Grace and peace to you today! I was listening to some “old time preachers” yesterday, and they delivered a message that really hit home to me. Their topic of conversation was “The message of the Cross”. While listening to them, I felt the Holy Spirit within me confirm their words and shower me with great peace.
What these men were saying is that many in today’s Church have embraced a type of humanism that some call “Christian humanism“, which is really an oxymoron because humanism is a religion that makes man into a God. This is exactly the lie that Eve “bought into” when she ate the nasty fruit from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. Christian humanism actually has its roots back in the Renaissance period. What is it?
Humanism is a very seductive and subtle philosophy that has crept into the church. Humanism claims to be about reason, critical thinking, and rationalization. Their eloquent words SOUND very good…and yet, they ultimately lead us away from God. Those who push HUMANISM say that humanism is a philosophy (it’s also a religion) that focuses on “human potential “and self-fulfillment. “Christian humanism” focuses on the humanity of Jesus, His “social Gospel” and ignores or severely downplays His Deity. The “Christian humanist” will NOT focus on the work that Jesus did on the Cross, but will only focus on His teachings that they title “social justice”.
Humanism is emphasized on many college campuses, and taught by professors, so the people teaching it are VERY educated with slick, important sounding words and well articulated phrases. This philosophy has actually become a huge movement in the Mainstream Churches.
Below is an example of their “flowery phrases” that make Christian humanism sound good, and True Christianity sound bigoted, old, and out-dated.
“Today there is considerable variance in the positions of those who fall under the umbrella of Christian Humanism, from those who are more generally at the liberal end of traditional Christianity but want to humanize it by refocusing it away from the archaic theological language of tradition and move it the direction of the example of Jesus by exhibiting compassion to one’s neighbor.”
I mean, let’s face it, those words “archaic” and “theological language” are NOT meant to complement true Christianity. The way that they word these descriptions is very deliberate. By stating that Christian humanists want to “humanize” Christianity, they are implying that True Christianity does not care about mankind at all. They then describe moving AWAY from the “old and archaic“, and use words like “refocus..towards COMPASSION“ creating what appears to be a stark contrast between an old, archaic RELIGION that doesn’t care about people, and a humanistic philosophy that cares about the suffering of humanity. The devil is in the details. Are they speaking the truth? Does God Himself lack compassion for mankind? NO! God LOVES mankind, and True Christianity has ALWAYS cared about mankind! Even in the Old Testament, God ALWAYS called HIS PEOPLE to care for the widow and the orphan.
Deuteronomy 10:18: He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing.
Zechariah 7:9-10: “Thus says the Lord of hosts, Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another, do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.”
Humanism claims that they alone have a handle on human compassion and dignity and that True Christians who believe in God and who do not embrace moral relativism and modern lifestyles are just old-fashioned, boring, and immune or uncaring towards the suffering of others. Here’s another example of the FLOWERY LANGUAGE that they use to make the “Christian humanist” sound FAR MORE Concerned about people than those who hold fast to True Christianity.
“Christian humanism regards humanist principles like UNIVERSAL HUMAN DIGNITY, individual freedom and the IMPORTANCE OF HAPPINESS as essential and principal components of THE TEACHINGS OF JESUS.”
Hmm….which teachings of Jesus are they speaking about? Did Jesus REALLY emphasize the “importance of happiness”? No, He did not, THAT IS A LIE AND A DISTORTION OF HIS TEACHING. Jesus spoke of JOY, but not HAPPINESS. We find joy in the everlasting FATHER. Joy is permanent, happiness is fleeting. Joy does not depend on circumstances, but on God Himself who never leaves or forsakes us. Happiness is completely dependent on circumstances and is generally self-focused. The verses below are an EXAMPLE of Jesus’ TRUE teachings. NOWHERE do you see “You deserve to be HAPPY and you should STRIVE FOR THIS”.
John 15:18: “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. 19: If you were of the world, it would love you as its own. Instead, the world hates you, because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world.…
Matthew 24:9: Then they will deliver you over to be persecuted and killed, and you will be hated by all nations on account of My name.
Christian humanists place ALL of their emphasis on “the social Gospel”. The Social Gospel is a Protestant Intellectual movement that became prominent in the late 19th to early 20th century. Those who adhered to a social gospel sought to apply Christian ethics to social problems such as poverty, slums, poor nutrition and education, alcoholism, crime, and war (we’ll add climate change in the 21st century). These things were emphasized while the doctrines of sin, salvation, heaven and hell, and the future kingdom of God were downplayed.
Jesus lived in one of history’s most corrupt societies – ancient ROME. Jesus never issued any call for political change, not even by peaceful means. He did not come to earth to be a political or social reformer. The gospel Jesus preached did not have to do with social reform or social justice or political change. Jesus came to change people’s hearts and point them to God’s kingdom. He preached the saving power of the gospel and the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. Although Jesus had great compassion for the poor, sick, and marginalized in society, His primary FOCUS was on addressing their SPIRITUAL NEEDS, not their PHYSICAL NEEDS. Jesus healed people PHYSICALLY so that they would KNOW who HE IS..the SON OF GOD who has the AUTHORITY to FORGIVE SINS…Oh, did Jesus use the word “sin”? That’s not politically correct, is it? Wouldn’t the word “sin” indicate that Jesus taught there are MORAL ABSOLUTES? That’s not the Gospel that’s being taught by Christian humanists.
Matthew 9:5: Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk‘? 6But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” 7Then the man got up and went home. 8When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to man.
Matthew 6:33: But SEEK YE FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Hmm..I doubt that Christian Humanists want to talk about the “Kingdom of God” because that is supernatural and doesn’t fit in with their “humans first” worldview. They need reason and rationalization to understand the world. I don’t think they want to talk about Jesus’ Miracles either.
Oh, wait a minute! We may have to delete that verse because it’s taking away personal freedom! Jesus spoke what the Father (God) told Him to say and not of His own words? Oh, now, that’s a problem. Okay, I’m using a little sarcasm here, but you get the idea. “Christian Humanists” pick and choose the Scriptures that they want to emphasize, while ignoring the others completely because they absolutely DO NOT want to focus on an everlasting, Almighty God who has the final say in everything.
When Jesus walked the earth as a man, He did treat all humans with dignity and compassion; however, it’s completely false to claim that He emphasized personal “happiness” and “individual freedom”. Jesus came to set the captives FREE from SIN. Jesus taught that God loves ALL PEOPLE, and that the poor, the weak, and the marginalized of society are NOT forgotten or overlooked by God and should NOT be overlooked by people. Jesus continually pointed to the Father as the source of His Teachings, so to remove (OR IGNORE) God the Father from Jesus is just plain wrong.
Christian Humanism is an oxy-moron and cannot naturally exist..and yet people claim to be “Christian humanists”. It’s really the ATTEMPTED or STATED conjunction of two different and unrelated WORLD VIEWS, really two VERY different RELIGIONS. Make no mistake, humanism is a religion, the worship or exaltation of man. Those who claim to be Christian humanists are really just humanists with a thinly veiled Christian title attached.
- TRUE Christianity RECOGNIZES mankind’s SIN NATURE and the NEED that we have for a SAVIOR.
- TRUE Christianity realizes that God is God and WE are NOT.
- True Christianity understands that there are MORAL ABSOLUTES (Holiness) that God ESTABLISHED and that we, through the POWER of the HOLY SPIRIT, must strive for (and yet never fully reach).
- TRUE Christianity ALSO affirms God’s love for mankind, and that God’s people MUST love and care for one another, especially the marginalized, the poor, the “least of these”.
- True Christianity focuses on Jesus, on His Finished work on the Cross, not on SELF, and understands that the sanctifying work done within a believer is only accomplished through YIELDING self will to the Will of God so that the Holy Spirit can complete the Good work that God began in the believer.
What were Jesus’ Commandments? Which Commandment was FIRST and GREATEST?
The Christian Humanist will ignore, forget (or SEVERELY downplay) the first Commandment “Love God” and they will ONLY focus on the 2nd Commandment “Love neighbor”. This allows them to EMBRACE all LIFESTYLES and ALL RELIGIONS. The Pope is attempting to move the Catholic Church to GLOBAL “Christian Humanism”, calling for a GLOBAL SUMMIT for “New Humanism”. But not all Catholics are buying this push towards “New Humanism”.
It’s very likely that once “Christian humanism” is FULLY embraced, then those who push this “religion” will move the “window of acceptability” from simply downplaying Jesus’ Divinity to denying His Divinity altogether. They teach that Jesus, Himself didn’t recognize the existence of an absolute moral authority. After all, don’t Christian humanists often maintain that Jesus EMBRACED alcoholism, thievery, adultery, and homosexuality because He ate with tax collectors and forgave the adulterous woman?
Matthew 9: 10 Then it happened that as Jesus was reclining at the table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were dining with Jesus and His disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to His disciples, “Why is your Teacher eating with the tax collectors and sinners?” 12 But when Jesus heard this, He said, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire compassion, and not sacrifice,’ for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
Did Jesus really EMBRACE SIN? By the way, in those days tax collectors were working for the Romans, and they were generally thieves, skimming money off the top for themselves. Jesus ate with them, so that means Jesus was endorsing thievery, right? That’s what some “Christian humanists” will teach as they twist and distort the Scriptures. No, Jesus said that the SICK need a DOCTOR. He did not endorse SICKNESS. Jesus went right into the BELLY OF THE BEAST to draw sickened and sinful people to GOD and to REPENTANCE. Those who already considered themselves righteous (Pharisees), had written these people off as “sinners” and would not even talk to them. However, these people were more “savable” than the Pharisees because at least many of them could RECOGNIZE their sin and repent. If a person already considers themselves (self) RIGHTEOUS, then how can they repent? Contrary to the false teaching of some Christian humanists, Jesus did NOT teach people to REMAIN in SIN! Jesus called for people to REPENT from sin!
John 5:5: A man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He *said to him, “Do you wish to get well?” 7 The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me.” 8 Jesus *said to him, “Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.” 9 Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk.
John 5:14: Afterward Jesus *found him in the temple and said to him, “Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.” 15 The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.
Moving to “Christian Humanism” makes it MUCH EASIER to EMBRACE all lifestyles and religions through the concept of moral relativity. What’s true for me may not be true for you. The phrase “she’s living her truth” is something we often hear in moral relativity. Humanism puts man squarely in the seat of God and Christian humanism only focuses on Jesus’ humanity while ignoring the Salvation (ETERNAL LIFE) that Jesus attained FOR mankind through His suffering on the cross. Jesus IS God and Jesus established the ONLY WAY for HUMANITY to enter the KINGDOM OF GOD!
|GOD’S MAN||HUMANIST’S MAN|
|Created By God||Product Of Evolutionary Process|
|Image Of God||Image Of Nature And Social Heritage|
|Has Immortal Soul||Has No Soul|
|Has Eternal Purpose||Has No Eternal Purpose|
|Life After Death||No Life After Death|
Basic tenets of Secular humanism, many of which are weaving their way into Christianity under the guise of Christian humanism
- It affirms that the universe is self-existent and denies that it was created. Thus, it affirms the eternity of matter and denies the existence of God and His word of creation.
- It affirms that man evolved by natural means. This means that they hold that God had nothing to do with bring man into being. (aka EVOLUTION)
- It affirms that man is totally physical, thus denying that man has a spirit or soul
- It affirms that all religion is the result of social evolution. Faith in God is outmoded, Religion retards Human progress
- It denies that God is the ultimate good, thus denying that men do either that which is really objectively wrong or that which is really objectively right.
- It affirms that the ultimate end of man’s life is to be found in the here and now. Humanism rejects Heaven; it denies there is a Hell.
- “Worship” of God and prayer to God is rejected. Man should rather use his time in seeking to promote social well-being.
- It affirms that man must learn to depend upon science and must discourage hopes of heaven (which involves wishful thinking)
- It holds that man alone is responsible for the realization of the world of his dreams, thus holding that God has nothing whatsoever to do with it.
Those who consider themselves Christian humanists somehow morph the above list with Jesus’ teachings on love and compassion. Focusing entirely on Jesus’ humanity, they believe that we should apply Jesus’ teachings to our world today through self discipline, through goal setting and through self–esteem sanctification, denying that it is the Holy Spirit working inside of a Christian who sanctifies, who empowers, and who transforms hearts and lives.
Books such as “The purpose driven life”, various Christian self-help books, etc are geared towards Christian humanism. These VERY POPULAR books center on our own goals and ambitions, putting MAN into the DRIVER’S SEAT, the master of our fate.
“The lie, the twist, the seduction that was used to deceive Eve in the Garden of Eden is the same lie that satan is using today. Take the pathway of self-fulfillment, and self success. It is no longer the Gospel of Christ, it is the Gospel of self. The self-Gospel concentrates on what you can GET from God, and everything revolves around blessing you…..”Seven steps to your blessing”....The self Gospel is popular, the REAL Gospel is not popular. The real Gospel is narrow and few find it. The self gospel is the broad way and many run into it (Matthew 7:13). This self-Gospel produces arrogance and self-righteousness, or pride. The self Gospel has nothing to do with God and His purpose, but everything to do with man’s ambitions, and goals. The Church once confessed its sins…now it confesses its rights. True Christianity teaches “deny the flesh”…false Christianity teaches “FEED that flesh, ENTERTAIN that flesh. Satan had seduced Eve into her first selfish act. Now instead of denying the flesh, crucifying the flesh, self is loved, self is esteemed, self is promoted…Humanism is the new self-centered Gospel“
1 Timothy 6:20: O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called “knowledge“
Colossians 2:8: See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.
What is the result of “Christian humanism” and humanism in general? Although this religion claims to care about the individual’s happiness, dignity, self-esteem and self-worth, we are actually seeing an increasing number of people (even Christians) who now consider themselves to be depressed, lonely, anxious, fearful and even suicidal. To comfort themselves, because of the void that is in their hearts by denying God, they are turning to anti-depressants, marijuana, other illegal drugs, alcohol, sexual deviancy and various addictions to fill the void. God built into mankind a NEED for HIM. We cannot fill this need ourselves. It never works, and just leads deeper into despair, whether we admit it or not.
The apostle Paul had a really good handle on True Christianity. Although Paul can sometimes be hard to understand, he does a wonderful job of detailing the message of the Cross. The message of the Cross is not one that Christian humanists want to speak about. When we believe in Christ’s finished work on the Cross, then we receive the GIFT of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a supernatural GIFT for believers, and is literally CHRIST IN US. Christ lives inside of believers and He is the One who does the work of SANCTIFYING a believer. FAITH is a Gift from the Holy Spirit and is not something that we “work up” by ourselves. The Holy Spirit is working inside of all believers to TRANSFORM us into something that looks more like Jesus, our Savior. This is not done of our own volition, nor can it be. Trusting in SELF to gain a feeling of purpose, worth, or “human dignity” is futile and exhausting at best, and self-destructive at worst.
Whenever I find myself focusing on “self” I begin to feel anxious, frustrated, never measuring up to my own standards. It’s kind of like being in a prison of my own mind. But when I focus on Jesus, and take the focus off of myself, I feel FREE. If you are a Christian and think “I’m not working hard enough”..relax and trust God’s Holy Spirit who will draw you to the works that HE wants you to do. Your Christian walk will look totally different than another person’s Christian walk, so do not compare yourself with another.
The primary lesson we learn is to fix our eyes on Jesus and take our eyes off of “self”. This is counter cultural, it’s not being taught in many Churches, and yet it’s the only way to experience TRUE and LASTING JOY and PEACE.