Another wacky idea blowing through the church is so-called “Red Letter Christianity”. Many of these movements blow through, distract many, and then fade away as they desire to redefine God’s Word into something “seeker friendly” for reasons of social justice, or other (bad) ideas.
This week’s lesson comes as a founder of one group (Red-Letter Christianity) Mr. Campolo (mis/re)defines sin, as he admits the group Red-Letter “Christianity” is a political movement — what he calls “progressive evangelicals”.
Although radical groups might use the same terminology as traditional Christianity, they redefine terms to fit their political views; Mr. Campolo wrote on the Huffington Post “What differentiates Red Letter Christians from other Christians is our passionate commitment to social justice — hence, our intense involvement in politics”.
We’ve written before on the social justice movement, which exists as a far-left progressive political movement rather than a God-centered religious one. So in the redefinition game, what does the progressive liberal Red-Letter “Christian” mean by sin? Allow Mr. Campolo to provide his definition, and see if it agrees with what you’ve read in the Bible.
From time to time, I have been asked in the academic classrooms where I have taught to define what I mean by sin. I always respond by saying, “Sin is what diminishes the humanity of another person and of the self.”
We’ll skip a detailed analysis of the passage and simply notice the definition coming from Red-Letter “Christianity” has no reference to God at all — an essentially atheist religion devoid of God (or truth).
You must remember when you use the word “sin”, and Mr. Campolo and associated progressive political “Christians” do, you’re not talking about the same thing, even if using the same word. Let that point sink in, because it’s critical to understand. The first thing you have to do when talking to a radical liberal progressive is get them to define terms, as you’ll quickly find out they’ve redefined terms to suit their ideology.
Suppose you told someone they were living contrary to God’s law (adultery, drunkenness, etc). According to Red-Letter Christianity speaking the truth is sin, as it had the possibility to make the person feel sad. Boo-hoo-hoo. Send a Hallmark card.
What a load of stinking manure. Red-letter Christianity — another non-biblical ideology (wrapped with a thin candy shell of religious terms hiding it’s radical political ideology) which should be thrown on the trash heap.
Remember David when he murdered one of his men? What did he say to God in Psalm 51 — “Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight”. No mention of “dehumanizing”, the offense is always against God.
Mr. Campolo’s ideas remove God from the equation, reducing sin to whatever you want it to be — it’s not constant, but whatever “diminishes the humanity” of a person. Not only is God not involved, but neither is truth. According to Mr. Campolo’s definition of sin, if what you say is true, but it bums someone out, that’s sin on your part.
Sin is against God, period. It’s not about dehumanizing another person or yourself. Those may be results of sin, but they’re most definitely not the definition of sin. At best Mr. Camplo’s redefinition confuses the definition of sin with the results of sin, at worst Red-Letter Christianity’s version creates a heretical designer religion centered around man, instead of God.
Where is the absolute inerrant Word of God? Nowhere to be found — only whatever man decides is sin. Classic value relativism, and the removal of God from Red Letter “Christianity” — reducing Christianity to a man-centered philosophy which changes day to day.
Don’t fall for the brightly colored thin candy shell of religious terminology, hiding the deadly poison of heresy inside.
You’re required to take a stand on what you believe. Is it the Bible? Or some strange shifting man-based radical philosophy (Red-letter Christianity, social justice, collective salvation, common good, etc) somebody tells you to accept — a religion void of reference to God or truth?
Because it’s 2:59AM.