Tenacious disbelief

Something I find fascinating is the tenacity to which people will hold to lies – if things are not as we wish, we have an astonishing capacity to just ignore the truth and believe the lie. The best contemporary examples are political, and I won’t go there, but the best Biblical example certainly has to be the chief priest, scribes and elders at the crucifixion. Here is what they said:

So also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him.” (Mt 27:41-42)

Okay, that’s part one. They threw down the gauntlet and said they would believe if there was a big miracle. While Christ went on to die, as was necessary, still they posted a guard at the tomb which came back to them and reported that an angel had descended from Heaven, looking like lightning and with garments white as snow. Christ gone, clearly resurrected, big miracle, etc. So how did they respond?

While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.'” (Mt 28:11-13)

The point? They asked for a miracle. They got the miracle. They