Jesus…and the Evidence He Offered

From Issue: Discovery 9/1/2015

Have you ever thought about how Jesus could have merely announced to the world that He was the Messiah without giving any proof? He could have expected everyone simply to believe His claims that He was from Heaven and never given anyone proof for His Godhood. Jesus, however, understood the importance and necessity of evidence.

During His earthly ministry, He repeatedly gave ample proof of His deity. He noted how John the Baptizer bore witness on His behalf (John 5:33). He said, “[T]he Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me” (John 5:36). He spoke of how “the Scriptures…testify of Me” (John 5:39). He also noted how His miraculous works bore witness to His Godhood (John 5:36). Jesus performed many miracles that showed His power over nature, disease, demons, and death. He understood that His own verbal testimony alone would not convince anyone in a court of law (John 5:31). So, at the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem He told the unbelieving Jews, “If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him” (John 10:37-38). Sadly, His foolish, stubborn enemies repeatedly rejected the irrefutable evidence that Jesus presented on His own behalf.

Perhaps the greatest evidence that Jesus presented for His Godhood was His miraculous resurrection. He could have risen from the dead and never appeared to anyone on Earth. Christianity could have begun on the back of uncertainty. Instead, Jesus was “declared to be the Son of God…by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:4). Jesus “presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs” (Acts 1:3), because He is the Head of a reasonable religion. The excitement and courage that early disciples showed were grounded in the rock-solid proofs of Jesus’ resurrection (among other things). The emotional, energetic, evangelistic faith of 21st-century Christians must likewise be rooted firmly and deeply in solid evidence.


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