Pope Francis hails from the Christian left. That is, if you can you can call such a set of beliefs “Christian.” This goes beyond the split between Rome and the Eastern Orthodox Church. It even goes beyond the split between Rome and historic Protestantism. If all Christians should at least be able to sit down and recite the Apostles Creed with a clear understanding and agreement of what it means, it is doubtful Francis would be there.
This is a man who has stated that it is “harmful and dangerous” for Christians to actually believe in a “personal relationship with Jesus Christ.”
Christianity distinguishes itself from other faiths in that it is based on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, something made possible by His blood atonement for the sins of believers and their acceptance of that forgiveness and relationship by faith. By denying this belief, Francis has struck at the heart of the Christian Faith. This is no less than utter blaspheme.
He has recently gotten into trouble with the following crackpot remark:
Pope Francis has delivered another criticism of some members of his own church, suggesting it was better to be an atheist than one of many Catholics who he said lead a hypocritical double life.
All Christians live in a fallen world. Some engage in more egregious offenses than others. Some engage in offenses so serious that one can rightly doubt that they truly are regenerate and members of the Body of Christ. Part of the mission of the local church is to demonstrate those who have strayed and restore them to fellowship!
As the late Billy Graham said, the Christian faith is a continuous process of becoming more like Christ. While one becomes a Christian at a point in time, Christian maturity is a life-long process.
But Francis gets this wrong as well. The point is that the Church is to call sinners to repent and trust Christ. Part of the Christian life includes attending a church to hear truth, be nurtured by other believers, and grow in the faith, as sinful desires fade while a desire to mirror the likeness of Christ grows. Francis seems to want to write some people off and damn them to Hell by suggesting they would be better off being atheists. Such teaching is utterly foreign to the Scriptures. Fortunately, Francis has no such spiritual power to send anyone to Hell, various teachings to the contrary notwithstanding.
Having struck at the heart of the Christian Faith, Francis then moves on to promote a globalist and environmentalist extremist view. He has called for a “new global political authority” to “save humanity.” The Pope might as well be Al Gore if that is what he believes the Church’s mission to be. After all, Al had some theological training when at the university. Christians are to be good stewards of all God has given us, including the Earth. But Francis has gone way beyond that. He would be better suited to be the leader of Greenpeace than of a segment of the Body of Christ.
It is tragic that the College of Cardinals elected this man as the head of the Roman Church. He is a pox on the congregation of the faithful.