McCarrick Knestout Mark White
Title: Gulag Dispatch #5: Evangelization and Freedom of Speech/Religion
Author: Father Mark White
Publisher: Father Mark White Blog
Jesus of Nazareth worked miracles, and He rose from the dead. A large number of eye witnesses documented these facts.
That said, the Christian faith involves something beyond these remarkable facts. The Lord did not teach His disciples, “I am a miracle-worker who will rise from the dead.” He taught them: I and the Father are one.
In other words, the Lord Jesus did not merely do extraordinary deeds to make His disciples gape with wonder. He proposed to them: Believe. Believe the unseen divine truth. Believe in the tri-unity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
A Christian does not simply believe that Jesus rose from the dead. Anyone who trusts the New Testament as a collection of historical documents believes that much. Christians believe that Jesus rising from the dead affects us.
We believe that God has united Himself with us, in Christ. Yes we accept the Apostles’ accounts of what they saw and heard, but more than that: We believe what the Apostles themselves believed.
The Apostles believed what they believed because Jesus proposed it to them, for them to accept or reject. And they accepted it. Of course, He poured out the Holy Spirit, to enable them to believe the Christian mystery. But that doesn’t make their act of faith any less human. The Holy Spirit empowers the innermost soul of a human being to believe in Christ, the only-begotten Son of the eternal Father.
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