Self-Help Was Not Their Defense

As the apostles were brought before Roman authorities, they said nothing about how Jesus had helped them put their marriages back together or how they found the gospel helpful and useful in daily living.  There may well have been stories like that to report.  However, that was not their gospel.  Rather, they testified to the datable events, which they assumed to have been well-known to their judges.  It was not a “religion story”, but an international headline of immense world historical significance.  (People aren’t persecuted for having an invisible friend who helps then them through personal crises.)  They referred the secular rulers to eyewitnesses who were still living to back up their claim.  If the witnesses only offered good advice, spiritual and moral therapy, or defended their “product” for its pragmatic usefulness, Rome would have had no trouble adding another cult to the soup of imperial religion.

– Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 68


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