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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Did The Death And Resurrection Of Jesus Really Happen?

Did The Death And Resurrection Of Jesus Really Happen?

The most important event of Christianity is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. If you can disprove this event then the whole belief system is invalid. Apostle Paul himself puts it this way in 1 Corinthians15:13-17, Paul wrote, “But if there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised and if
Christ has not been raised then our preaching is vain. Your faith also is vain. Moreover, we are even found to be false witnesses of God. . . . . and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless.” In fact Jesus himself said in John 12:27 it was for this very reason that He came. Jesus Himself predicted several time that he would not only die but would then be resurrected (brought back to life). We can see this in Matthew 16:12, again in Mark 9:9, also in John 2:19-22, and several other locations. In fact in Matthew 12:40 Jesus said this event was the one sign to prove His authenticity as who He claimed to be, “For as Jonah was three days in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son Of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”
This must be an actual historical event that happened not some story to portray an idea for there to be validity. One of the first things that I tried to prove wrong when I doubted was the fact of historical evidence. First off was there really a trial by a man named Pontius Pilot? Was there even a guy named Pontius Pilot? Because it says in the Bible, that Pilot oversaw a trial relating to Jesus, so if you disprove Pilot’s existence then you can put doubt in the whole account. Over the years, many scholars had questioned even the existence of Pilot and the reason is there had been no archaeological confirmation that Pilot ever existed, there had only been literary references to Pilot. But then in 1961, in Caesarea, in Israel, the Mediterranean port, an archeologist by the name of Antonio Froya, found an inscription in the amphitheatre that was about two feet by three feet that said this, “Pontius Pilot prefect of Judea has presented the Tiberian to the Cesareans.”
So archaeology, confirmed the existence of Pilot, and the fact that he was the prefect of Judea, where Christ was.
Well that does not prove the event but does lead to the credibility of the characters involved. So if there was a man named Pilot and there was a man named Jesus did Jesus really go to trial and be crucified? There is a historian of the time named Josephus who tells of the event, but the best account of the event that is on record is the four different accounts seen in the New Testament. These accounts of the event come from four different people who were all witnesses or received eyewitness account from witnesses. And these accounts were written and circulated while there was eyewitness alive that could have questioned the credibility or accuracy of the accounts. In the past there have been questions about the date that these were written and the accuracy of the transcription over time. But if you honestly evaluate the evidence you will find there is no room for questioning this. Read these scholarly studies and you will find the truth. William F Albright who is considered the foremost biblical archaeologist said: “We can already say emphatically that there is no longer any solid basis for dating any book of the New Testament after about A.D. 80.” William F. Albright, Recent Discoveries In Bible Lands (New York Funk and Wagnall’s, 1955) 136. Sir Frederick Kenyon, one of the leading authorities on the reliability of ancient manuscripts wrote this, “The interval between the dates of the original composition and the earliest existent evidence becomes so small as to be in fact negligible, and the last foundation for any doubt that the Scriptures have come down to us substantially as they were written has now been removed. Both the authenticity and the general integrity of the books of the New Testament may be regarded as finally established”. Sir Frederick Kenyon, The Bible and Archaeology (New York: Harper and Row, 1940), 288-289. William F Ramsay a scholar who tried for years to undermine the reliability of the New Testament had to conclude: “Luke is a historian of the first rank. . . . This author should be placed along with the very greatest of historians.” William F Ramsay, The Bearing of Recent Discoveries on the Trustworthiness of The New Testament (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1915), 222. F. F. Bruce a professor of biblical criticism at the University of Manchester said this: “Had there been any tendency to depart from the facts in any material respect, the possible presence of hostile witnesses in the audience would have served as further corrective.” F. F. Bruce, The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable? Rev. ed. (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 1977) 33. In fact the writing of the New Testament were presented and circulated in the very presence of antagonistic eyewitnesses of Christ who knew the events. And Paul who was once a detractor wrote that Jesus appeared alive to more than 500 of His followers at one time and the majority of these were alive and could confirm what he was writing.
Not only are the New Testament accounts reliable and accurately handed down to us. But if we look at the behavior of the witnesses it can tell us if they really believed that Jesus was who He said He was and was crucified and then rose from the dead. If we look at all eleven of the Apostles who remained after the resurrection and one convert Paul, how did they act? They all were in an antagonistic world that did not tolerate the belief in Jesus. The eleven had proven to be cowards and ran and hid during the trial and crucifixion. But something changed them from cowards to ones willing to face death. They all knew that to teach and proclaim this Jesus as God and that He rose from the dead to save the world would mean persecution or death. And Paul who persecuted and sought to kill believers suddenly changed into one of the most outspoken advocates. All 12 of these men continued to do it in the face of the danger. In fact eleven of the twelve were put to death for it and the one who wasn’t (John) was boiled in oil and lived. What kind of men would risk torture, imprisonment, and death to spread a lie? What men would go to their deaths to perpetrate a mere hoax? No one would. But they would because it was not a hoax it is the truth. And it is the most important truth that has ever been. Because it means that Jesus defeated death and He is who He claimed to be, the one and only begotten Son who God gave as gift for you and me so we can have eternal life. It is up to you to accept and receive the gift or refuse and risk that you may not have eternal life with the one who created you.


  1. Thx for all your gr8 music: Zawinul, Garcia all the truly majestic ones.

    Just wonder why the 'fact' that Jesus rose from the dead in any way 'proves' he was God's ONLY SON? There are many reliable accounts of yogi's having done the same.

    I guess for many people like myself it's this claim of Jesus being the ONLY that makes us turn the back on (established) Christianity. And makes so many Christians fanatic and closed.

    The Eastern view that we are basically all One and therefore all part of the Divine, yeah in fact we all are the Divine - 'Tat Twam Asi' (You are that) - seems so more constructive. Opening up for deep respect for every living organism in the cosmos! (Where as influential 'Christian' groups consider enviromentalism a great enemy).

  2. Heeren. Thanks again for coming to my blog and expressing your view. The eastern view of we are all one just is different than the Bible idea of a seperate creation and creator. I just don't feel I made myself. And I am more humble than to assume I have any part in being devine. The thought of a devine rapist or child molestor is quite strange. The Claim that Jesus is the ONLY begoten Son is HIS claim not mine. I have just come to believe Him. Please show me the "reliable" accounts of Yogis rising from the dead. Also show me the Yogi ability to make the blind see, lame walk, raise others from the dead, tell the future, and fullfill 300 prophecys of the saviors coming, and predict His own death and resurection and proclaim the purpose of it and predict His coming again. Also show me the yogi who was born to a vigin. Heeren show me a Yogi that if I pray to him my wife who was barren will have a child as happened to me. Show me a yogi that i can pray to and my father in laws cancer goes away as has happened to me. Show me a yogi when I prayed for a new way to support my family gives me a new career path in a day. Heeren. God loves you and created you for a purpose. He wants you to know Him and fullfill that purpose. Jesus taught that we are to be ONE with God through comunion with Him, But not that we are a part of God. Heeren your complexity speaks of a creator and you are not Him. Heeren, I ask you have you read the Bible? Do you see how it all tells one unified story though written by 40 different people? Do you see the amazing prophetic nature that is beyond what men could do in their own ability (more than 1/3 is prophetic)? Well Heeren, may God Bless you and show himself to you in a profound way as He has to me.

  3. One more thing Heeren. I do't feel my Lord Jesus teaches that enviromental groups are wrong or a"great enemy". Sure some Christian groups and people are flawed. We all are prone to make mistakes, unless we are Devine. Just because a follower is flwaed does not make Jesus flawed. That would be like saying if anyone who proclaims an eastern religion makes a mistake the whole eastern philosophy is mistaken. Thats just poor reasoning isn't it.

  4. It is up to you to accept and receive the gift or refuse and risk that you may not have eternal life with the one who created you.
    In that case, Jewish people must be taking an
    incredible risk by not converting to Christianity.
    Their expectation is eternal life with the same
    God as Christians. Is remaining Jewish, and living
    a holy life, a foolish thing for Jews to do?

  5. Good question! You see Jesus wept for the Jewish people on the day he entered Jerusalem on a donkey. He saw that they would not recieve Him. He said in Luke 19:42 "But now they are hidden from your eyes" He is talking of the prophecy of Isaiah 6 being fullfilled that says "Hearing you will hear and not understand, and seeing you will see and not percieve." The religious spirit keeps them blind to who Jesus is. So they don't see the risk, because they are blind to it. In the Tribulation the veil will be lifted from their eyes and they will realize that Jesus is who they have been waiting for. Some Jews today are coming to Christ in this end time (Mesianic Jews). It is a sign that the end is close at hand.

  6. That would be like saying if anyone who proclaims an eastern religion makes a mistake the whole eastern philosophy is mistaken
    What if the mistake is not believing
    in Jesus? Is it a mistaken philosophy,
    given that no Jews end-up in heaven?
    Sounds like the biggest possible mistake.
    Sad to think that Jewish children
    who died very young
    (in the past 2000 years) are not
    in heaven. If not in heaven, you
    might expect they are in hell.
    Too bad they couldn't have been saved.

  7. My friend. I must say that the bible claims that Jesus will be the one who decides and not me or you. As for the character of Jesus. He said about the men who were nailing Him to a cross, "forgive them Lord they know not what they do". Sounds like the judgment will be tempered with forgiveness to those who don't know. It's having full knowledge of who Jesus is and then chosing to turn your back on Him that will be hard to explain away. But thats just my opinion. If you are reading this stuff then you know. So what are you going to choose?

  8. I'll choose to live a life without God,
    myth or magic & the violence and extreme
    contradictions of the Bible. A life where
    devout non-Christians go straight to Hell.
    Where the most awful crimes against humanity
    are forgiven on a deathbed conversion, no
    matter how sincere. I'll live a life where
    God could reveal himself in the present,
    in an absoulutely unquestionable way, and
    never does. In our life there are no miracles
    for amputees. Never. The Bible, while only a
    book of fables, gives believers the sanctimonius
    ability to say: "You other people. What you're doing is wrong..." Literal belief in the Bible means believing in the slaughter of innocents, the justness of slavery, the inferiority of women, and a complete ignorance of science. Its a book written by primitive man. God exists only in the mind of man.
    This is not a bad thing, but its amazing how often its been turned into a stick to beat people with. If I eventually meet God in a day of reckoning, I'll have no problem making a case for my life. If belief is more important than actions though, I guess the result will be an eternity in hell as dictated by a loving God.

  9. Anonymous. If I'm wrong and your right then I will have lost nothing. If I'm right and you are wrong then you will have lost everything.
    I could go on refuting your claims but you will not hear or see. It is foolishness to you as the bible said it would be. You don't want to see it so you won't be able to.
    Statments of it being a "book of fables" "believing in the slaughter of innocents" "infereority of women" "ignorence of science" shows a lack of biblical knowledge and understanding. Because none of that is true if you truely look deeply into the subjects with honesty. I guess I will have to write a whole piece on each of these but I don't have the time right now. Oh and "extreme contradictions of the Bible". Where are these? Avoiding God does not make violence go away it just gives you less ways to deal with it. Oh and thats funny that you say that God does not reveal himself in and absolutely unqueationable way when millions of people will say he has to them. And I will say He hs to Me.

  10. some of the greatest things about believing that jesus is my savior is that first and for most the unconditional love that the lord shows, the overflowing abundance of joy, knowing that all problems and concerns you don't have to deal with alone, for sickness and disease there is a way of life, such as when i was diagnosed with a curvature in my back so sever that i was in a back brace for 2 years and doctors gave no choice but surgery with not very good outcomes but the lord had a better plan, plan of life and freedom, i had nowhere to go no one on this earth that could get me out of the situation i was in, a had no more fight, no more pride, and no more selfish desires, it was time to fight for my life. I dropped to my knees and confessed the lord as my savior, gave my problems to god, started to walk in faith small steps at a time and my back began to straighten up. The doctors were speechless and that for the first time when it sunk in that the scripture more than a conqueror through christ jesus really meant. from a non believer its hard to understand how there can be freedom in a teaching on how to live life but when tired of living life for yourself and your own wants and give your life to the lord there are these change's that begin to happen, it seems from a world perspective that you as a christian are giving up your life for a belief but what isn't seen is actually the amount of freedom and ability to live a loving, joy full life and knowing nothing will come your way that you can't handle. Thank you lord for all you have done, your awsome!!!

  11. Great testimony Steve! Yes it seems like restriction, but is a stop sign restriction? You have free will to go through and not stop but follow the signs and you are free of problems.