My journey through faith/introduction


(Luca) #1

Hey everyone I’m Luca Bertotto. People call me Totti because of my last name. it’s a thing in the family. I live in Belgium and i’m (only) 15 years old.
I’ve always been an atheist until i was 13. Where i grew up my friends including I, always laughed with religion. Espescially Christianity. The things the teacher told us in religion class was always very stupid to us. Until a couple days after my 13th birthday a Jehovah witness came to our door and gave us a preach or talk i don’t know what to call it. And that day i gave it a honest thought.
Of course i began searching the internet about religion and came to a site named Gotquestions.
They gave a good explanation for things/resurrection of Christ and why you should believe etc.
And it really did make sense to me. Then while reading answers i found that they believed the Bible said that the earth is 6000 years old. It was directly against what i always knew about the world by reading books about dinosaurs(and i love dinosaurs). So that was hurdle 1 in my faith. Then i found articles about not being able to believe in evolution if you were a christian.This was the second hurdle that i could not cope with. I sent a message to the people at gotquestions and they redirected me to sites as AIG and CMI. I directly began to read all of their articles and stances on interpretation of the bible. Why evolution could not be true. How to rationalize the world without millions of years. etc. Of course i had no clue about the deep science of evolution. And so i bought in to the things CMI and AIG said. Reason 1: because they told us they had real Ph D’s and were true scientists so i trusted them. And reason 2: that they said all Christians must believe that the earth was so young.
This for me meant that literally every single christian denied evolution, So why not me too.
After Being a YEC a year. And discussing evolution. People kept bringing up evidence for evolution.
So i sent messages to CMI and AIG about the evidence they gave me. And mostly they either pasted an article or said “that site is full of old articles and are full of lies”. This of course was very fishy to me. Also the fact that they deleted comments that seemed to answer or refute their articles.
After 8 messages of asking a question they gave me an ultimatum: You either believe what the Bible says and are a Christian. Or you believe what the atheist scientists say about the earth and evolution. This to me was very rude. And not helpful. I was on the brink of giving up christianity again. Because it was slowly coming to me that i always knew that evolution made more sense than dinosaurs on a boat. And because the way they said it wasn’t possible to be a christian while also trusting in evolution. Shortly after, i quit going to sites like CMI AIG ICR because i kept finding issues/ contradictions/problems with their explanations of things.Then a couple weeks after i found a blog called “is there a god?” The creator of this Blog had articles about evolution not being a problem for Christianity. And i of course was like: What on earth is this. So i sent a mail to him.
And ever since he is a good friend of mine because he has shown me that you can be a christian and trust in evolution. He has also helped me when i had doubts about certain things or when i had a difficult time understanding something. Then i went on a search to find more people like this. And sure enough i found tons of blogs sites including biologos that have the same worldview.
And now i’m here finally dared to get onto the biologos forum!
So from that point i made the conversion from YEC to EC.
Being a Christian here in Belgium isn’t easy. Alot of people are quite hostile against it.
Actually i don’t have any friends who are christian. I have told someone and directly i got rediculed for it. Belgium is actually the country where most people think religion does more harm than good.

see : https://www.ipsos.com/sites/default/files/ct/news/documents/2017-10/globaladvisor_Religion_Charts_AUSTRALIA.pdf

I personally go to a catholic school. And it has gone so far that the class religion doesn’t actually talk about the bible anymore but talks about social problems or bullying. God is barely mentioned.
My teacher for religion is really nice. We talk about the bible and God a lot when the other classmates are going to another class. But when God does come up. I see myself in the other students. They are exactly as i was. So i’m sure that if they gave it a true thought and were shown the way it really is that they could change their minds as well.
My family isn’t very christian or catholic.(They don’t ever talk about it really) I was never forced to believe anything. It was my own choice to believe what i do now. But now that i have you guys to help me if i have problems. And also UnkleE (The mr who has that blog) it softens the blow a little. That i am not all that alone in the way i see the world.

I hope my age doesn’t reduce the credebility you guys give me. And i hope my english wasn’t too big of an obstacle for this post.
I might be making alot of edits to fix things or add stuff that i have forgotten!


Off-topic spin-off thread: Wookin's ideas about interpreting various NT passages
(Christy Hemphill) #2

53 posts were merged into an existing topic: Off-topic spin-off thread: Wookin’s ideas about interpreting various NT passages


(Christy Hemphill) #6

Thanks for telling your story, Totti. I think it’s so fun that we have such an international crew here. @archicastor1 is from Uruguay, @Jonathan_Burke is Australian, @Casper_Hesp is from the Netherlands, and we have quite a few Brits and Canadians. I live in Mexico. Once in a while people chime in from Brazil, Malaysia, and other far flung places. Glad to add Belgium to the list. I was there once for a few days when I was nineteen to catch a plane after a study abroad program in France and Switzerland and a visit to a friend in Czech Republic. The Belgian chocolate was every bit as good as people promised it would be.

It’s interesting that you ended up at Gotquestions. BioLogos went back and forth with them over what they said about us a while back and they very nicely updated their question to be more accurate even though they totally don’t agree with us.

I wonder if @Casper_Hesp has any good advice about how you could find some real life community with other Christian young people in Belgium. Support from the internet is great, but it’s always good to have some face to face interactions too. Maybe try contacting Navigators Europe and asking about student ministry. Or IFES. Or Cru. Or YWAM.


(Luca) #7

Yes chocolate is what we are known for! :wink:
It’s good to see that there’s alot of people on this forum!
I love diversity. Gotquestions was my go-to spot for all questions.
But since i didn’t agree with their literal interpretation anymore i stopped going.

I had no clue that @Casper_Hesp was from the Netherlands! He might indeed be able to help me!
I don’t know how religion/christianity is going in the Netherlands but its quite close so maybe not so different from here. I’d always accept help!
And perhaps those sites can help. I can look around on it for a while.


(Wookin Panub) #8

Quote: “I was on the brink of giving up Christianity AGAIN” Not to rain on your parade. But this stood out for me in a big, big way. You almost gave up Christianity (if that is even possible) because, what was being taught in some circles did not jive with what you were taught in science class? My friend, information could bring us to Christ but it certainly will not keep us in Christ. How do you know that you will stay this time? and what will you do if your theistic evolutionist view is not jiving with the secular evolutionist view? Do you know of the parable of the sower? I am not trying to be negative, but only I felt it necessary to point this out. God Bless

P.S. I am a huge Belgium fan Orrrrrrrigi! I am pulling for you guys in the next world cup


(Christy Hemphill) #9

So anytime now you hardcore YEC folks could admit you have a problem instead of just victim blaming the intelligent kids who are unsatisfied with all the non-answers. Your team lost. Because you have a lot of lousy arguments and you tell people with legitimate questions that they just don’t have enough faith. That’s your problem, not his.


(Luca) #10

Well. I had an ultimatum.
Either you believe in the YEC interpretation. (young earth, No evolution)
Or you believe the “secular science” and the Bible becomes void and you won’t be a christian.

The YEC view has been proven false. So it would be very unreasonable for me to still believe it.
So yes. If YEC was the only interpretation i wouldn’t be a christian now.


(Wookin Panub) #11

My “team” lost?? You have me all wrong. This is not a competition with me. I am called to speak the truth, even if that means speaking to an empty room, because I know God will get the glory. That is my ONLY focal point. (1 Corinthians 13:1) “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”


(Luca) #12

It is very possible. Many people find issues that, to them are a big problem. So they end up abandoning their faith. That is why there are forums like this and sites like Biologos. To help solve those problems.
And strengthen your faith.


(Luca) #13

If Christianity were proven false. No way around it.
Would you still believe it?


#14

Welcome to the Forum, and, more importantly, welcome to the family!

Part of your post actually angers me–that the insistence on YEC puts barriers between people and Jesus (and his Church). I’m glad you got past that.

By the way, your English is really quite good.


(Wookin Panub) #15

It’s pretty simple for Christianity to be proven false to me. You would have to prove to me that Jesus did not resurrect from the dead. You prove that to me, and I will out wit the best of them indulging in every “sin” I could think of.

(1 Corinthians 15:14) “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain.”


(Luca) #16

Thank you so much! :smiley:
You are also dutch?


#17

Well, no. My parents were both Dutch.

I’m Canadian. :rofl:


(Luca) #18

Oh! We reach that far?


#20

Great to see another brother. I’m a youngster myself and I realized the importance of getting people hooked as early as possible. I saw a quote the other day that said something like “You will be the only Bible some people will ever read in their lives.” I don’t want to miss anyone’s opportunity. And the great thing about now is that there’s so many more resources for these things than there was a generation ago. I think Francis Collins founded BioLogos in 2007, and I don’t know if I could imagine growing up in a time without all the resources, evidence and answers available widespread today. Would I be able to manage? Sure. But I am so much more confident right now than I would have otherwise been since more evidence is available. And BioLogos has been a great help. I think I joined the BioLogos a few months ago.


(Luca) #21

My thoughts exactly.
I think if forums like this and sites like Biologos are no more.
i would be struggeling.
But you are right. Together we are stronger!


#22

Together we are stronger. That’s a great way of looking at it. Thanks.


(Juan Romero) #23

Welcome, Totti. I am Juan Romero, a.k.a. archicastor1. As @Christy said, I am from Uruguay, in South America, so you will probably see me sharing some things in Spanish (translating them into English, of course).

So, you’re 15? Well, I am 16 (turning 17 in May).

GotQuestions? I like that website when it comes to questions about the Bible, but it falls flat on its face when talking about science.

I was like that until some (like two) years ago, when I discovered I didn’t have to deny evolution.

Atheist scientists? Oh brother. Tell them about Ken Miller and others, who hold traditional Christian beliefs and accept evolution. Miller, in particular, is one of the best ones around, since he has shown he can handle ID supporters by himself.

That’s a good one.

I hope you have a great time around here.


(Curtis Henderson) #24

Totti, thanks for sharing your story. I hope you feel welcome here and find a community of support. I can only wish I had the same knowledge that you and others like @Korvexius and @archicastor1 have at your age. I grew up YEC and had to make a long, hard transition to evolutionary creation that took several years. It was a tremendous relief to see someone with the credentials of Francis Collins that had come to the same conclusions that I had regarding Creation, evolution, and Genesis.

Salvation is through Jesus Christ alone and anyone attempting to enforce a particular view of Genesis as a requirement for salvation is just plain wrong.

God bless you as you follow Him!

P. S. Since I have virtually no fluency in any foreign language, I was rather impressed with your English!