A thought occurred to me, and I wasn’t sure if it was extreme, or, if it was, which position was far from reason: this idea, or the culture to which it responds. (The dock seems very far away from a boat that has drifted away. A correct belief that is hundreds of years old can seem ‘extreme’ if it is the culture that is in the wrong.)
An analogy first to introduce the idea: In the United States, there are many illegal immigrants living there who are not citizens. Suppose they claim that they are American – and, after all, they live in America, pay American taxes (sales tax + have tax withheld from paychecks), and live an American lifestyle. Who are you to say they’re not American? Well, they’re not citizens, and they’re not doing everything Americans should (e.g. if their birth records etc. are not registered, not paying income tax), so it’s justifiable to draw the line and say they’re not American. They are rather Brazilians, Mexicans, Hondurans, Indians, et al. claiming to be Americans. If they want to be called American, then they must become citizens and do everything Americans do – not only some of the things Americans do.
Now enter Protestants. I am frustrated by how they appear to be damaging the Christian faith in the eyes of others, a driving force of confusion in the United States. I realized when the Associated Press, Reuters, et al. first adopted the agenda to redefine marriage (or at least, I noticed around 2006) after seeing a Protestant clergy member, “the Reverend …” advocate for it in a NewsMax or People magazine, that the media can find any Protestant clergyman to advocate any idea as “Christian”. That is, influential journalists can apparently easily find someone claiming to be both ordained and Christian to support any anti-Christian practice they wish, to have “an authoritative spokesman on behalf of Christ”, to support the claim “you can be Christian and do x” (without problem).
On the contrary, our Lord says, “Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me.” It appears to me that any belief held by a Protestant in contradiction to the Church is not a Christian belief. Moreover, it seems the argument can be made, as with the analogy above, that those who repudiate the Church are not Christian. Perhaps what our Lord says is actually true: Those rejecting the bishop who speaks for Christ are in fact rejecting Christ, and hence should not be called Christian. It seems that Baptism does bring one into the Church in an imperfect way, so Protestants do become Christian, but denying the Church – e.g. rejecting a bishop (or more) because of an authoritative teaching – seems to contradict this, and Pope Pius IX (perhaps in his Syllabus of Errors? or a similar document) writes, as I recall, that we cannot hope for the salvation of those who oppose the Church. Hence, it seems Presbyterians and Methodists who have accepted the secular definition of marriage should be called Presbyterian and Methodist, not Christian.
What I am getting at is: Are we reaching the point where we must stop saying “Catholic Christian” and “Protestant Christian” and start saying “Christian” and “Protestant”? Should we reclaim the title “Christian”? It appears to me that culture is shifting in the United States to the point where the federal government will outlaw orthodox Christianity through efforts like those redefining marriage and stripping religious liberty (conscience rights), so that only those Protestant Christians who support homosexuality, feticide, contraception, etc. – i.e., those who have severed their connection to the Church and are now adrift in secularism – will be permitted to practice their faith, and the government, mainstream media, and those led by them on social media sites will refer to them as “Christian” and to those loyal to the Church as “Catholic extremist” (compare “Islamist extremist” already in use). We are enabling this by referring to those who hold explicitly anti-Christian beliefs as “Christian”, causing the general public to not be able to tell which lifestyles and beliefs are Christian and which are not.
We see a demonstration of this symptomatic confusion by the number of Christians, and those calling themselves Christian, who are members of a dominant political party whose 2012 platform has explicitly anti-Christian goals such as redefining marriage and universal free contraception.
It sounds “mean” to say, “You are not a Christian. You are a Lutheran who agrees with some Christian teaching,” but we see the United States changing into an anti-Christian state – where Christians cannot legally help children be adopted, where they cannot legally refuse to purchase contraception if they work for an insurance company, where they cannot legally refuse to provide goods for an invalid wedding, etc. – because many Protestants claiming to be Christian are promoting these changes.
It seems helpful to call a spade a spade.* As with cancer therapy, you must delineate the tumor before you can begin an effective treatment to heal the body. We must stop turning a blind eye to anti-Christian behavior and anti-Christian beliefs. If people want to follow Christ, they must be able to see what leads away from Him, what demonstrates a rejection of Him, and calling everything “Christian” is not useful or accurate.
What do you think of all this?
 Of course setting aside the fact that the term also applies to Central and South America.
 If I can make a humorous allusion to St. Thomas Aquinas. This EWTN article also looks interesting (found while searching for Biblical citation).
[post 1 of 2: see next post]