He is Risen!
On Sunday, April 1st, we will celebrate Resurrection Sunday along with Christians throughout the world! More than just an exciting story, the resurrection is the central teaching of the Christian faith. If it could be disproved, as some have tried to do throughout history, Christianity would collapse like a house of cards. The Apostle Paul makes it very clear in 1 Corinthians 15:12-19 that Christianity stands or falls on the reality of the resurrection:
12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
So how do we know that Jesus actually died, was buried and rose again? If we check out the first verses of 1 Corinthians 15, Paul tells us that there were many people who witnessed these things: Cephas (Peter) saw Jesus after his death and burial and later the twelve. Jesus also appeared to 500 people at one time. This could hardly be a hallucination! He also appeared to James and all the apostles, including Paul. And, since many of these witnesses were still alive at the writing of Paul’s letter to the people of Corinth, Paul is essentially encouraging his readers to check this out further with these witnesses.
As Christians, it is essential that our beliefs are based upon historical realities! And we can rest assured that the resurrection, this central event and belief of Christianity, stands up to close scrutiny.
He is risen!