There is a mountain of evidence that shows that the resurrection of Jesus Christ (Yashua ha’Mashiach) is a historic fact. This means that He is who He claimed to be – the Messiah of God who died on the cross for the sins of humanity. Here are just a few of the evidences for Jesus’ resurrection.
The Appearances of the Risen Christ
For 40 days after His Crucifixion, many eyewitnesses saw Jesus alive. In 1 Corinthians15:3-6, the apostle Paul notes the following: For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day…and after that he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have died.
1 Corinthians was Paul’s letter to a church; thus it is important to understand that it was a public document. In it, Paul was attributing the appearances of Jesus to people who were still alive. As Timothy Keller, the esteemed pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, points out, “Paul was inviting anyone who doubted that Jesus had appeared to people after his death to go and talk to the eyewitnesses if they wished. It was a bold challenge and one that could easily be taken up,since during the pax Romana travel around the Mediterranean was safe and easy. Paul could not have made such a challenge if those eyewitnesses did not exist.”
The Transformation of Jesus’ Apostles
After Jesus’ crucifixion, the apostles were disappointed and heartbroken. They no longer believed that Jesus was the Messiah. Utterly dejected, they dispersed and fled in fear. But once they saw the risen Jesus with their own eyes, there was a dramatic turnaround. They began to boldly proclaim the Gospel, and they did so without any material rewards. Most of them were tortured and executed for their beliefs. Tradition holds that Peter insisted on being crucified upside because he was unworthy of being executed in the same manner as his Lord. Why were these men willing to die such cruel deaths? J.P. Moreland provides the answer: … “they were convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that they had seen Jesus Christ alive from the dead. What you can’t explain is how this particular group of men came up with this particular belief without having had a experience of the resurrected Christ. There’s no other adequate explanation.”
The Personal Experience of Receiving Jesus Christ as One’s Lord and Savior
As Hank Hanegraaff astutely observes, “Today Christians everywhere not only know Christ evidentially but experientially as well. Christ is more real to them than the very flesh on their bones.”
Jesus said, “I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him (or her). (Revelation 3:20). I suggest that if you haven’t already, that you open that door.
Related Articles by Hartley Engel:
Luke 12:31: But Seek the Kingdom of God and all These Things Shall be Added to You
Objective Moral Values: Proof the you Know God is There
The Fine-Tuning Argument: A Solid Case for the Existence of God?