Natural Disasters and Hell

No, I’m not talking about Pat Robertson’s latest “wisdom”.

What I am talking about is human nature. Specifically, I am talking about the all too human nature of Christians, especially “Western” “Civilization” Christians. I do not decry anyone that seeks to give to help that nation. We did. In fact, I believe it is part of the imago dei to want—and maybe even need—to help people. Often times, however, we are very selfish in that regard. We don’t want to help people if it is inconvenient, or if it might cost us something. That would be the Fall.

The Fall and imago dei are not really what I’m talking about. I’m talking about me, and maybe you. Do you have friends that don’t know Jesus Christ as their savior? Why are we tweeting and blogging and what have you about Haiti, but not about the peril of the souls of our friends and/or family?

It’s easy to say and perform acts of Christian love when helping others like those in Haiti, or those who suffer such natural disasters. It’s a lot harder to talk about our friends and family going to Hell. It’s a lot harder to live an everyday Christian life, and have it be a testimony to our faith in Him.

I know that I, at least, suffer with the fact that I am not a very good person. I am certainly not the kind of person that exemplifies the stereotyped “goody two-shoes” Christian. I’ve got issues. I get mad. I say stupid and hurtful things. I make mistakes.

Just like everyone else, I know I am not the best testimony for Jesus Christ, because I am a fallen person. Yet through the continuing and constant working of Jesus Christ (through the person of the Holy Spirit) in me, I am slowly being changed (sometimes the old and new self are in an all out war) to be more like Him.

Yet, the church has propagated the impossible view of the Christian, and even aided and abetted the media in that (in other words, it’s not just the media’s fault). Now before we can even talk about Heaven or Hell, we have to teach theology, because so few (including Christians) really understand. We are stumbling and falling, trying the bear the  weight of “Cultural Christian” and “lazy” Christian baggage.

My own denomination (Church of the Nazarene) has contributed to the confusion with Entire Sanctification, which was partially built upon John Wesley’s Christian Perfection. We don’t even use words such as propitiation, expiation or justification any more, or at least we don’t use them in a way even “church” people understand. Thus these vital concepts are not part of their lives, and cannot be part of our testimonies.

The church itself has weakened the will of its people to share  Jesus. It is not, and never will be, just about the crisis of the day. It is, and always will be, about the crisis of eternity.