Years ago a documentary aired bringing into question the resurrection of Jesus Christ. A team of researchers had uncovered a tomb outside of Jerusalem that bore the names of Joseph, Mary, and Jesus. This “discovery” lead some to believe that the resurrection story was in fact a hoax begun by Jesus’ disciples and entrenched in the early church becoming a part of the gospel account. If true, to the minds of unbelievers, Christianity would have to take its place with the other religions of the world. No longer could its followers claim, unlike other religions, that the tomb along with its founder was empty. No longer could they claim that Jesus was God in the flesh or that his death paid the sin debt for mankind. No longer could they claim that salvation is found in no one else.
The apostle Paul addressed that same question not many years after the death of Jesus as he wrote to the Corinthian church. Concerning the resurrection, he concluded that if Christ had not been raised, then their faith in him was useless and they were nothing more than false witnesses. Moreover, they were still in their sins, separated from God, and lost for all eternity. But in declaring that condition, Paul used the word “if,” which is a supposed condition, not a fact. (My dad used to use a statement that illustrated that supposed condition, “if a frog had wings, it wouldn’t bump its rear when it jumped.”)
Paul states in chapter 15 of First Corinthians that Christ did in fact die for our sins according to the Scriptures and that he was buried and raised on the third day according to the Scriptures. To give credence to his statement, he provides personal testimony to the validity of the Scriptures with the resurrected Jesus appearing to his disciples, to more than five hundred others on another occasion, and finally to him personally.
Any wonder why Paul could declare with absolute certainty and conviction to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Any wonder why the disciples were willing to die for that same certainty and conviction. Any wonder why the lives of so many have been changed down through the centuries from that certainty and conviction.
The resurrection of Jesus is the foundation of Christianity. It is our hope, our confidence, and our assurance that eternal life is found in no one else. We need never fear that the body of Jesus will be found in a tomb. He is alive and well, seated at the right hand of the Father in glory and in the hearts and lives of all the faithful through the power of the Holy Spirit. This Easter, allow the assurance of the Risen Savior to bring renewed confidence in your walk of faith and lift you to new heights of joy and praise.
To His Glory,