Questions of faith and love

Foto tirada em Morro Gaúcho, Arroio do Meio-RS Brasil by Anderson Fleck CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Morro Gaúcho, Brasil by Anderson Fleck (CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

“…although the historical arguments for Jesus’s bodily resurrection are truly strong, we must never suppose that they will do more than bring people to the questions faced by Thomas and Peter, the questions of faith and love. We cannot use a supposedly objective historical epistemology as the ultimate ground for the truth of Easter.  To do so would be like someone who lit a candle to see whether the sun had risen.”
N. T. Wright 

I imagine that Wright’s words will make sense to many of us who believe in the resurrection as the pivotal moment in history.  For others, they may be puzzling, even nonsensical.

Faith, hope, love; each is ultimately a decision that goes far beyond initial acceptance of the idea.  For skeptics, the decision to adopt a belief system that defies natural law and human tendency may appear as the most difficult step of becoming a disciple of Jesus.  Yet it’s only the first step in a lifetime of challenge and growth.

Experience will teach us that truth goes deeper than objective “fact” and encompasses far more than historical events and individual testimonies, however trustworthy and proven they may be.  If our journey is a long one by earthly standards, we likely will look back in astonishment at how much bigger, brighter and overwhelmingly awe-inspiring the truth has become; how little of it, we now realize, that we have known, and how much we long for the morning when the brilliance of sunrise will render our little candles obsolete.

Until then, we rejoice that we “know whom [we] have believed.”  Happy Easter!

 

24 Comments

  1. Julia, happy Easter to you, Jeff and Matt. May you enjoy a blessed day with family and friends. 🙂

    • Thank you Merry! I wish you a joyous Easter as well. He is risen indeed!

  2. Happy Easter to you, too, Julia and friends!

    • Thank you Susan! He is risen indeed — Hallelujah!

  3. Cherie

    Have a very happy love filled Easter!!!!!

    • Thank you Cherie! The same to you and Ron.

  4. Carolyn

    Happy Easter to you all and hope you have a great day. Will Drew and family get to be with you? We will be going over to David’s. I am feeling great, still a little sore, one more week and I will be finished with my recovery time. Sun is out and the birds are singing, a wonderful day to be on my porch. I pray that things are going good for Jeff, haven’t heard anything lately. Give your men a hug and one back to you for me. You all take care. Love you all,

    • Carolyn, I am happy thinking of you getting better, enjoying the birds and sunshine. I have been busy with various home maintenance projects and haven’t had much computer time, but we are all doing OK. Jeff started back on chemo and so far he’s tolerating it fairly well (just one month so far). Thanks for the hugs, we send some right back to you all! Love J and guys

  5. Carlyle

    Julia,
    The last observation in today’s post aptly describes the point at which I find myself as I approach my 87th birthday, looking back and realizing how much has become clearer over the years and yet knowing how much I still do not know or understand. Looking forward to that day!

    • Thank you Daddy! Life is truly “a vapor,” even for those of us blessed to live many years. I remember the friend who took a theology class with Jeff and said about halfway through, “I knew more when I came into this class than I do now.” 😀 It’s kind of that way with life, isn’t it? The more we learn, the more we realize that we have yet to learn. Paul’s closing words in I Corinthians 13 come to mind. I love you!

  6. Wonderful, Jula!
    A Blessed Easter to you and your family.
    -Alan

    • Thank you Alan! I hope you have had a wonderful Easter.

  7. Amy

    Happy Easter dear friend

    • Thank you Amy! Hope you had a great Easter too.

  8. I think of the simple truth in the lines of an old hymn:

    “You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart.”

    • Yes Tony! I see Jesus in so many people. He is risen indeed!

  9. Happy Easter to you and your family, Julia. Blessings abound truly, and they are entwined with faith, hope, and love. We have enjoyed a week with the 6 grandchildren and friends in and out of our house, as they’re all enjoying “Spring Break” in the Garden City area. Sending love and prayers across the miles on this Good Friday! 🙏 Sheila

    • Sheila, how wonderful that you were able to be surrounded with your family at such a beautiful time of year. I think of you often, always with love and gratitude. Enjoying the April Verandah! 😀 ❤

  10. MaryAnn

    I look forward to when the “sunrise will render our little candles obsolete”, standing in His Presence, singing Hallelujah! While still confined to Earth, I praise God because He is risen!
    Thank you, Julia! Love to all “my” Dentons!

    • Mary Ann, thank you for sharing my joy at so many things!! Today in church we sang “I can only imagine” and I wish you had been there with us to share in the rejoicing — I know you were doing likewise. How blessed we are. Love to you always.

  11. You know when I was in college in 1968 I took a philosophy course that tested my christian faith. The professor teaching the course was a professed atheist who based his quarterly course on the existence or nonexistence of God. During the course of the class student’s faith was shaken to its foundations. I did not have an issue because my religious beliefs were rooted in faith not trying to prove I was right and everyone else was wrong. Faith is the knowing of the promises of God which cannot be questioned. I know a chair will support me without sitting in it first. I know that Niagara Falls exists without the actual need to go there to affirm my faith.

    • Bob, I have found that those who are most sure of their faith do not feel the need to argue with others or try to prove them wrong. So often Jesus met his accusers’ criticisms with silence, yet he never wavered from his absolute faithfulness. It is sad that so many teachers mistake indoctrination for education, but I will always believe that truth is strong and has nothing to fear. Thanks for sharing that foundation.

  12. HarryS

    Thank you Lord for this day and for all that is in it.
    Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
    My times are in your hand.
    My soul rests with you, my Anamchara.
    Love is what the soul thrives on.

    So on this Easter may He Easter in me with aforethought or preparation of carrying on.
    During this time of Lent as I have mentioned several times I have been in prayer that my faith may be increased.
    So has it?
    This is not one of the things in life which is easily measurable and perhaps may be measured only by its on integer which is faith. Yes I believe. Yes I believe in some holy measure more than I did when I echoed the Scripture; “Lord I believe, help thou my unbelief”.

    May I consider the stars; may I consider the dust; may I be constantly open to every metaphor which speaks to me of the purity of God as I understand him.

    May I be the exemplar and expounder of God’s purpose?

    “I see the moon,
    the moon sees me,
    under the leaves of the old oak tree.
    Please let the moon that shines on me,
    shine on the ones I love.”

    • Harry, I too echo the verse you quoted, and still find myself in that position often. Thank you for sharing your personal thoughts with us. I am always happy to hear from you here. I hope you have had a wonderful Easter.

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