Are We Preaching To Itching Ears?

For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 ESV

A colleague of mine pointed out this fascinating piece concerning American spirituality at the New York Times.  What this study reveals about the people in our pews should give every pastor pause:

Entitled “Many Americans Mix Multiple Faiths,” the report points out that many Americans are now choosing to “blend Christianity with Eastern or New Age beliefs”…

Twenty percent of Protestants and 28 percent of Catholics said they believe in reincarnation, which flies in the face of Christianity’s rapture scenario. Furthermore, about the same percentages said they believe in astrology, yoga as a spiritual practice and the idea that there is “spiritual energy” pulsing from things like “mountains, trees or crystals.” Uh-oh. Someone’s God is going to be jealous.

Surprisingly, in some cases, those who identified themselves as Christian were more likely to believe these things than those who were unaffiliated…

…Furthermore, 16 percent of Protestants and 17 percent of Catholics said that they believe that some people can use the “evil eye” to “cast curses or spells that cause bad things to happen.” I have to say that based on the looks my mother used to shoot me when I was misbehaving, that evil eye thing might have legs…

The report is further evidence that Americans continue to cobble together Mr. Potato Head-like spiritual identities from a hodgepodge of beliefsbending dogmas to suit them instead of bending themselves to fit a dogma.

[Bold emphases mine.]

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2 thoughts on “Are We Preaching To Itching Ears?

  1. Great post, I regularly find my self trying to look at my walk and see if I’m falling into the American idea of religion or God’s word’s instructions for living.

    I see it far to often, many of us American’s have no clue what true faith is about.

  2. I am examining myself and am finding things I know I did not and would not do when I first came to Christ. It is so easy to stray and not even know it! Not until you remember from whence you came when a new believer and Christ was your First Love. I watch too much on TV that I used to reject as dishonoring to God, I use my tongue to curse more than to bless, I do not do eat or drink or do all to the glory of God. However, I am thirsting again after being in a desert wilderness too long and I love that I find myself panting after God and wanting to KNOW Him. I thank God I have preachers at my church (Metrocrest Presbyterian) that love God and preach the Word in and out of season, a place where I am encouraged, convicted and fed by the Word of God. I do not desire the world nor the things of the world when I am “up close and personal” with the Lord. You are right in your article, too many Christians have strayed and are not happy where they are at but like the world and not the restrictions of the Cross. The Bible says those who stray from the path will be unhappy, God is a jealous God He will not leave them there long but will use the rod to bring them back into the fold. Thanks for all your interesting articles Jimmy. Because He Lives! Donna

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