Why do you believe in Jesus?
Have you ever revisited what it was that drew you to say you are a “follower” of the One who claimed to be “one” with God? Was it something someone said? Was it something Jesus said or did? Was it something someone said about Jesus? Was it pressure or influence from peers or parents and “coming to Jesus” seemed like the right thing to do at the time? Is it possible that our reasons for claiming faith may change over time? After all, whether one is a young child or a not so young person making some kind of statement of faith in Jesus, at the beginning one’s “statement”is likely to be pretty rudimentary compared to where our spiritual paths are intended to take us over time. Why did you say you decided to follow Jesus?
Like every religion, Christianity requires faith. Specifically, Christianity requires faith in a person.Christians don’t necessarily believe Jesus rose from the dead because the Bible says so. Especially today, that doesn’t seem to be enough of a claim for sceptics and seekers. Christians today, in fact even those simply inquiring about Christianity today, are more prone to believe Jesus rose from the dead because reputable eyewitnesses, hundreds of them, said this was true and they experienced it. They saw for themselves the resurrected Jesus or believed in someone who saw him first hand. Confirmation by a living eyewitness is a luxury we don’t have 2000+ years later and it likely contributes to the challenge of considering belief by a skeptical world. Show me something! (I believe this is our cue to enter stage left and authentically and consistently demonstrate to the world what a life looks like that has been touched by and is being transformed by the Spirit of Christ)
In his day, Jesus called upon his followers to believe in him. Not simply in his ideas or even the miracles he performed, but who he was and who he represented. “I and the Father are one.” (John 10:30) and “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.” (John 14:9) In a sense, this is now our calling today, pointing others to Jesus as the one who is trustworthy to create living proof in “whosoever will believe in Him” as a testament to his love, power and resurrection.
When Jesus died, the dream was shattered. Was Jesus confused about his identity, his deity or had he intentionally duped his followers? They fled. Keeping his teachings alive made no sense until the proof of his resurrection from the dead. By the way, is there visible, historical proof of your “resurrection” from the dead into new life in Christ?
This is where the “story” gets really good. These early followers were so committed to what they evidenced in Jesus’ resurrection that they sacrificed their lives for their crucified and risen leader. Why else would they risk their lives to reengage this movement? And here we are, 2000+ years later discussing it. The hinge of our history was not so much what Jesus taught, as great as it was, but what Jesus did. With the resurrection of Jesus there was a resurrection of faith. When the Apostle Peter hit the streets as we read in the book of Acts, he didn’t focus on repeating Jesus’ teaching and parables. Peter preached “you killed him, God raised him, we’ve seen him, our words are reliable.” (personal paraphrase)
Everyone since has lived and died. No-one since has died and lived like Jesus has. So, whether it’s A.D. 100 or A.D. 2019, the choice is believing in a historical event. We believe in many of these though we have not seen or witnessed them and yet we rely on our sources and are resolute about them. No doubts!. You would think one of such life and death proportions would merit great investigation. Why do you believe in Jesus? Think About It.