3. Christians abandon the faith when they see a God who didn’t meet their expectations.
It could be a tragedy they experienced. It could be a painful event. It could be something dark and horrible that they’ve prayed to be saved from for years and God doesn’t seem to care. It could be a “promise” in Scripture that they stood on in faith, but never saw materialize.
I’ve talked at length about this problem and the solution for it in God’s Favorite Place on Earth. Thankfully, that book has helped scores of people who have read it. But unfortunately, I can’t make people who would benefit from reading a book actually read it. One of the frustrations of being an author. (Countless contemporary Christians will only read a book if a movie is made for it or if it appears on Fox News or The Today Show, or is heavily promoted by a megachurch pastor.) Anyway, this is a BIG reason why many abandon the Jesus ship.
4. The stupidity and ignorance of so many Christians.
Regrettably, many Christians believe whatever they read or hear. Those who are wiser and smarter don’t want to be associated with that lot. So they start thinking, “If Jesus was the Savior of the world, why are so many of His followers so stupid?” … “If Jesus is the head of the church, why is His church so dysfunctional and so toxic in so many cases?” So Christians abandon the faith and start questioning the claims of the Lord Himself.
5. Failure to live up to the gospel of legalism.
I’ve watched Christians abandon the faith because they were taught a gospel of legalism—namely, that God will be upset with them if they don’t live a perfect life. Despite how hard they tried, they kept failing to keep the standard in various areas of their lives. They prayed, fasted and sought victory over the problem with no results. Eventually, they got so weary that they concluded that it’s just not worth it to follow the Lord, so they left Him.
6. They loved the world more than Christ.
Jesus wasn’t enough in their eyes to satisfy their heart’s desires—or what they thought were their real desires. They loved “the pleasures of sin” more than the pleasures of God. Paul said of Demas, a Christian worker who had abandoned him, that “he loved this present world.”
7. The cares of this life choked the (spiritual) life out of them.
In His famous “parable of the sower,” Jesus talked about the seed of God’s word being choked to death because of the cares of this life. The daily grind of day-to-day life with all of its twists, turns and problems can be a perpetual distraction to the spiritual person. So much so that Christians abandon the faith. They find the life choked out of them — the spiritual life, that is.