Then some of the scribes and the Pharisees answered saying:  “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.  Matthew 12:38

Likewise the chief priests also………..Let the Christ, King of the Israel, descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe.  Mark 15: 31-32

First let me start out by saying this is not a debate concerning religion versus science or faith versus the scientific method.  I don’t personally see science as satanic any more than I see religion as always virtuous.  Where man is involved the answer is always going to be; it depends.

But we sure spend an incredible amount of energy  in justifying our beliefs through proof.  Think about the debate going on concerning how old the planet is.  Or the significant amount of effort being put forth to find Noah’s Ark.  If we are not careful we will elevate ourselves (at least in our own minds) to the highest judges in the universe.  We will only surely believe that which we can prove and/or at least seems logical to our thinking.

So man confronts God.  That is what was happening in Jesus’ time.  Give us a sign; show us by what authority, come down off the cross and then we will believe.  First, I truly wonder, had Jesus come down from the cross ( a crushing defeat for us, as our salvation came from His sacrifice), would they have believed him anyway?  Did they not call him in league with Satan, so they would have said he had the power to save himself from the devil?  Who knows?  How about today; would those who have made up their mind the there is no God be truly swayed by the finding of the Ark or some new scrolls seeming to authenticate the life of Jesus?

And here is a more important question: when called on to discuss or justify our belief  with provable facts (that at least the other person accepts), do we start to question ourselves when the proof for those facts don’t readily come?  What has been shown throughout man’s history is that in so many cases, the facts at hand are irrelevant to the truth.  For most of man’s existence, up to 1903, it was the general fact that man could not fly.  Did it change the fact that we could and do? No.  That atoms were only recently discovered doesn’t mean that they didn’t exist before.

That God is real is not dependent on man’s say so that we can prove it.  We are in no position to make the call.  That it impacts God or His plan that we believe is also irrelevant as shown by Jesus Christ’s admonition to the Jewish leadership, that the stones would cry out themselves, if man was not praising Jesus arrival into Jerusalem.

Who it is pivotally relevant to, is us.  We may indeed withhold our total following and committment until we “see” the proof and then believe.  We can expend much mental energy and perhaps physical and financial resources attempting to justify our faith with rational evidence.  To the extent that we do that, I fear we are falling into Satan’s trap and will find ourselves disappointed with a feeling of despair and loss.

Look around at creation, there is so much evidence of the beauty and perfection of God’s majesty.  Read the bible, Jesus, time after time, performed miracle after miracle.  Why? Just to prove who he was?  I don’t think so.  To show loving compassion, to show to what lengths God will go to heal are more in line with the intent of those miracles.

For us it is time to enter the Peace and Joy of belief; pure simple faith.  Like Jesus Christ many in the world will mock us and call us crazy.  They will continue in an existence of “prove it” before I’ll do it.  And God will sigh at them.

And by the Grace of God that surpasses all understanding and yes proving, we will be blessed.  As Jesus Christ said:  In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world.  He who has overcome will not leave or forsake us.

Amen

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