21 December, 2006

The Schooling of Christ

So why are you a Christian? Archibald Alexander probes us to ask this question. Have you been converted to Christ by the Spirit of God, or are you a Christian because that is how you have been raised. It is worth meditating on whether you believe because you have been taught thus by earthly tutors, or have you been taught at the footstool of Christ?

“Suppose a person to be educated in the Christian religion from childhood, and is taught to believe that the Scriptures are of divine authority, that Christ is the only Savior and that he must depend upon Him alone for salvation together with all the other doctrines which are essential to salvation. He has that kind of faith in these things which is common to most men who live in a Christian country. He believes them as he does a historical record. And we may suppose him also to attend to the external part of all those duties which he has been taught as incumbent on him as a Christian, he may also have exercises which seem to resemble those of a real Christian, and may have his mind sometimes considerably engaged in thinking about religion. This man is possessed of what I would call a dead faith, and it is of the very same kind he would have had if he had been educated in the religion of Mohammed; for he believes in Christ for the very same reason, and in the same manner which a Turk believes in Mohammed."
-Dr. Archibald Alexander, 1772-1851, Princeton Seminary

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That can be a very real struggle for those of us raised in Christian households. Don't get me wrong - I wouldn't trade it for the world, and it's a wonderful blessing. But it is easy to take things for granted, and to do things thoughtlessly. It's a good problem to have, sure, but still a definite problem.