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Flexible Christianity

Summary 

Our world is full of Atheists and others who promote false teachings that will not result in eternal life in Heaven. However, the most insidious group are those teachers who profess to be Christians but are not. They use Christian terms and pluck a few verses out of the Bible which offer God’s grace and love, without acknowledging His power, authority, holiness, and righteousness. To strengthen their following, these false teachers promote a form of “Flexible Christianity” that allows their followers to customize their theology around what they think is morally acceptable based on current trends (ex. abortion, deconstructioncomplementarianism, etc.). 

In-Depth

These “Flexible Christian” teachers focus too much on the Spirit over the Word. Those who look to the Spirit for daily guidance into truth, without the Bible as their backstop (for theological integrity and consistency) are in danger. They use God’s grace as a justification for redefining truth. They are likely not engaging the wind of the Spirit (John 3:8) but the whims of the spirit (Eph. 4:14).

False Christian teachers encourage their listeners and readers to individualize and customize their theology. They emphasize the belief that everyone can create their own “Christianity” inside God’s grace. They imply that God’s attributes are limited to grace and love, ignoring His holiness (Heb. 12:14) and need for righteousness (1 John 2:29) as a prerequisite for a relationship. 

Truth Comes from Scripture

In 2 john 1:4-11, the Bible combines the importance of God’s love with an equal need to respect His truth. Verse 6 presses the point by saying, “And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it.” 

God’s commandments do not come from daily seeking the Spirit alone. Further, our relationship with God is not strengthened by being “tossed back and forth… blown here and there by every wind of teaching coming from cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming” (Eph 4:14). Instead, truth comes from daily drawing on the Spirit in the studying of God’s inerrant Word.

God’s love and grace for His children is evident throughout Scripture. However, that love does not negate the importance He places on sound doctrine. This is evident just a few verses later in 2 John 1:9 when Paul states, “Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.” That “teaching” does not come from our current concept of God or Christ. It comes from a deep and honest reading of the Bible. 

Typically, these flexible false teachers offer limited Scriptural support on their open view of Christianity. Ignoring or undermining the Word allows one to pick and choose their version of God, and what they wish to believe while continuing to call themselves “Christian”. 

The term “Biblical Christian” is used on BCWorldview.org to describe what one used to be called, simply a “Christian”. The explosion of “Flexible Christians” represents support of that necessary qualification. The term “Christian” has lost its true meaning. it has been watered down by mainline denominations and radicalized by those who seek to enlarge the term to encompass nearly everyone who believes in a god.

No One’s Theology is Totally Correct

Biblical Christians need to recognize that no one’s theology is 100% correct. We need to be open to hearing the opinions of others, recognizing we all are sinners and therefore tainted. However, while holding secondary theological constructs (such as predestination vs. free-will, and End Time prophesy) loosely, we must be very sensitive toward those who would undermine our traditional core theology, for two reasons. 

First, a traditional core group of beliefs, well-established by the vast majority of Biblical Christians and clearly evidenced by an understanding of the inerrant Word of God, offers one growth in their relationship with Christ on this side of the grave. Second, it provides assurance of eternal life on the other side of the grave. 

Core Theology

This core theology can be found on the website of thousands of Biblical Christian churches, regardless of their denomination. It can be found on hundreds of Biblical Christian ministry websites such as ours (BCWorldbiew.org), GotQuestions,  and Billy Graham.  Opening up Christian theology to flexible interpretation removes one from these basic principles. It leaves them vulnerable (Eph 4:14), both in this life and the next. That is deeply disturbing from the perspective of 2 Cor. 4:1-7 which includes verse 4…

2 Corinthians 4:4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

Freedom in Christ

There is so much freedom inside Biblical Christianity, to think and believe on that which God provides insight. Learning and growing within this freedom is called Sanctification. However, core beliefs must be based on a source document, the Bible, and not one’s feelings about what God may be telling you today that might be different than what He said yesterday or tomorrow. God is unchanging and His theology is unchanging (Heb. 13:8). It is man, whose moral decay and desire to make his own decisions in his own best interests, who opens the door to heresy. 

Jeff Hilles | BCWorldview.org

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