I use that term a lot, personal Jesus, to describe the relationship aspect of the faith claimed by evangelical feminists. This claim is certainly not limited to women, many men also find comfort in this.
Today reading Greg Laurie’s column on World Net Daily, I found some straight from the horses mouth verbiage that describes the personal Jesus gospel, from which all manner of problems arise. Even if there are aspects of truth in this, the problem is it is so easily corrupted by those who crave empathy above all else.
He says (emphasis mine):
But what does it really mean to be a follower of Jesus Christ? When Jesus said, “Follow Me,” it could be translated, “Follow with Me,” meaning companionship and friendship. Jesus was essentially saying to Matthew, “I want to be your friend, your companion. I want to be someone you can open your heart to, someone you can reveal your secrets to.”
Do you know God in that way – as a friend? A lot of people think that God is out to ruin their lives, to rain on their parade, to not let them have any fun, to just be mean. They think the Bible is a book filled with a bunch of rules and regulations to make their lives miserable. But nothing could be further from the truth.
God said, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you … thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV). God’s plans for you are better than any plans you have ever envisioned for yourself.
That was exactly the situation with Matthew. Jesus was saying to him, “Follow with me. Let me be your friend. Let me be your companion.”
From Jesus, the friend and the companion, has followed a Jesus who is willing to take her side into account, who will discuss things and find common accord, who is OK with reactions to His admonitions that begin with “Yes, but you don’t understand…….”
I fully understand what well intended pastors like this are attempting to say, and to do. However, as evidence of the unintended consequences see:
and pretty much anything else written on Dalrock’s site and in the comments there.
Christian Men’s Defense Network, both are linked in my blogroll
Read these sites front to back, with an open mind. If you are a man and have seen signs that your wife has taken on a personal Jesus, who she seems to align against you in all things relational, read and find succor. If you are a woman, read them and learn the harm that has fallen as a result of the new feel good personal Jesus.
ETA: Its no surprise to see that article. It is the frame from which most sermons are derived. The Jeremiah “plans for hope and a future” combined with Jesus as BFF make great recruitment tools. And, for the folks who still think Christians are fuddy duddies well, he goes and renounces the existence of rules. Who would NOT want to be a part of this? You get no rules, no fun spoilage, and you get the best BFF ever, Jesus Himself, as friend and companion.