• Hillsong Christian Church Song Writer Marty Sampson Says He Has Left the Christian Faith

Hillsong Christian Church Song Writer Marty Sampson Says He Has Left the Christian Faith

Before I get to listing the links to the news story about Christian song writer Marty Sampson saying on his social media that he has now left the Christian faith, I wanted to make a few comments first.

Some of the comments from Christians regarding Sampson leaving the faith are either sad or ignorant.

This is from Ken Ham of Answers In Genesis (who I’ve actually defended on this blog in the past, in another context) said this (link is below):

Answers in Genesis founder Ken Ham said Sampson’s rejection of his former beliefs reinforces the need for parents to instruct their children in doctrinal truths at an early age. “This sad situation about this person is a reminder the church & parents need to teach apologetics to counter today’s attacks on God’s Word,” he tweeted.
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I find that a lot of Christians who are still in the “Christian Bubble” do not grasp how and why adult Christians leave the faith, or are considering leaving.

I myself was brought up in the Christian faith and read a lot of Christian apologetics literature from my mid-teens to around my late twenties to early thirties.

And, of course, I also regularly read the Bible, and I spent a few years reading about the history of the Bible, in particular the history of English language Bible translations.

So believe you me, contrary to what Ken Ham believes, a lack of being instructed about the faith from childhood, and hearing defenses of it, and being educated about Christianity, are not at play in why some Christians leave the faith (or may leave it), at least not in my case.

I was steeped in Christianity as a kid and into my adult years, and I did a ton of reading on apologetics, and none of that has changed the fact I’ve been in a faith crisis the last several years.

Farther below, under one of the last links, I have several more comments.

Update August 13, 2019:  
Hillsong worship leader clarifies he hasn’t renounced faith, but it’s on ‘incredibly shaky ground’

Hillsong Songwriter Marty Sampson Says He’s Losing His Christian FaithHillsong worship leader Marty Sampson announces he’s ‘losing’ his faith

Hillsong writer reveals he’s no longer a Christian: ‘I’m genuinely losing my faith’

By Leah MarieAnn Klett, Christian Post Reporter
August 12, 2019

Marty Sampson, a prolific worship music writer known for his work with Hillsong Worship, Hillsong United, Delirious and Young & Free, revealed he is losing his faith and believes Christianity is “just another religion.”

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• Deconstruction, Deconversion, Joshua Harris, and the Awful Christian Reaction

Deconstruction, Deconversion, Joshua Harris, and the Awful Christian Reaction

Josh Harris is a guy who wrote a book about sexual purity and dating in the 1990s (“I Kissed Dating Goodbye”) when he was in his late teens or early 20s – it’s a book that upset a lot of Christians who claim now that as teens, that book stunted their relationships and harmed them in other ways.

In the past couple of weeks, Harris announced on his social media he’s divorcing his wife and is “deconstructing” from the Christian faith.

In one of his social media posts, Harris said something or other about apologizing to women and to LGBT persons he may have wounded with some of his former teachings and beliefs.

At no time (that I recall) did Harris say he is now a flaming liberal who is a big time pro-LGBT- lifestyle- affirming SJW.

But some Christians are assuming he is now such.

Some are assuming either he is now a liberal, or else that he was seduced to (possibly) rejecting the faith because he was seduced by liberals or liberalism.

It’s not immediately clear to me if Harris rejects Christ now or is merely reevaluating the faith.

Before I continue discussing Harris and the Christian reaction to Harris’ comments, I will point you to a few off-site articles or editorials, so that you may gain any additional background information you may be wondering about (I’m not interested in covering all the nitty gritty in my own post here):

Author Joshua Harris Kisses His Faith Goodbye: ‘I Am Not a Christian’ – via CBN News (Christian site)

Joshua Harris falling away from faith: ‘I am not a Christian’ – via The Christian Post

‘Purity’ advocate dumps Christianity, apologises to gays
– Via Patheos, non-religious blog

Regardless of where Harris is faith-wise, I am disturbed, angry, and horrified to see how 98% of professing Christians are reacting to Harris and dealing with the subject of leaving the faith.

I have not seen many Christians demonstrate kindness or understanding.

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• Megachurch Will Form Its Own Police Force After Passage of Controversial Law

Megachurch Will Form Its Own Police Force After Passage of Controversial Law

Megachurch Will Form Its Own Police Force After Passage of Controversial Law

By Jasmine Hyman and Brian Ries, CNN
June 2019

(CNN)An Alabama megachurch plans to start its own police force thanks to a new law permitting the church to do just that.

The law, signed by Gov. Kay Ivey, authorizes Briarwood Presbyterian to “appoint and employ one or more suitable persons to act as police officers to protect the property of the school or academy.”

A similar bill was proposed four years ago, but it was dropped by the Alabama legislature amid a public outcry over the Presbyterian Church in America’s racist history, as well as criticism that the bill was unconstitutional and violated the Establishment Clause’s separation of church and state. Briarwood Presbyterian is part of the PCA.

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• The End of Empathy by Hanna Rosin

The End of Empathy

This issues discussed in this article remind me of this Bible verse:

Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold…

The End Of Empathy by Hanna Rosin

Snippets:

…Americans these days seem to be losing their appetite for empathy, especially the walk-a-mile-in-someone’s-shoes Easter Sunday morning kind.

…Konrath [associate professor and researcher at Indiana University] collected decades of studies and noticed a very obvious pattern.

Starting around 2000, the line starts to slide.

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• These pastors were busted taking the ‘Prosperity Gospel’ to the extreme and bilking their followers out of millions by S. K. Burris

These pastors were busted taking the ‘Prosperity Gospel’ to the extreme and bilking their followers out of millions

Snippets:

by S. K. Burris

The worship of the almighty dollar is never more evident than with religious leaders who manage to work the system and avoid paying their taxes. For some pastors, faith in the prosperity gospel is stronger than the biblical gospels.

According to the Washington Post, fraud is thriving in U.S. churches, but it goes largely unreported either to church leaders or to the authorities.

…The late Rev. Dr. David B. Barrett partnered with the Center for the Study of Global Christianity to chart a statistical understanding of Christian churches around the world. Barrett “was a pioneer in collecting data on churches and noticed a significant increase in embezzlement fraud during the 1980’s,” Pavlo wrote.

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• Christianity Did Not Help Me, It Did Not Work For Me

I was a very devout Christian from childhood up to my early, maybe mid, forties.

These days, I don’t know what I am (religiously speaking).

As I look back over my life, I can see that not only did the Christian faith not help me much, but as some of its teachings were taught to me, it created obstacles in my life, and kept me stuck in harmful patterns or ways of thinking.

Supposing there is an afterlife with a Heaven and a Hell, and acceptance of Christ means a ticket into Heaven upon death, that works out just fine. I can sure see how that is beneficial later on.

Christianity, though, did not really help me with very much in the present life.

Any pain, problems, or stress I’ve had so far were not relieved by the Christian faith.

Prayer, Bible reading, believing in Jesus, volunteering at charities, attending church – none of that alleviated my problems.

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• Godly Men, Be Quiet By S. Krehbiel

Godly Men, Be Quiet By S. Krehbiel

Godly Men, Be Quiet By S. Krehbiel

Snippets:

….Patriarchal Christian masculinity is a powerful drug. It makes many church men believe that the world desperately needs their perspective on everything.

It makes their followers believe that asking such men to step aside from leadership is somehow tantamount to cruelty. 

God is always calling these men to lead someone or something, even when what they know about that thing may be approximately two cents less than nothing

Particularly in the evangelical world, the spiritual quality that seems to most define men like this is their ability to imagine that they hear God in the voice of their own ambition.

And then, inevitably, they start talking about healing, and positioning themselves as experts on how survivors should heal and need to heal. They cultivate suspiciously in-house quasi-professionals. They host high-profile healing services.

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