20051204

So you want... Proof??

Someone said the other day that they don't believe anything that hasn't been proven.

How silly. If you think about it, nothing has been proven. Even what I see with my eyes I could have imagined. You could even be imagining up the room you're in, the computer in front of you, my existence. In order to believe anything at all (and some don't), you have to be willing to accept a certain relative level of proof.

Many people, for example, believe only what they have seen with their eyes. This is a trade-off; if you choose not to accept commonly accepted information, others could think of you as uneducated. So most choose to also believe what others, whom they trust, have seen. Most people believe what scientists say, because scientists are just reporting on what they have seen with their own eyes in experiments in the laboratory.

Often, religious people cite the story of 'doubting Thomas.' Thomas was told that Jesus Christ had just risen from the dead, but he said that he wouldn't believe it unless he could touch the wounds in Jesus hands and side. Jesus later appeared and invited Thomas to do just that. Thomas, upon seeing Jesus, didn't even need the physical contact, and called Jesus "my Lord and my God." That's when Jesus uttered the famous words, "Because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed," which is to say: "You believe because you have seen me; blessed be those who have not seen and believe anyway."

Most religious people site this story verbatim as an answer for people who demand proof. So you've probably heard it before. But it ignores the fact that there is proof.

We are the generation of believers. Most of us (including me, of course) have not seen Jesus Christ with our own eyes, but we believe the reports of those who say they have. Jesus Christ was seen by more than 5,000 people after his death. What further proof do you need?? You believe the reports of scientists who have seen the results of their experiments in the laboratory. Believe the reports of those who saw Jesus before, during, and after His death. You believe the reports of newspaper journalists about what they have seen in the field. Believe reports of Christians about the things that Jesus Christ has done for them.

Well, aren't there high-brow philosophers, even famous scientists, who don't believe that anything is certain? Is anything really certain at all? But isn't that quite a long way to go to avoid admitting that Jesus Christ was who He claimed to be? We're scared to death to admit it because if we do, then we're also admitting that we deserve to go to Hell. And we stop there! Why? Don't you know that isn't the whole story? Don't you know that you can't solve a problem by denying its existence? Jesus didn't come to condemn us all to Hell, He came to save us from it! Believing in the sacrifice He made isn't going to condemn you, it's going to save you! When Jesus died on the cross, He took your sin to hell with Him! And when He rose up from the grave, He secured for you eternal life! Your belief will not condemn you, your unbelief will condemn you. Give up your pride and throw yourself on the mercy of a God who sacrificed His life to pay your ransom from death.

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