hi peter, chefoosians and a slew of other christian cam.ac's,
ah, petrus. a fellow anti-CAPITAList. i have pondered if and indeed to what extent the demise of the capital letter has its roots in a postmodern rejection of authority, a skepticism of absolutes and ultimately atheism :-)
this and other profound, ehem, ponderings at: http://phil-blogs.blogspot.com/ ~we use the same template, freaky? you however are more consistent in your decapitalising, where i reserve it for emails.. but you write at equal and greater length, hence the white on black for ease of reading?
why did i become a christian, why am i christian, why am i still a christian, why that church of that denomination? what is a christian and what is faith? and as I was asked by an individual on the late 'christian union no thankyou sir' fb group, what do you get out ofdefending the christian faith?
the answers to the why became question should contain at least one miracle, and preferably conform to the 'perfection - spectacular-fall- redemption' pattern, and the fall should include any and all of abuse,drugs,serious-crime, that is if you want to be chosen for the microphone at a group baptism service.
where as the why are you still a christian, should be peppered with prophetic leadings into some grand and foreign ministry, more spectacular miracles, but then a fall back to heavy weight apologetics, recounting a crisis of faith gloriously resolved by an investigation of all the great -ologies ~ theo, onto, philo, epistemo, eschato's and friends. thus having baffled and bemused the inquerient win them back with references to dawkins and popular culture, invite them to alpha and pray for the best.
my sarcasm betrays that i struggle, am struggling with these questions, as a second generation christian, of both missionary origin and impecable, iwerne-boy, evangelical pedegree, i have not been rescued from the brink of guncrime. i would say i am a christian because it is good, taste it and see ps34:8, and true, test it and see one might say, i am a christian for the lives changed i have seen, for all the good done, and for the aching existential gap left as a christ shaped hole in every other philosophy that ever pretended hope for this curious humanity. but for all this what sort of christian does it make me, one who intellectually assents to a hypothetical god, whose miracles have been visited on such third parties, and what strength of faith is one never having been spelt r i s k. rob bell in his week455 paints faith, amongst other things as ask,seek,knocking, as refreshment, as a wind, as a report, as a return home. any of these resonated except the report, my not having been the gadarene demoniac, but more than this never having risked. the church does not celebrate the value of a christian upbringing enough, it simply is not as glamorous as the excon saved, but this does not excuse that i have got away thus far with treading water in a shallow experience of the spirit and timid faith.
i have been a christian because it is a comfortable club, i may even have been a christian for my just-in-case ticket for pie in the sky, i will forever in some way be a christian because i was a christian..am i infact a christian, are the charismatics falsely proliferating the notion that disciples of christ should be those who speak the gospel, heal the sick and cast out demons? who can say, i think my answer is a work in progress. i am a christian, and because of the glorious historical truth, because of its present day urgent reality, because that following of jesus is humanity as it was meant to be, i'm just not sure i'm terribly good at it, yet(?) these are such deeds asyou would put open to judgement from those who know me and here don't know me.
i have said too much, and with an unchristian self-pity. i do hope you are well and that cambridge is treating you well. yours, possibly unhelpfully, but never-the-less, with love in christ pajxxx