Why I left The Faith: I was a Christian

Part 1    (Part 2 here)

I was a Christian.  For some of you, my statement is enough for you to believe me and I could stop writing my intro right here.  To you, I say THANK YOU.  You’re awesome.  But for the rest of you who will want to cast doubt on that statement due to the fact that I have left the faith, I urge you to keep reading.

I was a Christian.  I don’t just mean I went to church on holidays and said grace before meals.  I was a diehard, devoted, born-again, Jesus-loving, awe-struck, Bible-believing, all-American, devil-rebuking, 6000-year-old-earth-believing, on-fire-for-God, relationship-not-religion evangelical Christian.  Pentecostalism was the flavor I was raised with.  Yes, I am certain that for many, that makes me a Not-True-Christian, but let me tell you, Pentecostals can “Not-True-Christian” with the best of them.  As far as we were concerned, all y’all other Christians were fake.  Even the Baptists.  Especially the Baptists.  We had a particular dislike for that “once-saved-always-saved” bullshit.  We sure wouldn’t want anyone to get too comfortable that they were safe from hell in our religion!  Can I get an amen?

But lest you dismiss me because I spoke in tongues a few times, let me point out that I didn’t stay Pentecostal.  I chose to go to a non-denominational church in my teen years and dropped a little bit of the weirder Charismatic stuff (although some of it definitely stuck around).  I was less into tongues-speaking and immersion baptism, and willing to accept a wider range of Christians might have a handle on the truth.  Even if my doctrine may not have been 100% pure at all times, according to your metric, no one could deny that I was a Christian.  The evidence and fruits of my faith were numerous.  I read my Bible front to back multiple times, and the New Testament so many times I lost count.  Every single evening I would read scripture and meditate and pray.  I sought god’s will on all of the important (and sometimes non-important) decisions in my life.  I felt the supernatural presence of god.  I trusted in his guidance and I listened for his leading.  I had powerful experiences that other Christians  confirmed were revelations from the Holy Spirit.  My faith was not shallow, nor was it based solely on the demands of others.  By almost any standards, I was considered a Christian with a genuine Walk With God.

I preface my explanation of my deconversion this way because I am tired of self-righteous Christians trying to explain to me “you must never have really known Jesus” or “you were never really a Christian.”  If you had told that to anyone who knew me during my earlier years, they would have tried to rebuke the devil of lying out of you.  They would have laughed.  YOU would have laughed.  If I was an imposter, I was a damn impressive one, so much so that I apparently deceived my family, my pastors, my community, and myself.  NO ONE thought I was a fake.

Now, at this moment, you might still be trying to rationalize where my faith was flawed.  “Too legalistic,” you might say.  Or maybe “not legalistic enough”.  Or maybe you might even imply that demons can masquerade as God and thus I had fallen for Satan, not Jesus (although if they look so alike, I’m uneasy about worshiping either.)  But take an honest look at the way that you judge Christians within your own denomination and church.  If someone in your church appears to have a real relationship with god, people say they see god working in their lives, they pray, read their bible, believe all the right things, they inspire others, would you ever consider telling them to their faces “you probably aren’t really a Christian”?  Or is this absurd “real Christian” standard something you only apply to apostates?  I bet it’s the latter.

So then take me at my word for the sake of this discussion: I was a Christian.  I loved god and I believed in Jesus to save me from my sins.  And now I don’t.  I’m not even convinced that God is real.  I’m going to briefly explain how that happened.

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25 responses

  1. I hope to read the reasons why you left the faith. Personally, I just left the church system (in your own word) “bullshit”. The systems are pretty well “use em and abuse em”, and if that’s “Christian”, then I agree with you – it is absolutely false.
    Grace and peace.

    1. Thank you for your comment. I hope to share my story further in the next week or so. To be clear, I’m anything but an atheist evangelist and, if you still find worth in your faith and believe it, I have no desire to change your mind. But I will gladly share my own journey, because it is mine. 🙂 All the best, and see you in the next installment, I hope!

    2. Several new parts are up now, if you’re interested. 🙂

  2. Hey, Galactic! Nice to see you here. I can’t wait for the next installment.

    1. Thank you! I’ll try to post it in a timely manner. Good to see you, as always.

  3. As long as they are sure that nothing could possibly shake THEIR faith, you could not have been as real a Christian as they are. Because if you were as strong in faith as them then Satan is more powerful than they previously thought. The fact that you know a case even has to made for yourself in this matter tells me you were for real. I was for real, too. And I have done my fair share of trying to explain that in my own story 🙂

    1. Yes, I often think that Christians who refuse to accept that I was truly a Christian are really threatened by what I represent: someone who saw it all, who truly understood it, and still decided it wasn’t true. If you are completely invested in believing that Christianity is true, it’s scary to think that someone could sincerely experience it and still find it lacking.

    2. “And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.” – 2 Timothy 2:26

  4. Your story needs to be told. Whether some will listen or not, believe you or not, doesn’t really matter. You are being honest and clear about what you once believed—once upon a time. And now the fairy tales just don’t comfort any longer. I wish you well!

    1. Thank you. I’m tired of others trying to tell my story for me. I want the truth to be out there, so I’m speaking up.

  5. That ending was so abrupt, didn’t see it coming.
    You have laid a proper groundwork for where you are coming from.

    1. 😀 Sorry for the whiplash. I will write more soon!

  6. O hai! I followed you over here from Roll to Disbelieve, where you posted earlier today. Let me just say, if someone self-identifies as “Christian”, that person is Christian. Full stop. And any Christian who wants to claim otherwise should reflect on Matt. 7:1-5 and Matt. 7:21, in that order:

    “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

    “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

    Also, let’s not forget that, when it comes time to declare which religion has the most followers worldwide, all of a sudden, Christians want to count ALL the Christians they can! All that “not a True Christian™” bullshit is instantly forgotten and it’s “Everybody into the pool!” Then, when they’ve crowed about how there are more Christians than any other type of believer (we’ll just ignore China’s Buddhists to make the numbers work), they revert to their sneering about how THEY are the only Christians worthy of the name. Note: We nonChristians watch them do this. We are not impressed O_O

  7. Just look up to God people are judgmental but God sees your heart that”s what really matter how God sees us , what our relationship with him. The world is ruled by the evil one as a christian our faith will be tested . I suffered terrible trials and tribulation because of my faith but I continue to beleive.

    1. Thank you for your encouragement. I no longer believe in god, but I appreciate your sentiment.

      1. I’m so disheartened and in tears of what happen to you. A soul is very precious to our loving creator. Why Jesus, a son of God humble himself and came to the world to die for you and me even if he was blameless in atonement for mankind’s sins . Jesus don’t judge mary magdalene right? That represents God’s unconditional and unfailing love.

      2. If such a god exists, then I will be glad to meet him and ask him my questions after I die.

      3. Wow, are you Job resurrected? hahaha he asked that question too. He question GOd.

  8. Thanks for posting me the link to your blog. I’m fascinated to read your story and look forward to catching up on all the posts.

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