The Flu Shot Gospel

This was one of the first articles I wrote in the Jesus is not a flu shot!!! series.  God showed me these lessons mostly from my experience as a Pharmacist.

Jesus is not a flu shot.
Jesus Christ in the past 100 years has been turned into a 5 minute, no commitment required, convenient, just-in-case FLU SHOT.
The biggest problem I see in today’s evangelism is this — we are pushing a CURE on a world unconvinced of the DISEASE.
The church today is good at explaining the cure. Jesus is the cure. We are good at explaining what the cure will do. It will forgive your sin and take you to heaven when you die. We are good at explaining what will happen if you don’t take the cure. Eternity in a place called Hell for whoever dies lost. We are sometimes good at explaining how to take the cure. Sometimes we say it is praying a prayer, sometimes we say it is asking the Lord to save you, but in general we to some degree or another teach it is only by repentance and faith.
What we are very weak at, and often totally neglecting, is convincing the disease. The reason for that is for the past 100 years or so we have for multiple reasons turned Jesus Christ into a Flu shot. Jesus is more like chemotherapy.
What I mean by that is —Salvation today is geared more today of getting the person whatever it takes to make a one-time decision to “receive Christ”, and we usually motivate them by either
 1) advertising the benefits of getting the cure.
2) explaining the consequences for not getting the cure.
Anyone interested is given the cure, and it is made as painless as possible. Biblical doctrines are turned into an abbreviated short-cut method, so someone has all the head information to make the most reasonable choice — to get a Free one time, easy ticket to eternal life in exchange for gaining heaven and rejecting Hell. Who wouldn’t want that?
What is wrong with it? And is this not the Gospel?
Well, think of the prodigal son. Yes he was given the fatted calf, but he didn’t know that when he headed for home. It was unexpected. Someone getting a flu shot expects something totally different than someone who has cancer. Not many flu shot patients are content if they survive the flu shot. They better survive! They are entitled to have a wonderful flu season.
If a chemo patient has a round of chemo where they feel somewhat normal, they are excited. Back in the Great awakening times, you heard extensive preaching on SIN, YOUR SIN, the Holiness of God, Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God, the righteousness of God, God’s expectations, God’s penalty for your offenses against him, etc. It was a negative message. People responded like they did in Nineveh from the preaching of Jonah.
“WHO CAN TELL?” was Nineveh’s response.
Jesus said “they repented at the preaching of Jonas.”  That was God’s response, but it is only for those who respond Biblically.   The Bible said God saw their works, and God spared them. Jonah did not come down and say, “God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life. Won’t you please come and ask the Lord to save you? He really wants you all in heaven so that is why he died on the Cross.” The emphasis was on the sin problem, not the cure and not the consequences of not getting the cure.
When the emphasis is on the disease– specific and clear and targeted for that audience — then the hammer of God’s judgment will fall and people cried out “WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED?”. They didn’t come expecting heaven, they came fleeing from the wrath to come. That produced a repentant group of people. Yes, when people come to the end of their selves that will produce repentance when people see the goodness of God when God is all they have left.
However, most folks in America never get there, and they instead choose the easy, watered down modern gospel where they come not convinced they have sinned against a holy and righteous God. They come excited to go to heaven, they are glad to get a vaccine against hell should they really catch the hell bug, but they never saw themselves as truly wicked and evil and hell deserving because their disease was never exposed for what it was.
Hence, the seed is only falling on stony ground, and that seed is not going to hold up and it will not bear fruit. There is something radically different about our converts than even 100 years ago, and how I think that can be explained is we have changed the gospel of faith and repentance into the Flu Shot Gospel.
When you look around at our methods the past 100 years I think you clearly see the fruit is not the same as what you saw for thousand of years before that. Today, the majority of professing Christians are not true Bible Christians, instead they are Christian Hindus. False converts who have the Flu Shot Jesus as their fire escape, and they still have their gods of this world as well. True saving faith is turning from idols to serve the true and living God.
A Flu Shot is something you can just get in the state you are in, and keep living your life just as before. You don’t have to give it a ton of thought afterwards, and if someone asks you about it, you simply say, “Yes, I had my shot, I am good to go!” Jesus Christ is not a flu shot, so most people are not good to go at all. It is time to renounce this false method and replace it with sound bible teaching. A person will get a flu shot just in case they were to get sick.
Especially if it is quick, painless, and covered by their insurance.  The flu is something that only might happen to them. They are not super concerned, but JUST IN CASE, WHY NOT? What have I got to lose?
The Flu shot Jesus Gospel is just like a real Flu shot, as it is something you:
1. Agree to get JUST IN CASE even though you are currently OK.
2. It is a ONE TIME thing you never have to think about again (until immunity wears off)
3. It will not turn your world upside down.
4. You can get it even if there is nothing physically wrong with you from what you can tell.
5. You can get it even if you’ve never had the flu nor would ever get the flu!
6. There are low chance of any adverse effects.
7. Has minimal demands. You should stick around for 15 minutes after to make sure you don’t have a bad reaction — but we won’t hunt you down!
8. Appealing if there is no wait and no cost.
9. No appointment necessary! Come whenever you feel like it, 7 days a week, whenever the pharmacy is open!
10. The Flu Shot givers have to get our quota of 5 a day! (7 at other chains!)
11. Flu shot advertisement is so heavy that often people get it so we pharmacists doctors and nurses quit bugging them!
12. Flu itself is usually not too serious and only fatal in certain immune-compromised situations.
13. If your immunization records burn up, there is no proof you even got it!!!
14. We use such a fine tip needle that leaves no impact nor draws blood that often people don’t realize I gave it to them!
Contrast that with chemotherapy.  One will only commit to chemotherapy if they know they are dying. Chemo changes a person inside and out. Chemo is something that changes everything.
It will change your plans, it will affect your finances, it will affect your mood, it will affect your blood, it will not be a flippant decision, and it will be something you won’t forget – and can never Doubt or DENY you received it!!!
Yes bible salvation is a moment, and yes, there is no such doctrine as works for or works after salvation, but I believe God showed me the clear contrast in the modern gospel and the old fashioned gospel we’ve mostly abandoned.
Today in general we have repackaged the chemotherapy gospel for one of a one-time easy flu shot. The cure is Jesus Christ, the way to get the cure is faith and repentance. What needs to be better emphasized is WHY you need the cure. Without that, you merely have a flu shot Jesus!
Example — who would volunteer for 40 weeks of intensive chemotherapy just in case you get cancer? Who would hook their arm up to a 4 hour cocktail of chemotherapy just in case? I could tell you how bad cancer is, i could give you statistics about how bad cancer is and how it is killing people and how most people get it and what the risk factors are,but it will not affect you one bit until YOU PERSONALLY GET DIAGNOSED and hence CONVINCED Of THE DISEASE!!!!!
Yet, if I tell you how bad the flu is and how it could kill babies and old people and people with asthma, you might volunteer for that.  No one wants to go to Hell. Everyone wants to go to heaven. People will take a Flu Shot Jesus because it appears to immunize them on the rare chance they truly one day get caught being a sinner. <But what population is going to volunteer for the reproach of the cross, and accept the temptation, tribulation, and persecution that comes from accepting the true Christ? Only one convinced of the disease!!!
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