Finding it hard to believe? (John 3:16)

If you find it hard to believe, you’re not alone.

Forty-three years ago, a bulk ore carrier struck the pylons of a bridge in Hobart, and the central sections of the bridge fell into the Derwent. Some Tasmanians still refuse to drive over that bridge. You can show them the bridge is safe and they’ll believe you, but they can’t trust it with their lives. They want to believe, but after the trauma it’s not so easy.

In a few months, Australia goes to the polls. Who do you believe will do the best job? Who will you trust the country to?

If you find it hard to trust, know that Jesus did too. He found it hard to trust even the ones who said they believed:

John 2:23-24 (my translation)
23 While Jesus was in Jerusalem for Passover Festival, many people believed in his authority as they saw the signs he was doing.
24 As for Jesus, he wasn’t about to trust himself to them, since he knows people. 25 He needed no one to give him evidence about humanity. He was all too aware of what was in humanity.

When you see how his story played out, you can understand him being cautious. Manipulated by their rulers, people demanded he be crucified.

Jesus was cautious, not cynical. He wouldn’t trust himself into the hands of people, but he did trust himself into the hands of God. He believed that even if people killed him, God would raise him up. He knew God would have the last word, even if that meant calling him out of a grave.

Jesus had no doubts about the extent of evil in the world, but he believed that God had sent him as a reconciliation gift to restore the world. His task was to prevent the world from perishing, to restore it to eternal life under divine reign.

That’s what it means to believe in him: to trust him as the person appointed by God to sort out everything that’s wrong.

He asks you to trust him as the ruler who rescues the world. Our politicians can’t do it, but God’s appointed ruler can:

John 3 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him

Trust him. You may not find it easy, but the world needs it.

Author: Allen Browne

Seeking to understand Jesus in the terms he chose to describe himself: son of man (his identity), and kingdom of God (his mission). Riverview Church, Perth, Western Australia

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