Are you a Christian?

I have a somewhat sociological question for the blogosphere. What make someone (YOU) decide to call himself or herself a Christian? This question can be applied to many things, but I am specifically interested in its relation to Christianity.

To YOU, what is a defining characteristic that would lead you to say, “Yes, I am a Christian!”? I am assuming for many “devout” Christians this will be a fairly simple question. I would really like to hear from people who consider themselves “marginal” Christians (not marginal people, mind you), those who don’t consider themselves devout.

Why do some people consider themselves Christian if certain Christian beliefs aren’t held? I am guess that many people would consider Jesus a good person but if asked about his divinity, they might shy away. Or if pressed about Christianity being the Truth and therefore nothing else could be, there are Christians that might distance themselves. My question, then, is why is there the need to call yourself Christian?

It seems there are many “church-goers” out there, but it is always difficult to have an accurate representation of “real” Christians. Of course this brings up the problem of what a “real” Christian is. Far be it from me to say who is and who isn’t. For this “exercise” I am more concerned with why people feel they have to fit into that category if they don’t consider themselves devout. Is being a Deist not inclusive enough?

I am quite curious to hear what people have to say about this.


UPDATE: The discussion has been great in the comments section, I would love to hear from more of you!

UPDATE: Glenn (hope you don’t mind the link Glenn!) has posted some more insightful thoughts on this subject over here.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

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