Thursday, March 20, 2008
Reasons not to Believe
There are reasons to believe… It’s historically verifiable that there was a man named Jesus from Nazareth who lived, reportedly performed miracles, was killed by Pontius Pilate, who had followers who claimed he was resurrected and that there was an empty tomb. In fact these followers were so convinced of his life, death and resurrection that many of them lost their lives in defense of the idea. Since that time hundreds and thousands and eventually millions of people have devoted their live to this Jesus. There are reasons to believe.
There are reasons not to believe... questions, pain, war, child pornography, hate, racism, depression, poverty, the crusades, bigotry and cable preachers to name a few.
I have a friend who had a son praying for a shot in basket ball game. He told his mom he just wanted to know that God exists and answers prayer. So his prayer was something like, “God if you really exist, help me make this shot.”
The shot didn’t go in.
So the mom was asking how should she respond to this… I wanted to tell her to tell him that he just didn’t pray hard enough or that he didn’t use the right words because God wants what is best for her boy and he would absolutely answer the right kind of prayer.
But I know better. God wont be used like a genie.
Something bigger is going on here. All of us deal with this sooner or later. Something profound is happening in this boy’s life. He wants to know God (and He wants to win the basketball game but that’s another story) but mostly he wants to know God.
To know God, you have to struggle.
Every great man or woman I know… Every great biblical character had to struggle in order to know God. They all had to decide for themselves if God really exists, if He was going to answer prayer, if He really cared about them or not.
It’s Thursday of what we now call Holy Week. We find Jesus in the garden praying, “Why?” “Is there another way?” “Father-God, where are you?”
There are reasons to believe… and there are reasons not to believe.
Everyone, incredibly including Jesus, has to decide which one they will give their life to.