“Hello world”. was heard every week morning on Australian talk back radio is Sydney for decades. I don’t think there is copy write on this so I can say “Hello World” I can’t say I am the man who said it.
I am differentiated from that personality in that I define myself a s a born again Christian. The radio personality above often referred to himself as Christian as well but there is a vast difference between calling yourself Christian and being a Christian.
Many define themselves as Christian through association with a church denomination because they were baptized there, or their parents were affiliated there.
I come from a long tradition through the Methodist Church as many of my forbears were Preachers or missionaries. My great, great grandfather founded the Methodist Church at Chain of Ponds in South Australia during the 1800’s. He was a man that stood out in his community according to my fathers extensive research into our family History. Some of our older ancestors apparently rubbed shoulders with John Wesley or were commissioned to preach by him personally. But I don’t know any of the details that information comes from a very distant relative.
So seeing that I have such a rich ‘Christian’ heritage I could define myself as a Christian right? I could call myself one of God’s children because its in our blood right? Wrong! That view and kind of thinking couldn’t be more incorrect..
Christianity isn’t something you inherit from your Parents. Christianity is something you obtain through faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work at the cross in Calvary. But there is more! Christ’s death on the cross was only the beginning. If Christ had only died for our sins what assurance do we have that our sins are forgiven? Well, none actually! If Christ only died on the cross it would mean he was still dead. It would mean His body rotted away in a rich mans tomb and everything that happened in the history of Christianity was based on a lie. Well meaning as it may seem it is all false if the story ended there.
But it didn’t end there. Three days after Christ was crucified he raised from the dead. These aren’t just mythical claims. No one was more surprised than his close followers that his tomb was found empty or that he appeared to them, his own family and to more than five hundred witnesses in one place.
Of course they could have had visions of Christ, or they Hallucinated or worse yet made the whole thing up. But there is nothing in the whole Jesus narrative that would suggest any of the above are even remotely true.
Thomas the doubter would not believe unless he could touch Jesus physically or could see him with his own eyes. Thomas was the first skeptic and like all skeptics he wasn’t there at the original appearance of Jesus after he raised from the dead. Thomas was the luckiest skeptic on earth Jesus met his challenge head on and gave him exactly what he asked for, proof!
Through the ages many skeptics have doubted they lacked the same thing Thomas did, faith.
All the skeptics protest that it could never have happened and yet some of these same skeptics from the enlightenment period call Christ a humanitarian, a great teacher and a great leader. Why would you if the man was still dead and almost everything about him was made up?
Of course all His followers could have been mad! or seriously ill. Nearly 600 hundred people had the same hallucination at the same time but apparently that hallucination was identical for everyone. I would love to see someone back that argument up!
This blog was originally my first entry although it hasn’t been published until now. The reason being that I have a steep learning curve when it comes to this whole blogging thing. When I wrote this blog I accidentally logged myself out and couldn’t navigate my way back to this point…… It’s only taken six months to retrace my steps!
Apparently I was about to add one last mind blowing, thought provoking comment but that was six months ago so I have no idea where my train of thought was going.
I guess I would like to close this entry with an appeal to not just say you believe but to investigate the claims about Jesus Christ. Too many who claim faith accept it because it is their family tradition, Others put their faith in their Pastor or their wise guru and great teacher and put them on a pedestal as though they had a personal hotline to the Holy Spirit.
As you may have observed many call themselves Christians. Had I known all the history and background of my forefathers as a young teen I might have followed in the tradition of believing I had inherited my Christian faith from them.
What I need to emphasis is that the bible itself does not support the view that people are born Christians. The bible does not teach that anyone inherits their faith or salvation from their family or church tradition. I do not accept the view that infant baptism has any saving effect or obligates God to honor the recipient in any way or fashion.
What the bible does teach is repentance from sin and the call to believe in the person Jesus Christ as savior who paid the penalty for the sins of His people. The bible says we are justified by faith alone through the work and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. That faith is the gift of God to believe in His Son’s sacrificial work and that it is complete and effectual in its nature. By effectual I mean that those whom God has saved through His Son are saved eternally they cannot lose their salvation.
I could go on and recite a whole lot of stuff but it is suffice to say that God chooses his elect from eternity however each man, woman and child is responsible to respond to the Gospel and make their salvation sure. That is my point!