Things Unchurched People Dislike About Christians

Unchurched PeopleJust prior to Jesus’ crucifixion he told his disciples, “If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you” (John 15:19). Now while we Christians should not worry about the fact that the world may hate us, we should make sure it is not for all the wrong reasons.

I found an interesting post on this very subject where the author lists five things that unchurched people dislike about Christians. I thought I’d list them below and add a few of my own.

In no particular order, here are five things people that are unchurched or without the knowledge of God dislike about people who claim to be Christians.

1. Don’t like Christians who treat other Christians poorly – Interesting that even though an unchurched person may completely mis-understand who God is, they still believe that Christians should love one another which is also one of the commands Jesus Himself left us (John 15:12).

2. Don’t like “holier-than-thou” attitudes – A good friend of mine once said, “You can sin less but you still sin.” So simple and yet so profound. Have any of us stopped sinning since we came to Christ? We may sin less and we may even have left the “practice of sinning” but we still sin and are still therefore apart from Christ, most unholy.

3. Don’t like Christians who talk more than they listen – This is true of anyone, Christian or not. One of the best things a Christian can do is to listen, especially if someone is opening up about a problem or situation they are facing. Wise Christians will wait on the Holy Spirit to lead them as to when and what to answer in such scenarios.

4. Don’t like Christians who won’t get involved in my life – I’m reminded of the old adage, “People don’t care about how much you know until they know how much you care.” You could also say that they don’t care who you know (God) until they know that you care. When a believer gets involved in an unbeliever’s life, it is often in these times that they will have the most impact on them.

5. Don’t like Christians who don’t go to church – I’m thinking of a fitness freak who never frequents the gym or a health conscience person who always eats fast food or a numerous other situations where a person’s beliefs are not put into practice. I know there are bad churches everywhere but there are still good ones. If one is to follow Christ, then they also need to be part of a body of believers. This is part of God’s plan for His children – that they continuously experience fellowship with one another (Heb. 10:25).

And now for a few additional ones I thought of …

6. Don’t like Christians who have no joy – Christians, no matter what they are going through, should be able to portray joy in their lives, if for nothing else due to the fact that they have the hope of Christ in them. I’m not saying that Christians should be constantly be upbeat and happy. Rather they should be real and transparent but at the same time allowing that joy and hope that Christ gives us to always shine through, no matter what circumstance we are currently in.

7. Don’t like Christians who forget they still live on Earth – I am referring the the “super-spiritual” here, those Christians who seem to forget that they live in a real world with real people. I once heard a pastor make the statement that he did not want any “negative” people around him so as to not dilute his positive thinking. Are you kidding me? How can a minister minister to only the healthy?

8. Don’t like Christians who don’t understand what they believe – Blind faith is what they call it – believing in something just because someone says so. Christians should have at least some understanding as to what they believe. As my pastor says always, “Don’t check your brains at the door.” I Peter 3:15 says, “always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.” Keep in mind that when asked to defend your faith, it is okay to respond with a, “I’m not sure about that but I will look into it,” which should then prompt you to seek out an answer through study, prayer or both.

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Now as a Christian, it is error to think, “What do I care what non-believers think of me? They’re going to Hell anyway,” when in fact that should be the very thing that compels us to be concerned about what they think.

Paul said “I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some” (I Cor 9:22). In light of these words as well as this post, shouldn’t we make sure we are doing all we can to help lead the unchurched to Christ as opposed to being a stumbling block to the process?

What about you the reader? Whether churched or unchurched, can you think of anything else that may have been missed here? I’d welcome your comments.

Author: David Wallace

David Wallace is a search & social media marketer who lives in Anthem Arizona with his lovely wife. Interests & hobbies include all things Disney, roller coasters, musicianship and Christianity. Follow +David Wallace on Google + as well as Twitter.

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7 Comments

  1. Sorry, I forgot about this conversation alltogether.

    1) The theory has tons of evidence supporting it and since you have the capacity to disprove it, feel free to submit your research on the issue for peer review and you would most likely win the Nobel prize! Of course, I think we both know that the arguments that you put forth on this issue are not even close to scientific. But perhaps you don’t want to win such a prize, or perhaps there is this global conspiracy that wants to put a particular section of Christianity down.

    Creationism is just assertions made without any scienfitic evidence whatsoever, so feel free to teach them (as myth, or else it would go against the constitution) in religion class, by all means.

    3.5) You still have that right. I take it you have heard of this place called “church”? I guess you won’t be satisfied until you can teach other people’s children about your religion as well? How about in mosques?

    “If I were a teacher and told a student, “Jesus loves you very much” I doubt I’d be teaching very long.”

    That’s all fine and dandy in Christian schools, but when you start teaching the children of non-Christians that your god is real as a *teacher* then you are obviously stepping on other people’s rights. I think we both know that you wouldn’t want a Muslim teacher teaching the Quran as truth to your children in school. So come up with an actual right that has been taken away from Christians already. How hard can it be to come up with just one?

    4) Correction: it’s not called science at all.

    I could look at a cucumber and say “that vegetable is green”, but that wouldn’t make it science. Just how low standards do you Christians have? Either use the scientific method or don’t call it science.

    Also, if you look at the strata in different countries you will notice that no global flood occured but rather that some floods occured during different times. The fact that you take this simplistic approach to such a complicated matter tells me that you rather not read more than one particular book and stay away from all science. You, sir, are willfully uneducated.

    5) It’s one thing to be a Christian and do something stupid or criminal. It’s another thing to do something stupid or criminal because the bible told you to. See the distinction?

    You made an ungrounded guess and I shot it down. Then you tried to save your hide by declaring it a stalemate after you had confessed to being wrong about the whole deal. I wonder how you are to play sports against, declaring a draw after you have lost must get pretty frustrating for your opponents.

  2. 1) Neither. I’m saying that if Darwinism (a completely unproven theory) is taught, why is creationism not? Concerning the question of the origin of man or the earth, there are large groups of people on either side. Why is creationism just automatically considered unworthy of mention?

    2) Very well.

    3) Are you asking my opinion? If so, I think many denominations teach the truth, but not all.

    3.5) Like the right for us to teach our beliefs about the origin of man and the universe? How many lawsuits have there been now because a teacher or student had a Bible with them on a school campus? And that’s just one area. In most cases, thankfully, the courts have upheld the First Amendment rights of the accused, but the inevitable trend is that Christianity is being more and more trounced upon and virtually ANY expression of it outside of church or home is considered an infringement on the rights of others. If I were a teacher and told a student, “Jesus loves you very much” I doubt I’d be teaching very long.

    4) It’s called observational science. In other words, we see the result and have to speculate how things got that way. For example, if there were a global flood one would expect to see various layers of sediment with dead things trapped inside. And what do we see? Layers of sediment with dead things trapped inside.

    5) You say it’s plain as day, but it seems like any time a professed Christian fails and does something immoral, thousands of skeptics are right there to point it out and make a huge deal out of it…far moreso than if an atheist committed the same offense.

    I don’t see how anything there is a “checkmate.” I can’t prove that you don’t read C.S. Lewis with an open mind and you can’t prove that I don’t read Dawkins with an open mind. In what way do you consider that a checkmate? In either side’s favor?

  3. 1) Are you saying it is science, or are you saying it is not myth? Surely you can do better than throw ad hominems around.

    2) His point and mine were similar, yet not the same. So I wasn’t particularly inclined to discuss the matter. But feel free to add something to the subject instead of throwing entry-level sarcasm my way.

    3) Well, I’m glad to hear it, although the leap of logic wasn’t across a very large gap. Do you consider all denominations of Christianity to be true (or the followers to be “true Christians”?)? Mormonism? Jehova’s Witnesserism (my own word, enjoy)?

    3.5) I think Christians should have rights, just like everyone else. I notice how you failed to come up with even one right that had been stripped from Christians as a group. Not that I’m surprised, of course.

    4) So what “science” found on AIG doesn’t pre-suppose that the bible is true? What “science” found on AIG uses the scientific method to amass data?

    5) If your point is that “Christians aren’t perfect” then we agree. It’s funny, though, Christians keep bringing this up as if it was some kind of hidden truth. It’s plain as day, and if it wasn’t before, it certainly is after this discussion.

    “Pretty much a stalemate there.”

    Except I didn’t make any such statement/guess about you in particular. So I think the word you are looking for is “checkmate”.

  4. 1) “because creationism is *Christian* myth, not science”

    Because YOU say so? You must be way smarter than just about every person who has ever been born throughout all of history, then. Congratulations.

    2) You don’t have a point #2. You went right to #3. Apparantly, my previous conclusion about being the smartest person to have ever lived was spoken too soon.

    3) I’m not judging who is and is not a real Christian. Just because I say that they exist, don’t assume that I’m pointing fingers and determining who those people are. That is very presumptive of you and I don’t appreciate people putting words in my mouth.

    3.5) Open your eyes. But then, since you seem to feel Christians don’t have rights, how could you see them being infringed upon?

    4) Completely and categorically incorrect. You’re confusing observational science with experimental science.

    5) I did. And what I stated still stands.

    Finally, if my guess was wrong, so be it. That’s why it was offered as a “guess” and not a statement of fact. So, you have my apologies. I still wonder if you were only reading those things in order to find ways to argue against them and back up your existing conclusions, but there’s not way for either of us to know if the other is doing that, really. You could pose the same question about my reading of Dawkins or Darwin or Stenger, etc. Pretty much a stalemate there.

  5. 1) Thanks for the example of the hypocricy that I mentioned. Teach religion in religion class, not in science/history class (because creationism is *Christian* myth, not science). Why isn’t church enough for you?

    3) Who are you to judge what a real Christian is? There are as many different kinds of Christians as there are followers of Christ. Your faith isn’t better or more real than anyone else’s.

    3.5) What rights are being stripped away from Christians? And before you start answering, consider the difference between mandatory prayer time in school and whether or not you are allowed to pray in school.

    4) “I don’t see anything wrong with looking to AnswersInGenesis if the answers they provide seem to be well thought out and logically sound” – I rest my case. The fact that you believe that things from that page is logically sound (without anything but biblical backing in 75% of the time, and inaccurately depicted (scientific) research the rest of the time) shows an utter bias on your part.

    5) “Hypocrisy is not a specifically Christian problem” Nobody said it was. Go read the title of this blog entry again.

    You accuse me of not looking at the other side of the coin… on this page? That’s pretty hilarious. But I have read the bible several times, and I have read “The Case for Christ” by Lee Strobel, and I have seen “Expelled”. I have read apologetic texts by C.S. Lewis and I have spent a lot of time discussing with religious people (mainly Christians).

    So, your guess is wrong.

  6. Korinthian,

    Interesting points you’re making. I’ll see if I can go ahead and address each one.

    1) While I agree that this can be the case, the other side of the coin is the fact that government and the public education system imposes THEIR views every bit as much as Christians try to ensure that their values are represented by the government. In fact, most Christians don’t have a problem with teaching evolution, as an example, provided that they ALSO teach that some people believe in creationism. The same respect is not returned from the secular environment. So, while some Christians DO admittedly try to use the government to force their values on everyone, MOST Christians focus on keeping the government from imposing THEIR values on Christians and stripping away our rights (such as the right to pray in a public school…why is that illegal? I’m not trying to impose my views on anyone, I’m just privately saying my own prayer).

    2) I believe this point is made above by Ty in #2.

    3) There is a large difference between those who claim to be “Christian” yet live their lives no differently than anyone else vs. those who truly attempt to live lives trying to become more compassionate, generous and loving. If you take away the “cultural Christians” from the mix, we are most certainly NOT the majority. A quick review of the ACLU website can easily show that the rights of Christians (or any other religion for that matter, though Christianity seems specifically targeted in many cases) are gradually being stripped away and this nation is headed in the direction of making Christianity outright illegal at some point if it continues the way it’s going.

    4) Again, this is true in SOME cases. But this is also true of those in opposition to Christianity. I don’t see anything wrong with looking to AnswersInGenesis if the answers they provide seem to be well thought out and logically sound. I agree that one should look at both arguments and THEN determine which one seems the most plausible. But, again, this is not a problem only among Christians. Heck, Richard Dawkins does a lot of this in “The God Delusion.”

    5) Hypocrisy is not a specifically Christian problem. It is also a commonly misunderstood thing with respect to Christians and hypocricy in the sense that a person claiming to be a follower of Christ is often held to a higher standard, so when they fail people immediately cry foul and start throwing around the “h” word. This neglects the fact that Christlikeness is a process, not an immediate thing. One doesn’t just accept Christ and suddenly become a moral, upstanding, compassionate, generous, kind, loving person. Also, following Christ doesn’t mean that one is perfect. We are still human and therefore we still make mistakes, bad judgment calls, act selfishly, etc.

    So, to immediately label a Christian as a hypocrite is to not take all circumstances and data into account which would seem to violate the very scholarship you seem to feel so strongly about.

    For myself, I don’t simply look at AiG for information. As I alluded to earlier, I’m reading Dawkins’ book so that I can look at both sides of the coin. I’ve also looked at other skeptical works like Stenger’s “God: The Failed Hypothesis” for example. My guess is, you probably do the exact same thing that you are accusing Christians of…looking at only one side of the coin, taking Christian teaching either out of context or viewing it from a secular world-view and ignoring anything that doesn’t correlate to the conclusions you’ve already come to.

    Grace, love and peace.

  7. You forgot that others don’t like Christians that impose their faith on government, education and other people.

    Another one is Christians who care more about other people’s so called sins than their own.

    Yet another thing is how Christians go around whining about how they are oppressed when they are the in the majority (they just say that because Jesus claimed they would be hated and oppressed).

    Christians on the Internet also have a tendency to be very one-sided when they do their “research” on several issues. They usually stick to utterly biased sources like AnswersInGenesis and settle for that as long as it doesn’t go against the bible.

    And then there’s the hypocricy that’s so closely related to faith. For instance the demands that Christianity should get special treatment, while other religions are completely disregarded (and actually defended by secular people in some cases). But I could write a book about Christian hypocricy, but it would benefit no one as Christians would call me a liar, and the rest of the world would already be aware of the things I wrote.

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