(Male, 24) Going through a bit of a deconstruction/possible beginnings of losing my faith.

If I've gutted my own doctrinal beliefs this much, is it still Christianity?

I had this same question/concern when I started my theological study at the beginning of this year. I was raised in a Christian home and had been going to church my whole life, but I didn't understand how much lurked beneath the surface (for lack of a better term). When certain views I had held, unquestioned, my entire life began to unravel before my eyes, I got anxious that Bible College was going to strip away everything I thought I knew - and how could I truly be a Christian if everything I "knew" was wrong?

It might seem painfully optimistic, but I decided to look at this as a good thing. I truly believe that I'm being a much better Christian by critically questioning what I believe and what I'm learning, than I would be if I was too afraid to question things for fear of losing my faith in God. It was hard, and there were certainly times I sit in class and thought "This is insane," but doubt isn't the antithesis of the Christian faith (disobedience is).

Read commentaries, read books about well-known and highly regarded theologians (they then to put the more complex ideas in simpler terms), and if there's anything I've learned from studying under theologians - they love it when young people approach with questions. I have two lecturers I go to separately when I have difficult questions, because they have different ideas about different things and its always more useful to get multiple vantage points when looking at a complicated issue.

I don't see "fruit" in others, either. Most of the religious people I know, including my parents, are some of the most narrow minded and unhappy people I know.

This one is really hard. Something I value about my Bible College is that they don't sugarcoat the way that Christianity has been used by Christians to hurt and oppress various people groups (both historically and currently). It's important to understand how people have used the Bible for hate so that we don't repeat it.

In my opinion, people are often projecting their own biases and bigotry onto God, and then projecting that warped image of God back into their prayer life by using any verse they can find to justify it. All of our experiences shape how we view God, and it's easy to trick ourselves into following a god that we constructed ourselves, instead of the God of the Bible. The frustrating reality is that we can't change other people, but we can change ourselves and how we interpret things.

I'm super tired so apologies if this wasn't useful in the slightest, but hopefully this made sense and maybe sharing my experiences can help even in some small way.

/r/Christianity Thread