The whole they're not 'real Christians' argument always gets me. It seems like every time someone uses Christian dogma to do something pretty reprehensible, instead of calling them out on it, a good chunk of the Christian culture dismisses it under the banner of 'not a real Christian'.
The 'real Christian' argument just seems to be a way of denying any responsibility for dogma based decisions. If we use the same sort of logic for other things, we could say that 98% of all Catholic women are not 'real' Catholics because they've used contraception. Soph seeded an article yesterday about an AIDS patient who was refused medication because the patient went against God's will:
A Catholic hospital in New Jersey is accused of denying a gay and HIV-positive man his HIV medications, as one doctor on staff reportedly stated, “for going against God’s will.”
I would assume that a majority of Christians would think that denying an AIDS patient lifesaving medicine is abominable, but the point is that it's still a Christian hospital and that decision was made (however wrongly) by using the Christian dogma.
The anti-same-sex marriage movement is predominantly a Christian one. However, there are plenty of Christians who support same-sex marriage and there are even thousands of Christian churches that say they're 'gay affirming'.
Guess what? Both sides of the debate use Christian dogma (scripture) to back their particular stand. Both sides are comprised of Christians. People who belong to the pro-gay camp and those who belong to the anti-gay camp are real Christians.
Another example are creationists. Some people take the Genesis account of creation literally, while others think it's a metaphor. Some creationists want to teach their creation dogma in the classroom while other Christians don't. Both sides are Christians and both (again) are using their scriptures to back their side of the argument. Here's an example of a Christian that is vehemently opposed to creationism in the classroom:
I have spent much of my life fighting Creationism, and I know that there are many reasons -- legal and otherwise -- as to why it should not be taught on the public tab. But what was brought home to me vividly this last week is that the greatest crime is blocking our children from seeing what a wonderful world in which we humans live and how (for those of us who are religious) God's greatest gift was giving us the abilities to discover this world, however strange and terrifying it may seem at times. Remember the parable of the talents. Don't hide them in the ground. Use them that they may multiply and that their fruits may be enjoyed.
If you profess belief in Jesus as Christ or follow the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus, you're a Christian. If you use the Bible to justify your world view, you're a Christian.
When Pastor Worley said that Gays and Lesbians should be stuck behind electrified fences to die, he held up the Bible to justify his claim. Some people in the congregation punctuated his sermon with delighted 'Amen's'.
All real Christians.
There was even a NV comment yesterday that basically said that people who criticize radical Christians should call them 'pseudo-Christians' because they behave 'NOTHING like a real Christian would, nor are they in fact Christians at all, no matter what it says on their letterhead'.
Well yeah, they are Christians. They might not be acting Christian in the manner you wish them to act but they're still Christians for the reasons I've outlined above. Hell, a Christian could make the case that people who blaspheme God, work on the Sabbath, talk back to their parents and commit adultery should be put to death according to the Ten Commandments - you know, those Ten Commandments that some Christians want to erect on court house lawns.
In fact, in the link above, you can find a bunch of Christians talking about the Ten Commandments. Here's some of the highlights:
-'I've just printed that off as a handy reference to keep in my Purse. Who needs Secular Laws when it's all so simple?'
-'As to the severity, all of the punishments are from scripture so they are completely Biblically founded and thus what God says on the issue.'
-'What you can observe and what the Almighty can observe are just a little different, no? Besides, even if the animals themselves don't follow any gods, it's well known that animals can be vectors for demons.'
When one poster pointed out that Commandment one and two called for genocide, the response from another poster was:
-'Well, of course since Jesus told us to obey secular law, we can't yet follow this to the letter. But as soon as we get biblical law in the USA, of course we will apply these to the letter.'
I'm pretty sure there are a crap load of Christians who would disagree with everything said on that thread and thankfully so. However, that doesn't change the fact that they're Christians...horrible human beings...but Christians and many Christians would think they're horrible Christians as well.
Christians: You'd be better served in my opinion, if you stopped using the 'No True Scotsman' fallacy and called out the hateful Christians in your midst.