One of the main reasons Christians settle for lukewarm and are not passionately journeying with Jesus is because they have not developed their faith. They have believed in Jesus and what He accomplished for them on the Cross. They have made Him Lord and Saviour. But, they have never moved forward in their faith or even grappled with what it means to believe (have faith) and be a believer, a disciple, a true Christian.
Statistics show that the fastest growing religion in North America is not Christianity or Islam or Buddhism or Hinduism or Amway. It is not even atheism or agnosticism. According to studies made and published the fastest growing religion, especially among the youth, is something identified as Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.
Now don’t stop reading just because this is a new term using a few words that you would not hear in normal coffee conversations. It is important to understand what this ‘new religion’ is as it is very prevalent, pervasive, and it is shaping the faith of Christians whether they know it or not. This new approach to the Christian faith actually rewrites the Scriptures in the hearts of believers. For example,
Jesus said (Matthew 10:38)… “If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine.” This journey of following Jesus grows faith in the believer.
This new approach to the Christian faith – that actually destroys faith and does not allow it to develop – would never quote this verse but instead would believe (have faith) in a rewrite of a different verse ….”Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God. Believe also in whatever you want.” This, of course, requires no faith at all and certainly will not develop or challenge, and thus grow, true faith in God.
Let’s quickly look at Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.
MORALISTIC: means that God wants people to be morally good and kind to each other. The problem is pinning this down. What does that “goodness” look like? Nobody seems to know. And, of course, Jesus said that there was none good except God the Father.
THERAPEUTIC: means the central goal is to be healthy, happy, and feel good about yourself. What does appropriate health and happiness look like? That also is unclear.
DEISM: means that there is a god who exists, but he isn’t necessarily involved in your daily life. This god does not really place demands on us but is always available when we have a problem.
What is so dangerous about this religion is that many people in Christian churches think of themselves as Christians but are really embracing this new teaching. And this “religion” clashes head-on with Jesus who said things like, “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28).
Unwitting victims of this new politically correct orthodoxy are missing out on the real adventure of faith and true Christianity. This ‘Moralistic Therapeutic Deism’ is not following Jesus. It is not biblical faith. it is not God-honouring living. It is a watered-down version of the Christian faith that isn’t Christ-centered.
This new “religion” declares, “You don’t have to sacrifice. You don’t have to listen to the tough stuff Jesus said.” This is a direct clash with Jesus, who said, “Whoever wants to be My disciple must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me” (Luke 9:23).
This is the first of many reasons why Christians today are often lukewarm in the faith.