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Are Christians More Like Jesus or More Like the Pharisees?
One of the common critiques leveled at present-day Christianity is that itâ€™s a religion full of hypocritical people. A new Barna Group study examines the degree to which this perception may be accurate. The study explores how well Christians seem to emulate the actions and attitudes of Jesus in their interactions with others.
The findings reveal that most self-identified Christians in the U.S. are characterized by having the attitudes and actions researchers identified as Pharisaical. Just over half of the nationâ€™s Christiansâ€”using the broadest definition of those who call themselves Christiansâ€”qualify for this category (51%). They tend to have attitudes and actions that are characterized by self-righteousness.
On the other end of the spectrum, 14% of todayâ€™s self-identified Christiansâ€”just one out of every seven Christiansâ€”seem to represent the actions and attitudes Barna researchers found to...
Interesting that this issue was brought in as a sign of self-righteousness:
"I try to avoid spending time with people who are openly gay or lesbian. "
Seems like a political agenda here. Why not replace "gay" and "lesbian" and see how it sounds?
"... who are openly pedophiles and adulterers" "... who are murderers and racists" "... who are liars and blasphemers" "... who are thieves or use foul language" "... who are into pornography or are fornicators" "... who worship graven images" "... who are drunks and drug dealers"
"Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?" 2 Corinthians 6:14
"Do not be deceived: â€śBad company ruins good morals.â€ť" 1 Cor 15:33
"a companion of gluttons shames his father" Proverbs 28:7
"a companion of prostitutes squanders his wealth" Proverbs 29:3
etc etc etc
Now, of course, we need to go out into the world to preach the Gospel, but a Christian prefers to hang out with his brothers and sisters in Christ. It only becomes pharisiacal if we think we are better than unbelievers or anybody else.
Unfortunately it's true, alot of people are playing church and are not being the church. Nowadays everybody wants to be somebody in Lord and that just can't happen. In appearance of godliness which was everything the pharisees were. No passion anymore always waiting for someone to wind them up, it is the sad truth.
We have no excuse to be hypocritical. However, although the Church is supposed to be an example to non-believers, the only perfect example is Jesus Christ. Whether the Church is hypocritical or not, everyone's ultimate Standard is Jesus, not the Church.
Whether I disagree with the survey or not, people should be looking to Jesus Himself as the highest Representative of Christianity.But, sadly, 'tis not so.