Monday, April 6, 2015
Last week I wrote about Resurrection joy. Today let's explore Resurrection faith! In the mid 1950’s and 1960’s a German Lutheran theologian and professor of New Testament at the University of Marburg, Rudolph Bultmann, caused a stir when he argued that only faith in the message of the New Testament was necessary for Christian faith, not any particular facts regarding the historical Jesus. Now I have just spent an entire Easter weekend focused on the very detailed events of Jesus’ passion, and how they radically heal, transform and save our lives. If Jesus was not a historical figure, then I don’t know who he was! However, I think I get what Bultmann is trying to say! He is elevating how important our FAITH is! It is no good believing in the historical Jesus if we do not accompany this with an alive and practicing FAITH. It is like James says, “What good is our faith if it is not accompanied by actions?” I have met many people who are not believers but who have accomplished much good in their lives through having a robust and vigorous faith. The point for me though is not to get into a debate about believers faith and non-believers faith, or the historical Jesus’ whereabouts, but to focus on our faith. Let’s not worry about other people or a sensitive theological debate, but look at the authenticity of our faith. Let’s allow Bultmann, however controversial (or wrong) he was, to ask a valid question – how active is your faith? James went on to say, “Do you believe that there is only one God? Good! The demons also believe - and tremble with fear.” A dead faith is worthless, an active, action filled faith is really the only faith!