Thursday, 25 December 2014

What was then (and is now) convincing about the truth and reality of Jesus Christ?

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Then and now are different.

Then (not a complete list):

1. Prophecy - that Jesus was (had a strong claim to being) the heir to the throne of King David, King of Israel - this was the predicted lineage of the Messiah (sent by God).

2. The miracles- especially raising of the dead. This implied supernatural power.

3. The endorsement of John the Baptist - regarded as the holiest man alive.

4. The charisma, personal authority, intelligence and learning of Jesus himself.

5. His resurrection. 

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Now (again not a complete list):

1. Personal revelation/ being born again - an intuitive conviction.

2. Tradition, historical evidence (including historical evidence of the above five listed factors)

3. The (only) complex, complete and coherent theology/ philosophy.

4. The societal fruits of Christianity, the socio-political consequences of the faith; or, negatively, what has happened when Christianity has been abandoned - the fruits of apostasy.

5. The psychological fruits of Christianity - the personal consequences of the 'experiment' of Christian belief and living (or, negatively, the personal results of abandoning faith, Christian morals etc).

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So the situation, the evidence, then versus now differs almost completely.

But the basic human condition remains: Christianity is a choice.

There is substantial evidence in favour, but the positive evidence all has deficiencies and limitations, and can always all be subjected to critique and questions; and there is also evidence against - therefore, as always, the situation is not conclusive or compelling in either direction.

Then and now, a choice must be made, a commitment is required.

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