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I think its just a symptom of our times. There is a spiritual struggle that has intensified in recent years. Also, there has been a growing backlash against religion (the man-made institutionalization of spiritual beliefs). The spirit can not be quenched, but they challenge the benefit of religion.Atheists are just being rebellious and angry. Many look at what humans do and have done in the name of "God". They surmise that religion does not solve problems, therefore God must not exist. They conclude that humans are all alone and at the mercy not of God but of each other. How sad.But on the bright side, they always fall short of denying a spiritual component of their nature. They seek out kindred spirits and hence the current popularity of books about atheism. They are also (if you can work past any anger) slightly more amenable than most to talk about the spiritual and religion. What an opportunity!
Without a doubt many are rebelling against some of the institutionalism of religion. At the same time they are seeking spirituality.I have found most are willing to talk about the Spirit but don't necessarily care about talking about the church. The perceptions of so many christians is not good and you really can't blame them. All they see and read is the hypocrisy that is presented by the news outlets.As christians the one thing we can do is to be "real" and accept people for who they are and not judge them according to our christian standards.
Amen!The "churches" described in the NT were nothing more than the gathering of Christians in a certain location. The borders of these churches were determined by the time that it took for the congregation to gather.Today....within a couple of miles of most people there are a dozen Christian churches, probable most representing a separate religion. Wouldn't it be great if we could return somewhat to a time when people just "gathered in His name"?
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