Monday, June 16, 2008

The Pitt-Falls of Decision Theology

One of my biggest problems is that I start blog posts and never find time to finish them. This one I started last October and never got around to finishing....

An interview with Brad Pitt was published in Parade Magazine (10/7/07). Brad was raised as a conservative Southern Baptist and he discusses his falling away from religion:

"I had crises of faith," he says. "I thought you had to experience things if you want to know right from wrong. I'd go to Christian revivals and be moved by the Holy Spirit, and I'd go to rock concerts and feel the same fervor. Then I'd be told, 'That's the Devil's music! Don't partake in that!' I wanted to experience things religion said not to experience."

By the time he entered college, Pitt had scuttled his fundamentalist beliefs. "When I got untethered from the comfort of religion, it wasn't a loss of faith for me, it was a discovery of self," he says. "I had faith that I'm capable enough to handle any situation. There's peace in understanding that I have only one life, here and now, and I'm responsible."

In a few short sentences he hits on some of the dangers of the decision/glory doctrines of modern American Evangelicalism:
1. The need for an emotional experience.
2. Legalism.
3. The authority of an individual's faith (via personal revelation) is greater than that of the church.

1 comment:

Thursday's Child said...

You're absolutely right. So many people lose their faith because they don't think they're "feeling" the right things so they must not be Christians, or this must not be the right path for their lives, etc. It's such a danger, even though people who believe such things do so with the best of intentions.