A lot of the arguments I have heard against Christianity have actually been directed towards the Church. This is a tragedy to me, but some of these arguments are worth looking at and worth addressing. I was very hesitant to write this, because I don’t want anyone to be offended. However, I have heard a lot of people say that the Church is responsible for some horrible things in the past and that is why they cannot accept Christianity. I think this is a valid thing to discuss…
One thing that cannot be overlooked is the injustice that has been done by the Church. I don’t mean the Catholic Church or any one particular group, but I mean the Church as in the body of people who have called themselves Christians. In the past, this Church has persecuted peoples of different religious groups, started the crusades, and manipulated people using religious arguments. Christians have owned slaves, oppressed others, and stolen money from the people they were meant to pastor, all under the name of the same God and all with the “evidence” of the same scriptures.
There are many things I don’t understand in scripture, it’s true. But there is no excuse for when people in the Church take verses and passages and use them to manipulate others into doing something for their own agenda. There is an instance where this very issue happens in scripture to Jesus Himself. While He was in the wilderness, it was Satan who used the very tactic of twisting scripture to accomplish his own goals. I’m not saying that someone who does this is “satanic” or anything like that. But I cannot say that what they are doing is anything close to godly.
We have to be discerning when it comes to the Church. Christians are not infallible just because our God is. And I think, sometimes, we have to question whether or not these people are actually following God’s will at all. Though it is never our place to judge someone and decide whether or not someone is truly a Christian, I do think a person’s actions are indicative of their faith.
The Crusades. Persecution. Slavery. Manipulation. Theft. Controlling Wealth. All of these things are something… but not Christian.
We, as Christians, should acknowledge the mistakes of the Church and strive to correct them so that we do not relive them. We should always be loving in this process and we should help one another to seek God in our decisions. Christ never wanted religion to be used to control anyone—that’s what the Pharisees did—instead, He came that we may all be free. He wanted us to have life and have it to the fullest… and to share that life with others.