Is Society Better Off With Or Without Christians?

By: Tia Johnson 0 Comments   12/23/2013

“Get your head out of the Bible!” That was the gist of one student’s response to my commentary in my old college newspaper. My faith was hardly mentioned nor was it the focal point of my commentary, yet it was immediately attacked by numerous letters from students.

That reaction well illustrates a common perspective that was held on campus: the perspective that the Bible is damaging to culture.

This was reinforced both in teacher-led classroom discussions and among fiery activist groups. I often heard comments of the Bible starting wars in history that led to thousands of deaths and oppressing others with narrow-minded principles. Many seemed to think that culture was better off without the Bible and without those who adhere strongly to it. Are they right?

I think if their wish were granted, they would be sorely mistaken. Yes, the Bible is disagreeable to many- that’s the price of a book that holds total, uncompromising truth. Yet the Christian culture it instructs has helped more people and benefited society altogether in ways in which no other belief system can compare. Here are a few examples:

Apologist Larry Taunton described in a One-Minute-Apologist video that the average evangelical Christian gives ten times more of their money and time than an atheist does, and that without Christians, “What a very difficult place the world becomes for the poor, for the orphan, for the widowed, for the sick.”

Historically, churches provided the groundwork for hospitals to care for the sick. Churches also birthed some of our nation’s most renowned universities. When the United States was developing, it was her churches that insisted upon an educated people. They wanted people to learn how to read so that they could read scripture. Our nation’s education, and therefore its writings, inventions, and medical advances, owe a lot to our churches.

Christians also inject ethics into a community. Biblical standards are high, and the more a community is filled with Christian thought and attitudes, the more order and peace a community experiences-- instead of the outbursts of anger or sexual addictions which have made many of our streets unsafe. Christians also exhibit selfless love and generosity toward others. If presented with the option of living in a community of selfless people or living in a community of selfish people, it wouldn’t take me long to choose.

Christianity reinforces stewardship. Our possessions are a blessing from God to be cared for, not taken for granted. My grandma has a difficult time tossing out good food from her garden. God gave her that food, so it must be given away or canned for the future, not left to rot. I feel the same way about my garden.

 “When you take Christians out of the culture it quickly degenerates,” Taunton had said. While students at my college blamed the Bible for European battles over religion and slavery issues in the United States, Taunton referred to the “reign of terror” in France during the 18th Century to prove the opposite.

Because of these obvious reasons, the more authentic Christians we have in our nation, the better our living conditions will be. When I was in high school I wanted to advertise an evangelical event and needed the permission of my assistant principal to hang up posters. When I presented the idea to him, my selling point was that if more students in the school were Christians, he would have much fewer conflicts to deal with. He had no problem signing the posters.

Certainly, there have been “wolves in sheep’s clothing” who put on the Christian label to do what Christians would not do. They’ve used Scripture in a selfish way to accomplish something completely un-scriptural. There’s also the tendency for God to be pointed at for anything negative that happens. Funny, why He doesn’t get the credit when things go well.

Yet I think an honest look at history will prove how beneficial Scripture has been for the nations who have selflessly adhered to it. And by recognizing God’s blessing in our lives we’ll see that He has been far more generous to us than we’ve ever deserved. His grace alone is priceless, yet given freely. May we never forget the great value of that gift as described in the Bible.

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