Note: This page was written some time ago, when I was still a Christian. I'm not any more, so it's likely that some material in here no longer reflects my current opinions.
I'm a Christian.
Of course I think you should be one too; I'm not going to try to prove this (because it's not the sort of thing one can prove), but I can recommend it very highly.
Why am I a Christian? Good question. Here are some reasons.
- Christianity seems to me to give the best available account of human nature. We're made in the image of God, but `fallen'; i.e., screwed up. That sounds about right.
- The old Lord/liar/lunatic argument, despite the bad press it tends to get, actually seems quite strong to me. For those of you who haven't heard it: consider the words and actions of Jesus as portrayed in the New Testament. Leaving out, if you wish, the miracles and suchlike, it seems plausible that the account there is pretty accurate. What we then see, if Christianity is wrong, is someone who's obviously very clever and very good behaving like either a loony of the first water or else a thorough-going scoundrel. Doesn't seem likely.
- I know people who have experienced various remarkable happenings (varying from the slightly strange to the downright miraculous) whose only reasonable explanation requires Christianity to be true. In the interests of honesty I should say that I have never myself experienced anything of that sort. But then I've never seen the Taj Mahal in person either.
- Another of those old chestnuts: what on earth happened to Jesus's disciples between the Crucifixion (a pretty devastating event for them) and the remarkable surge of activity shortly after? The Christian replies: The Resurrection and the coming of the Spirit. I'm not sure any other explanation works as well as this.
- Being a Christian is intellectually satisfying, and fun.
- There's a very strong link between religion and ethics. The ethical system of Christianity is really very good. (That doesn't mean that everyone professing to follow it has lived a good life, alas; but Christianity's record here is not as bad as it's often made out to be.)
- Christianity seems (on the basis of not-very-complete personal observation) to provide immunity against a certain kind of shallowness of life which I find very unpleasant. (Of course there are failings which Christianity seems to encourage, just as there are failings against which it protects.)
The church I attend (Holy Trinity, Cambridge, England) is an evangelical Anglican church. I suppose that sort of makes me an evangelical Anglican. I'd go with the `evangelical', with certain reservations; I'm not so sure about the `Anglican'. I don't like denominational divisions, though it seems clear to me that denominations are necessary simply because of human diversity: not everyone will want to worship in the same way.
I believe strongly that Christians should be inclusive in outlook. I don't mean that `all religions are equally valid', or any such nonsense: I mean that contempt and hatred are never the right response to any person's ideas or actions. However badly wrong someone is, and however wicked their actions, they should be treated with love and respect.
I object in the strongest possible terms to movements like the so-called "Christian Identity" which try to link Christianity to racism and hatred. I consider them to be blasphemy of a particularly nasty kind.
You might possibly be interested in some essays and musings on more or less Christian themes. Or you might not.
If I weren't a Christian, I think I'd like to be Orthodox Jewish. I have been very impressed by the devotion of the orthodox Jews I have known, and by the clarity of their thinking.
For the last N years, my wife and I have been helping on Scripture Union's Live Wires holiday for children (and its predecessor, with the even less catchy name of "Computing and Electronics Holiday").