I ran across this quiz tonight and decided to try it. I went 32 for 32. Probably the equivalent of almost a hole-in-one in golf or a 300 game in bumper bowling. <LOL> I didn’t think the quiz was particularly difficult at all and it’s not all about Christianity but it includes questions about several different world religions such as Buddhism, Mormonism, and Hinduism as well. The first question was one of the hardest: When does the Jewish Sabbath begin? (my smart-aleck answer would be “Never”. There is no Sabbath rest for unbelievers. <OH!>
What’s amazing, and I think I’ve seen these statistics before, is that atheists and agnostics scored higher than Jews, Mormons, Protestants and Catholics. I’ve got a phrase for that. “Know what you don’t believe and why you don’t believe it.” Perhaps atheists struggle with these things more than say people who grew up in the church and simply took what they were told as dogma and didn’t dare question things. You can know your Bible forwards and backwards, know all the terminology and history, and still have no vital, life-giving connection to Jesus Christ. I think I’d prefer an army of converted atheists to a bunch of people who simply attended church only because mom and dad and grandma and grandpa went.
There are some alarming statistics which show that children raised in the church are dumping the whole business once they leave home or head off to college. What’s really cool is that when Jesus truly gets a hold of you, when the Holy Spirit is powerfully joining you to Christ, your will is changed and what used to be drudgery is now pure delight. What used to be enjoyable and really important to you begins to look like dung, as extra baggage bogging down your pilgrimage. I know it hardly seems possible but Christ and your communion with Him will become bigger to you than ESPN, golf, Facebook, beer-drinking,
politics and even family. Take my word on this…
(Chorus) To see the Law by Christ fulfilled,
To hear His pardoning voice,
Changes a slave into a child
And duty into choice.
4. Then all my servile works were done,
A righteousness to raise
Now, freely chosen in the Son,
I freely choose His ways.
From the hymn, Love Constraining to Obedience, by William Cowper
It would seem to me that America might not be the best incubator for orthodox Christianity. My guess is that some of the saints in either China or Iran would have a better understanding of their faith because they see it as something precious, something of value. With the general ease of life in America, coupled with the myriad distractions available to us, most Americans – even American Christians – would say regarding religion, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!” We tend not to value things which cost us very little.
We all manage to find the time needed to do the things we want to do. What’s very concerning is that grace and mercy and patience will someday come to a very abrupt end. No one wants to hear that Jesus doesn’t have time for them after all is said and done:
23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ Matthew 7:23
We’re getting our collective backsides kicked brothers and sisters. Based on what Jesus says in Revelation chapter 3, He is probably less angry with a fiery atheist than a lukewarm Christian. Get mad! Get your March Madness on and take your game to the next level. Your adversary enters the ring ready to fight and there you sit idly in the corner, not knowing or caring that you will soon be sprawled out on the canvas wondering what just hit you.
However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8b