You have to hand it to the secularist progressives intent on killing Christianity in the West – they are a persistent group. Whether it’s Buzzfeed or Vice, those leftists who fancy themselves pop culture savants are always quick to share the newest trend or craze within American society that signals a crisis for Christianity. It’s almost kinda cute that they have seemingly convinced themselves that Bible believers are actually going to be swayed by this kind of call to reformation from the world.
The latest comes courtesy of Vice that just published a ridiculous article entitled, “Meet the Woke Young People Trying to Make Christianity Cool Again.” Here’s why that’s laugh-out-loud funny: anyone who actually knew what Christianity was would never try to sell true Christians on such a premise.
Why? Because true believers know that the Way of Jesus is anything but culturally compliant. The Gospel has always been the complete antithesis of the spirit of the age. By its very nature the Christ’s Church is to be counter-cultural. That means becoming “cool again” (1) wrongly assumes that the church was ever regarded “cool” by the world, and (2) is the last thing a true follower of Jesus would care about.
Nonetheless, undoubtedly convinced that they were triggering nothing short of a theological revolution in the American church, Vice celebrated six young “Christian leaders” who are, “advocating to change some of those discrepancies in how churchgoers tend to view everything from the death penalty to immigration to climate change.”
One is bisexual, one an environmentalist, one a social justice warrior against the death penalty, two apparent open borders advocates, and another…well, let him explain it to you himself in one of his recent Twitter threads:
black lives matter...LGBTQ people deserve to survive and flourish...people of color should have a world in which they aren’t plundered by white supremacy...black trans women face a homicide rate that would get attention if they weren’t black and trans...cisgender black gay/bi/MSM men in the South are facing an HIV/AIDS crisis that springs from structural neglect...From this context, friends, I do theology. From this place, I speak to and about God. If our liberation ain’t specific, we’ll never get free
So let’s not overthink this. The progressive secularists at Vice think that the church can become “cool again” by imitating the world and adopting progressive political causes. I don’t fault the author, Serena Solomon, for falling into this trap. For those in the world who have rejected the moral authority and Lordship of Christ, there is a giant vacuum left to fill. Most fill it with politics and the worship of power. So it is hardly surprising that if government is your god, you are going to assume people wearing the name of Jesus doing things you agree with politically represent the best hope for Christianity.
But reality is something far different than Serena’s (and Vice’s, and Buzzfeed’s) assumptions. Mainline Protestant denominations in America, long the standard bearers for politically-progressive Christianity, are dead and dying. And Evangelical churches that decide to follow that same ideological path meet the same fate; just consider the cautionary tale of GracePointe Church in Tennessee.
In 2015, the church garnered large amounts of media praise (undoubtedly from these same Vice voices) for their decision to abandon God’s word on sexual ethics and begin conducting same-sex weddings. Two years later and the congregation has dwindled by 2/3rds, leadership is in disarray, the building had to be rented out, and is under contract for purchase.
But hey, at least they’re “cool.”
Churches that look to the winds of culture or the trends of man when calibrating their moral compass, rather than the Word of God, are no churches at all. They are social clubs. The Church of Jesus, in contrast, recognizes that they should not expect to be adored, respected, or loved by the world anymore than the Messiah Himself was – if they put nails in His hands, why should His followers expect any better treatment?
Regardless of the passing whims of pop culture websites, true believers will remain committed to speaking the truth that hurts but heals, and offering the world something other than a mere echo of itself.