The Oxford dictionary describes superstition as ‘any belief or behaviour based upon one's trust in luck or other irrational, unscientific, or supernatural forces’. Many of us might laugh derisively at such things, yet wish people ‘the best of luck’ in relation to a game or other competitive event. Having ‘our fingers crossed’ is a commonly stated phrase. Those who play the lottery often have their ‘lucky numbers’. Many practices, some semi-religious and others pagan, appear at this time of year and are referred to as ‘superstitions’.
The word superstition is used once in the King James Bible. The Roman governor that used it, Festus, was talking about the trial of a man called Paul. Festus was the judge in that trial and was struck by the fact that Paul talked of ‘one Jesus who had died, but--so Paul persistently maintained--is now alive’. Clearly, thought Festus, such a belief is irrational and unscientific. Resurrection of the dead? Superstition!
However, we need to appreciate that Christians do not believe in the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ as some people believe in luck. Christian belief is not ‘blind faith’. First, the Bible teaches it. Second, witnesses testified to it. Those witnesses saw the Lord Jesus in different places, at different times, sometimes singly and sometimes in groups. They spoke to Him, they touched Him, and they ate with Him. Ultimately, many of them died for Him – martyred for their faith.
This belief is essential if we are to be saved from our sins – those things in our life which are wrong in the sight of God. ‘If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved’. That’s what makes a true Christian!