70+ years ago C. S. Lewis said that the word Christian had lost its meaning. He compared it to the word gentleman, in that ‘gentleman’ once meant that one had a coat of arms and owned land. Today a gentleman might hold the door for a lady. He continued by pointing out that the word Christian once meant ‘little Christ.’ I think what Lewis was getting at was that being a Christian meant that one was a disciple, a learner of Jesus who gave up a great deal to follow Him as master.
Today, calling oneself a Christian is a label one chooses as part of one’s identity. In many contexts, it really doesn’t mean much more than one’s political party affiliation.
Click, read and consider this exchange in a Budapest paper where Hungary’s PM Orban has stirred the waters about protecting a so-called Christian Europe.
The article shows a Christianity that is hardly Christian in the biblical sense. Thus, I largely reject using the term at all today.
Well, dear reader, remember Jesus died to forgive our sins and rose from the dead to give us eternal life. He then told his disciples to make disciples.
He told no one to fill buildings with converts, onlookers and seekers listening to someone talking about subjects they don’t care about. All so they can check a box that helps them call themselves Christian. Or helps them be seen as “Christian” because they are in the building.
Don’t check a box in a building full of people you don’t really agree with. Instead, do what Jesus commanded:
Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength
love your neighbor
love your enemies.
Want to protect “Christian Europe” Mr. PM? Love those refugees and help them get to Western Europe. Love and help the NGOs and just plain folks who are taking sandwiches and water to these oppressed people.
Don’t feel the love? Consider C. S. Lewis’ advice. If you don’t love your neighbor, just begin by acting as if you do, then, after a while, you may find that you do.
Both Lewis thoughts are from Mere Christianity.