Readers, please help me out here -- leave a comment below, giving one or more reasons not to be a "Christian" (however you want to define the term).
These can be your own reasons for not being a Christian. Or they can be reasons that you've encountered from the unchurched or from non-Christians.
I'm interested in building a collection of such reasons, and maybe tackling some of them in subsequent postings. At the least, they're likely to provide food for thought. It's probably been done before, but what the heck ....
(Make no mistake about it: I regard myself as a Christian, although some traditionalists would disagree with me. My interest here is in identifying obstacles to faith, because identifying such obstacles can be a first step to helping to overcome them.)
Let me start things off by paraphrasing some of the reasons that I've heard or read, or that have occurred to me, in recent weeks:
- Why on earth should I believe in God?
- So many Christians are just plain weird.
- I don't understand this business about a personal relationship with Jesus.
- There are all these other gospels out there -- why should I believe the ones in the Bible?
- The Bible was wrong about a lot of things - why believe it at all?
- Jesus said he'd return soon, but obviously he didn't.
- If Christianity were true, it would have already taken over the world.
- We'll never know which religion is true.
- If Jesus defeated sin, why does it so obviously still exist?
- The claims of orthodoxy are bootstrapped.
- Traditionalist Christians don't seem to think it's possible for God to ever change his mind.
- A thousand-page book can't contain everything God will ever have to say to us.