Monday, August 11, 2014

Why I Believe…

By Robert E. Guinn

     Faith and belief are constantly used to justify one's religious practice and/or conduct.  Yet that justification makes no sense if that faith is not a personal faith.  So, what does it mean for faith to be personal? 
     For faith to be personal it must be more than a mere acceptance or acknowledgement of supposed facts.  It is deeper than simply having an answer for a Bible question.  Personally developed, faith can properly answer the question, "Why do you believe?"  Not just supplying reasons to believe, but answering the question, "What truly persuades you to be a Christian?" or "Why are you convinced?"  This answer should go deeper than the "I feel" responses and be more confident than "I think" statements.  So, why do I believe?  I am glad you asked.
     I believe there is a God.  When I consider Newton's Third Law, the Law of Bio- genesis,  and the First Law of Thermodynamics, I find the Big Bang and Evolutionary theories contradicting fundamental laws of science and the natural world.  I believe that the universe was created by a supernatural being known as God.  I see design, engineering, and craftsmanship in our natural world.  We look at a motorized vehicle and know that due to its complexity it was designed, engineered, and crafted by someone or something.  In like manner, a small leaf from one tree is more complex than that automobile.  I believe in a super-natural, all-powerful Creator.
     I believe in the Bible.  The most reliable documents from antiquity, based on manuscript evidence, are the Sacred Scriptures we call the New Testament documents.  In a span of over two thousand years both the Old and New Testaments were penned.  At least forty different humans, from various walks of life, were involved in its recording.  Though supposed contradictions exist, I have yet to see one that cannot be adequately explained.  Though its origin is found in antiquity, the Bible itself is not antiquated.  The Bible has proven to be timeless and relevant to our present age with proper study and application.  The Bible possesses the fingerprints of Divine origin.  I believe that the Bible is the inspired inerrant Word of God.
     I believe in Christ.  The Bible is not the only ancient document that mentions Jesus as a real historical figure.  Still, the New Testament, being the most reliable ancient document from manuscript evidence, clearly teaches that Jesus Christ is the son of God (Matthew 3:17, 17:5).  He willingly allowed himself to be murdered by crucifixion (Luke 22-23), as a sinless sacrifice (Hebrews 4:15), for the sins of those willing to submit to His will (John 3:16, 36;  Hebrews 5:9).  Being raised to life again, he proved there is hope for life after this one (1 Corinthians 15; Romans 8).  I believe in the risen, crucified Savior of my soul.
If I truly believe in these three faith statements, then my life should be in a constant state of transformation (Romans 12).  No longer living for self but living for Christ (Romans 3). My belief should compel me to action, being grateful for God's salvation (James 1-2).
Do you believe?  Why do you believe?

- Robert Guinn preaches for the Central Church of Christ in Paducah KY.  He may be contacted through the congregation's website:

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