Gershwin’s song from ‘Porgy and Bess’ expressed humorous disbelief about the Bible – at least when some stories are read too literally. The opera was written after World War One, a period in which Europe’s sense of being Christian took a major hit. The intractable and vicious war fought between ‘Christian’ nations, the terrible suffering inflicted caused much of a generation to lose its faith.
Oh Jonah he lived in de whale
For he made his home in
Dat fish’s abdomen
Oh Jonah he lived it de whale
Since then – much water has flowed under the bridge, and for many reasons, Christianity doesn’t feel like a live proposition for most people – An increasing number of people know little about it, and so aren’t even in a position to reject it.
BUT What if there is something both useful and true and beautiful in Christian faith? – What if faith is life-giving spiritual experience? What happens if you practice faith, rather than just adopt (or question) some beliefs?
Strange to say – but countless people across the globe today – serious, simple, clever – troubled people, successful people – Black, white, female, male, old and young people are all embracing Christianity for the first time. It’s a faith that is real, personal, inspiring and life-changing. Not credulous and simplistic – but a faith that transforms them, and gives them hope for transforming a chaotic world.
Christianity – too big to swallow? – all washed up? – It ain’t necessarily so!