A Christian: What It Means To Be One (5)

In my anxiety to be both plain and instant, I am tempted to state just a condition, like faith, and let it go at that. Jesus himself stated Christianity in terms of its condition only, one time when He said, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned." But remember He was here simply stating conditions, and was not giving the content of results.

Perhaps we had better go back and bring up again our figure of a house. Perhaps we had better admit that we cannot describe the house which is Christianity from one approach only. Approaching it from one, the front, Christianity is a creed to be believed; approaching it from the side, Christianity is a life to be lived; entering and viewing it from within, Christianity is an experience to be enjoyed. The true Christian is a Christian in doctrine, in life and in experience, all. If we define it in terms of doctrine only, we shall define but its intellectual phase. If we define it in terms of life we shall define it only in its practical and ethical phase. If we define it in terms of experience only we shall still give but a partial description, and our omissions will despoil our definition of its value.

The End