There are those today who consider Christianity not just
wrong but evil! They believe that the Christian message
robs people of joy and freedom, oppresses women and
LGBT+ minorities, and that we must be liberated from its
repressive and toxic influence!
In this magazine we look at some evidence that
demonstrates otherwise. Certainly (whilst distinguishing
between mere religion and living Christianity) we must
acknowledge the terrible injustices that have been done in
the name of Christ, and that Christians don’t have a
monopoly on virtue and compassion. But from the
beginning the followers of Jesus have sought to love their
neighbour and to reflect God’s character, and there’s
plenty of evidence for the beneficial impact this has had in
areas such as human rights, justice (hence the cover
photo!), the protection of life and the dignity of women, as
well as the topics examined in this magazine (page 6-7).
One author, Tom Holland, explains how in his youth he
thought that Christianity had ushered in an age of
superstition and credulity. But as he studied classical
antiquity he was shocked by its brutality and denial of any
intrinsic worth to the poor and the weak. He discovered
that it was the example of Jesus which was the foundation
for the values he cherished!
Similarly sociologist Rodney Stark (not a Christian) argues
that ‘the success of the West rested entirely on religious
foundations and that the people who
brought it about where devout Christians’.
Another historian, Paul Maier, claims that
Christianity has been ‘the most powerful
agent in transforming society for the better
across 2000 years’.
The media today and many educational establishments
are deeply hostile to biblical Christianity. Yet throughout
history Christ followers have done much good. As David
Bentley Hart says ‘A world from which the gospel had
been banished would surely be one in which millions
more of our fellows would go unfed, unnursed,
unsheltered and uneducated.’
Let us acknowledge our debt to gospel Christianity,