The No-Church Christians

Today I read a long article on the Christian Science Monitor site. For several years I subscribed to the Christian Science Monitor print version. Within journalism, it was regarded as among the great newspapers. It’s on-line version continues this tradition.

The article was an in depth look at a growing group of devout Christians who no longer attend church. As within any large group, there are many views and ways of handling this new development in peoples’ lives.

In spite of differences, a theme runs through the several interviews in the article. It is that these ex church Christians became disenchanted with their church’s practice of judging others. They now feel more comfortable practicing their faith without mixing in the institutional church’s practice of condemning groups it considers sinful.

To the extent this represents no-church Christians, it conforms to what I think has become a prevailing moral standard in U. S. society. It is a standard taught in elementary public schools where I have lived and I have overheard parents reinforcing what their children have been taught. It is that diversity in race, sexual orientation and creed is a good thing and it is to be respected, not condemned.

Thus, when the parents attend their church and hear the preacher doing exactly what they have taught their children not to do, they quit.

We all know the likely issues, homosexuality and the role of women in the church. I think the no-church Christian numbers have increased because of backwards views within some churches.

[The Christian Science article can be linked in comments.]

19 Responses

  1. Matt Noah

    Freethinkers exist only because Christianity exists. Everything on this blog is consumed with Christianity. Conversely. My favorite Catholic blogs are rich in variety.

    1. Matt 6:35 Valid criticisms from you today. That is, I am mentally ill because I am a skeptic about the faith. And, this blog is repetitious boredom.

      These are things I probably should improve upon. Probably, however, I will not. But, thanks for the suggestions nevertheless.

      1. Matt Noah

        You are much much more than a skeptic. Skeptics rarely obsess for years on end, bothering to author a daily blog aimed squarely at evangelizing as many Christians away from the Faith. A skeptic does not resort to lies to convince people of his position. If you were only a skeptic.

        The only time this blog gets much activity is when Henry or some other like-minded people decide to call you out on some of the “skepticism” you write.

        1. Matt 9:59 The only time this blog gets much activity is when Henry or some other like-minded people decide to call you out on some of the “skepticism” you write.

          I myself don’t measure “activity” by how many comments are posted here. I watch the number if visitors. Only a few of the visitors are folks like you who comment. My own visits are not recorded. There is little correlation between the number of comments and the number of visitors.

          Currently, the blog is attracting between 10 and 12,000 visits a month. I don’t know who they are or why they visit, but visit they do.

    2. entech

      Freethought — or free thought — is a philosophical viewpoint which holds that positions regarding truth should be formed on the basis of logic, reason, and empiricism, rather than authority, tradition, revelation, or other dogma.
      Wikipedia.

      In philosophy it predates Christianity, so to say Freethinkers exist only because Christianity exists. does not hold up, if you wish to relate the two then as freethought came first you could just as well say “Christianity only exists because freethought exists” and be just as wrong.

      It is wrong to say Everything on this blog is consumed with Christianity. There is much on this blog from which I am excluded as it is essentially American politics or other local stuff. Conversely it would be true to say that you are consumed with (or by) Christianity and read everything as somehow relating to it.

      1. Matt Noah

        The philosophy or theology of Christianity, more correctly, predates written history as Christ predates all of Creation.

        So-called “Freethinkers” exist only because it is human nature to rebel.

        Obsession is clearly evident on this blog and the object of the obsession is Christianity. There is very little on this blog which is centered on the general topic of free-thinking. Clearly, free-thinking is the mask which covers a virulent anti-Christian bigotry face.

        Christians are the most logical, scientifically sound and charitable group I have experienced. I have also found those qualities in Mormons, Jews, many Asian cultures and some others.

  2. dean

    Matt; What plantet are you from? Christ predateds creation? Christ first appears around 0 AD by your own new testament. Christians the most logical? There is’nt a shred of logical thought involved in belief in an invisible man who only exists in christians’ imagination. Scientifically sound? We would have no medicine (study Galen) , history would only be about 7 thousand years old and we would live on a flat plantet with the earth at the center. I don’t comment that often but your obsession is just too overbearing.

      1. Chuck Z

        entech
        Reply
        I am still so numb from shock that I can’t think of anything to say.

        December 21, 2015 at 7:09 am

        Praise Jesus!

        1. entech

          Purely metaphorical I assure you. I can think of much to say but most of the time can’t be bothered. Sometimes submitting to the futility of expecting any sense from the likes of you and Matt.

    1. Matt Noah

      I am from earth. Jesus Christ is one personality of a triune God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I think if you are commenting about Christianity you should know the basic tenets of the Faith. You can insult the religious people of earth but just know that the vast majority of the world’s people believe in the supernatural vis a vis religion, i.e. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, etc.

      Nearly all of modern medicine is attributed to …. well, why don’t you look it up.

      Seven thousand years old? Which Christian denominations believe that?

      Flat earth? Which Christian denominations believe that?

      Come back when you have facts.

      1. Matt 8:18 I think if you are commenting about Christianity you should know the basic tenets of the Faith

        That, indeed, is a good idea.

        In the Bible there are three different references to the beginning of the Jesus character. I have covered them in other blogs. The only one that conforms to your version that Jesus existed when God existed was a statement attributed to Jesus. Other places we find Jesus only existed at birth and other that he was tapped by God during his life. So, if you want to pick one as the “tenet of the faith” it’s a free country. Other Christians have chosen another point in time.

        As the old saying goes, whatever floats your boat.

        1. Matt Noah

          LOL. So Jon is now a “sola scriptura” atheist. Actually, please point to a branch/denomination of Christianity that does not recognize the Holy Trinity. Come on, just one. Use google or something like that.

          Jesus Christ (man) existed from conception. That is scriptural. Mary’s pregnancy was told to her by the Angel Gabriel, i.e. “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee …” When Mary and Elizabeth met for the first time since their children’s conception the Bible said, “The baby lept in its womb.” The baby was John the Baptist leaping for joy in the presence of the Lord.

          Jesus Christ the Divine existed for all time. You see, Christianity believes in both the divinity and person of Jesus Christ.

          Is your boat floating?

          1. wanna B Sure

            Matt; @ 10:39: You almost have it right, but the correct definition is; “THE TWO NATURES IN CHRIST”, aka “De Duabus Naturis in Christo”. ( Both divine AND human). Both the “person” of Christ. Remember the Trinitarian Formula. It “Is” what it is, and it “is not” what it is not. Your last paragraph would be accurate if you had said; “Christianity believes in both the divine and human natures in the Person of Jesus Christ”.

          2. entech

            Actually, please point to a branch/denomination of Christianity that does not recognize the Holy Trinity. Come on, just one. Use google or something like that.
            Using “christians that don’t believe in trinity”gives 1,420,000 results. There does seem to be many denominations that that do not believe in the Nicene Creed, actually most followers of the early Jesus Movement before 325 did not believe in any God except that of Deuteronomy 6:4
            Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.

            Not that it really matters to me as I do not believe in any of them, the fact that that there are so many different denominations that are so vehement about all the others being wrong does not help. It is only my belief and I may well be wrong but so may all the different beliefs as we say so often – they can’t all be true but they can all be wrong.

          3. entech 5:07 Using “Christians that don’t believe in trinity” gives 1,420,000 results.

            As has been pointed out here before, the term “trinity” does not appear in the Bible. Mormons do not believe the three are one, but three separate entities. I Googled up “trinity and the Bible”. There as essayist, a believer, said that whatever the Bible authors meant by the concept of the three is mysterious and outside the comprehension of humans.

            That is except Matt, who is confident he knows.

          4. entech

            Jon 5:36
            Gregory, one of the Cappadocian Fathers said something along the lines that trying to understand the trinity and all its complications leads to madness so we must just treat it as a divine mystery. Add to this the concept of divine revelation and we get the true case – it is religious code for “I made it up”.

  3. Rifle

    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made John 1:1-3

    The Word= Jesus, so yes, Jesus predates creation

    Isaiah references the circle of the earth, so no, the Bible does not teach a flat earth. The world taught a flat earth for a long time though!

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