And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus,
the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
Because of the joy awaiting him,
he endured the cross, disregarding its shame.
Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.
I was raised in the Christian faith and church. But in my early 20’s, after my first season of depression, I began to doubt my faith in Jesus Christ. I can remember declaring to my mother (I am sure much to her horror) that I did not believe in God and I certainly did not believe in Jesus or His resurrection. I turned to the world and avoided God at all costs.
You can only imagine how upset I was when a year later Dave called me, before I joined him in Amarillo, Texas for the baseball season, to tell me that he had accepted Jesus as his Savior. I remember thinking –
“Oh my gosh, I am married to a Jesus freak!”
When I arrived he was already involved in a Bible study with seven other Christian couples on the team. He insisted that I join him and because of my desire to fill that void that existed within my heart since I stopped believing, I agreed to go. I had a lot of questions and I was looking for answers – I wanted to believe but I wanted proof.
I knew at the core of Christianity was the resurrection of Christ. And in my inquisitive, skeptic mind I pondered, “How can I be sure that the resurrection really did take place?”
I was drawn to read the book “The Resurrection Factor” by Josh McDowell. As a young man, Josh McDowell considered himself an agnostic. He truly believed that Christianity was worthless. However, when challenged to intellectually examine the claims of Christianity, Josh discovered compelling, overwhelming evidence for the reliability of the Christian faith. He trusted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and eventually started the Josh McDowell Ministry.
In his book, Josh presented all the evidence supporting the resurrection of Christ. As I read and researched what Josh presented – the evidence satisfied my skeptic heart. I was convinced of Christ’s resurrection – I believed and accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me.
Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said.
He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said.
He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve.
After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time,
most of whom are still alive, though some have died.
Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles.
Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him.
1 CORINTHIANS 15:3-8 (Words of the Apostle Paul)
If you find yourself enduring a season of doubt, I encourage you to consider once again the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Go to www.Josh.org or www.Jesus.org, which are wonderful resource websites. Review the evidence for the resurrection and remind yourself or possibly discover for the first time why you never need to doubt your faith in Jesus Christ again. Consider the resurrected Christ so that you may endure with hope and receive the salvation of your soul.
Though you have not seen him, you love him;
and even though you do not see him now,
you believe in him
and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,
for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
1 PETER 1:8-9
On the journey with you,