The pastor asked that question in his sermon today. I had heard it before. I had a pastor some 25-30 years ago who was always challenging me, “Why do you believe that?” He did me a big favor by keeping after me about that. It made me think. It made me ask, “why DO I believe that?”
The pastor today made the statement, “We encounter the testimony” in Holy Communion. He’s right. But I started thinking about that, and applied it in a larger sense to my own faith.
We encounter and recognize the testimony of this great cloud of witnesses from the past 2000 years.
We don’t form our faith in a vacuum. If we do, it will be a weak and shallow faith. But we read, and we encounter in our reading (the Apostles, the early church fathers and the martyrs, the Puritans, and more) the testimony of those who came before us, saying, “This is Truth! This is Real!” And they believed it so strongly that many died for what they believed.
And so I must consider what they said, that faithful witness that has come down through the centuries. If they believed it, if they died for that belief, how can I NOT believe it, too?