For the longest time, you wouldn’t see Christians taking an active part in environmental efforts. That is not to say a Christian wouldn’t be environmentally sound, but there was not an organized action by a group of Christians who were actively promoting a Christian effort to be environmentally savvy. Personally, I think this is a good thing. Christians are called to be good stewards of what God has provided, and being environmentally friendly is one aspect I would consider to being a good steward. Should healing the earth take the primary focus of a Christians life though?
A new trend with in Christianity is the active practice of trying to reach out to other faiths and bridge the gaps that have been created. Now these gaps have been primarily created by the more conservative churches as they tried to remain uncompromised in their beliefs. I don’t think they did a very good job at it. In fact, many people view Christians as judgmental and prejudiced. Not the best way to reach out and minister to others. This new trend is trying to build bridges based on similarities between the different religions. They are changing their message from “repent and turn to God” to one of loving each other in the manner in which Jesus loved people. That doesn’t sound bad and there needs to be a lot more loving towards others spread by Christianity. At what point though do you have to say loving your neighbor is not enough though?
The doctrines of certain pre-Christian pagan, Jewish, and early Christian sects that valued the revealed knowledge of God and of the origin and end of the human race as a means to attain redemption for the spiritual element in humans and that distinguished the Demiurge from the unknowable Divine Being.
Sounds fun doesn’t it? Why am I looking at Gnostics? Good question.
Gnostic Christians, basically adhere to the Christian structure (i.e. God, Jesus and the Bible) but they don’t really follow the message of salvation and redemption that Christianity claims. That isn’t 100% correct. They believe in salvation, but salvation is not a result of the death of Jesus but rather on following His teachings instead. They tend to gravitate toward the lessons and actions of Jesus as the way to salvation and end up discounting the death and resurrection message that Christianity is built on. The spirituality of Jesus is the focus of these new Christians and that is where they get into trouble.
Our actions as Christians are a part of and directly reflect on our relationship with God. Paul and James are very clear that the actions of those professing Christ should begin to mirror what He taught. That being said though, our actions are not the way to salvation. Salvation alone comes from Jesus. This applies to everyone. Jesus is the only way that a person can be saved. Our actions will either keep us in Jesus or will move us out and away from Jesus, but salvation is never dependant on our actions.
This new breed of spiritual Christian is at risk of adopting a false religious belief system. One that sees the common loving actions of all people as the road to salvation. Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim, or any other religion will obtain salvation as long as they operate in a loving manner towards all people. This is a corruption of what Jesus taught and will lead people along the wide road away from salvation.