"If only you were more like Jesus"

David French on how well-meaning Christians get suckered into going along with liberal do-goodery:

“If only you were more like Jesus,” they [liberals] proclaim, “and less concerned with [fill in the hot-button social issue here], then you would reach more people.” I’ve mostly experienced this argument as a weapon wielded against young, idealistic Christians — often on college campuses — who are experiencing rejection and scorn for the first time in their lives. 

But here’s the catch: Those delivering the critique are as ignorant of Jesus as the New York Times. To the Biblically illiterate, Christ is simply the ideal man within their own frame of reference; it’s a short-hand way of saying “be more like a better version of me” or “be like the most compassionate person I can imagine” (however they define compassion). 

Sadly, eager-to-please young Christians are often vulnerable to this critique. Knowing, of course, they fall far short of Christ’s example in their own lives, the words sting. Being human, they want approval, so they are tempted to try to narrow the gap with Christ while simultaneously narrowing the gap with their fellow man. Thus is often born a new progressive Christian, who rejects his parents’ “intolerance” and suddenly realizes that Christ would be totally into the welfare state and totally unconcerned with what happens in the bedroom (in fact, he’d especially disapprove of anyone’s offering moral judgment on what happens in the bedroom).

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