Sneaky Thieves

Sneaky Thieves

 I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! (John 10:1)

Read: Psalm 120 – 123, 125, 126

Relate: Anne Rice, author of Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt and Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana along with a plethora of vampire novels, has been openly professing her decision to follow Jesus for over a decade now. She is the subject of one of the many I Am Second videos where she talks about her rejection and return to Christ.

Unfortunately, the story doesn’t end there and recently, on her facebook page she has written:

For those who care, and I understand if you don’t: Today I quit being a Christian. I’m out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being ‘Christian’ or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten years, I’ve tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.

“I hate your wife.” If I were to say that to a good friend of mine, how long do you think we will remain friends? If this “friend was even a slightly decent husband the most polite thing he would follow that up with could be, “Well, it was nice knowing you.” Personally, I don’t think I would be that polite. Anne Rice appears to be a recent addition to the bevy of people who have the temerity of saying, “Jesus, I love you but I hate Your wife.” Sorry. It just doesn’t work that way. It is like saying you would like to go through the gate without ending up part of the sheepfold. Jesus is the Gate. If you are following Him, you are a part of the church. You might not agree with everything everyone in the church says and does, but neither always agree with all my siblings all the time. Doesn’t mean I hate them.

On the flip side, I was reading a recent book about the beginnings of Christianity by an author who openly professes to being an atheist. He devoted his entire first chapter (and numerous barbs later throughout the book) on how unfair it is that scholarship on Christianity and the New Testament is being monopolized by Christians. To be honest, the entire chapter reminded me of nothing so much as a petulant child demanding the right to have a seat at the big kids table. Keeping with that analogy, the rest of the book demonstrated why he had no business being there. It was loaded with mediocre history and dubious (at best) scholarship. This was the product of someone wanting to be part of the fold, but who refused to go through the gate.

React: There is no way to be part of the church while denying Christ. Anyone who doesn’t recognize Jesus as Lord in Spirit and in Truth (with their heart and their head) has absolutely no business calling themselves a Christian. Some might say this is an example of the “no true Scotsman” fallacy. Well, if you’ve never lived in Scotland, and have no love for the place, it is safe to say you’re not a Scotsman no matter what you might claim. In the same way, if you do not believe in Christ, and are not following Him, then you absolutely, most definitely are not a Christian no matter what you might claim. You cannot be a Christian if you do not love Christ. You cannot truly love Christ if you do not love His bride. It is as simple as that no matter how many atheist scholars or Anne Rices might try to say otherwise.

Respond: 

God, it is You. You alone are all. You are the beginning and the end of my faith. You are the way, the truth, and the life. You are the gate, and it is only through You that I have the honor and noble privilege of being able to call myself a Christian. Thank You for providing a way. 

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10 thoughts on “Sneaky Thieves

  1. Oh my goodness! That doesn’t even make sense. I know many people who have been terribly hurt by ‘saints’ in the church and no longer choose to attend – I feel bad for them and I’m sure God won’t reward them for their stance on the subject – but I still believe they are believers and have faith in Jesus. I have never heard one of them say they are not Christian. My dad, who is in heaven now, used to say “To live above with saints we love, oh that will be glory. To live below with saints we know, now that’s another story.”

    • Take a lone coal and seperate it from the others and the flame. How long do you think it will retain its heat? A person claiming to follow Jesus without being in fellowship with others is either deceiving themselves or others. They will not, they cannot, maintain their flame for long.

  2. Hmmmm. “Being a Christian” means we are a follower of Christ but that does not mean we have to accept the hypocrisy, false teachings, gossip, back stabbing, etc. that goes on within the body of Christ. I think Anne Rice is saying that’s why she’s backing away, not from Christ but from people gathered together as “Christians.” . “The church” is ALL Christians. As a believer she is a Christian, a part of the body of Christ. I’m a Christian but I prefer to tell others “I am a follower of Jesus Christ.” Anyone can call themselves a Christian. Her disgust with “so-called Christians” I can understand. I’ve been an outsider in so many churches it’s ridiculous! Still am.

    • There is a quote commonly attributed to Augustine, “The Church is a whore but she is my mother.” No matter who truly coined it, the statement still rings true. Yes, the church is a flawed, unfaithful bride. But she is also a redeemed bride. We cannot be a follower of Christ and not be in fellowship with His body.

  3. I agree wholeheartedly. The Bible tells us that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; that includes each and every church member – Anne Rice and myself included. Of course there is hypocrisy in the church – hypocrisy lives everywhere! One might as well withdraw from the world. Even with her imperfections, the church is the one place in which believers are nourished by God’s Word as we nourish and uphold one another. Giving in to the temptation to walk away plays right into the enemy’s hands. I cannot fathom walking away from her.

  4. Really enjoyed reading this. I’m such a fan of Interview with a Vampire, but had no idea of its background! It’s always good to learn something new. I feel for Anne she must have had some seriously bad experiences at churches to post those comments/make decisions, but you never know she may come back!

  5. To believe in Christ and to follow him is to believe in our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ as well. We are all a community in it together. This despite some of the faults of some, for we all have our faults, but Jesus loves us all equally anyway and has absolved us of our sins.

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