Why Christ?

Why Be Christian?

Why Christianity? What makes Christianity the narrow way to eternity?

Humans want to know three things: where did I come from, what is my purpose and where do I go when I die?

Over the ages many Theologians and philosophers have debated these things

Christianity is not a matter of preference or pedigree, but of a choice born out of the uniqueness of the life Christ.

But was Christ real?

Today living in a secular culture and world that believes everything has a natural cause people look at evidence.

 "Why Christian?" was exemplified by the Apostle Paul as he kept before him the hope of the resurrection as both the proof of Christ's uniqueness and the assurance that this uniqueness inherently matters.

Unlike Buddhism, Islam and Hinduism which are Philosophies, Christianity is a real person. God is so far away from us in category that we cannot even look upon him our sin is so great. We die.

God the Father sent his Son Christ Jesus to inaugurate a new age, The Kingdom of God and to make God visible to US so we can relate to God. Christ became our advocate and Savior.

John 14:8-10 Philip said to Jesus, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

The Gospel message is simple enough to reach a little child and sophisticated enough to reach the most intellectual minds, such as those of Augustine and Paul and others throughout history.

Christians believe that Jesus is the unique Son of God in human flesh. Some unbelievers may or may not believe Jesus existed or if he did, he was just a wise or good man.  Muslims think that Jesus was a prophet whereas Hinduism depicts Christ as one among many great gurus. Liberal Christians and many other religions believe Christ was a good human being and had great moral character but had no supernatural or divine attributes.

Books, knowledge, and human wisdom can only teach you so much ultimately it is the wisdom and power of God that gets us through life.

God is so categorically beyond human cognition that you cannot get to him through reason.

The Apostle Paul spoke of the resurrection of Christ and his hope in the resurrection of the dead before the assembled Sanhedrin, before the Roman procurator Felix, and again before Felix's successor, Festus, who admitted that Paul's arrest was due to his proclamation "about a dead man named Jesus who Paul claimed was alive." Even before king Agrippa, Paul's answer to the first contemptuous aspects of the question "Why Christian?" was an appeal to Christ's uniqueness in the hope of the resurrection. He asked, "Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?...I am saying nothing beyond what the prophets and Moses said would happen--that the Christ would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would proclaim light to his own people and to the Gentiles"

(Acts 26:8, 22). For Paul, and for all who claim the inimitableness of Jesus, if Christ has not been raised, there is no answer to the question "Why Christian?"

“John, that was called the Baptist…was a good man, and commanded the Jews to exercise virtue, both as to righteousness towards one another, and piety towards God, and so to come to baptism…Herod, who feared the great influence John had over the people…sent [John] a prisoner, out of Herod’s suspicious temper, to Macherus, the castle I before mentioned, and was there put to death.”

The above quote was written by the first century historian Flavius Josephus (AD 37/38–97). He verifies for us that John the Baptist was an actual person and that he was put to death by Herod Antipas, just as the Bible says in (Matthew 14:1–10).

The Jewish Talmud is a compilation of Jewish teachings that were passed down from generation to generation then finally compiled/organized after the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70.

This excerpt mentions Jesus:

“On the eve of Passover, Yeshu [a Hebrew word referring to Jesus [9]] was hanged. For forty days before the execution took place, a herald went forth and cried, “He is going forth to be stoned because he has practiced sorcery and enticed Israel to apostasy. Any one who can say anything in his favor, let him come forward and plead on his behalf.” But since nothing was brought forward in his favor he was hanged on the eve of the Passover!” [10]

Not only does the Talmud mention Jesus, but refers to His crucifixion and the Jewish leadership’s attempts to stone Jesus (compare with John 8:58–5910:31–3339).  It even says Jesus was put to death at the time of the Passover—the very time the New Testament says the crucifixion occurred (John 18:28)!

Other sources that mention Jesus outside of the Bible include the Roman historian Cornelius Tacitus (c. AD 55–120), Gaius Suetonius (AD 69–died after 122) the chief secretary of the Roman Emperor Hadrian (who reigned AD 117–138), and Pliny the Younger (AD 61/62–c. 113) a Roman author and administrator.

These references outside the Bible have led historians to conclude—Jesus was a real person.

Even Bart Ehrman, one of the most zealous critics of the Bible alive today, acknowledges Jesus lived by saying:

“With respect to Jesus, we have numerous, independent accounts of his life in the sources lying behind the Gospels (and the writings of Paul)—sources that originated in Jesus’ native tongue Aramaic and that can be dated to within just a year or two of his life…Historical sources like that are pretty astounding for an ancient figure of any kind…the claim that Jesus was simply made up falters on every ground.” [11]

Mormonism teaches that there are many gods President Brigham Young stated:

"The Lord created you and me for the purpose of becoming Gods like Himself …" and that you can become a god. 

Christianity teaches that there is only one God, and you cannot become a god. 

Islam teaches that Jesus is not God in flesh-- Christianity does. 

Jesus cannot be both God and not God at the same time. 

Some religions teach that we reincarnate and others say there is a hell, and others do not.  They cannot all be trueIf they cannot all be true, it cannot be true that all religions lead to God.  Furthermore, it means that some religions are, at the very least, false in their claims to reveal the true God (or gods).  Remember, truth does not contradict itself.  If God exists, He would not institute mutually exclusive and contradictory belief systems/religions in an attempt to get people to believe in Him.  God is not the author of confusion and chaos (1 Cor. 14:33).  Therefore, it is reasonable to believe that there can be absolute spiritual truth, and that not all  religious systems can be true regardless of whether or not they claim to be true. 

There must be more than a claim of truth.

Why should you trust in Christianity over Islam, Buddhism, Mormonism, or anything else? 

It is because there are absolute truths in life and reality.  Only in Christianity are there accurately fulfilled prophecies of a coming Messiah.  Only in Christianity do we find evidence of extremely accurate transmission of the eyewitness documents (gospels), so we can trust what was originally written.  Only in Christianity do we have the historically  real person of Christ who claimed to be God, performed many miracles to prove His claim of divinity, who died and rose from the dead, and who said that He alone was the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). 

All this adds to the legitimacy /credibility of Christianity above all other religions.  It could not be that Jesus is the only Truth, and other religions also be the truth.

Jesus taught us this prayer:

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom comes. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give

us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.

Amen.

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