Growing up in a very religious setting, I accepted the Christian faith at a very young age. However, the practice of the faith around me was far removed from what I read every day in the scriptures. They were opposed. This phenomenon, which I will delve into, is what I have termed pseudo-Christianity.
Cessationism (the belief that the manifestation of spiritual gifts had ceased since the time of the apostles) was far from my Christian upbringing. I grew up seeing the supernatural being demonstrated frequently. Nevertheless, I discovered an insidious trend as I understood the Christian faith more: I came to realize that we were just concerned about the ‘goodies’ of receiving Christ.
Believers were caught in the matrix of how to appropriate all that they received in Christ for just themselves, leaving them almost irresponsible. So I found believers who would commit themselves to prayer, mainly because of their selfish desires; godliness was a means to gaining.
The essence of spiritual activities and exercises could not be seen if you weren’t going to benefit materially in the long run. At first, I found this comfortable and it made me see this as the reason for the exclusivity of the Christian faith. Earthly blessings became the proof of true Christianity, if the guy does not have a car, he probably doesn’t know God. Because, as I was taught, a person who is truly a Christian will have all the earthly goodies. After all, with the true God on my side, I was going to make all the money I wanted in life, so I was taught.
This lasted until I realised that the richest person on earth at that time wasn’t a Christian. This made me rethink all that held as true. How in the world could that be?! That’s an insult to my Christian faith, I said to myself. I had always thought following God was the only way to get the earthly things I wanted. How foolish I must have been? Puzzled by my sudden discovery, I began to seek the essence of Christianity. I wanted to know what true Christian living ought to look like. Soon enough, I would find my answer.
This Christian life that seeks to validate itself not from scriptures but from the world and its standards is pseudo-Christianity. Throughout scripture, the essence of the Christian Faith had not been tied to earthly benefits. I wish I had known that. Our Lord Jesus himself says this in Matt 6:31-32 “Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the Gentiles seek for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.”This Christian life that seeks to validate itself not from scriptures but from the world and its standards is pseudo-Christianity. Throughout scripture, the essence of the Christian Faith is not tied to earthly benefits Click To Tweet
The majority of the Christian folks I saw around me were busy seeking what the Gentiles sought. Christianity for them was a need-seeking enterprise and they were profitable at it. Our attention was on ourselves and how we could use all our “God-given abilities” as it were, to satisfy ourselves. Unsurprisingly, this fashionable form of Christian living made me see Christian folks who stirred themselves in the right direction as being special or perhaps, overzealous.
I was willing to do almost anything for God as far as it was tied to something I could get from God. If I couldn’t get anything off God from it, then it wasn’t worth it. Inevitably, we were not spiritually devoted. We were just all about our earthly pursuits.The question that comes to my mind is this, if I wasn’t going to agree with that, what should be my approach to my Christian Life?
As we would see in the second part of this write-up, the normal Christian life, as found in the Scriptures, is that life that is committed to the Lord and sees the relevance of its earthly pursuits within that sphere of devotion and not outside of it. Pseudo-Christianity is what we get when a believer esteems his earthly pursuits to the detriment of fulfilling the standards of devotion laid down in the scriptures; this we must constantly be on our guards againstThe Christian life, as found in the Scriptures, is that life that is committed to the Lord and sees the relevance of its earthly pursuits within that sphere of devotion and not outside of it. Click To Tweet