Christianity Johnson on 29 Sep 2008 12:01 am
This week the “God Squad” newspaper column took up the challenge of defining an “Evangelical Christian”:
The reader who posed the question offers the first definition.
Definition of Evangelical Christian #1
- believes and accepts the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus as the Gospel.
- knows that we are not our own, we were bought with a price to glorify God in our body and spirit, and cannot be the servants of men (First Corinthians 6 19-20; 7: 23).
- lives for Christ. I am nothing; realize that we are 6 zeros with Christ before us making us a million, and are willing to die for Him.
- knows that Christ is the Creator (Colossians 1:16; Isaiah 44: 24).
- believes in a triune God â€” salvation planned by the Father, Implanted by the Son, Empowered by the Holy Ghost.
- speaks in another tongue after we are sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise (Ephesians 1:13)
- looks forward to walk on the Street of Gold and enter in through the Gates into the City of Heaven (Revelation 21:21; 22:14).
Barna Research Ltd offers an alternative definition:
Definition of Evangelical Christian #2
- Someone who has experienced a personal â€œborn againâ€ feeling of being saved by their Lord Jesus Christ
- somebody who feels that their faith is very important in their life
- somebody who is eager to proselytize others, Jews and other Christians included
- somebody who believes that Satan is a living danger to the life of faith
- somebody who believes the Bible is the literal and inerrant word of God
- somebody who believes that salvation is only possible through faith and not through works
- somebody who believes that Jesus lived a sinless life here on earth
- somebody who believes that God created the world
The God Squad offers its own definition (sort of):
Definition of Evangelical Christian #3
- all Evangelicals are Protestants, but not all Protestants are Evangelicals.
- speaking in tongues is characteristic of Pentecostals only.
- Evangelicals are the most conservative and fundamentalist of Protestant Christians.
- Evangelicals have the most difficulty with interfaith dialogue and are definitely not going to embrace my definition that all religions are like different paths up the same mountain.
The most interesting part of the “God Squad” article is the last sentence: “I know The Boss will sort it all out when the Messiah comes (or comes again). In the meantime, I keep telling them that if being Jewish was good enough for Jesus, itâ€™s definitely good enough for me!” Of course if you believe in “The Boss”, you also believe that he will cast anyone who is incorrect into the eternal torture of Hell after he “sorts it all out”.
Then there is the famous Internet definition of a Christian:
Definition of Evangelical Christian #4
10 – You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of your god.
9 – You feel insulted and “dehumanized” when scientists say that people evolved from lesser life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
8 – You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Trinity god.
7 – Your face turns purple when you hear of the “atrocities” attributed to Allah, but you don’t even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in “Exodus” and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in “Joshua” — including women, children, and trees!
6 – You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
5 – You are willing to spend your life looking for little loop-holes in the scientifically established age of the Earth (4.55 billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by pre-historic tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that the Earth is a couple of generations old.
4 – You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs — though excluding those in all rival sects — will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet you consider your religion the most “tolerant” and “loving”.
3 – While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in “tongues” may be all the evidence you need to prove Christianity.
2 – You define 0.01% as a “high success rate” when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
1 – You actually know a lot less than many Atheists and Agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history — but still call yourself a Christian.
Finally, here is the WWGHA definition of a Christian:
Definition of Evangelical Christian #5
1) A Christian believes in prayer even though it is obvious that prayer is a superstition:
2) A Christian believes in the Bible even though it is obvious that the Bible is repulsive:
3) A Christian believes in Jesus even though it is obvious that Jesus is imaginary:
4) A Christian believes in Heaven even though it is obvious that heaven is a fairy tale:
5) A Christian believes in “God’s Plan” even though it is obvious that it is impossible:
6) A Christian believes in God even though it is obvious that God is as mythological as Zeus or Ra:
7) Most importantly, a Christian will look at all of this obvious evidence showing that God/Jesus/Heaven/Prayer is imaginary, then put his/her fingers in his/her ears and shout, “I will not listen to obvious facts! I believe in God because of faith!”