Why the Christian Faith is Fundamentally Uncomfortable

Following Jesus Brings Discomfort

Christianity, at its core, is an uncomfortable faith. C. S. Lewis says that if you’re looking for a religion to make you comfortable, don’t look to Christianity. Some religions may cater to that, but Christianity is a religion based around a cross, so that alone should show you that this is not about making you comfortable. The cross is a brutal execution device and it’s the focal point of Christian faith.

We believe that Jesus died on the cross, and he calls us to follow in that cruciform path and posture as we die to ourselves. That’s where life is. You die to yourself so you can have new life. “Deny yourself,” he says. “Take up your cross and follow me.” These are uncomfortable realities.

The very nature of Christian faith is uncomfortable—especially in today’s world. I think of the exclusivity of Christianity. Jesus says, I am the only way. “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

That is an uncomfortable idea in today’s world where we want to believe that there are multiple paths to God. So this is an inescapable, uncomfortable thing about Christianity.

In today’s world, people have a hard time believing in the supernatural, that someone could rise from the dead, that a God created the world, and that the same God lives within us. These are uncomfortable ideas.

These are a few of the various points of uncomfortable doctrine that cause friction in today’s twenty-first-century, educated, modern world.

Photo of Brett McCracken

Brett McCracken

Brett McCracken is a senior editor for the Gospel Coalition and the author of Hipster Christianity and Gray Matters. He also writes regularly for Christianity Today and his website, BrettMcCracken.com. He lives with his wife in Southern California where he serves as an elder at Southlands Church.

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