Truth Comes Out

The latest public snafu, this time involving journalist Brian Williams, has of course captured the attention of the masses, mostly because that’s what the media wants us to think about.  Eleven years later, claims that Williams’ made about his battle experiences in Iraq have been proven false.  Whether the falsehoods were deliberate or accidental is a secondary matter to this post, though.  The fact is that 11 years after the fact, the assertions of a high-profile media personality have been shown to be false.

Truth Comes Out.

It may take a while, but the truth comes out.

I think this is hugely helpful for Christians dealing with a culture that increasingly doubts the radical claims of first century authors that Jesus of Nazareth was executed by the state, buried, and then returned to life again, making himself seen to hundreds of people over a six week period before physically ascending into heaven.  It’s popular to simply act as if the writers of the New Testament made all of this up.

Why would they do that?  you should ask.  No answer.  There is no rationale for people making up and sticking to a story that culminates in their violent torture and death, their exclusion from family and community.  The idea that a group of people would make up a story that was patently false for no personal gain is hard to believe.

But it’s even harder to believe when we consider Mr. Williams’ situation.  Truth comes out.  Did the apostles, the writers of the Gospels, St. Paul and the entire early Church just make this stuff up?  Despite massive persecution both in their religious communities and by the secular government?  Despite the fact that the two groups with the most resources and the most to lose by such assertions – the religious authorities and the Roman government – both had very vested interests in making sure that Jesus remained dead?

St. Paul refers his Corinthian hearers to others for validation of his assertions of Jesus crucified and resurrected.  Unlike other major world religions – notably Islam and Mormonism – Christianity is not simply one person saying take my word for it.  St. Paul claims that the resurrected Jesus was seen by over 500 people, many of whom were still alive and accessible.  In other words, don’t just take my word for it.  Ask around and see if others validate what I’m saying.

If these had just been fabrications, if anyone had thought that there was something to be gained by making up these assertions, wouldn’t the stories have started changing when the persecutions began?  When people lost jobs and homes?  When people were disowned by their families?  When people were arrested by the government?  When tongues were being cut out and eyes being burned out?  When people started dying, don’t you think someone would have mentioned that Uncle Matthew or Uncle Peter had mentioned one time that the whole thing was a hoax?

The truth comes out.  Sometimes it comes out inadvertently.  Sometimes it comes out through guilt.  Sometimes it comes out through being exposed with the facts.  But the fact that there are no real attempts to undermine the facts of the Gospels by those most inclined and best able to do so at the time is a huge reinforcement to me of their validity.

It should be for you as well.

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