Is It Cool to Be a Cultural Christian?

In a recent interview with the UK’s LBC YouTube channel, Professor Richard Dawkins, one of the most famous atheists of our time, has touched on one of the fundamental problems in Christianity, being a “cultural Christian.”
In the interview Professor Dawkins speaks directly about the culture in Britain.  He says, “I call myself a cultural Christian. I'm not a believer, but there's a distinction between being a believing Christian and being a cultural Christian. And so, I love hymns and Christmas carols, and I sort of feel at home in the Christian ethos, I feel that we are a Christian country, in that sense. ...Statistically, the number of people who actually believe in Christianity is going down. And I am happy with that.  But I would not be happy if, for example, we lost all our cathedrals and our beautiful parish churches. So I call myself a cultural Christian.”
Like many of you, I have followed Dawkins for years.  He has made a career of being the opposing voice to many of Christianity’s fundamental beliefs. He has, no doubt, spent more time studying and speaking about Christianity than many who consider themselves to be an active Christian.  So, when he calls himself a “cultural Christian” he identifies, indistinguishably, with those who around him that believe they are the Biblical definition of a Christian. Like him, they do not accept the full authority of the Word of God, but would deny being an atheist.  He bases his comment on what he observes Christians doing juxtaposed to what the Bible says a Christian believes.  It is a backhanded, mocking comment that I believe Dawkins means as a true compliment.  His meaning is the “behavior” of Christians in the UK is something to admire, but at the same time mocks what the Bible teaches about spiritual truth.  Dawkins has a superior way of getting the opposition to lower their guard when discussing these topics.  However, his using the term “cultural Christian” to describe his lifestyle makes him no different than those in the Christian community he admires that live the same as he does.  A more accurate Biblical term for both groups is LOST!  What he fails to realize, is the key to Christianity is the submission to God, not simply following a set of rules.  This explains why those beautiful cathedrals are just as empty as the hearts of the people when they sing hymns and carols. 
The Christian Church in Europe has paved the way for Cultural Christianity, and the Church in America is not far behind.  It is easy to unpack the positive cultural qualities of any religious system and formulate a lifestyle.  But if there is nothing or no one to submit to, you are a god unto yourself.  Biblical Christianity is not a system or a religion, it is a relationship, and without it, one is not a Christian as the Bible describes.  Very soon, when the “culture” breaks down, your belief system will too.    
It is interesting that at this time of the year Dawkins was prompted to say what he said.  During the Easter season, when most churches partake in the Lord’s Supper, I am reminded of Jesus words in John 6:53 - So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I tell you, unless you eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of Man, you have no life in you. And in Matthew 16:24- Then Jesus told His disciples, “If anyone wants to come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me. True Christianity comes with a price.  It is not a lifestyle one adopts when it is beneficial and drops when it is not.  For too long the Church has allowed the “have it your way” “shopping cart” approach to be practiced.  In an attempt to maintain numbers, the American Church is losing the message and looking more like the Church in Europe each day.    
It should be compelling, however, that in the interview Dawkins uses the term “Believer” correctly. He says, I am not a believer.  “I call myself a cultural Christian. I'm not a believer, but there's a distinction between being a believing Christian and being a cultural Christian….I find that I like to live in a culturally Christian country, although I don’t believe a single word of the Christian faith.”
He said it better than most preachers do on Sunday morning.  Dawkins interview should come as a wake-up call to the Worldwide Church.  Like the prophets of the Old Testament, God sends messengers who call His people to repent.  Given Dawkins popularity and draw, it would appear God has once again chosen to speak through a donkey. Like in Balaam’s day, God will use creative messengers to call the people of each generation to repentance.
Serving the Savior, 
Bro. Jonathan 

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