Alright so roundabouts last week sometime I had an encounter with Christianity… Or I observed it.. Something…..
To be quite honest, I don’t really remember.
BUT- I remember the revelation that it sparked, and being that I have a blog now, I feel compelled to share it with you.
Have you ever noticed how EVERYthing has three forms to it?
Original. Gaudy. Gritty.
Music- there is of course the original version of a song… thennn somebody remixes it and adds a lot of bells and whistles to make it flashy (gaudy)… and then of course there’s always that one person with a remix that’s just a bit rougher than the original. A little- grittier.
Relationships- original relationships (in this case) would be the home ones, since that’s the relationship everybody starts with… Thennnn further down the road – whether a friendship, dating relationship, or maybe even certain family members – there’s a gaudiness to it. Very flashy and seemingly of depth, yet not really so. They are not “ride or die” as the term goes. And then of course that one (or more than one) suspicious character in your entourage that you are glad is in your entourage because their gangster levels (or grittiness) is just bit high? Right.
I could go on, and on, but then we would never reach my point.
My point is- religion. More specifically- Christianity.
And we are going to take the liberty of assuming that the entire Bible is true… particularly the New Testament where Christianity itself was born.
I noticed that inside of the world of Christianity there are also three “versions” if you would. Three different types of practices.
The original. The gaudy. And the gritty.
Let’s start with the gaudy.
Gaudy Christianity goes something like this….
“God loves everybody… Even if you sin He doesn’t care… Just be happy and do good deeds and Heaven is yours.”
That’s about how it goes.
Very flashy, and about appearances, and really nothing substantial. A lot of smiles. A lot of free will doing and believing what you will. Certainly no evangelism or anything of the sort.
More or less a loose claim to Christianity without a stake in it.
Gaudy Christianity is closer to karma than anything else.
Gritty Christianity goes something like this…
Turn or burn… God is waiting to smash you for the smallest infraction… the Cross must be hung over everybody’s head…
It’s very strict and judgmental… Almost as if God needs “thugs” to bully people into accepting Christ because they are afraid. It can be easy to slip into this because it’s “more” truthful- focused on the facts of the Bible. They don’t run away from the tough issues, and will spring into debate the drop of a hat.
Gritty Christianity has very little to do with God, and much to do with His self proclaimed “enforcers” to push people into believing.
Original Christianity is pretty much this…
Man was separated from God via sin… Jesus died on the Cross and rose again to reconcile man to God… Man is charged with spreading the love and power of Jesus throughout the world – He is the only way to God, and subsequently to Heaven.
It’s flashy, but not really… gritty, but not really… on the outside it isn’t very impressive at all, and with no confidence in oneself, you can miss the elements of its potency. It’s a humbling belief system, that elicits either humility or pride depending on the character balance of the person.
Overall it’s very- focused. Clear. A balance between human responsibility, and divine authority.
So what’s the point dude.
The point is- with these three versions of the most potent religion running rampant on the earth… which is the best? Obviously these are very concise descriptions for sake of time, and because this is not a theology blog- but the summaries convey the issue.
And without advocating for any of them- which is the most accurate? The most effective? The most useful? The closest to God’s heart?
It would seem, from a logical standpoint anyways, that since Christianity is more or less God’s “invention” as it were, that Christians as a whole should identify what He meant Christianity to be… and then rally behind it.
Perhaps this is not an in-depth enough examination? Maybe. So long as you’re contemplating it.
And here’s another stray thought as I close… If we get to “real” Christianity- then churches can stop competing. Rather than “my church is better than yours” there could just be style preference. Like preferring rock n roll over jazz. Not that either is better- but for a particular person one may be more impactful.
Because at the end of the day that’s ultimately what Christianity boils down to isn’t it?
Impacting the world with the message of Christ?
Does gaudy do that best? Or being gritty? Or sticking to the original laid out in the Bible?
I won’t even end on a conclusion… it’s not about me convincing you of anything other than to think. And to see that- it’s possible to take issue with church and certain Christians, but don’t disqualify Christianity itself. You may not be facing the genuine thing- possibly just a twisted form of it as far as presentation goes.
Happy speculation my friends.