The tragedy of today is that there is a tacit kind of agreement, conscious or unconscious, that Christianity is impossible. And this agreement is not among non-Christians, but very often among Christians.
It is clear that Christianity is regarded as impossible in the international world.
A world which has agreed that the only way to keep peace is to possess so-called nuclear deterents has clearly come to the conclusion that Christianity can be written off as an impossibility in the relationship between nation and nation.
It is clear that Christianity is regarded as impossible in the industrial sphere.
It seems impossible for the two sides to sit down at any industrial dispute without each of them being firmly convinced that the one thing that matters is self-interest.
It is clear that Christianity is regarded as impossible in the political sphere.
Any politician who announced that he proposed to judge each issue in terms of soul and conscience and so to cast his vote would quite certainly be told in effect that the party whip was very much more important than his conscience, and that the party line was very much more important than the Christian gospel.
It is even clear -- God forgive us -- That Christianity is regarded as impossible in the Church.
Before a man, at least in certain quarters, is allowed to preach the gospel or to come to the communion table, the question that is asked is not, “Is he a Christian?” but, “To what denomination does he belong?”
We have come to a stage today when we are content to shut Christ up within the church, and when we quite bluntly regard it as impossible to bring Christianity into the ordinary concerns and affairs of the world. Christianity has become rather an optional extra on the circumference of life than a complete essential, dominating the whole of life. What happens if we let Christ out? That is not the question, for the question for the Christian ought always to be, not, “Is it safe?” but, “Is it right?”
Daily Celebration, William Barclay, Word Books, Waco, TX, 1972, pg 111