Why I Have to Believe in the Resurrection

I have to believe in the Resurrection.

I don't have to prove it or explain it or argue for it

I just have to believe it.

Owen Meaney, the main character in John Irving's novel A Prayer for Owen Meaney expresses my thoughts about this well: "I find that Holy Week is draining; no matter how manu times I have lived through his crucifixion, my anxiety about his resurrection is undiminished - I am terrified that, this year, it won't happen; that, that year, it didn't. Anyone can be sentimental about the Nativity; any fool can feel like a Christian at Christmas. But Easter is the main event; if you don't believe in the resurrection, you're not a believer."

The Resurrection of Christ is unbelievable; and yet, it demands belief.

At least, it demands my belief.

I have several friends who are perfectly content to see the Resurrection as metaphorical - they do not need a literal resurrection to believe in Jesus.

But I do.

I need to know that death is not the end. I need to know that the worst thing is not the last thing. I need to know that "the sun will come out tomorrow ...." The Resurrection helps me to know these things.

Resurrection for me means HOPE. And HOPE, for me, is an absolutely essential quality. I have to have HOPE!

I have renamed this blog The Hopeful Aesthete because I want to write about things that bring HOPE and BEAUTY to anyone who happens to drop by. There is more than enough DESPAIR and ANGST and BRUTALITY and UGLINESS in our world and on our computers. I want to be a peddler of HOPE and BEAUTY, because I think that's what Christ came to bring us; I think that is what the Kingdom looks like: a place where HOPE and BEAUTY reign.

So HOPE for me starts on Easter. It starts with a belief in the resurrection of the God-man Jesus who had been executed, dead and buried. A mysterious, un-believable, miraculous event that asks us to simply believe.

And yet, even before the HOPE of Easter, I am captured once again by the BEAUTY of Christ's final days on the planet: the institution of the Eucharist, the foot washing, the LOVE shown to those who would betray and deny him, the New Commandment, the High Priestly Prayer of unity, the willingness to suffer the wrath that was due us all, the FORGIVENESS offered to his executioners, the invitation offered to the thief on the cross. Only God could take the ugliness of the final days of Jesus' life and turn them into something BEAUTIFUL. And the only way I have found to see the BEAUTY in them, is to see them through the lens of the Resurrection.

No matter what I have to face in this life, I know that there is HOPE.

I know that when I face the Friday's of life, Sunday's comin'!

And that's why I have to believe in the Resurrection.

Here's a great song by a great band (Robbie Seay Band) which captures some of what I am trying to say here


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