Over the last 2,000 years, far too many people have not given serious thought to the “rumor” of Jesus rising from the dead. I believe the entire credibility of the Bible hinges on whether or not Christ rose on that third day. Biblically speaking, the Messiah, whoever He was or is, had to defeat the enemies of the human race that no other human could beat. The Bible identified those enemies as: Satan, sin, and death. Jesus beat the devil by never obeying him, He beat sin by not sinning, and defeated death by rising bodily from it (He had to die first to beat it).

What assurance do we have today that His resurrection was not just an exaggerated tale to glorify the disciples’ hero? The Old Testament predicted it in Psalms 16:10: “For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.” Jesus also predicted it on more than one occasion. Furthermore, from a practical angle, Jesus’ body was never produced by His enemies after the tomb was discovered being empty (after being sealed and guarded by Roman soldiers). All the Pharisees had to do was to produce the dead body of Jesus and the whole religion would have died immediately. It is extremely doubtful that any follower of Jesus would steal His dead body because of the guards. They were scattered and scared. Moreover, these followers were later preaching His resurrection, and that got them into trouble with authorities and eventually caused their deaths, except for John (but he was exiled to the island of Patmos). People do not die for what they know to be a lie. Something big had to have happened at that time to get Christianity spreading as quickly and as early as it did. Therefore, the resurrection could not have been a later addition to the story of Jesus.

There have been a handful of other lame theories attempting to explain away the resurrection. Some suggest that Jesus never died on the cross and somehow broke the seal of the big stone door, rolled that stone aside, and then overcame the guards. Think about this for a second. Those armed Roman soldiers would have heard the noise that Jesus would have made while opening the tomb, and their spears would be drawn and readied by the time Jesus saw the light of day. A few others claim that the man Jesus never existed. This is like saying that the Holocaust never happened. The historicity of Jesus of Nazareth is solid. Maybe Jesus had formed a secret group of men apart from His disciples who were sworn to secrecy and they bribed the guards and stole the body while never telling the disciples. Bribing Roman guards without the guarantee of their lives being spared would never work, unless it came from a very high authority. This so-called conspiracy had to go far deeper than any rational thinking person would believe.

If you know a person who claims they cannot believe in Christ’s resurrection, share with them that if they are willing to obey God (not that they will be perfect), they can ask the Living Christ to enter their souls (see John 7:17). If they do this, they will have the same assurance that we have concerning the Greatest Event in human history.

NF: Right on Dave–where o where would we be without the Resurrection of Christ!

GR: Amen. It’s really quite simple, either you believe the Bible or you don’t. I do, and I have peace and
Joy in my life knowing a living God exists and is inside of me.