Is Christianity a "lazy" religion?

I admit I know practically nothing about Islam, but I am constantly impressed by what appears to be the duties of believers–prayer multiple times a day, pilgrimages like the Haj, and so forth. Likewise Judaism has dietary restrictions that must be strictly adhered too.

Obviously Christianity has many broad sects, and Catholicism certainly place requirements on its followers; but by and large Christianity (or at least the Protestant version I was raised in) strikes me as a religion that does not require much daily sacrifice. There are no daily “call to prayers,” there are generally no diet restrictions, and no mandatory pilgrimages I can recall.

Lazy is probably a poor word choice, but I’ll use it anyway. Do you think Christianity is a lazy religion compared to Judaism and Islam? (Or other religions, for that matter–I can’t say I know much more about Hindiusm, Bhuddism, etc, either). If so, the debate here is why? An earlier calculation on the part of Church fathers to make the faith more popular? Simply a very different world view–eg, Jesus made all of these sacrifices for us, and God no longer requires such structured worship? Something else?

No disrepect intended towards anyone’s religion. It just seems to me that Christianity doesn’t require much in the way of personal time, while a religion like Islam does. Then again, there is Mormonism, which seems to require a great deal of personal sacrifice, such as going on a required mission. I’d just be curious to hear opinions.



Actually, Christianity requires you to love everyone around you as yourself. Defend the weak and the weary, stand up for what is right. It requires a person to have the inner strength to make a fool of themselves and be struck down over and over.

On the whole, Christianity is easily as demanding as being Batman. Now, as to Christians. . . :wink:

The way I understand it, Garden-variety Protestant Non-denomination Christianity focuses more on belief and intention than action. I don’t know if I’d describe it as lazy. Let’s see if I can try to sum up the distinction:

If I emphasize the importance of beliefs and intentions, a person who buys into these beliefs will naturally live their lives by their beliefs.

If I emphasize the importance of action, a person who says 5 hail Mary’s and a Praise Jesus everyday could still be thinking that some persons face would be delicious with just a touch of oregano. I think that this variety of religion lends itself towards the extremists that create so many problems for the rest of the world. I.e., Islamic Jihad’s.

**Disclaimer: I am not religious myself, nor an expert in world religions. These are just my interpretations of the world I see and I welcome the opportunity to be shown wrong. **

We are however too lazy to bother checking who is logged into our computer. XJETGIRLX’s post was actually mine.



in christianity, all that is “required” is loving Jesus and accepting him as god. all that other stuff doesnt really matter. Although it is fun to yell “you’re going to hell!” at people who don’t seem to love jesus.

Seriously though… yes, it is an easly religion (a more accurate term than ‘lazy’) that doesn’t require much, if anything substantive at all, from its believers. That’s why it’s so popular.

One other thing to note is that in nations that are primarily christian, there is much more to do on a daily basis (work, sit in traffic, go shopping, etc.), thus religion becomes less important in daily life because the population is occupied. When it becomes less important, it necessarily becomes more liberalized and requires less from its followers (they don’t have time to pray 12 hours a day). So, the religion either damns everyone to hell, thereby losing followers and money, or gets rid of strict requirements.

That’s not true. Evangelical Christianity teaches that turning one’s life over to Jesus is the only thing that’s truly required for salvation. In other words, salvation is not to be attained by one’s own righteousness, because human righteousness can never suffice (Isaiah 64:6, James 2:10).

This is not the same as merely accepting Jesus as God, and it certainly doesn’t mean that “all that other stuff doesn’t really matter.” Obedience to God’s commands is necessary for the development of one’s character, and one’s relationship with God.

Actually, Kalt, in addition to loving Jesus and accepting Him as the Messiah, the son of God, ect., you also have to leave aside the wealth of the world for your beliefs, and always strive to love others. With that love comes a duty to help, protect, share knowledge and support.

As I said before, let’s not confuse lazy religious practitioners with lazy religion.

While most Christians focus on the act of going to church as the central act of our religion, I believe that it requires much more of us. When you leave church you are expected to help others and care for others. You’re supposed to do this unceasingly, all day, every day. You’re supposed to help others and love others with all of your strength and willpower.

Christianity is a marathon of personal relationships, and raw, unadulterated love and support of your fellow man.

Ah, Kalt, I think I may be justified in requesting from you a cite on your comments above. You might reread the post Copaesthetic made (as his wife XJETGIRLX) above before doing so.

I don’t know for sure but I took Kalts comments to be tongue in cheek. At least I hope that’s the way it was meant.

I’m not insulted, even if Kalt was serious. It’s a common misconception of Christianity. Actually, in my above post, where I said ‘laying aside the wealth of the world’, I meant whatever you have to lay aside for your faith. My quote was a paraphrase of the parable of the Rich Man. It means, IMO, that you have to give up what get’s in your way, and that can be everything.

It can be an emotional trauma, it can be wealth, it can be a great opportunity. In your unceasing effort to love your fellow man, you reaffirm your love of God.

A faith in Christ is a necessity, but that faith is evident by following His way. How can a person say they believe in the divinity of Christ, and ignore His teachings?

They’d be lying to themselves.

As I said, I’m not rebutting Kalt, since lots of people have that conception of Christianity. Some people may actually get by like that, but I think you have to do what you can. For some it may be everything they can do to keep themselves in the green, but for many there is more that you can do.

I’ve also written before on ‘callings’, the idea that Jesus didn’t want all of us to run homeless shelters.

Some may be called to be doctors, lawyers, mothers, soldiers(IMO), ministers, ect. That means you may not feed the homeless with your hands, but perhaps by spreading some of that doctor dough? We are also called to be the best we can be at our profession, and to do by example. It’s a substantial committment.

It might not mean you’re Mother Teresa, it might mean you’re not going to use heroin today. But it is still a committment.

I’ve been trying really hard OK?

That’s good, Skank, should I call you Skank? It seems insulting, but I’m just abbreviating.

Now, for a lesson in Christ-speak:

I know you’re trying, Skank. I love you, and wish you well in the future. :slight_smile: (Smile, it makes people happy.)

There, a first lesson in Christianity! Remember, don’t just say you love people, really love them. Feel the love going out to Skank? It’s real love. I love you skank!

It actually does take some work to learn to love people, but you can do it. You’ve got to feel the love. Connect with your fellow man and woman.

Alright, I’m getting too touchy feely. You get the point. :wink:

Copaesthetic, skank is fine, and thanks for the love.


Many religions do take a lot of intensive discipline and work. There are many types of yogas and meditations that require hours each of day of intense practice in order to achieve higher states of consciousness.

Christianity does not. Mainstream Christianity is blissfully unaware of any other states of consciousness aside from awake, asleep, and maybe drunk. Once allegiance to Jesus is achieved, one is merely advised to live in a moral way. No further introspection or self-discovery is required for entry to heaven. Inertia takes it’s toll.

Gnostic Christians are an exception. They seek to achieve the same union with God that Jesus did through meditation, love, devotion and spiritual practices.

Hi everyone: thank you. Your comments have clarified my own thinking quite a bit. I knew lazy was poor term to use and that I was likely shortchanging Christianity. Copaesthetic, your remarks were particularly helpful re: confusing lazy practioners with lazy religions.

I’d like to explore the notion Kalt raised of Christianity as an “easy” religion, because this might be more what I had in mind in terms of my fascination with the physical daily requirements Muslims seem to adhere to. I’m not very religious myself, but I wonder if Christianity might have more appeal to me if it required daily physical rituals–a sort of ordering process, I suppose.

Part of me simply feels that due to the strict and regular show of obedience towards God, Islam’s adherents have a stronger faith than Christians–but that of course is relying entirely on appearances; I have no way of knowing the heart of the worshipper and it’s just as possible a Muslim could be “going through the motions” of praying 5 times a day and the whole thing just becomes a tedious daily grind with no religious significance at all.

Thank you all again,


montag01, easy is a relative term. Islam is a works based religion. In other words you HAVE to pray at certain times, you HAVE to make so many pilgrimages in your life, you HAVE to do these things in order to reach salvation or enlightenment or whatever it is you seek. Catholics at least were the same way (I’ve heard it’s changed now but I have no first hand knowledge of that) in that you had to perform certain rituals in order to be in good standing and that you could work your way into heaven. Christianity, the Protestant version believes that salvation comes from trusting that Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, the shedding of his blood is the payment for our sins. That only God himself, in the form of Jesus could have paid the price. Jesus was the sacrificial lamb. Because we are sinners the penalty is death and eternal separation from God. Only a sinless being could have paid the price of atonement for us because otherwise he would have been guilty as well and deserving of death. I think you’d have to have a bit of knowledge of Judaism to put this all together. Jews of the old testament looked foward to the Messiah. They performed animal sacrifices to atone for their sins. God has always required a blood sacrifice mind you.

I’ve got to take my kid to work now and get some coffee. I’ll be back if no one else has expanded on this for you by then.

While we hold up yogis and whatnot as excellent examples of religous devotion, what about preists, nuns and monks? Last I knew they were required to give up all worldly pleasure and that certainly doesn’t seem easy to me.

Among other things, the Protestant Reformation did away with a lot of the ritual of Christianity, without significantly changing the beliefs. If you’re a good person, for example, surely God knows it whether or not you count off prayers on Rosary beads, light candles, go to Confession, etc.

Though to be fair, older rituals just get replaced with others, like Christmas trees and Easter eggs and whatnot.

You can say Prostestantism demands little from its followers by way of ritual, but it’s unfair to ascribe that to “Christianity” in general.

Personally, I like being Jewish. It’s very relaxed when people aren’t trying to kill you.

IIn my old church, rituals were discouraged because the motions of the ritual could often overshadow the meanings of them. In a way, they could be considered a false idol.

Any religion which imposes the restrictions of:

  1. No premarital sex.

  2. No porn.

  3. No masturbation.

… among others on its followers in our society sure as hell isn’t easy. :wink: