Why do we believe? Because we know who Jesus was


By Rev. Glenn Martin
Guest Columnist

Easter completes the identity of who Jesus the Christ was and is. The Bible contains a sequence of prophecies of Jesus.

• "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign. Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and you shall call his name Immanuel (God with us)." Isaiah 7:14

• "Unto us a child is born, a son is given. His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace..." Isaiah 9:6,7

Isaiah 53:1-6 is one of the most powerful passages in the Bible. These Old Testament words describe the New Testament revelation of God's plan for every sinner's salvation.

Jesus' miraculous life and ministry caused even the doubters to say, "No one can do these things unless God is with him." 

If you had been there when Jesus was born, when he taught and fed the thousands, when he healed the sick and lame and blind, when he was tried, condemned and nailed to a rugged cross; when on the third day he came out of the grave and made himself known to several hundred people...if you had been there, would you believe that he is the promised Messiah, the only begotten son of God, the word made flesh, the lamb of God who takes upon himself the sin of the world?

If you had been there, would you believe?

An eyewitness can make or break a case where human life is at stake in a court of law. The Jewish nation required two or three witnesses as proof of an event. 

Truth is not always affirmed in case of an eyewitness. Human beings are capable of mistaken identity or of bribery or of making a deal to benefit themselves by testifying against another. Many are being released from prison due to inaccurate information used to convict. 

But the identity of Jesus, the Christ, is not in question. We have eyewitness accounts by the hundreds written by those who were closest to him.

No bribes, no deals, no doubt that this is the promised Messiah. His witnesses could have cut a deal with the Roman authorities to save themselves from death row. They chose rather to proclaim the Lord's resurrection and die.

Their only motive -- they knew who Jesus was! I know why I believe.

Martin is a retired clergy member of the Mississippi Conference and a frequent contributor to the "Advocate."