John Shuck is a Presbyterian minister—but he doesn’t believe in God and has the audacity to declare that “Jesus may have been an historical figure, but most of what we know about Him is in the form of legend” and “God is a symbol of myth-making and not credible as a supernatural being or force” and “the Bible is a human product as opposed to special revelation from a divine being” and “human consciousness is the result of natural selection, so there’s no afterlife.”
So, basically, this Presbyterian minister is an atheist. In fact, he made these declarations on The Friendly Atheist’s blog. Despite these beliefs he still describes himself as a “proud minister” and says he doesn’t appreciate “being told I’m not truly a Christian.”
Go ahead, read that again. Actually, I’ll summarize it for you: Shuck essentially denies the divinity of Christ, characterizes the Father as a myth-maker, repudiates the veracity of the Bible, denies any existence of an afterlife and gets offended when people suggest that maybe he needs to reclassify his faith—or lack thereof? Yes, that about sums it up. About the only thing he didn’t do was directly blaspheme the Holy Spirit.
Promoting ‘Belief-Less’ Christianity
“I believe one of the newer religious paths could be a ‘belief-less’ Christianity. In this ‘sect,’ one is not required to believe things. One learns and draws upon practices and products of our cultural tradition to create meaning in the present,” Shuck writes, acknowledging his support for congregations that make huge commitments to LGTBQ people.
“Belief-less Christianity is thriving right now, even as other forms of the faith are falling away rapidly. Many liberal or progressive Christians have already let go or de-emphasized belief in heaven, that the Bible is literally true, that Jesus is supernatural, and that Christianity is the only way. Yet they still practice what they call Christianity.”
That might be what they call Christianity, but that’s not Christianity. Christianity is a religion based on the person and teachings of Jesus, the Christ.
Let’s be clear: Christianity teaches the Bible is the inspired Word of God (see 2 Tim. 3:15). Christianity teaches that God exists in three Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit (see Matt 3:16-17). Christianity teaches that Jesus died for our sins, was buried, resurrected and seated at the right hand of the Father (see Rom. 4:25). Christianity teaches that mankind was created in God’s image to live in relationship with Him (see Gen. 1:27). Christianity teaches that in order to be saved, one must believe in their heart and confess with their mouth that Jesus is Lord (see Rom. 10:9). Christianity teaches that there is an afterlife—heaven for those who believe and hell for those who don’t (see 2 Cor. 5:8; Matt. 5:22;30).
Perverting God’s Word
Yesterday, I released a prophetic word about a tsunami of perversion rising. Shuck’s belief system is part of that perversion. The root of the perversion I see coming is actually the perversion of God’s Word itself.
We’re seeing prominent pastors and entire denominations perverting God’s Word, twisting it to defend and justify perversion itself and suggesting the rest of us are legalistic or unenlightened about the truth. It may have started with the gay marriage doctrine but it won’t end there. Shuck, a Presbyterian minister who doesn’t believe in God, is one more proof point.
“Someone quipped that my congregation is BYOG: Bring Your Own God. I use that and invite people to ‘bring their own God’—or none at all,” Shuck concludes. “While the symbol ‘God’ is part of our cultural tradition, you can take it or leave it or redefine it to your liking. That permission to be theological do-it-yourselfers is at the heart of belief-less Christianity.”
It’s also a perversion of the truth that could send people to hell and the blood of those who buy into Shuck’s false gospel will be on his hands. Thankfully, God is merciful and forgiving. I pray that a spirit of repentance would fall on Shuck and all those like him who are perverting or denying the Word of God. I pray that church leaders and parishioners alike would receive fresh wisdom and knowledge in the revelation of Jesus. I pray that the truth would prevail in churches across the world. I pray for a Third Great Awakening with signs, wonders and miracles that will make it very evident that God is real and Jesus is alive. Amen.
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The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.