“You see, Tom, just stick your finger in there and wiggle it around a bit.”
“Cor! That’s so neat. And all cured as well. Not even a trace of septicemia. And those rusty nails are bloody nasty, JC, let me tell you!”
“So, now do you believe that I was dead and was resurrected?”
“Er … no, I don’t, in actual fact. But I would be very interested in reading the report of the presiding physician and seeing the death certificate, JC. If it’s all the same to you, that is?”
“But what about your faith, Thomas?”
“Oh, come on JC. No whining now. You’re a big lad. And you know how is it, right? All those false prophets, yes? S’why they call me Doubting Thomas isn’t it?”
So, faith, then?
If faith is the bedrock of Christian belief why do so many of them spend such an awful lot of their time trying to justify and demonstrate how it is possible to know that the bible is trustworthy. That things really happened. That there were witnesses. That Jesus really is Yahweh; that Paul did write all those Epistles … except the ones he didn’t, of course.
Surely, if one already believes the bible is the inspired Word of Yahweh ( One is not going to be a proper Christian if one does not believe this.), then why the need to “prove” anything at all?
You have faith, yes?
Jesus walked on water – it’s in the bible. Right there in black and white. And in English, too! I believe the bible. Ergo, this is an historical fact. Should I need to go further? No!
But the sceptics keep telling me it’s nonsense. And they are mean to me.
So what? Buck up. Be a
man … er woman … er Person. You have your faith, yes?
You do believe, don’t you? I mean really really believe. This is not just a bit of shamming is it?
Of course not. I believe every single word. Even the publication date!
Ssh … not so loud.
Well, we don’t have to believe everything is literal.
No? Oh. So … God breathed could mean there might be a few analogies?
Phew! Thank goodness for that! Because the story of the Saints climbing out of their graves and walking through Jerusalem. Well, between you and me, it always seemed a bit far-fetched, to tell the truth. Know what I mean? And when I heard that Mike Licona got fired from his job for saying this was not to be taken literally I was in a bit of a flap, because I doubted too and I thought, Jesus H, if the Vicar finds out I’m up the creek without a paddle.
Oh, I understand perfectly.
So … er … the Resurrection? That’s also analo …?
Oh, great because I was wonderi—
Oh! Yes. Right. Of course. No problem. That’s real. Definitely. Historical fact, right?
Yes. Historical fact!
So, walking on Water, analogy. Dead Saints coming back to life and going walkabout, analogy. Dead Jesus coming back to life and going walkabout. Absolute unimpeachable historical fact. Definitely happened. Can’t be a Christian if you doubt this, okay?
Okay, I’ve got it! Er … what about the virgin birth? Only I heard …
You read Raymond Brown didn’t you? And he said this was not to be taken literally, didn’t he?
Well, you now, I might have glanced at it.
You do know he was a Catholic?
Get away! He was? Wow, so not a proper Christian, then?
Should tell you all you need to know.
So, virgin birth?
For many Christians, their belief is primarily based on factors (Emotions? Perceptions?) other than objective evidence.
Evidence for this is the statement by evangelical Christian apologist William Lane Craig: “Even if there were zero objective evidence for the Resurrection, ( and, let’s face it , Bill, there isn’t.) the simplest of Christians can know that the Resurrection is an historical fact simply by the testimony of the Holy Spirit in his heart”.
Oh, well, if your buying, Bill, mine’s a Jack on the Rocks … oh, sod it, make that a double.