Sometimes reality is harsh. The truth often hurts. To soften the abrasive nature of certain truths, we invent euphemisms to avoid thoughts of what is unpleasant to us or to others. Sometimes these euphemisms or politically correct” terms are harmless; at other times they can be misleading and cause us to misdirect our efforts. Here are two examples of politically correct but biblically wrong terminology.
For starters, the word church is a noun, not a verb, so it is incorrect to make it into an adjective. Correct grammar aside, the term leaves much to be desired. Those who use the word unchurched instead of unsaved think they are being kind and polite. They are probably also the sort who like the adage, “You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” That is good advice if you want to catch flies, but it does not apply to evangelism.
The term unchurched may be politically correct because it spares people’s feelings. Yet it conveys a theological fallacy. Merely belonging to a church does not save anyone. Only Jesus saves. It really does not matter that a person belongs to the best church in the world if he or she has not made a life-changing commitment to Jesus as Lord and Savior. Probably many people who use the term unchurched do believe that Jesus is the only way to be saved. They just may feel uncomfortable about talking to others about being saved or lost. The word lost implies a flawed state, and our culture teaches that it is impolite and thus politically incorrect to criticize anyone. Unfortunately, skirting the truth out of politeness can lead to reticence in talking about Jesus at all—and such inaction would severely curtail any kind of evangelism. It is no more impolite to tell a person outside of Christ that commitment to Jesus is the only way to heaven than it is to point out to a blind person that he or she is about to walk in front of a speeding car.
The Judeo-Christian Tradition
This term is intended to bond Christians and Jews in a common effort. The Jewish comunity is content to allow Christians to believe there is such a thing as a Judeo-Christian tradition, because it can be useful in the area of Jewish-Gentile relationships. Nevertheless, in the final analysis, most rabbis would insist there is no such thing as a Judeo-Christian tradition. There is a separate Jewish tradition and a separate Christian tradition. Both are based upon intrinsic beliefs. These beliefs sometimes overlap, but sometimes they are diametrically opposed. Those who would like to pretend that a Judeo-Christian tradition exists generally do not have the slightest idea of what “tradition” means.
The Nature of Truth
Truth is the only virtual reality.
Truth cannot be tamed or domesticated to serve us.
Truth is not a being whose character we can shape or who can be made to behave according to our manners and mores.
Truth is merely what is, what was, or what will be.
Truth in itself is neither pleasant nor unpleasant.
Truth is neither threatening nor affirming, neither encouraging nor discouraging.
We perceive truth through the filters of our own self-interest.
Our own perception of truth is what makes it unpleasant, threatening or discouraging.