Easter Sunday is about the resurrection of Jesus Christ. But how do you know that the resurrection of Jesus Christ took place? How do you know Jesus really came back to life?
We believe that Jesus rose again because we have the eye witness testimony of many people. A number of people saw Jesus alive and well after his very real death.
A summary of Jesus’ resurrection appearances is given to us by the apostle Paul when Paul speaks about the gospel to the church in Corinth: ‘1 Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. 6 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 fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born’ (1 Corinthians 15:1-8).
Notice what Paul says in verse 6 in that quote – many of the people who saw Jesus were still alive when he wrote to the Corinthians. In other words, if you think I’m lying, go ask the people who saw Jesus.
In the end, we must recognise that Jesus’ resurrection cannot have been made up by one or two people, many people claimed to have seen Jesus’ resurrection body. Either Jesus’ resurrection was a mass conspiracy or it really happened. And the odds that it was a mass conspiracy are extremely slim. A lot of the people who saw Jesus were put to death themselves as a result of their belief that Jesus was alive. This means that they couldn’t have been lying – after all, who is happy to die for something that they know is patently false?
So will you trust the testimony of these witnesses and believe that Jesus is alive? Will you trust in Jesus’ death as payment for your sins so you can live again too?
Joel Radford, Preaching Elder.