Beware of Moralistic Therapeutic Deism

From my experience this is true of Christian youth culture in Europe, but not in Africa and Asia.  My thanks to Jason Robertson for this:

Dr. Albert Mohler reports that when Christian Smith and his fellow researchers with the National Study of Youth and Religion at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill took a close look at the religious beliefs held by American teenagers, they found that the faith held and described by most adolescents came down to something the researchers identified as “Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.”

Therapeutic Deism consists of beliefs like these:

  1. “A god exists who created and ordered the world and watches over human life on earth.”
  2. “God wants people to be good, nice, and fair to each other, as taught in the Bible and by most world religions.”
  3. “The central goal of life is to be happy and to feel good about oneself.”
  4. “God does not need to be particularly involved in one’s life except when God is needed to resolve a problem.”
  5. “Good people go to heaven when they die.”

Notice that the belief system of these youth is very inconsistent.  It is a muddled mixture of both moralism and hedonism.  In short, they are creating a god in their own image, according to their own pleasures.  They want a Divine parent… who will provide for them so they can have fun.

By the way, #3 reveales that “goodness” is completely subjective.  In other words, the god that these young people believes exists is not the righteous God of the Bible but the god of their own imaginations.

I encourage you to read the whole article.

Peter serves as a pastor-teacher, at home and abroad, resourcing gospel-centred communities.

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