Why should you believe anything you see written in my blogs? Why should you believe what you hear on my podcasts? Why should you believe what I have written in my books? I am claiming in all these media forms to be faithfully relating to you what the Bible says…but why should you believe that I’m right when I say that?
I tell you this: you need a reason to believe me. And you need to know what that reason is. Faith that does not involve your reason is…unreasonable. The God who gave you the power to think does not want you to believe in Him thoughtlessly. People who think that faith is not logical either misunderstand what faith is or else they’re being illogical about it. I will give you three valid reasons for believing me, and you can decide which applies to you.
First, you could believe me because you know me and you know my character. If you know me and know my character, then you would know I am not the kind of person to claim expertise that I don’t have. I don’t write about dentistry because I’ve never studied it. Neither am I knowledgeable about carpentry…or nuclear physics…or embalming…or all sorts of other things. I have some experience in business so I could write with some authority about that. And maybe a few other things. So, to sum up, there are many subjects about which I’m too ignorant to write, and there are a handful about which I’m knowledgeable enough to write – the Bible being one. I have chosen to write about the Bible. What qualifies me? I have read it. A lot. I am telling you what I’ve read and understood. If I’ve read something in the Bible and don’t understand it, I don’t write about it. Therefore, if you know me then you know I am a principled man (not a perfect man, but a principled one) and would only say “the Bible says” if I were sure from my own study that that’s what it actually said. This is a valid reason for believing me.
Second, you could believe me – even if you don’t know me – if God bears witness to your heart that what I’m saying is true. That is, God, through His Holy Spirit could so work in your heart that you came to a conviction that I am not lying or mistaken in what I am saying about the Bible. God could accomplish this in a variety of ways: through various thoughts that occur to you, dreams, visions, or whatever. The point is that in your mind you would see the truth of the things I’m saying based on those things themselves and the work of God in your heart – without having to know anything about me.
A third reason you could believe me is because you went to the Bible and checked out the things I’ve said to see for yourself if the Bible actually says them. This is what some citizens of a city named Berea did when Paul preached to them what the Scriptures said (Acts 17:10, 11). In all my work, I point to the places in the Bible from which my thoughts come. Therefore, if you want to check out for yourself what I say, you have the means to do so. In fact, I invite you to do that; I welcome it. I am not the least bit offended that many people will want to read the Scriptures themselves to see whether these things are so. The prophets and apostles are even more reliable sources than I am. I am indeed reliable because I’m too sober-minded to write about such weighty things without first making sure I was relating faithfully what the Bible said. But the prophets and apostles are far more worthy to be believed than I am – so, by all means, take their word for it.
So there are three reasons for you to believe me when it comes to Jesus Christ. Know which one applies to you. And if you don’t believe me…the same reasons apply. That is, if you don’t believe me, make sure you know why you don’t believe me.
Of the people who’ve heard (read) me and not believed, what do you think is the main reason? I can tell you from my own experience that the people who don’t believe me simply don’t want to believe that what I’m saying is true. It’s that simple. Why do they not want to believe it? Because it would cost them something. And they figure it would cost them more than they would gain.
There are people who know me and would pay attention to anything I said in a business context. That is, they would at least take it seriously and not dismiss it out of hand. Yet when it comes to God, life and death, eternity and related things, they won’t even consider what I’m saying – even though they know my character to be such that I would never intentionally mislead them about such important things.
There are people in whose hearts God bears witness to the truth of what I say about the Bible’s testimony, yet they shake it off and move on to another subject as if they’d never heard a thing.
And there are people who believe I am misrepresenting the Bible because what I’m saying doesn’t match what they’ve heard from others. Yet they will not invest the time to study the multitudinous chapter-and-verse references I give in order to make a proper choice between what I’m saying and what they’ve previously heard – even when what I’m saying offers far greater hope in God and has far more scriptural support than what they’ve been taught in the past.
To sum up, most people who don’t believe me lack a good reason for not believing me. They simply don’t want these things to be true. It’s a matter of the will.
Therefore, whether you believe me or disbelieve me, know why you do what you do. I have given you three good reasons for believing that God is good and in Him there is no evil at all. I have given you three good reasons for believing that Jesus Christ is God and that there is much more to learn from Him and about Him than we have ever imagined. I have given you three good reasons for opening your heart and life fully to this One who created us…and redeemed us from our sins. Pick a reason…and believe…Him.