Is There Evidence of Jesus’ Existence?

QUESTION: Despite the fact that there is no historical evidence outside of the Bible to prove that Jesus actually existed – no artifacts of something he owned or wore, no works of his carpentry and most curious of all, no self-written manuscripts from Jesus himself, only hearsay about Him coming from others, it begs the question:  With the gospels claiming great multitudes of people who knew about him, including the scribes mentioned in the Bible, why do you think it is so hard to prove that such an important man in history actually existed when we can easily prove the existence of other historical figures who lived centuries before him?

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First, I would challenge you on two assumptions you’re making above.  (1) Is there no historical evidence outside of the Bible of Jesus?  and (2) Can we truly “easily” prove the existence of other ancient figures who lived before Jesus?  With these, I’d like to ask two more questions: (3) Despite the New Testament being the best attested historical documents from ancient times, why is it viewed with such skepticism when other much less reliable ancient documents are rarely questioned? and  (4) If the same skepticism that is applied towards Jesus were applied to other ancient figures, would “proving” the existence of these other ancient figures be any more convincing?

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There are at least 10 ancient non-Christian sources that mention Jesus of Nazareth.  All are dated after the New Testament (NT), so the NT is still our best source for learning about Jesus (which I’ll say more about later), but to have information about Jesus from non-Christian sources is significant because the likeliness that the source writers would put a biased positive slant on the information about Jesus is slim.  Likewise, if the information comes from someone actually opposed to Christianity, we can assume a biased negative slant is likely (at worst) or a neutral, unbiased view (at best).  So, to have an opponent of Christianity confirm information that appears in the NT is significant.

On the other hand, we have to be fair and honest and not make these sources more (or less) than what they say.  Some of the sources may not so much be saying something about Jesus directly (though some do), but reporting information about what ancient Christians believed about Jesus.  Still, these are useful because they tell us important information about early Christianity.  The one thing that becomes clear is that Christians considered Jesus God from early on, they were highly moral, and these Christians were willing to die for their belief that Christ rose from the dead.

 

Here is some information these ancient non-Christian sources confirm, which are in harmony with the NT:

  1. Jesus lived during the time of Tiberius Caesar.
  2. He lived a virtuous life.
  3. He was considered a wonder-worker.
  4. He had a brother named James.
  5. He was acclaimed to be the Messiah.
  6. He was crucified under Pontius Pilate.
  7. He was crucified on the eve of the Jewish Passover.
  8. His disciples believed he rose from the dead.
  9. His disciples were willing to die for their belief.
  10. Christianity spread rapidly as far as Rome.
  11. His disciples denied the Roman gods and worshiped Jesus as God.
  12. After Jesus’ execution, Christianity disappeared from public view briefly, but then abruptly grew.

(This list is adapted from the book I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist by Norman Geisler and Frank Turek.  More in depth critiques of these ancient documents are in The Historical Jesus by Gary Habermas and The Jesus Legend by Paul Rhodes Eddy and Gregory A. Boyd.)

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Josephus

 

Of these ancient non-Christian sources, the following 3 are considered the best because they’re the closest to the actual events and written by ancient historians who have been shown to be trustworthy:

Josephus, Jewish historian (written about 90-95 AD)

#1 – “At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus.  His conduct was good and he was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and the other nations became disciples.  Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die.  But those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship.  They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion, and that he was alive; accordingly he was perhaps the Messiah, concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders.”

 

#2 – “Upon [procurator] Festus’ death, Caesar sent Albinus to Judea as procurator. But before he arrived, King Agrippa had appointed Ananus to the priesthood… [He] was rash and followed the Sadducees, who are heartless when they sit judgment. Ananus thought that with Festus dead and Albinus still on the way, he would have his opportunity. Convening the judges of the Sanhedrin, he brought before them a man named James, the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, and certain others. He accused them of having transgressed the law, and condemned them to be stoned to death.”

 

Pliny, Roman senator (written about 111 AD)

“I have asked them if they are Christians, and if they admit it, I repeat the question a second and third time, with a warning of the punishment awaiting them. If they persist, I order them to be led away for execution; for, whatever the nature of their admission, I am convinced that their stubbornness and unshakable obstinacy ought not go unpunished… They also declared that the sum total of their guilt or error amounted to no more than this: they had met regularly before dawn on a fixed day to chant verses alternately amongst themselves in honor of Christ as if to a god, and also to bind themselves by oath, not for any criminal purpose, but to abstain from theft, robbery, and adultery… This made me decide it was all the more necessary to extract the truth by torture from two slave-women, whom they called deaconesses.  I found nothing but a degenerate sort of cult carried to extravagant lengths.”

 

Cornelius Tacitus, Roman proconsul & historian (written in 115 AD)

“Therefore, to stop the rumor [that the burning of Rome in 64 AD had taken place by his order], Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace.  Christus [Christ], from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their center and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty: then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city as of hatred against mankind.  Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired.”

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Skeptics, of course, question these documents, especially Josephus’ work, accusing Christians of corrupting Josephus’ original words.  Some claim Josephus, a non-Christian Jew, would never write so favorably about Jesus.  Others claim these were written after Jesus’ lifetime, so they’re based only on hearsay.  My challenge to these skeptics, then, is for them to provide evidence for these claims.  As Christians, we’re constantly asked, “Where’s the evidence?”  So, if these documents were doctored, where are the early manuscripts before the supposed corruptions?  If these reliable historians decided to write based on hearsay, what proof do we have of this?  Let’s be fair; anyone can make a claim, but where’s the evidence?  Much is possible, but what is plausible based on the evidence?

Interestingly, at one time there only existed manuscripts of Josephus with phrasing slightly different from the sections I quoted above that contained what seemed like additions that favored the Christian view of Jesus.  Both Christian and non-Christian scholars were skeptical of specific words and phrases.  Then, an earlier Arabic version was discovered without the questionable words and phrases, proving that scribes had added to the words of Josephus, but also confirming the authenticity of the Jesus passages.  There has never been any ancient manuscript of these writings of Josephus discovered that don’t include the passages about Jesus or Jesus’ brother James (or John the Baptist, who only appears elsewhere in the NT).

What Josephus writes is not contradictory to him being a non-Christian Jew.  Josephus doesn’t write that Jesus rose from the dead; he writes that Jesus’ disciples reported that he rose from the dead.  What Josephus is writing is a neutral report based on investigation.  Josephus wrote this within the lifetime of people who would’ve witnessed the ministry of Jesus.  The quote from the two Roman sources would’ve been written when people who were young during Jesus’ ministry were still living.

What’s interesting is that Josephus and Tacitus mention Jesus being put to death by Pontius Pilate.  Despite this, some skeptics in the past have even challenged the claim that Pilate ever existed, not just Jesus.  But in 1961 archeologists found an inscription on a Roman building naming Pontius Pilate as the perfect (governor) of Judea.  Tacitus, being part of the Roman elite himself, had easy access to records, and it would’ve been extremely sloppy historical writing for him to claim this Roman leader executed a make-believe Jew.

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The medieval Catholic Church claimed to have all sorts of artifacts belonging to Jesus and his apostles, but no one takes those seriously anymore – and with good reason.  (Conversely, the Shroud of Turin is an interesting mystery worth looking in to.)  Frankly, if we had some artifacts that belonged to Jesus or archeological evidence other than the documents mentioned above and the NT documents (which are solid historical documents), I honestly don’t think it would make a difference to a skeptic.  I’m saying this as a former skeptic and atheist, and someone who still approaches everything with a good dose of skepticism.  After all, we have 13 letters written by Paul himself and a thorough account of Paul’s ministry in the book of Acts that spans about 30 years, including specific historical people and places, and still some skeptics have claimed he never existed just because they’re collected in the NT (which, to me, shows a bias and a disregard of history).

There are people who also disbelieve the moon landing, the Jewish Holocaust, the Sandy Hook school shooting (saying it was a staged event with actors), and the deaths of Elvis, Osama bin Laden, and Tupac.  To be clear, I’m perfectly aware that providing evidence for these modern events is much easier than for the life of an ancient rabbi, but my point is that some people make up their minds about things and, after that, no amount of evidence will dissuade them.  Doubt can be cast upon everything if that’s how we choose to approach things.

 Alexander-the-Great

Furthermore, the NT documents are extremely reliable ancient records by historical standards, especially compared to other documents about other ancient people – people whose existences are never questioned:

ALEXANDER THE GREAT

We have 2 sources for our information about Alexander the Great.  Both of these sources were written about 400 years after Alexander the Great lived.

 

CAESAR AUGUSTUS

We have 5 sources that give us the information we know about Caesar Augustus.  One is a funeral writing, written at his death.  One was written 50–100 years after his death.  The last three were written 100–200 years after his death.

 

JESUS OF NAZARETH

For Jesus, we have 4 sources – the four Gospels found in the NT, each individually investigated, each containing both complimentary and unique information.  The 4 Gospels were written 25–60 years after Jesus’ crucifixion, which means within the lifetime of those who knew Jesus and witnessed his ministry.  (Jesus was crucified about AD 30–33, and all of the Gospels were written before AD 100.)  Two of the Gospels – Matthew and John – were written by Jesus’ actual apostles, where the other two – Mark and Luke – were written by disciples of Jesus’ apostles, Paul and Peter.  This means the 4 sources we have for best knowing about Jesus’ life come from eyewitnesses.

 

Also, how does the NT do compared to other ancient manuscripts?

  • For Aristotle, we have 49 ancient manuscripts.
  • For Sophocles, we have 193 ancient manuscripts.
  • For Plato’s tetralogies, we have 7 ancient manuscripts.
  • For the NT, we have 5,686 ancient manuscripts in the original Greek, either in part or in whole.  Plus, there are about 9,000 other ancient manuscripts of the NT books in other languages.

(For an earlier article on the reliability of the NT documents, click here and here.)

I think it’s safe to say, the only reason anyone doubts the NT record is because it reports miraculous events.

 

Finally, let’s keep in mind that Jesus was a rabbi from the backwaters of the Roman Empire whose ministry only lasted 3 years.  The fact that we know anything about him 2,000 years later is incredible.  Despite Jesus not being the type of person ancient historians wrote about (they wrote primarily about rulers and conquerors), he has arguably become the most famous and influential person in the history of the world.  Whether a believer or a skeptic, that has to make you wonder about what sort of man he was.  Furthermore, if Jesus hadn’t risen from the dead, what possible reason did his disciples have ­­– what did they possibly gain – by dying for this lie?  Why would the disciples, as eyewitnesses (not fervent followers hundreds of years later), die for something they very well knew was a lie?

CaseofRess

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Book Review: “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist”

I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist

by Norman L. Geisler and Frank Turek

(Crossway books)

IDHEFTBAA_Book

I fluctuated between atheism and agnosticism most of my life.  Then, at age 31, I became a Christian.  During my most ardent years of skepticism, I took the position that there was no possible way to put together an intelligent argument for the existence of God, the divinity of Christ, or the divine authority of the Bible.  Trying to logically argue for any of these things was the equivalent to arguing for the existence of Bilbo Baggins or flying spaghetti monsters.

After having an experience that opened my mind to the possibility of the existence of God, I wondered if anyone had ever tried to put together a logical, intelligent argument for the existence of the Christian God.  I caught wind of a book called The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel, and this was my introduction to Christian apologetics — the logical defense of the Christian faith.  From there, I read other books by Strobel and books by the scholars he interviewed in his book.

Like many — both Christians and non-Christians — I had no clue how much information was out there using philosophy, science, and history to explain the reliability of the Christian faith — and reading apologetic books has been a regular thing for me ever since.

I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist (IDHEFTBAA, for short!) by Norman L. Geisler and Frank Turek is an excellent introduction to Christian apologetics.  Like Strobel’s books, I would recommend IDHEFTBAA to those who want a readable and accessible grasp of Christian apologetics.

In a post-modernist culture, where the gap between the secular and the religious is growing, open hostility towards Christians is increasing, and internet misinformation is spreading more rapidly than ever before, Christians need to know how to explain and defend their faith; IDHEFTBAA is a thorough overview of philosophical, scientific, and historical arguments for the validity of the Christian faith.

IDHEFTBAA literally builds an argument, starting from the ground with exploring the question of whether there is such a thing as objective truth (instead of subjective truth) and moves on to philosophical and scientific arguments that point towards a divine creator – an intelligent mind behind all of creation, the Uncaused First Cause – and then narrows down the possibilities to the monotheistic religions of Judaism, Islam, or Christianity.  From there, the authors narrow their argument even more to the Christian God, Jesus Christ as the incarnate God, and the trustworthiness of the New Testament.  Quite an accomplishment done in a relatively quick read!

IDHEFTBAA was written primarily for college-aged students who face challenges to their faith at secular universities and colleges.  It’s readable and easy-to-follow, with plenty of written illustrations to help communicate ideas.  Charts, lists, and subject headings make it easy to refer back to, so it’s a great, easy-to-use resource.  Most of the chapters could be expanded into books of their own, so what they accomplish in a relatively small book for such a massive task is impressive.

Thus, IDHEFTBAA is an excellent overview and introduction, which will give a reader a good understanding of the major arguments for the Christian faith.  I found the sections about the historical and biblical texts particularly thorough.  Perhaps because Geisler and Turek don’t have backgrounds in science, the chapters on the scientific arguments left me wanting more.  Where IDHEFTBAA is a great introduction to the big arguments for an intelligent creator behind the universe, and Geisler and Turek present some interesting arguments using science, I definitely would want to do much deeper reading on the subject (especially since I don’t have a background in science either) before engaging anyone with these arguments.

To be honest, I had read and owned a copy of IDHEFTBAA months before receiving my complementary ebook copy from Crossway Book’s Beyond the Page program for this review, but I chose the book so I could have an electronic copy on my kindle.  Feeling passionate about the need for Christians to have a better grasp of their faith when it comes to defending it, I have been using IDHEFTBAA as a guide to teach an apologetics class at my church.  (There is also a self-study curriculum guide for IDHEFTBAA available that I have found useful for this class too.)

I’ve found apologetics are particularly useful in responding to internet and Facebook misinformation about Christianity or in everyday conversations with friends and family.  Furthermore, having a basic understanding of the information presented in IDHEFTBAA builds considerable confidence in believers who face regular attacks on their faith.

There is a difference between blind faith and the sort of faith that is better defined as trust.  The longer one walks with Christ, the more trust one has in Christ – similar to any other healthy relationship.  Books like IDHEFTBAA do a nice job of strengthening that trust even more and showing that accusations that all Christians are led by blind faith are unwarranted, and, in fact, many of those of other worldviews should be the ones accused of blind faith.

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Disasters, Disease, & Death — Why is there Natural Suffering?

QUESTION: If God is perfect and God created the heavens and the earth, shouldn’t then this world be perfect if it was created by God?  If God is perfect, why does he allow or cause so much pain and strife?  We could blame many things on humans because much of the strife is caused by humans such as starvation, murder, slavery and other horrific acts perpetuated by people, but what about things beyond our control?  Why do tens of thousands of people die in super storms?  Why are people born disabled? Why do children get sick and die? Why would God allow such things if he was a perfect and loving God?

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As you said, much of the suffering in the world could be avoided; it’s caused by human sin and evil because God gave humans freewill. Yet we’re still left with the question of what I’ll call natural suffering: suffering caused by natural disasters, disease, and even accidental suffering and death from things like car accidents, exposure to weather, or, say, someone slipping and falling to their death.

Hurricane from space

Let me start with a more “worldly” answer and move into what the Bible teaches: The most basic answer is to say that these are the natural consequences of living in our life-giving world.  Extreme weather, earthquakes, and tsunamis are going to happen on our planet, the only planet that we know of that can sustain life.

Someone might criticize God and say, “If he’s so powerful, why couldn’t he just create a world without those things?”  First, it’s easy to be an arm-chair creator of the universe and say we’d do things differently, but obviously we’re not in the position to know better.  Secondly, certain possible bad things are going to logically follow from things that are not just good but essential.  For instance, if we’re going to have gravity so we stay on our planet’s surface and don’t just float off into space, it’s going to logically follow that gravity may kill a person if they step off something high enough.

Furthermore, if God intervened in every situation that would cause us harm, can you imagine what life would be like?  It’d be like living into your 50’s and still having your mom hovering over your every move like when you first learned to walk.  Also, if this was the case, you can pretty much kiss freewill goodbye.

Someone might then ask why God can’t just intervene in particularly bad instances — perhaps “big” situations — like preventing a super storm.  But how can we know he doesn’t intervene sometimes – or even a lot of times?  Not long ago, my mom had a stroke, but she fully recovered quickly and the side effects, like partial loss of the one side of her body, were gone within days.  The doctors were perplexed, and we were all amazed.  My mom, who tends to be a “half-empty” type, was talking about the stroke and said to me something like: “Why would God allow this to happen to me?”  I responded, “How do you know God didn’t intervene and, in fact, protect you from the stroke?”

COMMON GRACE & THE CURSE

The Bible writers teach that in God’s providence, he does interact with the world.  Why he intervenes sometimes and not others, I can’t say for sure because I don’t have the mind of God.  But in Christian theology, there is a doctrine called “common grace.”  This is the idea that due to sin, the world should be much worse than it is, yet God shows mercy and allows us to still enjoy the good things of this earth he created.

Common grace means even nonbelievers benefit from God’s good creation and mercy, which can include everything from their innate sense of morals, to meaningful relationships, to the beauty of nature, to food, music, and sex.  The difference though between the believer and nonbeliever is that the believer recognizes these good things are from God and they worship the Creator instead of the creation.

So, this moves us right into what the Bible teaches about natural suffering.  In Genesis, after Adam and Eve’s fall into sin, a curse comes upon all of creation.  God says to Adam,

“…Cursed is the ground because of you;

In toil you will eat of it

All the days of your life.

Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you;

And you will eat the plants of the field;

By the sweat of your face

You will eat bread,

Till you return to the ground,

Because from it you were taken;

For you are dust,

And to dust you shall return.”

What this is showing is that mankind will no longer have the privilege of living in God’s garden, a place were food comes easy, but will have to toil and sweat to produce food.  In Romans 8, Paul writes of all of creation being in “bondage to corruption” and “groaning,” waiting to be set free from the weight of sin.  Further, God clearly tells Adam before the Fall that death is the outcome of sin.  Thus, death is not a natural part of God’s good creation.

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GOD’S GOODNESS & WRATH

Now, a thoughtful person may ask where the curse came from and point out that God was the one who put the curse on the creation.  This is true; God is the sovereign Lord over all creation and only he has the power to do such a thing.  But I’d argue that he had no choice.  That might sound shocking to both nonbelievers and believers.  It’s God!  Of course he had a choice!  But God’s nature is wholly good, holy, and just.  Often, people like to focus on the goodness of God and they try to forget the just wrath of God, but God’s goodness and his wrath are connected and cannot be separated.

People with kids can understand this; a parent should love his or her children unconditionally and show them understanding and mercy, but a parent who never disciples his or her children is not just a poor example of a parent, but actually doing something unloving.  Can I claim to be good, and at the same time turn a blind eye to evil and injustice?  Because God in his very nature is good and just, sin must be punished.  To not punish sin would go against God’s very nature and that’s something God can’t do.

If God simply overlooks sin, then he is no longer good, and if he’s no longer good, then he’s no longer God.  Those who think God can simply overlook sin don’t have a high enough view of God or a low enough view of sin.

God can’t break the laws of logic (such as he can’t make a square circle) and he can’t do something contrary to his own nature.  Thus, God is not to be blamed for the curse, but Adam and Eve.  Notice God tells Adam the curse came “because of you.”  God is no more guilty of the curse than a police officer is guilty for arresting a person for committing a crime or a judge is guilty for sentencing the criminal to prison.

Further, God still shows mercy in this situation.  Adam and Eve were warned that the outcome of sin is death (both physically and spiritually), but God doesn’t kill them immediately, yet now death will become a normal part of life.  Moreover, even when God kicks them out of the garden, he shows the lovingness of a Father by making them clothes from animal skins (Genesis 3:21).

The Bible goes on to tell the story of the continuing corruption of God’s good creation by man’s sinfulness, yet throughout we see God showing mercy.  Even when he destroys most of mankind with the flood, he spares Noah and his family; even when he allows sinful Israel to be taken into captivity by Babylon, he preserves a remnant.  And then this brings us right back to common grace.  If God withdrew all of his blessings from us, the world would be a much more horrible place (whether because of human evil or natural catastrophe) or just a desolate, lifeless rock floating in space — or, most likely, nothing would exist at all.

 

THE IMPORTANCE OF LUKE 13:1-5

Finally, God showed the ultimate act of mercy by becoming a man himself and suffering for the sins of the world, so we could be free from the curse of death.  Once you understand that, your view of the suffering in the world changes.  Once you understand that, you realize God has done all he needs to – actually, more than he needs to.

Jesus says something very interesting in Luke 13:1-5:

“Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices.  And Jesus said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered this fate? I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.  Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem?  I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

Here, we have two events being discussed by Jesus and his audience: Roman governor Pontius Pilate seemingly unjustly killing several people (what I would consider suffering due to human sin on the part of Pilate) and a tower that has randomly collapsed onto 18 people, killing them (what I would place in the category of natural suffering).  The crowd that Jesus is speaking to seems to think these people were worse sinners than others and God punished them by bringing these horrible deaths upon them.

Notice Jesus’ response: he basically says that these people were no worse sinners than all of you (us), so you (we) all need to repent of your (our) sins and get right with God.

We can get important theological lessons from this, especially in connection to the curse on creation in Genesis 3.  We are all deserving of punishment, but when bad things happen to us, we can understand them in two ways:

(A) the direct result of sin and

(B) the indirect result of sin.

When a person’s sinful behavior brings about logical negative consequences, this is suffering (either their own or others’) due to the direct result of sin.  For example, a man cheats on his wife and his wife leaves him, tearing the family apart.  On the other hand, when a person suffers because of a random, natural occurrence or accident (such as cancer, natural disaster, or a tower falling on them), this is not the direct result of their sin (so we aren’t to assume they did something that brought God’s wrath directly upon them) but an indirect result of sin because we live in a fallen world cursed by Adam’s, Eve’s, and all of our sins.

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ONE LAST THING: THE ONLY SOLUTION

I have one last thing to add:

If I were consoling a person who had just experienced a great tragedy, I wouldn’t go into all of this.  The last thing that person needs at that moment is an exposition of biblical theology.  But I’d share what God tells us through the Bible: God loves us, and he is with us in our suffering.  When Joseph (in Genesis) and Paul (in Acts) are unjustly imprisoned, we’re told God is with them.

But most importantly, we don’t worship a God who sits far off in the heavens, judging us from a distance.  We worship a God who loved us so amazingly he became man and suffered and died the most humiliating and agonizing death just so we can know him.  Our God knows what it is to suffer.  He knows what it is to be hungry, to weep for dead loved ones, to be betrayed by friends, and to be tortured and die.  When God looks at the state of this world, he is heartbroken; he weeps and suffers with us.

The writers of the Bible teach that though God may not stop all suffering from happening, he will use all things, including suffering and evil, for a greater good.  The greatest example of this is Jesus Christ’s suffering on the cross.  Evil had thought it had won a great victory, but God used that event to defeat evil, sin, and death and free us from the bondage of our sins.  The suffering we experience will lead us to greater things.  As Christians, we no longer fear death and we wait for Jesus Christ to return to put a final end to pain and suffering.

John writes of his vision of the new earth in Revelation 21, what I consider some of the most beautiful words written in the Bible:

“And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.’”

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***One of the reasons I started this blog is to address the questions of my friends, whether they be atheists, agnostics, Christians, or of other faiths.  I don’t propose to have all the answers, but by addressing these questions I hope it will benefit everyone involved, including myself and those who take the time to read this blog.***

  • This question was asked by my friend Ian J. Keeney, a former Satanist/atheist, and director of the documentary The Meaning.
  • Read my response to: Did God Make the Entire Universe for Humans?  *here* and Is the Bible anymore accurate than other religious texts? *here*
  • Read my interview with Ian & learn more about The Meaning: Part 1 & Part 2*cross-silhouette1