A few days ago I received a well-written email from Roger, a Christian and supporter of Evolution. He had a few things to say with respects to Christianity that I thought you might all enjoy. I’m hoping that Roger will stick around to answer any questions that readers may have as he actually appears to be a reasonable Christian ;)
Roger does mention a few books in his post and I’d like to know if anyone here has read them and could share their thoughts.
Here’s Roger’s email (which was free of spelling mistakes! A religiousfreaks.com first!):
Hi gasmonso, I appreciate your frankness on all the points you raise here, or toss into the public forum. Although honestly your horrid experience with religion (in your upbringing, as well as from some of the people flaming you on this site!) doesnâ€™t really reflect the biblical belief system.
While I was raised in a (very loving and tolerant) Protestant household, in my late 20s I took the stance: “OK God, if this book [the Bible] is true, itâ€™s true not because someone says it is, certainly not because IT says it is, but only if itâ€™s REALLY true.”
I embarked on an odyssey to put that to the test; actually, the biblical belief system (not necessarily organized religion!) specifically instructs people to put it to the test; and if it is found wanting, to toss it. (You donâ€™t hear THAT from a lot of pulpits! I donâ€™t think they often have the balls.) My eventual conclusion was that, despite the horrendous hypocrisy and outright evil among many professing Christianity (think Inquisition, pogroms, etc.), that in fact contradicts who Jesus is and what he said; and he himself turns out to be pretty cool and reliable.
But this isnâ€™t a “preach” letter. You mentioned looking for books to read: “Who Moved the Stone?” (Frank Morison), originally in around 1930, is an interesting volume by a British investigative journalist who set out to prove that the story of Jesusâ€™ resurrection was merely a myth; what he found instead brought him to believe in Christ. Much later, an American, Josh McDowell, likewise rejected religion and set about to completely debunk Christianity; what he found turned him to faith in Jesus, and his findings were published in a (huge) book, “The New Evidence That Demands A Verdict Fully Updated To Answer The Questions Challenging Christians Today” (originally in the â€™70s, revised edition 1999).
And as above, I hold the view that Christianity (the biblical belief system, not necessarily what you get in a lot of churches) is based on fact, not mere “belief” (read: make believe). To that end I also fully embrace evolution as a fact, not contradicting biblical teachings at all, as you will see if you have the patience to wade through the blog Iâ€™m currently building at http://rogersshrub.blogspot.com â€¦ and maybe more to the point, as you can see from the comment I left tonight on your “America not a Christian nation” post, I would advocate that if people professing Christianity would actually walk their own talk (or really, walk Jesusâ€™ talk), for one thing society would have a profoundly different view of Christians, and society might even be positively affected the way he advocated. (Gandhiâ€™s quote about liking Christ but not Christians hits it on the nose.) I should add that for the last 15 years Iâ€™ve had the great privilege of being part of a church that actually DOES advocate and aim to live by love, mercy, compassion, tolerance, genuineness, and that openly refutes the hypocrisy of the Christian “subculture”. Rare but honestly refreshing!
However, enough rambling; thank you if you had the patience to read through all this.
Take care and all the best to you.
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