This post pointing out that the liberal Presbyterian Church of the USA has been funneling loot to the corrupt ACORN organization for years makes me stop to ask why such a thing could be going on. We can’t hold our head too high. The Catholic hierarchy have been shoveling loot their way too it seems.
This is the inevitable result of modernism in the church. At its core, modernism denies the supernatural in religion. For modernists the Scriptures are not inspired. They are a collection of human religious texts. There are no miracles. They are the product of a fervent and deranged religious imagination. God (if he exists) does not intervene in the world. There is no such thing as answered prayer. Sacraments are no more than symbols. The Church is merely a human institution. The incarnation is no more than ‘Jesus was the most fully human being who ever existed and in that way he shows us God’. The Virgin Birth is a pretty fable and the resurrection is ‘the beautiful fact that Jesus’ teachings continued to live even after his tragic death.’
This is the creed of the modernist Christian, and it is only the end result of the core denials of Protestantism. (As a side line, ask your conservative Protestant Evangelical friends which of the above statements they would agree with. You’ll find that they agree with about a third, and will have no good reasons why they do not deny the others.) This same modernism, of course, has infected the Catholic Church too.
The result is that Christians have to do religion with the leftovers, and what is leftover after the Christian faith is robbed of any supernatural element? Good works. When you no longer believe in the reality of the next world the only thing left to do is work to make this world a better place. So religion becomes a campaign for peace and justice. Religion becomes a campaign for equality and tolerance. Religion becomes a campaign to eliminate poverty and raise the standard of living for all.
Of course, these are laudable objectives and ones that all Christians should endorse, but they should be the fruit of religion, not the main point. The terrifying thing is that once changing the world becomes the main object of religion the devotees soon shift their attention away from the worship of the immortal invisible God to the devotion to a mortal visible god.