What Are You Against?

Jon Acuff has a blog I respect, Stuff Christians Like, and this post was Reacting to Anne Rice. Jon said Christian bloggers are required to respond to Anne Rice’s recent bombshell, so here goes.

Here’s what Rice posted on Facebook:

For those who care, and I understand if you don’t: Today I quit being a Christian. I’m out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being “Christian” or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to “belong” to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten years, I’ve tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.

As I said below, I quit being a Christian. I’m out. In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen.

Do you agree that being a Christian means being all those “anti”s? That would make a good poll, I guess. Rice said her remarks were “For those who care, and I understand if you don’t.” With the same thought, here is my brief reaction to the Seven Anti’s:

  1. Anti-gay: Christians do have a hard time “hating the sin, but loving the sinner” on this one. We tend to get the most indignant about sins that don’t tempt us.
  2. Anti-feminist: One-word labels always fall short, don’t they? What does “feminist” mean? Respect for women as taught in the Scriptures? Male culture has certainly fallen short on this for a lot of history.
  3. Anti-artificial birth control: We don’t have a “Thou shalt not…” on this one, so it’s no surprise there’s a wide spectrum in Christianity, all the way from complete anti- to complete pro-. The biblical connection to this issue is life, and since a new life begins at conception, I believe those methods that work before conception are acceptable and those that act after are immoral.
  4. Anti-Democrat: Since I’m a libertarian and consider both the Democrat and Republican Parties to be unattractive, I’ll let this one go.
  5. Anti-secular humanism: I may have an inadequate understanding of this term, but I take it to mean the viewpoint that there is no supernatural realm and humans are the greatest. A Christian has to reject that.
  6. Anti-science: This usually means rejecting evolution as a valid explanation for the history of the universe and the history of life. Since I spent a lot of years presenting the scientific evidence for that rejection, I guess Rice would consider me anti-science.
  7. Anti-life: As might be obvious from my post, “Pro-Life? What Age Are We Talking About?,” I’d have to agree with Rice that many (most?) Christians are anti-life when it comes to the life of American young adults and people of all ages in disfavored nations.

The day after Anne Rice posted the above quotation, she clarified with a strong Christian statement:

My faith in Christ is central to my life. My conversion from a pessimistic atheist lost in a world I didn’t understand, to an optimistic believer in a universe created and sustained by a loving God is crucial to me. But following Christ does not mean following His followers. Christ is infinitely more important than Christianity and always will be, no matter what Christianity is, has been, or might become.

It’s a shame she decided to pull out of organized Christianity because she differs with many of the members. Much better, it seems, would be to stay in there and seek to change those with whom you disagree. At least there, as opposed to the farce of national elections (whoops, my libertarianism started to leak in there), the individual’s voice can be heard

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