Sunday, March 23, 2008

Here, you can have this back

He is risen! These words will be spoken and celebrated around the world today as the resurrection of Jesus is commemorated on this Easter Sunday. But how can I know it’s real? Who’s to say it’s just not another story passed down from generations ago that we just accept as true? Why Jesus and not Mohammed or Budda? How can I be certain? Of course I’ve heard all the arguments about the primacy of Christ, that he’s either a lunatic, a liar or Lord. I’ve sat through the sermons using stacked boxes that represent other religions, and Jesus’ stack of boxes reaches the ceiling. I could hand you book after book that uses historical evidence, philosophical reason, and logical rationale for why one should believe in the resurrection of Jesus. And you may have also. But doesn’t something still fall a little short? I used to think that seeing it with my own eyes would have made it easier, but even the text itself says that it will be better for those who have NOT seen and yet still believe. How is that the case? If I could have only seen the empty tomb with my own two eyes, it would put all the disbelief aside. Or would it? Science and its facts only go so far in giving us what we think we need to believe. Science limits itself to what it experiences within the senses, and since Jesus is not physically present and doesn’t fit in a test tube, there isn’t the same kind of verification that Science demands, and therefore it seems logical to dismiss the claims surrounding him. Future Pastor, build the Church of the Future on this foundation. Recognize the limits of physical, philosophical and logical evidence for belief. These have their place and I would add that they can provide support, but nothing will substitute the one thing required for belief, and that is faith. To lead this way requires a confidence that the Spirit of Jesus can and will communicate Truth in a way that results in faith. It’s not all up to you. It’s not all on your shoulders. If it is, remove it and give it back. His yoke is easy. His burden is light. Continue to be kind to those who don’t believe like you. If arguments arise, don’t be defensive. Listen more, talk less. You may be getting in the way of what He is doing if you speak too much. Offer kindness and blessing. And in all of this, keep doing so by faith. He is risen, indeed!

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Thank you for saying that so well! I have been talking to my students about the relationship between science and faith all year and we've been coming to the same conclusion. :) S.