Our Faith

Lots of people mix up faith and religion. Faith 'is being sure of what we hope for' (Hebrews 11:1). Religion should be about the practical outworking of faith in worship and loving service. At its best religion glorifies only God and shows us how to relate to God and each other by following the way that Jesus taught. It builds faith and helps people live a truly fruitful life in common with other Christians. At its worst it puts people off God entirely and when that has happened then the Church should be thoroughly ashamed of itself for letting down those it is called to serve and coming between God and his people. If that has happened to you then take a risk and look at it again. It is worth it.

Contrary to what you may imagine the Christian faith is not about petty rules and "thou shalt nots." It is not about working your way to heaven, satisfying a tyrannical and demanding God or a judgemental church. It is not about removing your brain and gullibly accepting a load of hocus pocus. It is about being open to the ridiculous generosity and grace of God who loves us and forgives us and calls us back to himself, not because a single one of us deserves it but because our best chance in life now and after death is in relationship with him through Jesus Christ. And God wants the best chance of life for each one of us. Whoever you are, whatever you have done, wherever you have been the door to His forgiveness and love is open any time you ask. Christians believe that God can be trusted and that "If God is for us then who can be against us?" (Romans 8) This is the heart of the Christian faith.

Death did not succeed in silencing Jesus - he is alive and that means his love is alive having survived the worst that we can doHow do we know that this insane generosity is true? How do we know that the Creator of all wants to be in loving relationship with you and me? Because he sent his Son, Jesus Christ, to spell it out for us in a way we can actually understand. Not just to preach at a bunch of fishermen, not just to grab attention with a few miracles but to take the terrible punishment for us that our turning away from goodness deserves; But to die for our sins; to be betrayed and rejected and executed in a humiliating and agonising way. And all without turning his back on us. Death did not succeed in silencing him or removing him from the world. He is alive and that means that his love is alive having survived the worst that we can do.

And once we begin to understand this then we can open ourselves up to God’s love and mercy and freedom. When we really begin to get the message then in gratitude and confidence we try to live generous lives, always asking how the gifts given us - practical or spiritual - can be shared in a way that helps other people be more fully alive. And we begin to trust the generosity of others and be free to receive what they have to give us. That is the Christian faith, centred on the extraordinary irrationality of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ but tangibly changing lives every day. If you want to know more click here.

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