Monday, 7 April 2014
Easter – why I believe
Surely you can’t be serious? Someone coming back to life?. Well as it happens, personally I do. I appreciate that there are other, equally valid points of view, but I thought I would tell you (since it is me writing the article!) why I believe.
I think you know me well enough by now that I am not someone who just takes things “because they are in the Bible”, as some of my colleagues do. I am the first to say that scripture can be read in many ways, and that it is our job as 21st Cent believers – those who walk a daily life of faith, to interpret ancient truths in the light of the world we live in.
But I also know too much history not to take the narrative seriously. We do know for certain for example, that the first Christians went from a group of inept and cowardly group of people into a group of people who massively changed their world in one generation. We also know that the first disciples, dispersed by the first diaspora, having lost country, way of life and family, indeed all that was important to them, nevertheless went to the end , often martyred, maintaining that Christ had risen, and that life was now different.
Why would anyone do that?
I have on my bookshelf works which as a young man influenced me greatly, - “The case against Christ” and “Who moved the stone?” in particular. But for me simply and purely, belief is a personal stand point. More than this, I see echoes of the Easter resurrection in my life and in others around me. It is almost as if there is a little of that moment left over desperate to find new means of expression – a new job, an opportunity you thought gone forever come back again, a healed relationship, small deaths in all of us which find greater resurrections.
Such was the notoriety of the resurrection in the years that followed the event, that Jesus’ relatives were summoned all the way to Rome to stand before Caesar. He had heard all the stories and wanted to reassure himself that there was no lineage he would have to contend with. They showed him the rough worn hands of carpenters and fishermen. No there was no royal lineage, except that has come down through all of us and swirls about the days of our lives reminding us that God has not finished yet….
Have a good Easter and God Bless