At the University of Chicago Divinity School each year they have what is
called "Baptist Day". It is a day when all the Baptists in the area are
invited to the school because they want the Baptist dollars to keep coming in.
On this day each one is to bring a lunch to be eaten outdoors in a grassy
picnic area. Every "Baptist Day" the school would invite one of the
greatest minds to lecture in the theological education center. One year
they invited Dr. Paul Tillich.
Dr. Tillich spoke for two and one-half hours proving that the resurrection
of Jesus was false. He quoted scholar after scholar and book after book. He
concluded that since there was no such thing as the historical resurrection
the religious tradition of the church was groundless, emotional mumbo-jumbo,
because it was based on a relationship with a risen Jesus, who, in
fact, never rose from the dead in any literal sense. He then asked if there
were any questions.
After about 30 seconds, an old, dark skinned preacher with a head
of short-cropped, woolly white hair stood up in the back of the auditorium.
"Docta Tillich, I got one question," he said as all eyes turned toward him.
He reached into his sack lunch and pulled out an apple and began eating it.
"Docta Tillich ..." CRUNCH, MUNCH ... "My
question is a simple question,"
CRUNCH, MUNCH ..."Now I ain't never read them books you
read ... "
CRUNCH, MUNCH ... "and I can't recite the Scriptures in
the original Greek..."
CRUNCH, MUNCH ... "I don't know nothin' about Niebuhr
CRUNCH, MUNCH ... He finished the apple. "All I wanna
This apple I just ate -- was it bitter or sweet?"
Dr. Tillich paused for a moment and answered in exemplary scholarly fashion:
"I cannot possibly answer that question, for I haven't tasted your apple."
The white-haired preacher dropped the core of his apple into his crumpled
paper bag, looked up at Dr. Tillich and said calmly,
"Neither have you tasted my Jesus."
The 1,000 plus in attendance could not contain themselves. The auditorium
erupted with applause and cheers. Dr. Tillich thanked his audience and
promptly left the platform.
Have you tasted Jesus? In Psalms 34:8 we read: Taste and see that the
LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him. If you have,
rejoice in the hope of the resurrection that your faith in Him brings.