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Welcome to the online home of Tim Challies, blogger, author, and book reviewer.
Old Fashioned Christian
December 06, 2004
I think I’m an old-fashioned Christian.
I believe in the Bible, that it is complete, sufficient, true and without error. It says what it means. I don’t expect God to speak to me apart from it. I’m not waiting for still, small voices in my head or trying desperately to find God in the circumstances of life. I read, He speaks, I obey. Or I try anyways.
I believe that God made the world in six days. Not six ages or six phases or six million years, but in six days. 144 hours. That’s what He said, so that’s what He did.
I believe in sin. I believe that Eve actually did converse with a talking snake and that the sin of herself and her husband was as simple as taking a bite of a really good-looking piece of fruit. This is not metaphor or fable. This is just what happened. I believe you and I are both worthy of God’s wrath because of our sin.
I believe in hell. A literal, tormentuous hell that is far worse than we can imagine. There are no devils with pitchforks and no sense of community. It is just the sinner and God, full of wrath, one-on-one forever. You don’t want to experience that and neither do I.
I believe in Jesus. Born of a virgin, the perfect, Holy Son of God. He died, literally, was buried, literally, and rose, literally.
I believe there is no salvation outside of Jesus. God will not waive the requirements of righteousness at the final judgment. Not for anyone and not for everyone. If you don’t know Him, you are without excuse and forever will be.
I believe in grace - God’s unmerited favor that He chooses to extend to some; just some.
I believe in repentance, for without turning away it is impossible to turn towards.
I believe in heaven. A literal, beautiful heaven that is far better than we can imagine. There are no angels with harps but there is a wonderful sense of community. It is the community of the redeemed together with God, full of love, all together for ever. I want to experience that and hope you do too.
I believe that man’s chief purpose is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. Or even better, to glorify God by enjoying Him forever. I don’t need to undergo testing, fill out inventories or take a forty day journey to figure this out. Our purpose is as simple and as joyful as living to bring honor and joy and glory to God.
I believe in the church - the true church - which is God’s community of the elect, anxiously waiting the sound of the trumpet, dedicating themselves to carrying out God’s will while they wait. I do not believe the Catholic Church is the church. It is a false church. It leads people to hell, not to heaven. It is not sharing the burden of saving the lost, but instead giving false hope to millions. Billions.
I believe in families that honor God. The church should be the stronghold of marriage - a place the world looks to learn how marriage works. The church should be a stronghold of family, where unbelievers look to see how to make strong families that stay together.
I do believe this makes me an old-fashioned Christian.