Premier Radio in the UK, in response to the The National Secular Society encouraging 100,000 people to sign a certificate to “debaptise” themselves are asking 100,000 people to publicly stand up and declare that they are Christians.
I won't be signing the declaration, despite my disquiet about living in a secular country that believes my faith should be relegated to the realm of the private.
The statement I am asked by premier to declare is:
"I affirm publicly that I believe in the life, teaching, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ as recorded in scripture and expressed in the historic creeds of the Christian faith."
I like the idea of encouraging Christians to connect their belief to public life, but wonder why it reduces christianity to beliefs, and not practices. To be a christian in public, is more than stating your private beliefs in public.
One of the many problems with the secularism is that it doesn't care what we believe, as long as we practice it in private (and take offense at the mention of it in public, like breaking wind in a restaurant). But what it hates the most is the practice of faith, at work, and the world, shaped by a church community. For it alone believes it can practice belief in public from it's own standpoint, able to relegate everyone else beneath it's own beliefs and public practice.
Our belief in truths as Christians only make sense when they are practice, and lived, publicly with others, through the church. Reducing Christianity to a statement of beliefs about Christianity, is to play the game on the terms set by others. To argue about 'truth', within the framework secularists have set for keeping Christian beliefs private and out of the realm of practice, is part of the problem.
So what kind of declaration would I sign, or join up to on facebook?
"I affirm publicly that I try to believe and practice the life, teaching, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ as recorded in scripture and expressed in the historic creeds of the Christian faith, within the Church to bring God's salvation, to myself, my home, my family, my work and community, my world, and that this way of life is worth living and dying for"
And even then it would be one aimed at Christians, calling each other to faithful public living, and not a truth statement response to secularists.