“The story of Israel as recorded [in the Bible] is filled not with abstract ideas or scientific discoveries but with events of profound and dramatic import, with ‘mighty acts of God’ and thundering words of the prophets.” – Roland Stromberg, A History of Western Civilization.
Most of us grow up accepting the things we are taught as being true. In school, we learned that there are seven continents and that the universe around us is made up of tiny particles called atoms, even though we had no way of verifying that fact unless we have an electron microscope in our house and know how to use it.
If we had the good fortune to grow up in a Christian home then we learned the stories of Abraham, Daniel, John The Baptist, Jesus, and others. We accepted those stories as historical narratives. In addition, we were taught that there is a God, that the Bible is God’s revelation to humanity, and that Jesus is God’s only Son who died for the sins of the world and rose from the dead, thereby offering eternal life to those who follow Him. But whether we grew up in a Christian home or came to accept the beliefs of the Christian faith later in life, at some point we’ve probably wondered whether what we’ve been taught is all indeed true.
Perhaps you’ve been challenged with, or have asked yourself, such questions as, “Can I believe there was a talking donkey or how do I know Jesus rose from the dead?” Or other questions, like “How do I know the Bible is true and not filled with errors or the made-up ideas of individuals from the past?” These are common questions that have been asked of the Christian faith for generations. And these are the types of questions every believer should be prepared to respond to, both for themselves and for others. (1 Peter 3:15)
In His book, Cold Case Christianity, J. Warner Wallace examined the testimony of the Gospel writers. He explored the New Testament to determine if there were reliable witnesses to Jesus. His background experience as a police detective specializing in cold cases has always added a fascinating dynamic to Wallace’s investigations of Christianity. He found out that the Bible and the person the Bible is about, Jesus, are investigable.
Think about it: Jesus is the center of all of history, and it is impossible to erase Him from History. The life of Jesus Christ was predicted and prepared for. The Apostle Paul put it, “But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” (Galatians 4:4-6) Jesus impacts virtually every leader, artist, educator, and religious figure. As Wallace points out, Christianity failed to morph around anyone who came after Jesus Christ, but almost every major religion adapted to incorporate Him.
Take the time in 2023 to investigate Jesus. Discover why we live in a world that has been so thoroughly shaped by the life and death of Jesus. You will find out that you don’t have to believe based solely on a collection of ancient manuscripts. The foundation of our faith is anchored to something far more substantial and sustainable.
- Have you ever spent time investigating Jesus and your faith? What questions did you have?
- Does the fact that the Bible (Jesus) is investigable change you views on Christianity?