The Dangers of Making Christianity ‘Cool Again’

Christianity was never supposed to be "cool." But the assumption that it should be runs rampant.

Name tag cords worn by Holywood Retreat participants display 'I Love Jesus' June 14, 2007 in Austell, Georgia. Young children, teenagers and their parents or guardians came together for three days to promote abstinence.

By Liberty McArtor Published on November 30, 2017

Earlier this month, Vice posted an article with this wince-worthy headline: “Meet the Woke Young People Trying to Make Christianity Cool Again.” 

In the article, we meet Christians in their 20s advocating for causes they care about. Some advocate causes Christians regularly disagree on, like climate change, eliminating the death penalty and loosening immigration policy. But others go further. Brandan Robertson, 25, boasts that he runs “a typical evangelical church” with “unashamedly progressive” positions on sexuality.

Then there’s Faithfully LGBT, featured in Teen Vogue. The organization encourages readers to “tithe trans” to “atone for discrimination against transgender people.” How? By asking Christians to pay for gender reassignment surgeries.

Of course, Vice and Teen Vogue praise Christians who endorse socially acceptable behavior, like same-sex relationships. The problem comes when Christians themselves buy the lie that their faith must be cool. 

Case in point: not long ago a group of clergy made news for praying a blessing on a Texas abortion facility and it’s work. “We’re trying say [the conservative] narrative isn’t the only narrative related to faith,” said Kentina Washington-Leapheart, who organized the event. In other words, Don’t lump us in with those other, lame Christians! Our faith is cool, because it affirms everything you already want to hear!

Society Changes. God Doesn’t

God’s Word is supposed to inform our understanding of the world. Not the other way around. If what’s popular in modern society influences our understanding of biblical morality, then God’s Word means nothing. And our faith in him means nothing. 

People, cultures, and what is generally accepted as moral change. It wasn’t that long ago that “cool” Christianity in the West included acceptance of chattel slavery.

Without Jesus and his gospel, church is nothing more than a weekly get together. Christianity is nothing more than a regurgitation of nice thoughts and secular opinion.

But God doesn’t change, and neither do his laws. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday today and forever,” Hebrews 13:8 states. The next verse continues, “Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings.” A few verses later, we read this: “For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.”  

The Gospel Works

Vice notes in their November 3 article that many people are leaving the church. “It doesn’t help that Christian communities can be out of step with the rest of the country when it comes to certain issues,” the article states. 

What Vice doesn’t note is that mainline Protestant churches are the ones hemorrhaging members. Those are the churches most likely to adopt liberal theology, meaning a theology that counters actual biblical teaching. As for churches sticking to a more conservative, literal view of the Bible? They’re “thriving,” according to a Washington Post report on a study earlier this year. 

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Some might wonder why this is. The answer’s easy. It’s because the gospel, pure, unabridged and uncensored, is what holds the power to change lives. That gospel centers on Jesus, the real person, who really died and rose from the dead. He’s the only one who can save us from a life of sin and from eternal damnation. And following the real Jesus means accepting and obeying his commands, not discarding them as outdated and uncool. 

The real Jesus has been attracting passionate followers for millennia, including in cultures much more hostile to Christianity than ours is today. He doesn’t need us to make his Gospel more appealing. 

The Scary Part

So why are so many modern Christians bending over backwards to make the Gospel socially acceptable? Partly because of what the church has become for so many. Without Jesus and his Gospel, church is nothing more than a weekly get together. Christianity is nothing more than a regurgitation of nice thoughts and secular opinion. If that’s all it is, then does going to church — or being a Christian — matter at all? 

No. Which is why more and more millennials are dumping Christianity for other “spiritual” experiences and community activities. Why bother with church if you can get the same warm, fuzzy feeling by doing CrossFit with friends?

The fact that modern society views Christian morals as uncool doesn’t scare me. What scares me is number of supposed Christians, especially in my generation, consumed with being cool. They’re willing to abandon uncomfortable Scriptural teachings in order to remain popular. When this world perishes, as it will, they’ll have nothing left. 

If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. John 15:19

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  • J B

    And outside of an encounter with the real Jesus, we find that faith is just a word that is easily defined by what “feels good,” and an emotion that wanes when the world seems to have better answers.

  • Patmos

    Cool Christians, eager to be pleasing to the eyes of the world rather than the eyes of God. They are in for a rood awakening, minus a repentance.

    • PalaceGuard

      Let us hope that they are, ideed, in for a “rood” awakening! Folowed by repentance.

  • Tom Rath

    Or maybe Millennials are simply accelerated in the logical eschewment of myth and superstition in a modern information age.

    • Patmos

      Nothing really logical about disregarding history, archaeology, endless sources of testimony, and your own heart and conscience. Or is it you just have that whole pride thing going?

    • Ronky

      But the subjects of this article claim to believe in what you call “myth and superstition” and yet illogically contradict its practical applications in the way we live our lives today.

  • Ken Abbott

    Trying to change Christianity to appeal to its cultured despisers (look up Friedrich Schleiermacher) is a time-honored recipe for producing religious liberalism and neutering the gospel. Preaching Christ crucified will always offend the world–the cross remains foolishness to Greeks (pagans, unbelievers) and a stumbling block to Jews. People need changed hearts to respond to the biblical gospel and only the Holy Spirit has the power to create hearts of living flesh out of hearts of dead stone.

  • How do you know “God” doesn’t change? Has anyone been in touch with Him? Has He held a press conference? You think of God as unchangeable, but how do you really know this? The Universe and our world are always changing. Why would not God?

    • Ken Abbott

      Malachi 3:6 and Hebrews 13:8, for starters.

    • Ronky

      Because God, by definition, is a totally different thing from the Universe or anything in it. He is, by definition, Being itself, Who makes everything else exist. By definition He is unchangeable, otherwise He wouldn’t be God.

  • John

    Your article is very true. Thanks for standing for the truth! The people who want “cool” Christianity are trying to find the a “middle ground” to dwell in and stay out of the “extremes” as they would call it. There is none! There is no middle ground with Jesus! One is either in or out. Our faith must be grounded in the revelations of the written Scriptures. John 1 says “Jesus is the the Word”. It follows that going against anything written in the Bible is Anti-Word. Which is Anti-Christ! Thanks for standing on the Word.

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