The Christian faith is booming all over the world. China soon will have 200 million Christians; in Russia over 75 percent are believers. The faith is booming in Africa – countries such as Kenya and Uganda are 85 percent Christian.
In the West, though, Christian decline and spiritual fatigue define the mainstream reality, as selfishness, hedonism and greed engulf us. In Decision Magazine some time back, the renowned preacher Billy Graham harshly compared the current status of the United States of America to Sodom and Gomorrah, deserving the judgment of God. He strongly suggested that Christians return to prayer and humility, which used to be a creed in the U.S. Graham proclaimed this to be the only saving power for a nation in sharp cultural decline.
It may be argued that one of the reasons for institutionalized-church decline is the tendency over time to collectively become more and more occupied with organizational structures, cultural regulations and intricate dogmatic questions. In addition, church leadership has, when facing decline, ironically enough turned to secular society for tips on how to liberalize and become more popular among the general public, instead of turning to spirituality and the genuinely Christian message. This is quite clear in Europe.
The current British Anglican archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, recently described the terrible results regarding declining church attendance as the effect of an “anti-Christian culture,” that our culture and churches have been infected with an ideological virus that aims to end the Western era of “freedom of religions.” There may be an element of truth in his statement.
Yet, the archbishop conveniently neglected to mention that the responsibility for this decline is his own, and his fellow church leaders, who so eloquently have chosen to remain silent and smile politely instead of standing up for the Christian message. Last we checked, Jesus did not exactly go silent into the night. The Anglican Church leadership were supposed to be spiritual leaders who showed the way out of social upheaval. Yet, they have quietly conformed to the standards of secular society, omitting subjects of discord and nervously nodding to avoid being persecuted, yet with remarkable strength holding on to the prestige of their clerical positions. They have liberalized church theology in accordance with what they knew to be the anti-Christian establishment.
Their willingness to comply to the standards of the extreme-liberal and hedonist society has been remarkable to watch. The Anglican Church has never been more liberal, omitting references to the antidotes to chaos described in the Bible – to paraphrase clinical psychologist and YouTube phenomenon Jordan Peterson – even voicing support for the regional implementation of local, Islamic Shariah law in the U.K. on family matters. The archbishop may well complain, but it is the Anglican Church’s own actions that have caused the spiritual misery in the United Kingdom. No wonder Europe loses its connection to the metaphysical world; its church leaders are such pitiful cowards. The politicization of the church has turned leaders such as the archbishop of Canterbury into extreme-liberal puppets of the anti-Christian elites. It is an example of how not to defend the faith in an age of social turmoil.
The passivity of politicized and compromised bishops indicates their relative indifference to the ongoing process of de-Christianization. If the contrary were the case and they actually cared, we would have heard their voices loud and clear. Yet, the silence is deafening. The complacency is observable even in regular Protestant Northern Europe church services: Even if hardly anyone attend, they still manage to portray the service as “successful.” Of course, everyone knows that persecution would quickly engulf them if they spoke up and defended the true dogmas of faith.
The current situation in the Northern European Lutheran and Anglican churches are chilling examples to study, as these regions have come far in implementing the extreme secular expectations from the anti-religious political establishment. And for decades, bishops and church leaders in Northern Europe have permitted the secular state to control its teachings, as more or less atheistic or non-believing ministers and secretaries of state often dictate theological direction. In Scandinavia, several of these ministers have openly said they are not even believers in Christ.
The Lutheran Church has still obediently accepted their rulings – its bishops still smiling. It is a study on how to de-Christianize society as well as the institutionalized churches. The result is the kind of drug infested, borderless, hedonist society with the ongoing war between the genders we now present to the coming generations as “the new, glorious West.”