Many in our day reject the reality of the resurrection of the dead. “We live in the 21st century” they argue “and we all know the people do not raise from the dead.” The Bible tells a different story. All of Jesus’s disciples (except Judas who hung himself before he could see the resurrection) claimed even unto death that Jesus rose from the dead. There are many ideas that people put out to disprove Jesus resurrection.
- The Disciples stole Jesus’s body. This faulty claim goes all the way back to the 1st century but ignores the fact that people will not die over a made up story. Almost all of the disciples who are accused of lying about the resurrection, were killed for preaching Jesus as raised from the dead and none of them changed their story even when given the opportunity to avoid death. The disciples were clearly not lying.
- The Disciples were mistaken. This argument makes sense at first since it is clear they were not lying. The problem is that Jesus did not just appear to the 12 disciples but he even appeared to 500 people at one time (1 Cor. 15:6)! Your telling me that 500 people + the 12 were hallucinating? Not only this but the gospel records that the disciples did not just see Jesus, they met with Jesus and touched Jesus over the many days before he went up to heaven. The disciples were not mistaken.
- Jesus was not really dead; he was buried alive. The problems with this are extensive. 1. Crucifixion is not lived through. 2. Jesus was stabbed in the side after he was declared dead and blood and water flowed out of his side(John 19:34). 3. The stone had to be unsealed and rolled away, something that not even several healthy men could not let alone a crucified man. 4. The guards at the tomb had to have been fought by this almost dead Jesus… You get the point. Jesus was truly dead.
- Jesus never existed. This is a claim that really comes out of desperation due to the impossibility of the above arguments. Even secular historians do not buy this idea. The first reason is from #1 above. People do not die over something they lied about, let alone for a person that never existed. Not to mention the fact that we have four gospel accounts (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) written by separate people and they all agree with each other.
Clearly we know that Jesus is real, he did die on the cross, he was risen from the dead, he did ascend into heaven, and he is coming soon. It is time for us to follow him and make his name know among all people before he comes back to gather his people and bring judgment on those who do not obey the gospel.