Primarily because I am convinced Christianity is true. The Bible’s narrative about humanity’s fallen condition and a loving God who has entered our world to save us has always been extremely compelling to me. Even from when I was a child being taught the elementary truths about God I have found it natural to believe. As I went to school and university and was exposed to alternative worldviews, whether presented in the form of other religions or atheistic philosophies, I was never satisfied by them. Instead, it seems to me, the Bible describes the human situation perfectly. Man has been made in the image of God and therefore has an inherent dignity; at the same time he is deeply flawed and therefore needs a Saviour. Christ graciously came to pay the penalty for sin by dying on the cross, thus demonstrating his great love for people. These are persuasive truths.
Naturally there are times when certain objections and arguments challenge my Christian faith but I am usually able to make a note of them and read up on them when I get the time. There’s nothing new under the sun and pretty much the same challenges to Christianity have been made repeatedly over the last two thousand years. There is always a Christian book or sermon to be found which deals with them.
Secondly, not only is Christianity true, it also works! It affects the human heart and brings the believer into a real relationship with his or her Creator. It supplies the most satisfying answers to all the big questions of life. Where have I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? With Jesus Christ in one’s life our journey through this world becomes a thrilling adventure. In addition, Jesus by his Holy Spirit deals with so many other deep human needs: loneliness; lost-ness; emptiness; temptation; and guilt.
When a person comes to Christ, life is never the same again. The sinner’s prayer changes everything. A genuine friendship with God begins (John 15.14-17). The Spirit of God enlivens the soul and we have a desire to commune with God as we read his Word and spend precious time in prayer. The God-shaped hole within each human heart becomes filled with a knowledge of his love, care, grace, mercy and kindness. These are the things which every single person in this world needs.
In Bible terms, the real reason I am a Christian is that God has called me. Predestination might be a difficult doctrine to wrestle with but it is clearly taught in the New Testament and that teaching is reflected in the 39 Articles at the back of the Prayer Book. As I examine my own heart I realise that left to my own devices I would never have looked for God or responded to his call. Rather, with irresistible grace the Shepherd has sought out the lost sheep and carried me home to his flock. For all these reasons I am incredibly thankful that I am still a Christian.