January 2, 2015
(St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops and Doctors of the Church)
St. John wrote, “Anyone who denies the Son does not have the Father, but whoever confesses the Son has the Father as well. Let what you heard from the beginning remain in you. If what you heard from the beginning remains in you, then you will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that he made us: eternal life. I write you these things about those who would deceive you.” 1 Jn 2:22-28
Thirteen years ago, in September, a major world event occurred in New York City, Washington, D.C. and in a field in Central Pennsylvania. It was dubbed “911” for the date of its occurrence, and it will always be remembered by that name.
But thirteen years is a long time.
And we have a whole new generation of kids who were either way too young to remember it, or were not even born yet; when, for the rest of us, it seems like it was just yesterday. So, all that those kids will know of 911, is what they’ve read about it, or have had to memorize for some history test. And in the process the actual story will eventually go from our real-life experience of it, to whatever the historians deem important enough to record. And that can include all kinds of biases to the actual facts.
And then, we can say the same thing for WWII, the first space launch, Korea and Vietnam, the ‘Bay of Pigs’, Kent State, hippies, Desert Storm, the assassinations of Kennedy and Martin Luther King, the first humans to land on the moon, the Challenger accident, the collapse of the Berlin Wall and communism in Russia, and on and on.
You see, we’ve lived through all of those events. But to those who haven’t, they have to take it on Faith, on belief of others accounts, that it really happened.
And it was, and IS, the same with everything that happened with Jesus. Was he an actual person? How could those miracles have really happened? From His miraculous birth, to His resurrection, what part of it was actually real?
John the Apostle and Evangelist lived the Story. And as John began to age, he started to witness the Story getting mangled by people who either didn’t know the actual events, or twisted the facts on purpose, in order to serve their own agenda.
And it really confused those who were new to the faith.
And that’s why we see the Letters of John, and Paul, and Peter condemning those false, or biased interpretations of the history of Jesus, that they, themselves witnessed and lived.
You see, it really does take faith and motivation to believe in Jesus. We memorize the accounts of history in order to get a good grade in the class. And the reason we want a good grade is so that we can advance in our careers and be able to choose a good college and eventually get a good job.
So the trick then is to move those shorter term, physical, worldly goals to longer term, spiritual, and heavenly goals. Goals that will benefit us, for Eternity.
And so we Believe.
And as time progresses, the archaeologists and historians are finally, proving that all of the events in the Bible, that were just known by their written record, actually DID occur.
Jesus Christ IS God.
And John the Baptist attested to that reality. And many of the people of his time didn’t believe, even what was obvious to their own eyes. They say, you can’t push a rope, But one thing is for sure. We CAN allow Jesus to pull us along to Heaven with Him –
IF we just believe He will!
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