I’d like to know if it’s true or not, but there is just not enough solid information to make that determination. Moreover, if a personal God exists, he could provide the additional information. If the Bible is to be believed, he did just that when Thomas doubted. But he is silent, or acting in ways that preserve the ambiguity rather than dispelling it. If that ambiguity is necessary (to preserve free will, for example), why was it not necessary for Thomas, or the other disciples who got many postmortem appearances from Jesus? Saying that he is present in the Holy Spirit just seems like a cop-out.
And I would say there is just enough information to find out that resurrection did happen. That is, if one is going to do a sufficiently honest and thorough investigation, then, eventually, one will be able to demonstrate that other versions are not superior.
Sure. He can give this information. In some cases He does. But if He would give as much of it, as you seem to want, that would spoil the “puzzle”.
After all, He did say that “blessed are they that have not seen, and have believed.” (John 20:29).
Let’s look at it in this way. There are many puzzles. For example, the one that got famous recently, about birthdays. Presumably, the ones who solved it (and not just it) in the contest got some prize (perhaps a certificate and a handshake with some official). Was it possible to give more information, to make the puzzle easier? Sure. But then the ones who solved the puzzle would have lost the chance to deserve the prize.
And in this case we might get an improved chance for eternal life (compare the value of that with the value of a certificate and a handshake). Do you really think the “puzzle” should be “spoilt”?
And “Cheryl” in the “Singaporean puzzle” said things to “Albert” and “Bernard” that we haven’t been told. That’s what the puzzle is about.
Also, apostles didn’t have all information we have. For example, they were not given the piece of evidence saying that a dozen of witnesses have laid their lives to confirm that resurrection did happen (as, obviously, they were those witnesses).
How much evidence would you require?
Would jesus need to be in some display tent somewhere for you to go and see?
He made it clear 2000 years ago…beyond a shadow of a doubt and that evidence is passed on down.
People are skeptics and will always be skeptics…if he came in glory from the clouds you may still not believe…
This is where faith comes in…all roads are pointing at Christ and a personal God,
You will get your proof soon enough.
Did Jesus appear to everyone at the same time?
Did they all recognize him right off the bat?
One person thought he was a gardener. Two other people thought he was a random guy walking on the road. These were all people who had followed him faithfully in person for an extended period of time. But he didn’t permit them to recognize him from the get-go… and when they were allowed, it was unmistakable.
Mother Teresa once said:
“Seeking the face of God in everything, everyone, all the time, and his hand in every happening; This is what it means to be contemplative in the heart of the world. Seeing and adoring the presence of Jesus, especially in the lowly appearance of bread, and in the distressing disguise of the poor.”
Ven. Maria de Agreda once postulated that Jesus’ appearances after the Resurrection were ordered according to who had contemplated/dwelt upon his death and passion. The ones who had contemplated and dwelt upon it the most were the ones who he appeared to first, and going on down the line. Presumably, he never appeared to, say, Caiphas or the other leaders who had plotted his death. The appearances gave grace and courage to his followers, who were in fear of their lives, and if you read Acts of the Apostles, pretty much all of them (minus John) ended up with the courage to give witness to the Resurrection with their lives. (As an aside, I heard a cute story the other day… some guy said that Watergate led him to Christianity, when he saw how much difficulty such a small group of people had in keeping their stories straight in the face of difficulty— no one being willing to sacrifice themselves and their careers to maintain a lie.)
But it might be helpful to put those tidbits together… (a) the need to contemplate Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, in order to “find” him; and (b) the knowledge that he’s already told us he is present in the Eucharist and in those around us. By the time you get to that point where you’re aware of his presence, it doesn’t really matter so much that you can’t put your hand in his side, a la Thomas. You’ll discover that you encounter God’s hand in your life so many times, at so many different moments, that you’ll probably lose track. Because people who seek will find, so make sure you’re seeking where he’ll be found.
I’m always interested in why people demand evidence from God.
If you get the proof you want, then what? What changes? Do you start going to Church?
And if you don’t get the proof? :eek:
Anyone who wants God to jump through some set of empirical, evidentiary hoops, treating God like a little dog that has to obey on command before we decide whether or not to obey Him in return has gravely misunderstood their own place in the universe/multiverse.
Well, personally, if I KNEW for a fact, and saw with my own tow eyes, I can honestly say, I would be a changed person from then on!!
Something else too, Jesus obviously had no problems showing people what he could do back when he walked the earth for 33 years…he performed all kinds of miracles right in front of people, whether they believed or not, they still saw the same thing with their own eyes, so in a sense, he DID have to show off a bit in order to gain such a following, ask yourself how many followers he would have gotten if he did NO miracles, no healing on the spot, nothing supernatural, and required them all to ONLY rely on faith in this new religion he was speaking about…what would that result have been?
I’ve never understood how martyrdom is supposed to equal truth. One can die for a passionately believed mistake. And a revelation that quickly becomes a mystery itself does not seem to have revealed much at all.
I’ll take what Thomas got. That seems fair. It’s uncharitable of you to assume that I’m so insensitive to truth that I’d be skeptical no matter what.
Couldn’t I form the habit of associating things around me with Jesus regardless of whether he was actually raised from the dead or not? This is poetic, but not really what I’m talking about.
The bold is the key problem. You want to take. God asks you to give as He gives.
Naturally, things would be different. Then I would believe that Christianity is true, and I would act accordingly.
I am seeking greater information precisely so I can avoid grave misunderstandings. Telling me I’ve misunderstood highlights the problem without solving it.
But the problem is he’s NOT giving more information and greater clarity about the truth or falsehood of the resurrection. Telling me to give as he gives when the problem is that he hasn’t given doesn’t really work.
I have been reading N.T. Wright’s series, Christian Origins and the Question of God–about five volumes I think. The one called, The Resurrection of the Son of God, might address your question… but to read the whole series might also help you to see Christianity in a new light, the way it was first understood, and not as things have accumulated and distorted it over time.
Although of course, if you wanted this kind of information fifty years ago, you might never find it… it is a troubling thing.
So everybody who died before Christ’s resurrection never got to see ‘proof’.
And we’ve had nearly 2000 years since, and a handful (I think Scripture says about 500 all together, according to St Paul) saw Him after the resurrection.
Interestingly enough, while Martha and Mary and Lazarus of Bethany are mentioned prominently in the gospels, there is no mention specifically that they saw Jesus after the resurrection. There isn’t even mention that Mary His Mother saw Him. What about Zaccheus? What about the rich young man? How about the lepers He cleansed, the blind man whose sight He restored? The paralyzed man? Joseph of Arimathea, who supplied the tomb?
We don’t know if those who believed in Him and were personally healed by Him ever saw Him after His resurrection. We don’t know, regarding most of them, even with Sacred Tradition, if after their healing, they continued in grace or if they fell into sin, even mortal sin, again. It could be that after Christ healed the paralyzed man and told him that his sins were forgiven, that 5 or 10 years later, after the man began to ‘live it up’ as a whole and healthy man, that he completely forgot about Christ.
So the idea that somehow if YOU (generic you) knew "for sure’, because Christ decided to give YOU the chance to put your fingers into the nail marks and your hand into His side so that you knew 100% He was God, and didn’t have to rely on simple faith, you’d turn into some uber Christian, whereas if you don’t have that guarantee you’ll just pfft through life and really, it’s CHRIST’S FAULT if you do because HE didn’t care enough to keep on repeating “whoop here I am” to all and sundry over the last 2000 years, is bogus. It really is.
Come on, when Jesus walked the earth people saw Him do signs and wonders, and they still yelled “Crucify Him”. . . what makes people think they’d not do the same today?
I’m familiar with the book, whose chief argument is that (a) something happened to change the disciples (b) the disciples said that what changed them was the resurrection © the words they used inherently meant a physical event so (d) it must have happened and been physical as they said. I respect the erudition Bishop Wright displayed in his analysis of ancient understandings of death and the afterlife, but that does not negate the possibility that the disciples were simply mistaken.
I have said it was a piece of evidence, I did not say that “martyrdom is supposed to equal truth”. And it is a piece of evidence. One among many. Also, there is the point that it was apostles (among others) that were martyred.
Ah, but that’s the point: martyrdom demonstrates sincerity of belief.
And if apostles made a “passionately believed mistake” then how could that happen? In that case they must have been mistaken about the same evidence that you demand.
If you think that they could have been mistaken, what makes you think that you would not be mistaken like them?
For that’s the problem: although you seem to think that the evidence you demand is much stronger than the evidence you already have, in fact it is not that much stronger.
As you can see, you already have a lot of evidence. You only have to use it fully, instead of demanding for more.
Also, be ready to accept certainty that is less than perfect. After all, what do you have to lose? For all you know, you might get even more evidence afterwards.
For something to be believed, you only need to see it yourself, or be told about it being seen by someone you trust.
Peter and the nine and the women saw him, then Thomas with the ten, then a number of others. The Catholic Church grew from those 120 people in the upper room on Pentecost because people heard them tell what they saw and knew, and trusted them. Then others heard from these. On down to us believing Pope Francis and our Bishops and Priests (and each other).
It was necessary that he be seen by some, and that that we hear and believe them (“The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”). Believing Pope Francis, or a Bishop or a Priest or a Catholic tell me that Christ is risen plus that I can participate in Him is my direct link to the sound of Jesus’ voice and to Him. Pope Francis heard it from Pope Benedict, Benedict heard it from John Paul II, John Paul II heard it from John Paul I. John Paul I heard it from Paul VI,… heard it from Pope Peter. Pope Peter saw Jesus and does not lie.
Jesus shed every last drop of His blood for us. In the Old Testament there were numerous types and figures of the Messiah to come…God, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity…in flesh like ours!
The apostles gave their lives for Him…they had seen Him and knew everything He said is true!
I hope that as I get to know Him better and follow Him more carefully, that others will recognize Him and then believe!
Wait…we do have many who followed Him faithfully and have done just that!
Our Lord’s life, death, and resurrection makes much sense!
Faith is a gift…if we pray for it we will get it.
And, if we already have it…we can go deeper. We have the means - His very life and all the gifts he gave us.
He loves everyone with an infinite love. He wants all to receive His love and give it to others, and to Him.
Alleluia! He is risen! And still with us.