Leading By Example

Christianity is not a fashion accessory, avoid being a spiritual poser!

Would you respect someone who blindly followed a religion without ever questioning it? Would you believe another religion if someone told you how amazing it was, but were unable to answer tough questions about it? Do you know if you are a genuine believer or a Christian poser?

“Posers” Are People Who Want To Look Cool Without Actually Living The Lifestyle

In high school I used to skate(board) a lot, and, along with my friends we guarded our underground skate culture very carefully

We skated at night, sessioned together, lived and breathed the tricks we chased, and also wore the battle scars of all the banged shins, ripped clothing, and scabs that came with each failed attempt–the visible evidence of our failures were almost as important as the tricks we actually landed because it showed we had the courage and dedication to push ourselves to be better

As part of the culture, we did not compare ourselves to one another, as each person was at their own level (this is a very important point), we just cared that we were all together to skate, have fun, and encourage each other to do new and more advanced things that we knew took courage to try

But one thing that drove us nuts, were the people who showed up at our skate spots, or just hung out in the high school hallways, wearing pristine skate clothes and shoes, carrying boards without a scratch on them, and tried to act like “cool” skaters

These people wore the uniform, and used their skateboards as fashion accessories, but they could not land a trick to save their life, nor did they care, so we called them by the worst name possible: posers

Dun dun dunnn….

How does this relate to Christianity?

I compare skating to Christianity because the process to becoming “good” is very similar

For example, when someone first starts skating, they are undoubtedly going to fall, scrape their shins, and get hurt in places on their body they did not know existed

As people get better, they fall less, but the risk of wiping out is always there no matter what their skill level (another important similarity to Christianity as temptation is never far away!)

In order to excel at skating, one has to overcome any hesitation associated with the fear, and guarantee, of getting physically hurt while trying to learn new things–the worst bails I ever did were when I lost my confidence in the middle of a trick and did something totally stupid like flail around or panic because my fear took over (ironic!)

Christianity is the same, in that as we seek out greatness, we are of course going to wipe out as we grow into new thoughts, lifestyles, and a relationship with God we did not know before–there is no instant, “perfect” Christian recipe, and the process becomes way harder when we get afraid and flail!

In the same way nobody ever stepped on a skateboard and instantly became awesome without some scabs and sharp pains, people do not recite a sinner’s prayer and suddenly become experts on the Bible or live as sinless Christians

Becoming spiritually mature takes work, dedication, and requires a fearless heart in order to expose the darkest sides of our personalities so they may be healed

James 5:16
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed

God Does Not Want Christian “Posers” In His Crew

Christian posers exist all around us whether we like it or not!

They go to the most expensive seminaries, sing the loudest and raise their hands at church, attend all the best guest speaker engagements, listen to Christian pop music, go to Bible studies and may even have positions of leadership in their churches, but these same people go around without a single battle scar, never having dug deep into their faith or relationship with God

These are the types of Christians who “seem” spiritual, live in outwardly pleasing bubbles, but are generally unable to give answers on deep, theological or philosophical questions, let alone hold their own against intelligent atheists who ask questions that normally cause Christians to crumple

Becoming a mature Christian by studying the Bible, and gaining life-giving wisdom by overcoming sin and walking intimately with God, is incredibly important, as without these experiences and character traits, people are not able to help others mature or come to a greater relationship with God

Helping and teaching others is something we are instructed to do, and will also be rewarded for!

Matthew 5:19
Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven

Matthew 28:19-20
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you

Just like how the Israelites did not want to go up on the mountain to meet with God but just sent Moses instead, a lot of Christians do not have a truly powerful, or personal, relationship with God because they favor their sense of comfort, and preferences in lifestyle–these are not the type of friends God is looking for, as he does not want any Christian posers in his crew!

John 4:23
Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks

2 Timothy 3:2-5
People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them

Jesus himself said that he would spit out lukewarm Christians who did not honor him with sincerity and passion

Revelation 3:15-16
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth

A sobering thought!

Paul also instructed us to stay away from posers who called themselves Christians but lived willingly sinful lives (everyone stumbles, but to have a lifestyle of sin is totally different)

1 Corinthians 5:11
But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat

Just like posers in the skating world, Christian posers enjoy the association and label of being Christians, but do not put in the effort necessary to actually be mature, let alone reach a place where they can teach others

What good is a person who is seen as a shining Christian example within a church if they lack a true relationship with God, and are not able to teach others or lead them to deeper intimacy?

Not much, they are a total poser!

It Is Easy To Point At Exaggerated Cases, But How Do We Help, And How Do We Stack Up On The Pose-O-Meter?

Okay, since we all have areas to improve on when it comes to our spiritual lives, and not every poser is an intentional or malicious one as they may just be misguided and/or lack maturity, the best thing we can do is review ourselves by asking a few simple questions that can determine whether we are posing or not:

Do I believe in God because I “know” or just have “faith” he exists?

If someone asked me why I thought Christianity is the “true” religion, what would I say?

If someone asked whether it was possible for Christians to lose their salvation, how would I respond?

Are all non-Christians going to hell, even the ones who have not heard about him?

If someone asked me to explain why God “lets” the world be such a bad place, what would I answer?

When is the last time I felt God’s presence when I praised him?

What has God spoken to me that I knew was his voice?

Do I passionately study the Bible?

Am I able to have theological conversations by quoting scripture or do I mostly talk about God using my opinions and thoughts?

Would I feel comfortable speaking with my best friends about God, even though they are non-Christians?

The list goes on, but these are some good things to think and pray about

In the next article, or one in the very near future, I will look at each one of the questions above as some of them are very common, and cause a lot of Christians to pause or give answers they want to improve on

Facebook Comments



Click here to post a comment

  • When did it ever become a contest? There is no such thing as a “poser”
    Either you love God/Jesus, or you don’t.
    And if you don’t believe that then your a hypocrite. Only God can judge whether a person is a true believer or not.

    • Hello,

      I have a very hard time understanding how you could read this article and feel inspired to come to this point of view as it ignores the points in the article almost completely

      If you think people cannot be spiritual “posers”, I wonder if you have read the Bible’s numerous discussions of people who act like they know God but do not, as this was one of the biggest issues that Jesus, Paul, and the apostles addressed in their ministries

      Matthew 23:27-28
      Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness

      2 Timothy 3:1-5
      But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them

      Also, in love, we are told to accurately judge one another as believers, this is repeated throughout the NT, and was part of Jesus’ instructions to us as well

      1 Corinthians 5:12
      What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside?

      Galatians 6:1
      Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted

      Matthew 18:15
      If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over

      It is really sad that people typically associate “judgment” with condemnation, but the reality is, we are instructed to hold each other accountable, it is just rarely done with love, and it wins up tarnishing the entire concept of accountability to the point where people do not speak to one another about sin at all, lest the other person feel “judged”

      2 Timothy 4:2
      Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction

      Also, if you are interested in reading more about how Jesus handled correctional situations, check out this article about the rich young ruler:


  • while i do agree that it is important for all believers to know at least SOME apologetics, i think that not everyone has been given the gift to be able to answer each and every question with distinction and confidence.
    i know it is important to be able to defend our faith, but in the end it is faith, hope, and love that will remain. (1st Corinthians 13:13) 
    from the same passage/chapter, knowing all knowledge (i believe including apologetics) and having works is STILL NOT ENOUGH…….really, the most important is to act out in love.
    we may not have all the answers, but that does not make us posers

    • Hi Samuel,

      The article is not saying everyone should have infinite wisdom or be able to “defend” their faith against any intellectual, philosophical or theological point, it is saying we should have a real faith that is based on a relationship, not academics or social influence/reflection

      We are not in total disagreement, but remember that we are told to study to show ourselves approved, ie: make an effort to learn about God’s character and Word, not just say “I have love” and call it a day

      2 Timothy 2:15
      Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth

      The reason why this is so important, is because a lot of Christians say they have “grace” and then stop pushing towards intimacy with God by seeking him in the Word

      Every Christian should take time to learn answers to the types of questions that the article poses at the end–something not everyone can do with a positive outcome!

/* ]]> */