In today's world, is Christianity practical? Is it realistic and useful, or just a 2,000 year-old fairy tale?
All you have to do is look around to see that modern society seems to condone just the opposite of Christian principles: Grab yours first. Don't worry about the other guy. Do whatever you have to to get to the top.
If you believe today's rules, money is the most important thing in life. Have sex with as many people as you want. Don't be concerned about other people's feelings. The poor are lazy, stupid people who don't want to work. There's no God, heaven or hell, so live it up and do whatever you please. Sadly, that is what millions of people believe.
Maybe that's a pessimistic assessment of how things are today. Yet that's exactly what we see on television and in movies.
Are Christians naive suckers who are being conned by hypocrite preachers promising pie-in-the-sky? Is Christianity practical or is it a just a quaint relic from a simpler time?
Christianity hinges on Jesus of Nazareth. Was he, as many nonbelivers think, just another wise teacher, a good but mortal man? Is Christianity just an elaborate scam invented by Paul and other early church leaders?
That seems possible except for one thing: the utter dependability of human nature. If you know anything at all about human nature, you know that terrified people don't instantly become courageous, bold, and even foolhardy for no reason whatsoever.
But that's precisely what happened with Jesus's disciples. After Christ's crucifixion, his 11 apostles (Judas had hanged himself) were hiding in a locked room. They were petrified that they might be executed in that same agonizing way as Jesus.
It would not have been the first time the Romans resorted to mass execution to put down a potential revolution. About 100 years before Jesus' death, the Roman empire crucified 6,000 slaves who had rebelled under the leadership of Spartacus.
Yet just a few days after Jesus was executed, these same terror-stricken disciples were preaching in the temple and on the streets of Jerusalem. They ignored the threats of the Sanhedrin, were beaten and imprisoned, but still would not keep quiet. These men never asked 'Is Christianity practical?' They personally put it to the test.
Tradition tells us that 10 of those 11 original disciples eventually died as martyrs.
Nobody will give up their life for a myth, a mass hallucination, or a concocted story. It's simply not
human nature. Would you? Of course not.
Jesus lived 2,000 years ago. Is Christianity practical today? Is it relevant to our 21st century world?
When it comes to hardheaded, bet-your-life practicality, I'll refer you to the two tools I use: The Life Application Bible and the Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible.
These two versions of God's instruction book are so practical you may be shocked by how relevant they are to your life. They bring Jesus' teachings to bear on the problems you face at work, with your family, and in trying to make sense of what happens to you.
The Christian writer C.S. Lewis, a former atheist, also puts Christianity to work in today's world. All of his books bring Christianity down to earth.
Lewis, like many Christians, was once an atheist until he began investigating the Faith. Today, thousands of scientists, doctors, professors, and other highly intelligent people are followers of Jesus Christ because Christianity provides the best explanation for the creation of the universe, the wisest way to conduct your life, and the promise of eternal life in heaven after death.
People who shut out God go from one thing to another trying to get peace and fulfillment, but they never find it.
Materialism? A house full of junk brings no peace, just a hunger for more junk. Affairs? Sooner or later, the shallowness and futility of that life ends in the terrible toll of self-loathing. Career? Company loyalty is a joke. Have a bad month or a bad year and you're thrown away like a piece of trash.
Jesus Christ is real. Jesus Christ matters. Jesus Christ is eminently practical and totally fulfilling, moreso in today's world than ever before.
Who knows better how to live than the God who created your life? Who can teach you lasting values better than the God who has always existed? And who can heal your hurts better than the God who loves you so much he took all your sins upon himself to save you?
Is Christianity practical? It is the only way practical in this world, and your only guarantee of neverending happiness in the next.