Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Dangers of Syncretism

The Dangers of Syncretism

A Recurrent theme in Christianity has been the competition between peoples allegiance to the worldview of the day and the Lordship of Christ. When Christianity compromises with the worldview of the time it can be catastrophic and deadly. The real message of Christianity gets subverted. We can see this throughout history, Christendom led to the Crusades, where violence and conquest was used in an effort to convert the heathen, the Nazis were supported by the catholic church and were allowed to continue there racist and genocidal policies because the Lutheran Church remained attached to the pews, the South African policy of apartheid was supported by a predominantly white Christian Africans population. The South African Dutch reformed church propagated a Racist theology where God was racist against Blacks and coloureds. This is what happens when we forget to remember Jesus and proclaim his lordship.

The destructiveness of this syncretism is summed up by Lee Camp.

In fact, the Rwandan genocide highlights a recurrent failure of much historic Christianity. The proclamation of the ‘gospel; has often failed to emphasize a fundamental element of the teaching of Jesus, and indeed, of orthodox Christian doctrine: “Jesus is Lord” is a radical claim, one that is ultimately rooted in the question of allegiance, of ultimate authority, of the ultimate norm and standard for human life. Instead, Christianity has often often sought to ally itself comfortably to other authorities, be they political, economic, cultural, or ethnic. Could it be that “Jesus is Lord” has become one of the most widespread Christian lies? Have Christians claimed the lordship of Jesus, but systematically set aside the call to obedience to this Lord? At least in Rwanda, with “Christian Hutus” slaughtering “Christian Tutsis (and vice versa), “Christian” apparently served as a brand name – a “spirituality” or a religion” – but not a commitment to a common Lord.


lisa said...

don't get me started on this one.......oh don't it just gets me irate.. it is a can of worms!


(runs for tropical island)

Nathanael Baker said...

I know this is a bag of worms lisa, but sometimes the ape in the centre of the room needs to be talked about. I havn't gone as far as I could do in this blog, but I'm fretting to!

lisa said...

Okay it's taken me a few days (and a good 12 hours sleep last night) but have finally replied on my blog....