Friday, May 25, 2012

The FEAR FACTOR





I have stated several times that I do not believe that fear based conversions to Christianity are healthy and/or desirable. That being said, many Christian denominations have made the fear of “hell” the linchpin for turning one‘s life over to God. While I do admit that physical and spiritual torture, via fire and brimstone, ranks right up there with forced sodomy in the- “Please God! Noooooo!!!!”- department….I do not believe that the fear of eternal punishment is the best way to enter into a relationship. 


We all acknowledge that any human relationship built upon the premise of: “do what I say or I will punish you!” is dysfunctional to say the least, yet when it comes to a relationship with God, this is often the status quo. I don’t believe Joe Rogan (or anyone else for that matter) would want to host an eternal punishment game show where you either fear God and win prizes, or not believe and die screaming and burning in the smelly sulfur pit. Call me crazy- but besides a few select churches- I cannot envision too many advertising sponsors anteing up for those infernal time-slots!?!


I’m not here to debate over the existence or non-existence of Hell. My point is that churches who focus solely on believing in God so that they don’t go to hell are missing out on the entire ministry of Jesus Christ and the sacrificial-relational message contained within. Loving and serving one another is where we truly begin to evolve beyond the dogma of religion and arrive at a Christ centered ministry. The only thing hindering us is that we tend to love ourselves more than others. Ah, damnable state indeed!




So what is your opinion of Fear Based Conversions?

How do you define "fearing God"?