Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled. 1 Peter 1:13 (NIV) When you see the word therefore, you know Peter is pointing back to what he just said. Peter was saying that Christians are born again as the power of the risen Lord touches their lives. “Now,” Peter says,...
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14
The Bible’s emphasis on seeing raises the question: Since we weren’t there, and did not see, how can we believe? How can we know it is true? Where is the foundation on which we can build with confidence?
“These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name” (20:31). In other words, John is saying, “We have written down what we saw so that you may have the evidence that Jesus is the Christ.”
The Apostle wants to present you with evidence, and when he is finished, he will be looking for you to give a verdict. He is persuaded of the case he is presenting, but he wants to set it out in a rational way. He is not trying to intimidate you or manipulate you, he is simply presenting what he has seen and heard as a direct witness of Jesus over the three years that he was with him.
The Apostles were not authoritarian preachers who wagged their fingers and shouted “Believe! Believe!” They were witnesses who laid out the evidence of what they had seen and heard about Jesus so that others could come to a verdict.
God has not called us to blind faith. He invites us to investigate the claims of Jesus, and he gives us the evidence in the Gospels. Christian faith does not rest on the dogmatic assertions of the church, or on the mystical experiences of an individual, but rather on the evidence found in God’s Word. The Gospels present the case for Christ. They are evidence that demands a verdict.
Have you considered the evidence? Have you come to a verdict?