Tuesday, March 23, 2010

I'm a Christian and I'm Not Sorry

As part of the facebook world I am privy to the random thoughts and life updates of over 400 of my closest friends. This morning, I saw a video posted of a young man reciting a poem with the title, “I’m a Christian and I’m sorry”.

I listened to it, and I must say that as shocking as it was to hear the f-bomb twice, I was more shocked at hearing the same Christian bashing lines of thought that you hear anywhere else.

You can find the video on youtube, but I transcribed (as best as I could) the words of the poem so that I could better interact with it (transcript is below). I felt compelled to respond, so I have written this post (not even close to poetry) called, “I’m a Christian, and I’m not sorry” and it is below the transcript the poem.

I am a Christian.
I’m sorry

I’m sorry for the way that I come across
So fair and fake friendly and full on my self so judging your spiritual health by the words that you say and the way that you dress and the things that you do
Or maybe just judging you

I’m sorry for the way I live my life.
So confident of my own beliefs that I would never think to think about thinking about yours

I’m sorry for the wars
Iron clad crusaders mounting steeds and drawing swords with such spirit but the spirit…
[something about the spirit being out and the sword of the spirit was the word]
…but the word was with God and the word was God and they preached this as they marched on the holy land.
Singing and praying
And killing and slaying.
And preaching and healing
And raping and stealing.
It’s ironic that they lined their pockets in the name of God
Just like the priests who lined their pockets in the name of God.
Just like the people you can’t stand because they always raise their hand and spread their faith and hate and judgment in the name of God.
I’m sorry that I take the name of God in vain – or rather I’m sorry that I stain the name of God. Defending my selfish actions and selfless actions pertaining to the will of God.

I’m sorry for being intolerant.
For trying to talk down to you, for trying to talk over you, for not letting you talk.

I’m sorry for not walking the walk. For being a hypocritical critical Christian. Criticizing your lifestyle while my own lifestyle styles itself like the televangelist’s hair. All slick and sly and slippery…(something about a syllable sliding into your ear)…but that’s my greatest fear.
That the steps I take won’t match the words I speak so when I speak all you hear of me is a weak hypocritical critical Christian. Doing one thing and saying another. Loving my friend but hating my brother – it’s a show.

I’m sorry I get drunk on Saturday’s and go to church on Sunday’s to pray for my friends who get drunk on Saturday’s.
And on that note I’m sorry for making the church about the pews and the cross and the steeple, because the building is not the church; the church is the people.

I’m sorry that I hate you because you are gay.
I’m sorry I condemn you to hell because you’re gay instead of loving I junp to hatred. Mouth open and tongue preaching, eyes open but not seeing that you are the same as me just a F****** human being.

I’m sorry that I only hang out with Christian friends and we only do nice Christian things like pot luck dinners and board game nights. While in the night a man beats his girlfriend again. Another homeless man dies again. Is this the that my own pride has been but here I am with my same friends again but see what I always forget is that Jesus didn’t come to hang out with the priests and the lords, no. He hung out with cripples and beggars and whores.


I’m sorry for history. For native tribes wiped out in the name of the church. Lodges burning. Stomachs churning and yearning for justice as mothers, screaming and bleeding, pleading for their young ones are dragged away to church schools where they were abused.

I’m sorry for the way that I refuse to learn your culture, instead I just came to spread the gospel - and the plague.

I’m sorry that I stand at the front doors of abortion clinics screaming at fifteen-year-old girls as they enter instead of waiting at the back door to hug them as they leave.

I’m sorry for taking my wars and my faith to your lands when historically your lands is where my faith was born. And in the face of the storm I realize that if God is Allah and Allah is God then why are we shooting instead of sharing? Why are we launching instead of learning? Why are we warring instead of walking together? Why are we taking instead of talking together? Why are we bombing instead of breaking bread together? You see I think looks down and He’s sad. And from His right hand throne above, Jesus asks “where is the love?” And if it takes Wil.I.Am and Justin Timberlake asking the same question for us to start asking the same question then where the f*** are we headed?

So I will take this stage to be my chapel and this mic to be my confessional, and in the presence of God and of you, the blessed, I confess I am a Christian. I’m sorry.

- A poem by Chris Tse

I’m a Christian and I’m not sorry.

I’m a Christian and I’m not sorry.

I’m not sorry for the way I come across. When I’m being friendly, I’m not fake – I’m genuine. If you think its fake, I’m sorry, but it’s not.

I’m not sorry that the way you speak communicates something about who you are to anyone who is paying attention. I don’t judge your spiritual health by the way that you dress, but the things that you do and the things that you say communicate a lot about you in the same way that what I do and say tells you a lot about me.

I’m not sorry for the way I live my life or for the tenacity with which I hold my worldview. I’m so confident in my beliefs that I will try to understand the beliefs of others in order to show their deficiency. But more than that I want to tell you of the Perfect Savior and the Holy God who is present nowhere else than the very gospel that other worldviews do not have.

I’m not sorry for Christians in the middle ages. I’ve read Foxes Book of Martyrs and I know how the Christians – the true Christians – were treated by the same Roman system that is responsible for all kinds of evils. I’m just sorry more people either aren’t willing or aren’t able to separate Christians and Christianity from the Roman Catholic Church, the associated monarchical system, and the abuses, perversions, and heresies that were hand in hand with that union.

I’m not sorry for being intolerant…because I’m not. Intolerance doesn’t allow others to speak. And unless I’m living in a parallel universe, those who oppose Christ and Christians have the primary positions on TV, Radio, Hollywood, Broadway, newspapers, and other forms of communication. I don’t seek to shut others down from saying what they believe; I just want the ability to do the same.

I’m not sorry for trying to live and be as Christ wants me to be while failing every day. That is how the Christian life is described in the Scriptures. And there are a great host of Christians who were the same type of “hypocrites” that I am. Look at Paul – he didn’t do what he wanted to do and longed to be free of the body of this death – but he was a true and genuine Christian. I, a Christian, don’t revel in nor seek to not repeat my failures, but I do not deny them or cover them up either.

I’m not sorry about greasy televangelists – I’m righteously angry toward them. They pervert the name of Jesus to line their pockets. I pray that God would have mercy on their souls now so that they can repent of their ill gotten gains, their filthy luker, and their hell-wrought theology. Otherwise they will be judged and condemned by God after they’ve enjoyed their short time on earth.

I’m not sorry that I don’t get drunk. I feel bad for non-Christians who drown themselves in alcohol, and I love and pity them and want them to be set free in Christ from their bondage. I am sorry for people who claim to be Christians but are in an unrepentant cycle of willful sin and very well may truly be non-Christians who are deceived into thinking that they have been forgiven.

I’m not sorry for seeing the importance of gathering together with other believers to hear the Word preached, to worship the Lord in singing, and to find ways to serve one another and others. And I’m not sorry to do that in a building that we try to keep clean and in good repair.

I’m not sorry for telling people that “neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals,” nor those enslaved to “immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor 6:9 & Gal 5:19-21). All sinners are human beings, and all human beings are sinners, except Jesus Christ the righteous. And all human beings are wicked and are sure to be condemned by God unless Christ saves them through the power of His gospel. And as much as I don’t like it when what I say makes people upset or frustrated – I’m not sorry if this offends you.

I’m not sorry that I am pro-life and want to stop women from paying others to kill their children. I’m not sorry that I know and love women who have had abortions. I’m not sorry that my church reaches out to women in situations like this to love them and to share the gospel with them.

I’m not sorry for sending missionaries out into the world to spread the gospel. I’m not sorry that Christians are going into hostile lands where men, women, boys, and girls are killed, beat up, abused, and persecuted for the sake of the gospel.

I’m not sorry for distinguishing between the Allah of Islam and the God of the Bible. They are not the same. Believing in one is not believing in the other. I’m not sorry for being clear where the Bible is clear.

I’m a Christian and I’m not sorry.

Copyright © 2005-2010 Eric Johnson