One Church is not as Good as Another
By: Wilfred G. Hurley +Imprimatur 1934
Nineteen hundred years ago with eyes stern, with words incisive and uncompromising, Jesus warned men of the evils to come. But there was to be one evil men should fear above all others. It was the one evil Christ would warn them against, time and time again. Satan? Yes! But Satan disguised as an angel of light!
It is here! It is the evil Christianity faces today! And the name of this evil is indifferentism! What is indifferentism? It is the thought that has come to you, time and time again. A thought you hear spoken of on every side. It is in the very atmosphere you breathe. What is this? That it doesn't make any difference to God what you may believe. That God doesn't care what you believe as long as you live a good life. That God doesn't care to what church you may belong, as long as you live up to the teaching of that of the church. In brief, indifferentism is simply this:"One church is as good as another."
This subtle attack on Christianity has been slowly developing during the last fifty years, coming along hand in hand with the material progress of the times. With the coming of the automobile, improved highways, the telephone, telegraph and radio, and the other various improvements to make life more livable and happy, men have been thrown more and more into contact with each other. So that today, in this nation of ours, we are really just one large family.
But the real vantage point for indifferentism came in 1917, with the World War. When men were taken from their homes, in the East, West, North, and South. Forced to live together in the closest possible contact in army camps, on the battle field, on battleships, in peril and danger, in privation and suffering. And men began to realize that no matter what belief a man might hold, he was apt to be a splendid fellow after all. And the result was, that although they might hold contradictory creeds and doctrines, a wonderful feeling of friendship, fellowship, and tolerance sprung up among men. And it was, unfortunately, in this garb of friendship and tolerance and good fellowship, that the evil of indifferentism disguised itself. Spreading far and wide until today it is an evil widespread as Christianity itself. Threatening Christianity's very existence. An evil all the more terrifying in its destruction, because while it appears lovely and beautiful on the surface, at the same time it is destroying men's souls. Does this seem far-fetched? STop and think for a minute!
If one church is as good as another, then, religion is only a matter of sentiment and good taste. There is no real truth in it. And a man is as free to follow his inclination in choosing his church, as he might be in choosing a club or a lodge. When you are indifferent to anything it doesn't require much opposition for you to give up that thing completely. Religion is no exception. You know that! And thus it requires only a little obstacle for you to drop church entirely. If you hold one church as good as another, you are not far from the belief that there is not much good in any church. And you are quite right. For, if religion is only an opinion, then it can easily be wrong, as any opinion can be wrong. Hence, there is no certainty. Everything ends in doubt and darkness. The mysteries of faith are denied. And this state of mind prepares you, sooner or later, for the complete denial of Christianity. A rejection of God's Revelation. And perhaps, even a rejection of God himself! "By their fruits you shall know them!" So said Christ Himself. It is the Acid Test! Apply it to indifferentism! What are its fruits?
FRUITS OF INDIFFERENCE
Fifty years ago, you had met a man on the street and asked him: "To what church do you belong?" he would have promptly answered you. Mentioning such and such a church. The United States was, practically speaking, a hundred per cent Christian nation. Today ask a man on the street to what church he belongs. He will be amazed and amused at your question. Seven out of ten will answer you with a pitying smile, that they belong to none. Do you know what the last census revealed the appalling fact, that the American people are now practically 70% Churchless? Think what this means! Seven out of every ten men and women in our country have put themselves down, in black and white, that God, and the worship of God, means nothing to them whatsoever.
To sum up! The last generation were, for the most part, are baptized, but are not church members. And the signs of the times seem to point out that the next generation, at least outside of the Catholic Church, will be neither church members nor baptized. That is the fruit of indifferentism in a short fifty years. Is it, or is it not, an evil? But while indifferentism comes to us disguised as an angel of light, like all disguises, it can be easily torn off. And you can see evil as it really is. Simply take your God-given gifts of intelligence, reason, and comMon sense and use them.
GOD IS TRUTH
"I am the way, and the truth, and the life," said Jesus. God is truth! But a God of infinite and absolute truth! He loves truth. And He hates and despises untruth, falsehood, and deceit. And you are the living child of the Living God! Hence, God wants you to love the truth! And hate untruth, falsehood, and deceit! If you believe in God at all, you must believe this!
Now indifferentism says that it makes no difference to God whether you believe in one thing or the other. Whether you belong to this church or another. Whether you believe one set of doctrines, or some opposing doctrines, or whether you believe anything at all. It is a terrifying statement! IT simply means that God is not
a God of truth. But a God of falsehood and untruth. That He is the Father of lies, You do away with God! Why is this?
Because, even though you know nothing at all about the teachings of the various Christian bodies in existence today, you know they are not only teaching different doctrines but they absolutely contradict each other in essential beliefs. Here is one church teaching baptism is absolutely necessary to salvation. But here is another church denying this, and saying that baptism is not necessary. Here is one church that teaches men are doomed either to eternal happiness or eternal misery. But here is another church teaching that all men will be saved. HEre is one church that is teaching Christ is really present in the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper. But here is another church which says He is not present, never was, never will be. And the contrary teaching is idolatry.....TO PURCHASE AND FINISH READING THIS SMALL PAMPHLET PLEASE VISIT ALL THE SAINTS BOOKS