Lets Be Clear - Why We Believe(RandyP adapted from his sj[RecentComments@CR18Day_23] entry )
nkjv@Mark:16 - This chapter presents evidence of Christ's resurrection. Let's be clear however why it is we believe even this very evidence.
Mark 16:11 kjv
Let us be clear as to why we believe in the death/resurrection/ascension of Jesus Christ the Son of God. It is not just because of these few testimonies from people that had seen Him in the flesh resurrected at the time (central and key as this evidence is).
- No, we believe on Christ Jesus because of all that God has established prior to these testimonies even before Jesus Himself was born incarnate.
- No, we believe because of the way God established and confirmed Jesus during the time of His earthly walk.
- No, we believe because of what God established immediately after Jesus' ascension.
- No, we believe because of the totality of scripture.
- We believe in the death/resurrection and ascension of HIS Son Jesus Christ because it is fully within God's revealed character to have done this so.
We believe because of what was promised Adam and Eve of a seed to crush Satan, we believe because of what was promised Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, we believe because of what was promised to Moses and David and several verifiable prophets speaking to all Israel. We further believe because of the way God conducted HIMSELF even in man's utter disobedience, we believe because of the grace and mercy and longsuffering HE has shown successively to each generation, what HE has brought HIS people through, how HE has gathered HIS people, how lovingly HE has at times corrected them, how HE has stayed true to HIS word and not forsaken us even when we have not fully reciprocated.
Much more we believe because of the manner in which Jesus was born, the attention and resistance and tension from men His presence received even early on as an infant, later because of His teachings, because of His works (their size and scope and form). We believe because of the way He became despised and rejected for little or no tangible reason, sought after to kill, illegally tried and sentenced, brought before the Roman magistrate to execute because the Jews could not themselves do it. We believe because of what Jesus told us Himself that He was going to do, also what those who knew Him best to a man/woman said that had actually happened.
We believe because of the way people responded after His death, during the reports of His resurrection, the wild fire that immediately started throughout the region because of His gospel. We believe because of the effect this essential truth has proven to be in the everyday lives of everyday people throughout the ages ever since. In other words we believe because of all that God has established before and after to make this known, to confirm it as happening, to bless and favor those that this gospel has touched.
We believe in part because identifiable men and women long before and long after were themselves convinced beyond any reasonable doubt and lived the remainder of their lives in full acknowledgement of that even unto severe persecution, even painful death.
In essence we have collected the best individual books relating to this evidence and establishment of this one great truth into one larger book of books. Each book has it's own place in the chain of evidence. This Bible is why we believe what we do about that Jesus of Nazareth, His death/resurrection/ascension, that is why we believe even further in the revelation of His soon second coming and the day of final judgment. It is because of all that God has done throughout man's time on earth that brings us mutually to these very same conclusions.
How do we know that? By well informed and revealed biblical faith!
Certainly, many a skeptic will argue the resurrection and ascension singularly as if that were all it took to dispel all this other. They will say that not having seen His resurrected body ourselves leaves no room for belief. Remember that the disciples themselves were once skeptics as well. I would say rather that it is all this other along with this eye witness testimony that proves the case for this one tremendously joyous thing:
Christ indeed has Risen!
Yes, if our proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is to ring true in other listener's hearts we need then to be much clearer to state not only what it is we believe but also to express why it is that we have come to trust our very souls it... what it is that best establishes why they should believe in it as well.
1Peter 3:15 kjv