(Narcissism is obsession with one’s own image, excluding all other persons (and even oneself) as possible objects of genuine love. This is a new comment from the “I wanted to be a Christian” article.)
Any religious obsession with a righteousness as imposed on others (morality issues) as opposed to a personal repentance and works is essentially a narcissistic religion. It all happens in the eye of the beholder instead of the heart of the believer. This is the problem in the US church today, what with the highly public religion so many are tempted to pursue to the exclusion of a personal (and anonymous, as Jesus taught) walk in goodness.
Our media-based culture is all about narcissism (television, movies, the rest) – that’s a no-brainer. What a tragedy that the US church is going headlong into the narcissistic folly, what with all the media circuses. What is being lost is the personal walk in Christ.
This is not to discredit a civic life which reflects one’s values. It is to protest that the public and the private have become conflated in the mind of the larger US church. Believers are encouraged to perform, as it were, into the mirror of the media. And that is contrary to what Jesus taught about works of righteousness.
The other line I draw, which is my personal interpretation of events, is that we are, as Larry maintains, in a unique time. My take on it is that an evil government system is stepping up to the plate, and that we were given the prophecies for a reason – to understand things. We need to be paying attention, so that when the evil is wreaked upon our country, we are not confused as to why it is happening. Which leads us into the grotesque tragedy of the pre-trib rapture fantasy… another story…