With some decades under my belt, I am astounded at the evolution, or in my view, the devolution of Christianity in the U.S. Having been raised Catholic and then converting to Fundamentalist Protestant Christianity during my mid teens, I have been fortunate to view Christianity from both sides of the Christian coin. By my early twenties I had abandoned both movements but then re-enaged with the Catholic tradition for a dozen years or so during midlife. Today I am attached to neither movement but Christian scripture shaped my life. I still believe in the basic principles of individual behavior as put forth in New Testament teachings. Sadly, Christianity seems to have abandoned these principles.
Christianity has become intolerant, judgemental, unaccepting of outsiders, steeped in prosperity gospel nonsense, hateful, and warrior minded. All of this in direct contravention of New Testament thought. We are human, certainly, and will never reach perfection. But the role of Christianity is to hold forth the ideals of Jesus, St. Paul, and the various writers of the New Testament. The teachings of: love, respect, accommodation, the rejection of materialistic values, the rejection of violence; while likely unattainable in this life, are values which Christianity should put forth, and we should never tire in our struggle to achieve these ideals. Yes, we will fall short of these ideals, but they are the ideals we should strive towards–always.
But increasingly we move in the opposite direction. The problems in this Nation are fixable, but they will only be fixed when we adhere to the plain language of New Testament principles untainted by clever theological arguments. This is not to imply that people need to be religious, subscribe to religious mythology, or perceive God in some institutionally sanctioned manner; it only implies that the principles set forth in the New Testament, particularly the Gospels, are the principles which can save us from our baser selves. There is no intent here to exclude other religions from this discussion, the major religions share many foundational tenets, and to the extent adherents to these other Faiths have also strayed from these foundations of thought, the world would be better served if they also returned these principles.
Much of what passes as Christianity these days is anti-Christ in Christian clothing. Only the Christ spirit will overcome our anti-Christ behaviors, however that Christ spirit is named within the various religious and humanitarian traditions.