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The American Christian Religion

This is not a new problem of the religious but is a very common issue in America now.  In 2012, 77% of Americans claimed to be 'Christian'.  That includes 2% who are Mormon, 23% Catholic, and the rest 52% Protestant and 'other' Christan.  In those stats alone we already see a problem.  Mormons deny essential truths of Christianity like The Trinity among others; they are not Christian by their own beliefs.  Yet, claim the Christian title.  This just validates the point being made here;  That the American Christian Religion has become a religion of its own with its own sects and has parted ways with the true Christian Faith from Jesus Christ as The Lord God and Savior in the Trinity. 

What is the American Christian Religion (ACR):

It is a religion that takes parts of Christianity, leaves other parts out, and replaces them with the focus on personal health, wealth, prosperity, self seeking individualism, with empathy for everyone else.  It prides itself in its focus on the self of the individual and nonjudgmental attitude (despite its blatant contradiction and hypocrisy).  It focuses worship on the feelings and emotions for the self and the followers seek churches for their self benefit.  It does not preach The Gospel in its entirety but instead only 'positive uplifting messages' in a watered down non offensive manner.  It is material and deed focused.

What are some groups within the American Christian Religion:

Olsteenism

One of the largest groups in ACR are Olsteenites.  Olsteenism is coined because of its predominate teacher, Joel Olsteen.  Olsteenism teaches emotionalism and positivism as its core values.  The end result of worshiping God is for the health, wealth, and happiness of the individual.  Their worship is feelings based and emotions driven.  Osteenism avoids offensive subjects and does not preach The Gospel so that new adherents do not feel 'judged' or get offended.  Olsteenites will passionately defend Olsteenism and their leader Joel Olsteen and avoid indepth studies of Scripture and correct Scripture interpretation of God's Holy Word.

Compared to Christianity:

The Gospel is the most important and most powerful message the church was given and is called to teach it to the world despite the worlds objections.  Our reason for being is to glorify God and worship God alone.  He is our end result.  His glory and proclaiming Jesus (what he did and who he is) is the reason for our faith.  The message of The Cross is offensive and when people hear it, the Holy Spirit convicts them of their sin and they 'feel' judged; because they have been already.  God declared them to be sinners and unholy in his sight deserving of the wages of sin, death. But that is not the only part of the gospel.  The redemption of The Cross is what changes lives and saves souls.  It is what replaces that 'feeling' of being 'judged' with pure joy and peace for eternity.  There is no teacher or preacher that is to be more passionately followed than The Holy Sprint and what God has made known in Holy Scripture.  Make make themselves to be God.

Social-Evangelicals

Another predominant group that claim the Christian faith are 'Social-Evangelicals'.  This group is less obvious than Olsteenites.  They attend a wide range of churches and denominations.  They accept more of Christian teachings and the gospel than that of Olsteenism.  They begin to differ from true Christianity when it comes down to faith and the spiritual.   Much like Olsteenism where the end result is for themselves, their end result is the same but their reason is different.  They strive to maintain the 'evangelical christian' image in society.  From regular church attendance, giving, ministry support, even political contributions- is to maintain their image so society sees them as being identified as 'christian'.  They strive to promote their image of Christianity in society.  They tend to be more legalistic in their lives to build and perpetuate the image.  They will use scripture to justify their image but also distort scripture for the same reason.  The image they project in society is their focus of faith and the reason for what they do.  The image they built is their God.

Compared to Christianity:

No one is righteous or make themselves righteous.   The Law of God proves to us that we can not maintain righteousness ourselves.  Perfect church attendance, and high amount of giving does not make us right before God.  The Gospel and the message of The Cross is the identity of the believer and is not built on the works or deeds that the believer does.  Christians do not attend church or do things in society to make themselves known or make themselves look good in front of the world.  Christians attend church to glorify and focus on God.  They give and do things in the world to point to Christ and The Cross, not themselves.  Their faith is completely dependent on The Gospel and The Cross; and nothing to do with them besides their sins and their need for salvation which by Grace they were given.

What these American Christian Religious sects have in common:

Olsteenism and Socail-Evangelicals share Three key things;
  1. Self Focused.  These two sects of ACR are focused on man and more specifically the individual.  They are selfish in nature and glorify man as the result of the teachings and deeds.  In the end and at the core, blindly they put themselves up as God or higher than God.  God is used as nothing more than a ATM machine for selfish desires.
  2. Worldly Focused.  These two sects of ACR focus their faith on the material world and worldly things instead of the spiritual and Heaven.  Trying to satisfy their sinful desire for self gain in this world instead of seeking Gods Glory in this world for eternal gain.  Their efforts try and benefit this world instead of The Kingdom of Heaven.  They seek temporary value like happiness, health, wealth, status, and preserving a worldly image but fail to seek eternal matters; leading people to faith in Christ Jesus, glorifying God, maturing in spiritual faith, producing spiritual fruit of the spirit, and expanding the Kingdom of Heaven by making disciples and preaching The Gospel.  Even though they ask for things in "Jesus' name" or try and maintain an image that stands for "God", they do them in vain because their hearts for themselves and for things of this world.
  3. No Sacrifice.  They live out their religion in such a way that it does not cause them to make any real sacrifices for God's glory or the advancement of the Gospel.  They do what suits them.  When they do 'mission trips' its to vacation spots that do not require any real test of faith while keeping them in some sort of comfort zone to a region that has access to the Gospel already.  They do not teach the gospel out of fear of losing friends or family, jobs or grades in school.  The fear of opinions of people keep them from fulling trusting the Lord and preaching The Cross.
These three key points are tied together.  Because of encouraged selfishness they desire things of the world; that causes them to be unwilling to sacrifice things of the world for eternal selfless gain.  They are blinded by selfishness and greed and encouraged by others who are blinded by selfishness and greed.

The Gospel convicts us of this.  What Jesus did on the cross frees us from this.   And because we truly believe what he did and why, The Cross is all we want to preach in this world for eternity sake.

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