Question of the day: a psychological experience?

I was scouting the internet as I often do, and I came across an interesting question.

Treat this question as if you were witnessing to someone, sharing the good news of the Gospel, and they in response asked you this sincerely.

No doubt this is a legit question that many unbelievers ask when confronted with Christianity. I myself had similiar questions in the past before I accepted Christ as my Savior.

Here’s the question…

How can I be sure Christianity is not just another emotional or psychological experience?

Keep in mind that if the person is not saved, they probably have doubts about whether the Bible is truly legit or not. They’re not going to take God’s Word as an authority on the matter until faith comes in to play; therefore, loading them down on Scripture verses probably won’t really help them much at the start.

What would you say to these people?
How would you answer this question?
Thoughts?  Opinions?  Testmionies?

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Posted on April 4, 2011, in Question of the Day and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Very interesting, first I would find out what common ground we have and go from there.. in general, first things coming to mind are:

    (a) I would present and submit to consideration the arguments and ideas that point to the existence of a creator.
    (a) Present the evidences of the historicity of the existence of Jesus, His claims and the logical, statistical and honest probabilities that, considering such amount of ‘coincidences’, He ma be in fact the Son of God and that He indeed rose from the dead.
    (b) From there, we would consider why we believe The Bible is the word of God and then salvation… supported by my own Bible-backed personal experience.(and others’)

    I’ve done it before and found it useful and for th most part effective.

  2. Whether someone doubts the Bible or not should never stop you from ‘loading them down on Scripture verses.’ Your great monologue on why the Bible is true and your deep thoughts on Christianity are powerless without the word of God. If they’re going to ‘believe’ anything you say, essentially that’s faith, and it will come in no other way than by the word of God (Romans 10:13–18).
    With that being said, I’m not saying to not use everything in the above response, or whatever you possibly have in your arsenal. Jesus dealt with everyone according to where they were at and what they needed (look at the difference between Nicodemus and the woman at the well). I’m just saying always use scripture—even if they don’t believe it—use it like it’s as natural as the very air you breathe; they will at least know that YOU believe it!

  3. You can’t prove Jesus to an unbeliever. The evidence exists, but the sinful mind will refuse to accept it.
    You have to tell them it’s faith. More importantly, you have to live like you believe it. Show them how happy salvation makes you.
    Most importantly, pray for them. They won’t open their eyes until the Spirit opens their hearts.

    Not to demean a faithful testimony, however. That is certainly a primary instrument that the Spirit uses. Just bear in mind, as I’m sure you all do, that part of a faithful testimony is a faithful life.

  4. Each of the comments above has real value. This is one of those questions whose answer probably depends on what common ground you find with that one person, and what it was in their life that led them to ask the question. You may go heavier on Scripture, or experience, or even simpler things (for instance, what first made me believe – and turned me away from atheism – was the love and joy I saw in the people at one small church, and the miracles they told about that had happened to them).

    My family has had many experiences that we sometimes tell others. But one of the most dramatic actually happened to a friend of ours I’ve known for over 40 years (and if I’ve told this same story here before, please forgive me). He and his wife were moving from the Seattle area to eastern Washington, but without a place to live picked out ahead of time. They got a late start, drove down near Portland, and then headed east through the Columbia River gorge. After dark, as they passed through one small town, they noticed a lone real estate office that had its lights on. They stopped, went in, and told one of the male agents what they had in mind. “I think I know the perfect place for you,” he told them. It was almost 50 miles ahead, so he drew them a detailed, turn-by-turn map of how to find it. He told them to park their RV on the property overnight, and talk with the owner in the morning.

    The map was perfect. They parked on the land and were setting up their RV when they noticed headlights bouncing across the field toward them. It was the owner. “What are you doing on my property?” he demanded angrily. They explained that the real estate agent had sent them, and showed him the map. “He’s wrong,” the owner said. “This land hasn’t been for sale for years!” But as they talked, the owner softened. Finally he said “come on over after breakfast and we’ll talk.” They did, and he sold them the property!

    After that, every time Doug drove back through that town, the real estate office was closed. Finally, curious why, he found someone and asked. “Oh, that office closed nine years ago!” the man said. “It’s never been open a day since!”

    When you’re aware of experiences like that, it can get rather hard to deny the existence of God.

  5. Even in my deepest darkest past, when I was thrown in the pit of despair and question God if I was still saved…I still believed he was there. No argument can ever convince a person of the Truth… only the Holy Spirit can do that.

    And he will work through, over and within our minds, emotions, bodies etc… after all – a lot of the Fruit of the Holy Spirit working in us; happens within our emotions and not our minds.

  6. This question is often asked in several different forms but it boils down to “How can you KNOW that what you believe is TRUE?”

    I would usually start by agreeing with the person that there is NO WAY that I can PROVE to them the truth of a living Christ.

    I could give them FACTS concerning creation, God, the birth, life, death and resurrection of Christ, the authenticity of the Word and so many other things. These might help someone to believe, but . . .
    The ONLY way to KNOW is by experiencing the relationship oneself.

    I would testify as to the way my life changed completely when I became a Christian. I would testify to the way He has been my constant Companion, my Guide, my Encourager, my Challenger, my Strength and Enabler, my Everything, for 52 years and of the REALITY of the relationship we have together.

    My relationship with Him is just as real as that with my loving husband, my family or my friends, but that cannot be proven to another person.

    That relationship must be experienced for oneself.

    If the person was really interested, I would invite him/her to look at the Scriptures with me, to see just who God is and what authority He has and to see what HE says about us, about our life and about eternity.

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