driver wrote:What attracts you to Christian Deism? Were you from mainline or fundamentalism Christianity before becoming a Deist? Do you like the fact that we mainly look at the historical Jesus without all the dogmas or supernatural myths attached to him? How do you view Jesus? Teacher, healer, prophet, philosopher or a little bit of all of them? Has Christian Deism changed your life at all?
My attraction is primarily to Jesus - as an outstanding example of what it means to be 'anointed by God' (teacher, healer, prophet, philosopher - all of those things). My 'Christian' views appear to me to be compatible with Deism, but I was and am 'Christian' first and foremost.
I was raised in a fundamentalist Christian family, and later embraced both 'Reformed' (Calvinistic/Presbyterian) and 'Pentecostal' forms of Christianity (though most of my friends assured me that Reformed and Pentecostal were completely incompatible). After some events that shook the very foundations of my beliefs (in my mid thirties) I sought to renounce Christianity altogether. I figured I made an agreement with God and Jesus: I wouldn't bother them and they wouldn't bother me!
Ultimately it didn't work though; it was as if Jesus was always right there with me, occasionally tapping me on the shoulder and saying "you can't get rid of my Father and me that easily".
Whether it was just that Christian teaching was so deeply ingrained that I couldn't get rid of it entirely, or there really is some 'spiritual' sense in which God and Jesus are really 'with me', I can't argue dogmatically.
Nevertheless, my 'Christianity' is way outside the bounds of 'orthodoxy', so traditional Christians are certain that I have been deceived by the Devil and I'm on the fast track to hell (the fact that I don't believe in hell is a sure proof that I'm going there). At the same time, I frequently wonder if I'm too Christian to be Deist. (My Christian friends believe I'm too Deistic to be Christian.)
So if some of you find yourselves wondering sometimes if I'm really a Deist, I can't find that surprising. My viewpoint is really very eclectic, drawing on many different religious persuasions (including Hindu, Buddhist, and Muslim), and consequently very 'liberal'. I'm still more 'traditionally' Christian than say Thomas Jefferson (as reflected in the Jefferson Bible) and most on this 'Christian Deism' forum - because I believe to a large extent in the 'miracles' of the Bible (particularly of the New Testament). I don't believe that any 'miracles' suspend or supersede 'natural law' though - they just reveal areas of 'natural law' that 'science' hasn't caught up with yet. [The virgin birth? No - it's a story that pretty obviously could have no 'eyewitnesses', and seems to me to be counter to the prevalent New Testament teaching of the full humanity of Jesus. The resurrection? Yes. The ascension? No, not literally at least - unless Jesus was 'beamed up' into a UFO hovering above the clouds!
I do enjoy reading and corresponding on this forum, so I hope I won't find myself getting 'excommunicated' eventually.