Jeff Bethke, the “Jesus Hates Religion” fellow is at it again. This time, he’s published a promo for his upcoming book “Jesus>Religion”. The new video is entitled “Jesus Still Hates Religion”. This seems more like a “I still hate religion” video more than a “Jesus Still Hates Religion” video. After all, anything that Jesus would hate, He should always hate, because He does not change. I wrote my thoughts on Bethke’s video when it first was released. I still believe that Bethke is in error and quite sloppy with his usage of words and expression. Religion, as it has been pointed out countless times before, should not be a naughty word for Christians, it is a biblical word with a deeply rooted foundation in the Christian faith.
Bethke says that people as a whole are trained to make enemies. He gives a few examples such as Blacks v. Whites, Republicans v. Democrats, and “Americans v. whoever we’re at war with” (I don’t think its too crazy to not befriend people America is at war with but for Bethke, meh). Then he says that “Christians are the worst” (Ah, here’s more of what we need Bethke, more Christian bashing). He highlights examples of feelings that our churches are better than those “down the street” or the way we “do worship is better than the worship of the church we grew up in”. Then he moves on to Arminians v. Calvinists, Complementarians v. Egalitarians, Charismatics v. Cessationists, and Catholics v. Protestants. WHOOPS. Catholics v. Protestants are examples of “Christians”? In a blog Bethke wrote explaining his mind behind his first video “Jesus Hates Religon” he also made the implication that Catholics are Christians (so I’m not buying the excuse that this was a slip). Now, since the distinction was made between Protestants and Catholics, he certainly must be referring to Roman Catholics. And those who sit under Rome, and bow the knee to their bishop, are not biblical Christians.
Bethke finishes his video off by saying “AS IF THE WORLD DYING OUTSIDE REALLY CARES”.
I don’t know who Bethke is referring to by the phrase “the world dying”. Whether this means starving children or spiritually dead sinners, I don’t know. I would grant that the spiritually dead care enough about theological issues as most of us care about Nascar. Do those who are starving for food care about theological disputes? No (but theology affects all men, whether one is starving or not our belief in who God is, why He hasn’t fed us, etc., does matter, even if you’re starving). Does that mean that theological disputes or theology as a whole, which just means the study of God, namely, what God has revealed in scripture, is not important? Emphatically NO. Hey man, if people want to feed the poor, that’s great. But to pit one against the other as if there’s some sot of dichotomy is not cool. Bethke looks like a nice guy and it seems like he wants to help but his ambiguity gets in the way.