To Prove You’re a Christian

During my high School or early college years, (which are longer ago than I care to remember) I heard an account of from the 13th Century of Crusaders entering villages and towns looking for heretics. All heretics were put to death. If accused of heresy, you had an opportunity to defend yourself and to prove your allegiance to Christianity.

As a side point, allow me a disclaimer. I do not condone what these men did, supposedly in the name of Christ. God and Christ had little to do with the actions of these men. History shows that men seeking power and fortune used and abuse Christianity (or a form of it) for their own advantage and not to spread the gospel of peace that scripture records. Now back to my original intent.

When the Inquisitors came to Toulouse, France according to some accounts, they came upon a certain individual who lived just outside the city. He was a laborer by trade and would walk through the streets crying out to the crowds these words:

“Listen to me, citizens! I am no heretic: I have a wife, and sleep with her, and she has borne me sons. I eat meat, I tell lies and swear, and I am a good Christian. So do not believe it when they say I am an atheist.”

For the record, this man died at the stake persistently insisting he was a good Christian and Catholic.

Remembering this story started my wheels turning this morning. How would one prove they were a Christian today? If asked for the reason for the hope you have, what would you say? If asked to prove you are a Christian, what evidence would you submit?


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