Are We Lukewarm Christians?

John FarrellBy John Farrell10 Minutes

On Sunday, February 5, the 65th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony was held in Los Angeles. On hand were some of the music industry’s biggest stars and hottest names. Unfortunately, there was someone else in attendance, someone who shouldn’t have been invited.

And yet when he showed up several times throughout the night, many people, Christians included, stood up and applauded, seeing nothing wrong with him being there. He appeared in several onstage performances, some more conspicuous than others.

And yet … no one seemed to care.

Of course, I’m referring to Satan. He was there strutting his stuff as if to mock God and Christianity. But do you know what the most appalling, shocking part of this was? That no one seemed to care … or at least no one in attendance seemed to care.

Something like this doesn’t go unnoticed, especially in Christian circles. Many churches, pastors, and regular Christians spoke out about the shock and disgust they had for what unfolded during the ceremony. While some preachers spoke about the satanic display from their pulpits, many people took to social media to provide their two cents to the growing commentary.

Churchianity or Christianity?

One pastor from Soulfire Revival Center in Mercedes, Texas, provided a unique observation on the events in a Facebook post on February 7 that, as of this writing, has garnered more than 40K shares, 11K reactions, and 548 comments. Surprisingly, Josh Reyes’ long post wasn’t aimed at non-believers, but instead at Christians, more specifically lukewarm Christians – Christians who watched the Grammys and didn’t see anything wrong.

In his Facebook post, Reyes calls out Christians who make excuses, such as “It’s just a song,” “It’s just a performance,” or “It doesn’t mean anything,” to validate the performances in question. He continues his post:

These are just some of the excuses I’ve heard from lukewarm Christians regarding the celebrities they endorse when they do things like this on national television and call it ‘art.’

Rather than pray for these individuals we cheer them on? Rather than teach our kids to be careful with what they listen to we sing along with them in the car? One of the top songs being played on repeat [on] our radio stations is called ‘Unholy.’ …

The world is going to be the world. The lost will act like the lost. Those who operate in darkness will radiate darkness. I’m not surprised by this. I am surprised that people who claim to love the Lord support this mess. …

Reyes calls Christians who support and see nothing wrong with “this mess” lukewarm Christians. This got me thinking … how many of us are lukewarm Christians? Are we all lukewarm Christians to some extent?

According to, a lukewarm Christian “is someone who claims to be a follower of Jesus but lives as though they are sufficient in themselves and don’t need Him. They might attend church, but they’re content in their own ways and rarely apply what they learn.

“They might attend a worship service, but they treat it like a concert only engaging if the music fits their preference; treating it more like a concert. They might do charitable deeds but only after weighing how it will benefit them.”

In the full version of the interview posted above, Reyes relates being a lukewarm Christian to a battle between Churchianity and Christianity:

We’ve become accustomed really to Churchianity versus Christianity. And so that means I can be at church every Sunday, that means I can serve on the worship team, that means I can dress the part. I’m wearing my suit and tie every single Sunday. I’m smiling; I’m doing all these things right on the outside yet on the inside I’m still struggling with lots of hidden sin.

God’s Response

While we may never know whether the performances onstage during the Grammys were more for shock value and to get people talking about them – which it did, though not for the right reasons – or as an opportunity to mock God and Christianity, God was quick to respond. His speedy response reminded me of Romans 16:20:

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you (NIV).

On Wednesday, February 8, just three days after the Grammys and far away from the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, God showed that He would not be outdone. Although Satan was only in the spotlight for several minutes during the Grammys, God used Asbury University – a small Christian college in Wilmore, Kentucky – to stage a student-led and spirit-fed revival that lasted non-stop for nearly two weeks.

Although the revival is moving off campus, away from Hughes Auditorium, it is expected to continue elsewhere. Additionally, it has sparked a wave of revivals on other college campuses near Wilmore. And it could continue to spread.

5 Tips for Discerning Viewers 

I’m not a perfect person. I would be lying if I said I didn’t have moments where I’m flipping through channels or scrolling through one of several streaming platforms only to be sucked in by a movie or TV show that is a little dark. It’s at those moments where I need to be more discerning in what I’m watching and remember that I need to think more heavily about my choices.

I need to strive to not be that lukewarm Christian that Reyes speaks about in his post, but instead protect myself with God’s armor: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand” (Ephesians 6:12-13, NIV).

Below are five steps we can all use to become more discerning viewers of entertainment, including myself, whether it be music, movies, television, or books, and shed our labels as lukewarm Christians and instead become Christians burning with a spirit-fed faith.

  1. Talk with God daily – begin and end each day by conversing with God whether it be through prayer, journaling, or quick conversations throughout the day. Don’t dominate the conversation, remember to listen for His voice.
  2. Read the Bible – establishing a routine where you intentionally set aside time to soak up God’s Word is one of best ways to grow close to God and learn what it means to be a Christian.
  3. Practice forgiveness – although it is often hard to do, forgiving others and yourself can do wonders for you emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
  4. Help others – helping others is a way of serving God and sharing Christ’s love. Additionally, oftentimes the person who offers the help is just as inspired and affected than those who received the help.
  5. Attend church – it is true that you can connect with God anywhere, but there is no better place to fellowship, praise God, pray, talk with God, and seek counsel from pastors and other Christians than at church.