Small Christianity

Pastor Matthew Best
7 min readAug 31, 2022

I’m amazed at what passes for Christianity these days. In so many ways, we’ve made Christianity really small and insignificant. I’m not sure if that has been done on purpose, or by accident.

There’s a whole lot of junk that passes off as Christianity and I’m not sure why. Have we become theologically lazy? Maybe we’re just mixing things that don’t really belong together. Small Christianity is certainly not inspirational. It’s not really Good News. It’s not even nice news. It’s usually pretty crappy news, just like what the world offers. At the very least, it’s just something that gives a person a quick high and then lets them down just as fast.

The vocal fits that have been thrown about canceling some debt for people (most of whom still owe more than they initially borrowed and have been paying for years — you might want to look up predatory lending practices), is a great example. Scripture is literally loaded with references to God being about canceling debts. Don’t take my word for it. But you’d think that cancelling debt is somehow satanic. Makes me wonder what we really believe in — God’s message about cancelling debts, or capitalism? What is our faith rooted in after all? Where do we put our trust in — Our money declares “In God we Trust,” but our shouting declares something different.

Spinning what Jesus said so that it’s not what Jesus said is a common thing these days. “Welcome the Stranger” is something Jesus said. It’s throughout the Old Testament too. You can look it up. Yet, I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people spin it away while still claiming to follow Jesus. Interesting. But not really. Why claim to follow Jesus if we aren’t going to actually follow what he told followers to do? I don’t understand that. Maybe someone can explain that to me. But then again, I’m making a bad assumption — I’ve been assuming that the junk that passes for Christianity has some kind of consistent logic to it. It doesn’t.

I’m also making another bad assumption — that we all agree what Christianity actually is. We don’t. And that’s very clear. We don’t even agree on who Jesus is or what it means to follow him. That’s also very clear. Maybe we need to just start with some basics and strip all the assumptions we have about Christianity away.

We love the idea of setting people free, until we try to put it in actual practice. Then all bets are off. See, we like the idea, but we don’t actually want to do it. That might be because we don’t agree on what it…

Pastor Matthew Best

My name is Matthew Best. I’m an ELCA (Lutheran) pastor who attempts to translate church and churchy stuff into everyday language.