While internet wandering, I happened across two situations. At ”a Longmire Rambles” JD Longmire talked of being kicked off a Christian forum board for daring to offer a contrary opinion on the extremely controversial topic of solos in church.
In a completely unrelated note, at Moral Science Club Jim Jordan discussed how poorly Christians treated a former pastor who had an affair.
Both situations reminded me of how we view Christians treating each other so harshly. We have all heard the phrase, “The Christian Army is the only one that kills their own wounded.” As a Christian, it often stunned me how fellow Christians would not speak to each other, or would deliberately sit on opposite sides of the church, or would gossip and tear to shreds one another. Even then, I thought, “Come ON! We are supposed to be on the same side, here.”
As a heathen, I am treated in roughly the same manner. Some Christians display charity towards me, others….well… others do not. None of this should come as a surprise. Christianity is a group of people, and—like any other grouping of people, consists of good people, bad people, kind people, mean people and about every personality, make-up and disposition that can be imagined.
Even though it does not come as a surprise—it still is. It would appear that we, including both Christians and non-Christians, expect more from Christians. We expect them to be different. When a corporate CEO is discovered as having embezzled from the company, we sigh with the though of “yet another.” But if it is a Christian, or a Christian company, or a Christian in a church, our eyebrows go up just a bit higher, and we are surprised that a Christian (of all people) would do such a thing.
As I was listening to Dr. Mohler talk about the upcoming elections, on the radio, a caller stated that he would ONLY vote for a Christian. If I called in and stated I would ONLY vote for an atheist, I suspect that many theists would find this close-minded. Yet there is something more. There is a perception that Christians are good people, so not only am I close-minded, there is a hint that it is not wise to vote for a non-Christian. They are not…quite…trustworthy.
(And if you don’t believe that, who is the last Republican or Democrat candidate for President that declared they are not a Christian of some sort?)
I confess it is disconcerting that what is surprising in a Christian, is expected in me. If I undercut, or lie or cheat or steal—well…what can you do? Atheist, ya know.
I am not ready for that typecast, I guess…
(And, to be clear, neither J.D.Longmire nor Jim Jordan was giving the impression that somehow these incidents would be expected of atheists, but not from Christians.)
Why is it that we (who should know better) have bought the bill of goods that Christians are somehow “better” than non-Christians?