And then one day, the Christians disappeared
At first it was not clear that everyone that had disappeared had that factor linking them. It was only after the initial shock had worn off and people started to try to piece things together that the realized that all of them publicly or privately shared this as the thing that was common to all.
Initially there was a great deal of confusion: Where did they go? In some cases, why did they go? Holes were left in families, in friendships, in businesses, in governments. In some churches very few people were there on Sunday; in others, it was as if nothing had happened.
What seemed to link the ones that were gone - as opposed to the others that were left - was that they were always exclusive in their claims about how people could be saved - the "narrow" ones, the ones that always seemed against the tenor of the times, the ones that really acted as if they believed in that whole "Jesus as the Son of God" thing.
The news panels - after floating various theories about what had happened and why - eventually came to the conclusion that on the whole, this was a good thing. So many things which had been held up or made difficult by these people could now move forward. Moralistic arguments about things could now easily be swept away. And after over 2000 years, the Christian church could finally be put in the place it had really belonged, as a sort of social activity or even a belief system but without any sort of influence or power to interfere with the world as it actually was. Finally, humanity's utopia was within its grasp.
The problem, of course, was that it did not seem to be going that way.
It is not that people did not try - indeed, at no time in human history had the ability to unite people been better. But what those that were trying to lead found was that something seemed to be missing, a sort of sense of the common good. People, relieved of the pressure of the moral judgments they had overtly or covertly suffered from, did not seem to be acting better - in fact, it seemed as if they were acting more selfishly than ever. And those behaviors that were anti-societal - theft, robbery, violence - seemed to grow in intensity and occurrence, not lessen. It was if, the self proclaimed "Christians" having left, something had left with them, something that had previously made the world work better, even for those that did not believe.
It was only at that point that some began to consider what they had actually believed.
But by then things began to work very differently.