Why Believe?

Why believe in the God of the Bible? You might as well ask why we breathe the air that is around us. What else should we do?

The apostle Peter was with Jesus when several “disciples” abandoned their faith. These early disciples were not true followers of Christ, since they turned back. Their initial “faith” was not genuine and they were more than likely following Jesus only because of the physical benefits Jesus gave, like healing and multiplying food. The claims of Jesus seemed to be far-fetched to them. They wanted a Messiah who healed the sick and fed the hungry, but they weren’t too sure about Jesus calling himself the bread that came down from heaven and that they would live forever if they ate on this bread. (John 6:58).

Peter didn’t understand Jesus’ words either; but he knew Jesus, and he trusted him, and when Jesus asked if he, too, would leave, Peter asked, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68). Peter is rightly implying that there is no other teacher who can lead people to eternal life and to true fellowship with God himself. I don’t think Peter could prove to the men and women running away that Jesus was the Messiah. We read that Peter also struggled to believe it himself. But at that moment, Peter did not have a better explanation for life than Jesus of Nazareth. And because of that, he wasn’t going to bend.

Fast forward 2,000 years later, not much has changed for followers of Jesus Christ. We can give arguments that make a solid case for the existence of God and the reliability and authority of the sixty-six books of the Bible. We can even argue for the historical reliability of the four gospels and the credibility of Jesus’ bodily resurrection. We can even suggest that there is no more beautiful story than that of Jesus coming down from heaven, taking on flesh, dwelling among us, living a perfect life, dying as our substitute, and rising to return again as the Judge of all. There are countless reasons to believe the gospel even if we can’t prove it.

Peter was onto something with his question to Jesus, “Lord, to whom shall we go?” What other belief is as fascinating as the fact that there is a God and he has spoken in his Word? It’s because of God and his gospel that all the redeemed are kept by God’s power and are secure in Christ forever. It’s because of the truth revealed in Scripture that believers walk in the light, always sure of where they are going even during the times when the path is a rollercoaster of the unknown. It’s because salvation is totally from God, by grace, through the redemption of Jesus Christ, the merit of His shed blood. It is not on the basis of human merit of works.

Why believe in the God of the Bible? Belief in the God of Scripture isn’t blind, it’s reasonable; more reasonable, in fact, than belief in anything else.

Pastor Justin Villines