“Before, what I believed, what Chinese people believe, is that people are innately good,” she said. “I realized that I was sinful. I was lying, not loving. Those are as bad as killing someone. There’s no difference between me and a murderer.”
I’ve said this before: Christianity offers a solution to a self-created problem. Evangelical or fundamentalist Christianity is only good news once you’re convinced that you are no better than a murderer and deserve to die and suffer in hell. Only then can Christianity offer its good news.
Imagine you are strolling down the sidewalk and a man excitedly calls you over to his front porch to share some “great news,”
The man’s got a gruesome torture chamber in his basement, Barker said, but you don’t have to go down there. Instead, you can come over, hug the man’s son, say you love him and you can all move in together in the attic and tell them how great they are forever.
Anyway, that’s the rabbit trail reading that article, and especially that one passage, took me down. Sometimes, living in a world where I see people as valuable and full of potential, it’s painful to take this walk back to the past and remember what I used to believe. In some ways, it’s like Alice fallen down the rabbit hole – and remembering that that is where she used to live.
Note: Moderate or liberal Christians generally follow different proselytizing techniques. Most often they believe that they should just lead their lives and be an example for others – that if someone notices they are especially joyful or especially fulfilled, that someone will ask questions. Moderate and liberal Christians generally don’t believe that non-Christians will not be automatically tortured for eternity. However, their proselytizing tactics are rendered rather invisible compared to those of more conservative Christians and without the ability to threaten hellfire and brimstone they have a decreased number of tools to use to convince a non-Christian person that he or she should become Christian. The plus side, though, is the focus on the positive (the offer of community) rather than on the negative (the threat of torture).