Leaving Christianity

One of the requirements for the journey that I have embarked on was to be absolutely honest regarding “Christianity.” But I had never contemplated that the outcome of this honesty would include leaving the same religion, which was not only hard, it was terrifying.

Many, many people are exiting Christianity and this is still happening on a large-scale today. Perhaps the keepers of religion are able to define someone when one leaves “the faith” and as a former “insider,” the reasons will generally be associated with scriptures from the Bible. But for the Bible to carry any weight, it must be infallible and inerrant, which is a doctrine as fresh as the nineteenth century. This is a period where the Pope was made “infallible” and the “Rapture” theory was established as well. But I agree with one well-known writer who quotes “the Bible is covered with human fingerprints.” 

With nowhere to go, people exiting religion throw up their hands and simply just go the way of the world or the “next” religion. Many who have exited the faith are judged as “lost.” A judgement is made. The insider becomes an outsider and what was once a relationship of committed love can become, of this same person, a rejection. The insider continues to focus on the insiders because of the perceived idea that the world is evil and one must not be associated with it nor those who have left Christianity. Why so much fear?

But I have discovered that many who have left religion have a deep abiding faith; a faith that you would never know was there unless you dug a little deeper. I have had several discussions with sworn atheists only to find they have no problem with the simple message of Jesus. In fact, I have a sense that most people don’t really have a problem with Jesus at all. What went wrong with Christianity?

How do we escape religion to find rest from the never-ending debates about doctrine, systems of belief and “truth”? Does one become an Agnostic or become an Atheist? Who is there outside of religion that can help when one cannot accept religion one moment longer for a multitude of reasons?

“Christianity” has created its own stalemate because of the endless debates, a debate that is taking it nowhere fast.

To leave “Christianity” was extremely hard and I had to unwind layers and layers of fear, sometime disturbing my sleep. Some times, I wasn’t sure I had the courage for the next step. My greatest release from fear was to stop fearing God. When anyone fears, including fearing God, some human has a hook that person.

St Augustine said this “Love God and do as you please.” Think about that. Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commands.” You can read this two ways with an emphasis on love or commands. People will do amazing things when someone loves. If God is loving and gracious, why would he want anyone to follow him out of fear rather than love? What sort of relationship is that? Is that the kind of relationship we desire with our children? Fear?

For me, the road in my quest for faith has broadened dramatically. I no longer follow God through fear and daily I continue to resist any fear of man. Christianity has no claim on me because I am no longer a Christian. In fact, I have, and will continue to resist all man-made religions. I realise there is no such thing as certainty or satisfaction which once again leaves only faith. Rather than endlessly try to define God, making him a kind of vending machine, I have let Him “go” and I will have to trust in the God I see through Jesus, letting the indescribable be the mystery He is.

For me, I am free to pursue a brand new faith. I will continue in this most simple faith, based on love, that doesn’t need more and more padding to support it. As Saint Paul said “love does no harm to a neighbour therefore love is the fulfilment of the law.” I am free to pursue the message of Jesus in all its simplicity without religion experts demanding I obey a Christian perspective for I am not a Christian. I still strongly believe we are in a great transformation and this may be a reformation. But one may need to leave Christianity to see it, even if one maintains going to Church. Would you be willing to leave “Christianity” if God is calling for something new? 

What then is the point to following Jesus? Not creating another religion! As I see it, the only hope is transformed lives and a transformed world through love. Welcome to the impossible. Welcome to the Dream (kingdom) of God.



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13 Responses to Leaving Christianity

  1. I can understand your desire to leave “religion.”

    Religious habits/rites/dictates really don’t impart much in the way of having a sincere relationship with God. The formal “church” has probably alienated as may people as it has “brought to the fold.” I think the only thing God really ever wanted was for us to have a genuine relationship with Him and love of Him, which in doing so would lead us to truly love one another.

    I look forward to reading more.


  2. claire says:

    Interesting post. I think in part it can come down to our definition of words. For me I’ve coined “religion” as the thing you feel a need to be free of and true “Christianity” as the things I think you are saying you want to embrace. (The word use is different but I think the meaning is similar).
    I came to Jesus outside church and have never felt at home in organized religion. It’s my joy to pray and study the Word every day, have experienced “living by faith” while traveling the world and partaken of so many miracles, but I seldom if ever go to church and when I do i usually have to get out fast before I say something that will cause a ruckus.
    I believe “Christianity” is a way of life, it’s living in the supernatural, partaking of the power of God and if you live it you automatically win converts even in atheistic climes, folks see a difference and want it, all one has to do is explain when they ask. True Christianity is very radical and I think few folks (Christian or not) have actually tried it.
    Thanks for your follow, I’ll do likewise and see how your venture proceeds.


  3. pastorpete51 says:

    Though this is a painfully true and bittersweet commentary I just wish to add some thoughts in response. Be sure that you are choosing to longer be called a Christian for the right reasons. If it is because you have reconsidered the claims of Christ and decided to reject them then that is a free choice. If on the other hand, your saying, “I am no longer a Christian.” Is simply to put at arms length we- your often failing ever quibbling and sometimes, simply embarrassing brothers and sisters in the faith, then pause for a moment on the threshold. Consider that by God’s mercy He does love us, has called us to remain a family and is not ashamed to call us brothers… God bless you

    Liked by 2 people

  4. MikeDR says:

    Question, why do you leave religion to pursue another one? Is it because you have blind faith in God/Jesus but dislike the way Christianity goes about it?

    I just don’t believe in any of it until there’s evidence (not fake evidence) because might as well believe in Big Foot eh. It’s an admirable path to choose, even if you follow only Jesus but leave out the God part because he had many good teachings, granted these similar teachings have existed before him and after by many people and nowadays you can find better more refined moral teachings from philosophers that fit our age better.

    Yours Truly,



    • Thanks for your comments and being part of the love first conversation. Like your question, and one we must ask ourselves.
      Meanwhile we will continue on this experiment of the ‘impossible’ [nothing else seems to be working!] – is love able to transcend all our divisions and hate to make a better world?


  5. That was lovely, well said. I think Christ Himself spoke about follow me, even leaving behind your own family, letting the dead bury the dead, if necessary. Church is a bit like family and Christianity is the body of Christ, but even that must be left behind sometimes if one is to truly follow their faith.


    • Thanks for your comments and being part of the the love first conversation, it is a conversation we have to have with out being shut down or shut out.
      Appreciated your blog about Atheism; your ‘first hand’ experience and thoughts.


  6. John says:

    I left religion several months ago to follow Jesus and have experienced that freedom that he and the apostles talk about. I tried expressing this same freedom as gently as possible to those still inside. A few responded but were afraid. Others outright rejected it. Ultimately following Jesus I’ve been more effective outside in reaching others than I ever was inside.


  7. Reblogged this on The Minstrel's Wife and commented:
    A picture thought of my previous blog. Says it all really.


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