by Bruce Hanson

Then Jesus told them, “This very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written: ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’”  Matthew 26:31

“…. But this has all taken place that the writings of the prophets might be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples deserted him and fled. Matthew 26:55-56

Way, way back in the day, I discovered Josh McDowell’s book Evidence That Demands a Verdict. One of the early sections was entitled “Lord, Liar or Lunatic”.
In that section, Josh contends that one of the greatest testimonies to Jesus’ divinity was the radical change it wrought in His followers. If he had simply been a great teacher, we likely would not have seen the changes that were evidenced almost immediately, fifty days after his resurrection, at Pentecost.

Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say.” Acts 2:14

Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. Acts 2:41

Not even two months after Jesus was crucified — despite Peter’s previous denial, Peter stands up in the very same Jerusalem, a city overflowing with visitors, and leads 3000 to Jesus. Which brings me to one of my favorite passages in scripture.

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.  Acts 4:13

These men had been with Jesus!!

Peter and John had gone from doubt to certainty. That self same assurance is ours as well — just like Peter’s and John’s. 

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:37-39

My brand (-B

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