Alister McGrath thinks Christian faith provides something we’re in great need of right now.
For me, one of the most remarkable things about the Christian faith is its capacity to energise, to stimulate, political engagement. What I mean by that is saying, look, here is a better and bigger vision of what human beings are, what they’re meant to be, what a just society should look like. Let’s try and implement that. And that’s very important – it’s about showing compassion to the poor, it’s about caring for people. And that seems to me to be something enormously important in contemporary Western culture.
And Christianity talks about heaven, but it also recognises that part of the Christian vocation is to try and make this world more like heaven. Trying to change structures, change the way people think for the better. So for me, Christianity is integral to social action. And there have been numerous surveys that have shown that we need precisely this, that we are losing the sense of, in effect, social engagement. People are losing interest in charity work because they don’t see the point of it anymore. Religion energises these things and motivates them and we really need to keep that.