what is your understanding of the word progressive? Dictionary.com defines it as favoring or advocating progress, change, improvement, or reform, as opposed to wishing to maintain things as they are, especially in political matters. making progress toward better conditions; employing or advocating more enlightened or liberal ideas, new or experimental methods, etc. So is this the definition we think of when we hear the term ‘progressive Christianity’?
I have only just learned about this ‘movement’ but it has been around since the early 2000’s. So what is progressive Christianity? It is basically a deconstruction of orthodoxy, giving a new meaning to the words and jargon that is typically Christian. it deconstructs the old ‘out mode misunderstanding’ of what it means to be a Christian and replaces it with a whatever you want Jesus. A Jesus in my opinion that cannot save you! There is a list of 23 basic beliefs of the progressive church, its like their manifesto or statement of belief, read them carefully to see if you can spot the ‘strawmen’ within them. You will see that they make a radical departure of true historic biblical Christianity. Here is the list
Progressive Christian manifesto 23 statements they make.
1) It’s not a sin to cuss
2) It’s not a sin to be gay
3) It’s not a sin to not vote republican
4) Abortion is a complicated issue, it needs to be legal, safe and rare
5) Wrath of God and he’ll aren’t literal- they are metaphors for swimming against the flow of God’s love
6) God’s justice isn’t punitive it’s restorative
7) You are not going to hell just because you didn’t pick Christianity anymore than you are going to heaven because you said a magical sinners pray at church camp
8) When will Christians realize that heaven and hell aren’t literal geographic locations but states of consciousness
9) Penal substitutionary atonement theory is absolute dog poo. God didn’t send Jesus to die on the cross for your sins to satisfy His wrath, He did it to satisfy yours
10) No one is saved because they picked the right religion anymore than they are condemned because they picked the right one
11) Anyone who interprets the bible literally needs to take a literature class
12) These are the 4 primary hermeneutics for scripture: literal, moral, allegorical, and anagogical- not literal.
13) You will either use the bible to interpret Jesus or Jesus to interpret the bible
14) Jesus loves you this I know….. Forge came to show us so
15) Jesus is the TRUE word of God, not the bible
16) Christians should worship the true trinity- father, son, and Holy Spirit- not father, son, holy bible
17) God is not holding a gun to anyone’s head saying if you don’t believe in Jesus he’s going to damn you to a literal hell for all eternity- that would not make God loving-and would mean Jesus was lying when he told us to forgive 70x 7… And to forgive our enemies
18) God is not going to send you to hell because you got his name wrong
19) Why would a God who says ” I desire mercy… Not sacrifice” and later decide to kill his own son as a sacrifice? He wouldn’t. God didn’t demand a sacrifice, we did
20) It’s not a sin to smoke
21) It’s not a sin to drink
22) If sin means ” miss the mark” then we all sin in every way by just being alive.
23) Jesus said ” I am the way, the truth, and the life, no one comes to the father without coming through me” This is not an exclusive statement… this is an inclusive statement. This was never intended to be a threat. Jesus was saying, I’m part of the deal whether you like it or not… He wasn’t saying pick me before you die.
From these 23 statements we can clearly see a denial of virtually every major tennet of our faith. In calling themselves Christians they have forgotten what it means to be a Christian, they should call themselves Tians because they have taken the Christ out.
Progressive Christianity is another of the many attacks that the enemy is using within the church to pull people away from the true risen saviour. The bible tells us that we are to expect this, that people will turn away rom the truth and follow doctrines of demons and every new idea. Let us be discerning and examine what people tell us in regard to our faith, check out what the bible says, asking the holy Spirit to guide us into all truth, be like the Bereans and check everything by the word.
this is a short summary and I am still looking into this myself but if you would like so more information on this subject check out Mike Wingers YouTube channel who is doing a series address each of the above points, also the book ‘Another gospel’ by Alisa Childers, these resources will equip you better to be able to defend the historic and biblical faith and spot the fake from the genuine.
So Are you progressive? For me i have to say no, I am a Christian who has placed his trust in Christ and in His word, I hope you are also of the same.
In Christ our redeemer Ps Jeff