USA Today has a couple of articles they put up recently about pastors who are losing their faith and turning to atheism for hope. Here are a couple of excerpts:
Mike Aus, 48, pastor of a Houston Lutheran congregation of 150 people, found The Clergy Project last year after years of solitary doubt. The day before MacBain’s appearance at the convention, he announced his atheism on MSNBC’s Up With Chris Hayes.
After addressing the convention — which also greeted him enthusiastically — he said he felt like a burden had been lifted upon connecting with The Clergy Project.
"The most important thing to me was knowing I wasn’t alone," he said. "It was that fundamental sense of community with people who were experiencing the same things I was. It let me know it was not the end of the road, that there was life after this calling."…
Aus’ congregation, unaware of his change of heart until learning about it on television — on Palm Sunday, no less — decided to disband. Their final service was Easter Sunday.
"I went from God loves everybody to God saves everybody to God is in everybody," he said. "When you come from where I come from … it’s not too long before you are" at the American Atheists convention.
His new beliefs — kept secret from friends, family and his congregation — were put to the test when a friend in crisis asked him to pray with her.
"I could not do it," he said, as the hall grew quiet. "At that moment my conscience outweighed everything else in my life. … No matter how much I loved her, I knew the best hope for her situation was a good medical staff and I wasn’t going to pretend there was anything better for her than science and reason."
His heart, he said, was "absolutely, totally broken." He described gazing at himself in a mirror and realizing "that if I could not pray for her that I would never pray for anyone or anything ever again."
The irony of both of these articles is almost too much to comprehend. What you really have here is the story of two wolves in shepherds’ clothes (Acts 20:28-30), ripping apart the body of Christ in their pursuit of fame (notice how the second pastor had his “coming out” on MSNBC).
What I find especially fascinating is the second pastor’s statement about how he came to atheism. It serves as a powerful reminder of the slippery slope of modern liberalism, which takes you from “God loves everybody to God saves everybody to God is in everybody” and before too long you end up with an American atheist pastor.
The truth is that God does love all men (John 3:16), but the proof of His love is the death and resurrection of His Son (Acts 2:22-24) who calls all men to repent of their sins and find forgiveness (Acts 2:38). The truth is that outside of Christ there is no hope for this life and especially not for the life to come, even for atheist pastors.Share on Facebook
May 03 2012 01:57 pm | Blog