I am pretty sure I have heard one or another apologist on Catholic Answers Live, and have certainly heard people in real life support the Truth of Christianity with assertions along the line of:
Well, it’s been around for 2000 years…
*The apostles were ***martyred **rather than renounce their story – Surely they would not have done so if they were making it up…?
Indeed, even the Acts of the Apostles alludes to this in 5:34-42.
And it makes me cringe.
I find this support to be unsatisfactory at best.
How long is *long enough *to establish Truth? Why does 2000 years make Christianity True, but not older religions such as Judaism or Hinduism. And: Was not Christianity True when it was only 1500 years old? Then cannot Islam today make the same claim to Truth?
And the witness of the martyrs is inspiring. But have not men likewise died for causes less than true? In ideological wars, in cults (Branch Davidians, Heaven’s Gate, Jim Jones, et cetera)? How many martyrs does it take to establish Truth? And have not martyrs of some other faiths (Judaism, Hinduism, Islam) shown at least as much witness?
Believe me, I love the Catholic faith and hold it True.
But if I – who am friendly to the Faith – find these supports of *longevity *and *endurance *to be weak, why should I expect them to convince others?
Is there some reason to hold *longevity *and *endurance *as supporting Christianity (and specifically Catholicism) and not other belief systems?