That's the title of a book written back in the mid-80's by Rubel Shelley that helped some of us in Churches of Christ to re-think our faith, our history, and our relationship to the church at large. It also expresses some things I've been thinking about recently as I've considered how to help our church's kids, teenagers, and new believers without much connection to the history of the Churches of Christ understand our plea for the restoration of New Testament Christianity and the unity of the church.
That double plea hasn't always fit together well, as Rick Atchley from The Hills Church of Christ in Fort Worth illustrates below:
"I Just Want to Be a Christian" is also the title of a sermon series I'll be working on for the next few weeks, exploring the plea of the restoration of the New Testament faith and the unity of all believers in Jesus Christ. I'm doing this series for two reasons:
- Historically, when we haven't given attention to this we've tended to forget unity, and have allowed the restoration of New Testament Christianity to devolve into a rigid, legalistic view of the Bible that allows no diversity of opinion and marginalizes divergent opinions.
- I want my son, the other teenagers and young adults, and the new believers in our congregation to carry this historic plea - one that I think is as valid today as it ever was - forward into the next generation.
I'll post audio files of the sermons here, in case someone's interested in commenting.