One of my favorite films has always been Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. As a Christian apologist, who is seeking to demonstrate and defend the truth of the Christian message, I can relate to Indy's quest for the supernatural artifact that could turn the world on its head. Though this is one of the most quotable movies in history my favorite line comes toward the end. Just after the crew arrives at the site of the holy grail they discover that not only is the enemy already present, but there are several more challenges that need to be overcome. Only Indiana Jones can successfully procure the sacred cup. Strategically, the film's villain puts a bullet into the stomach of Henry Jones Sr., Indy's father. Now the hero has a choice. He can either spend his father's final moments at his side, or attempt to quickly retrieve the grail on the off chance that it really is a miraculous object that can save his father's life. Faith vs. Naturalism. The villain then says the powerful words, "It's time to ask yourself what you believe."
What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. James 2:14-17
Faith should impact our actions. The Christian message is that there should be some actions that demonstrate the truth of what you believe. Just as Indiana Jones would have remained with his dying father had he not had faith in the grail, we will live lives that testify to naturalism if we do not have faith in the truth of the Christian message. Specifically, three things should immediately change.
1. PERSONAL EVANGELISM - If we don't really believe that Christianity is true, we will never share our faith with others. Conversations like that are awkward. They are awkward because what an individual believes about the big questions of life (where we come from, what the purpose of life is, what happens when we die) are deeply personal. They are awkward because we fear we might sound as though we think of ourselves as enlightened or morally superior. Awkwardness is icky. For that reason we often just don't reach out to others. But it's time to ask yourself what you believe. Is it a true fact about the nature of reality that those who never repent and believe will be sentenced to eternal separation from God? If that's true then it seems unthinkable that we would not preach this message.
2. PRAYER - I have my favorite celebrity Christian scholars. If I were told that they were ready to network with me on a regular basis, I would never hesitate to take advantage of that. I would want to talk with them regularly out of appreciation for their interest in my life, direction they might be able to give and knowledge I could gain. The Christian message is that someone far more famous, powerful and wise wants, not only to network with you, but bond with, transform and make you. It's time to ask yourself what you believe. If the message is true, it seems foolish to let that opportunity pass.
3. BIBLE STUDY - We ingest the thoughts of others everyday. You're doing it right now. Yet, the Creator of the universe has given you a volume of material that is universally agreed upon by Christians to be the most powerful collection of documents on earth. It has the power to provide you with insight into every subject. It's time to ask yourself what you believe. If you really believe that the message is true, how could you let a day go by without reading from the Bible?
If you are reading this blog article then I believe that you believe that you believe. Read that again very slowly. Just because you believe you believe, doesn't mean you believe in fact. If we all really believed the message as much as we say we do, wouldn't our lives look a little different?