish about that? But what about the fact that Christianity’s based on stories in the OT where God tells the Israelites to wipe out entire nations so they can have the land? Many Christians also believe that the Bible tells them everyone else in the world is wrong and deserving of Hell unless they repent. Is that selfish? I don’t know… but you could at least make the case that it may be a sign of apathy.

    I don’t know. It’s an interesting question.

    1. My thoughts (I don’t pretend them to be satisfactory to all your questions)
      In my limited understanding I believe the OT “wars” speak a lot about the preserverance of a nation in order to provide the promised line of Messiah. When every wicked nations came up against God’s chosen Israel or its promised right to exist/land then the wars ensued. I think the Bible makes it clear what type of nations those were, commonly reprobate and utterly evil.

      Obviously the New Testament has a different “tone” about it with Christ establishing a bride and not an ethnocentric people.

      I appreciate and empathize with the testimony of John below.
      As far as hell every Christian deserves it too (Romans 3:11-18). I personally believe “I am wrong” first and not just everyone else. If am saved it is what God has wrought on the cross and not what I deserve over anyone else.

      The cross is the eternal model of unselfish self sacrifice for the good of others, if I’m not striving to learn and submit to it every day then I am denying it’s power with my life.

      I appreciate those thoughts Nate!

  2. I agree with Nate as it is hard to think of a concise general response to such a broad question. I will say that we in the church should accept responsibility for any selfishness we have committed and point people to the selfless Christ who came not to be served but serve and give His life.

    Instead of going into theological debate, I will share a bit of ny testimony as it pertains to selfishness. My life before follwing Jesus was definitely selfish. My goals were to find pleasure and escape pain; I was at the center. My relationships had suffered because they hinged on what “I” could get out of them. But I encountered God’s tangible presence after a friend shared how God had changed His life. This love and goodness was so real that I gladly gave my life to Him.

    Growing up in a bible believing community, I knew that my experience lined up with what the bible teaches about the gospel of Jesus. After receiving Jesus, my heart was softened. I had an intense desire to give this love away to others. Of course I wasn’t perfectly mature and am still growing, but my nature has changed. My relationships were now honestly based off of a true love for people and wanting the best for them. There was a person who owed me thousands of dollars and God spoke to me to release them from their debts. This would have been unthinkable in my previous life, but wasn’t that hard to do as I thought of the joy it would bring that individual. And after the deed was done, the joy I felt was priceless.

    Even though I still might struggle with selfishness (especially when my body is done with giving for the day), there is a pull of the nature of God in me that keeps me and brings me back to my senses if I start to go astray. The bible puts it like this:

    “No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. 9No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.” 1 John 3:6-9

    Sin is a four letter word spelled: S.E.L.F. The Christian life is based on a selfless sacrifice, the death of Jesus on the cross which destroyed sin. When someone is transformed by Jesus, the desire to give your life for others is burned into your DNA. If a Christian is behaving selfishly, they aren’t reflecting the nature of God as they should.

  3. I think a lot of people who claim to be Christians are selfish, but if you’re living Christianity, I don’t think anyone could find anything they could call selfish

  4. “In a nut-shell. Christianity is “all” about dying to self (or selfishness) so that Christ may live in us and through us impacting the world with his power and love… Period…”

    Thanks for reblogging!!! 🙂

  5. Of all the adjectives I could use to describe your religion, this one would never have oocured to me.
    I mean, it will let anyone join for your god’s sake, and no special qualifications needed. In fact, it seems the less the better in this regard. Hallelujah!
    And if George Bush could proudly claim he was Chrisiian I would think twice about joining any cult he was affilitated to. And so should everyone wlse. Sheesh!
    Most odd.

    1. You’re right there certainly are no special qualifications needed to come to Christ! Hallelujah! Or else I certainly would be disqualified…Good Friday and weeked to you sir!

        1. Well, I’m not an ordained minister but the only qualifications for those are expounded in 1 Tim 3 and Titus 1. Paul who had the equivalent of three modern day PhDs yet said “I knew nothing among you among except Christ and Him crucified” (1 Cor 2:2) In the book of Acts the Pharisees marveled at the Apostles teaching because they were “unlearned men” who had simply been with Jesus (Acts 13). So you may believe I have don’t have a clue about any of these matters at all, but that won’t stop me from sharing the “foolishness of the cross” for the rest of my God given life (1 Cor 1)

          God equips the called, not the other way around.

          Peace and grace!

      1. Sort of like: “Sign here, and we’ll provide the tools of the trade.”

        I don’t buy into it; seems more like on-the-job-training, and from the many, many people I have read on this subject, from the Gospels to the late Ron Wyatt. )-LOVE this man, totally hilarious- I reckon the pratitioners should all go ‘back to school’..

  6. Very interesting perspective, however I must disagree– for the simple reason Jesus Christ (the core of our faith/Christianity) lived, loved and DIED to set the captives free. I speaking from a simple saved-by-grace Christ follower, I am not a theologian, nor do I have a any scholarly degrees.

  7. I will be the first to admit that all Christians (myself included) have been or are selfish far too often. But Christianity itself is the polar opposite. Jesus calls us to a standard of love for others that is perfect. All we have to do is, “be perfect,” as he was perfect in meeting this standard. Christianity asks for love 100%, 24/7, with all your heart, with all your strength, and with all your soul.

    My thanks to yinayun for the gentle nudge to live my faith more visibly so that she may see the Christianity that we are called to, but also for reminding me that Jesus came to save people like me; the sinners who don’t yet measure up.

  8. Being a Christian is selflessness, the opposite of selfishness. We live to please Another, not ourselves. “We make it our goal to please Him…” 2 Cor 5:9

  9. I think it depends on how you use the word. Every action a human takes is essentially for their own benefit, whether that benefit is direct (working for a paycheck), or indirect (helping someone ‘selflessly’ because a caring world is better for all). So in a sense, no matter what religion we are, because humans are humans our actions are by necessity, motivated by personal self interest. Which, some may list as selfishness, but selfishness is more commonly used when your actions directly hinder someone else for your own benefit. Part of maturing as a Christian is coming to understand the consequences of your self-centered actions and realizing that considering others (Christ’s second greatest commandment) actually benefits you more so then being selfish to someone else’s detriment. That’s why free-trade and other such capitalistic notions work and can be considered Christian policies.

  10. I believe our journey as Christians is to decrease that Christ may increase. Everyday building our relationship with our Heavenly Father, allowing him to prune us and mold us into the person He created us to be. Selfishness along with so many other negative character traits begin to dissolve as we lose our lives and allow Christ to live in and through us. Our Spirit has been made perfect but we will be crucifying our flesh and renewing our mind until Christ returns.

  11. It’s funny. I would completely agree wit the statement, but I would change it to “Christianity SHOULD be selfish.”
    ‘Thou shalt not murder.’ Why? Because of what it does to you.
    ‘Thou shalt not steal.’ Why? Because of what it does to you.
    ‘Be thankful to God in all things.’ Why? Because it puts you into an attitude of gratitude where blessings come more easily.
    ‘Praise God in all things.’ Why? Not because he needs your praise, but because you need the victories you get from offering those praise.
    I would say that Christianity should be a “look out for number one” religion if you approach it right.:)
    God bless.

    1. It’s true. Christianity helps change our perspective to realize that in order for us to do well, we must help others do well; or that God’s wealth is abundant and we don’t have to take in order to have. Instead of the world’s point of view that to benefit ourselves we have to hinder others.

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