WAS JESUS CHRIST REALLY RESURRECTED?
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is central
to Christian belief and to the Christian hope. Christians believe in the
resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, because the Old and the New
Testament teach it, because Christ promised it and because His apostles
confirm it in the New Testament writings. Contrariwise, Atheists, Agnostics
and others assert that the resurrection is a fable concocted by Jesus’
followers, because their attachment to Jesus’ memory was so strong that they
all “agreed” to create a new religion in His name based on lies and deceit.
The evidence for Jesus' resurrection is not based on flimsy fables but on
the unassailable evidence of common sense, solid logic, and many totally
reliable and truthful witnesses.
Was Jesus Christ a self-deluded charlatan?
Did Jesus Christ cunningly deceive His many followers with promises that
were impossible to fulfill? Most importantly, did His followers react to His
“unfulfilled” promise of a personal resurrection by “reciprocating” with an
vigorous attempt to elevate Him to the divine plane?
Any sensible and objective mind would have no
problem replying, “Certainly not!” to the above questions. Yet, shockingly,
the rigid mental set of the enemies of Christianity would reply
affirmatively. The reason for their baffling unwillingness to accept the
obvious is primarily because accepting Christ’s resurrection would devastate
a belief system that they have been defending for centuries and that would
transform their thinking and their lives beyond what they are willing to
This article is not an exhaustive attempt at
listing all the reasons that have been offered through the centuries on
behalf of the truth of Christ’s resurrection. The focus of this work will be
to present simple, sensible and obvious arguments which point forcefully to
the undeniable reality that Jesus Christ died and rose again,
and that His disciples witnessed the event and testified "truthfully" to it,
in spite of the dangers inherent in their
PEOPLE DON’T DIE FOR CHARLATANS AND
Those who have read the Gospel accounts know
that the disciples were called out of their occupations, their communities
and their future. Because they abandoned their secure jobs, they most
probably caused their families confusion, and concern for following a
"young" man who promised them positions of power and rulership in a “future”
Kingdom. Those great promises, though, were contingent upon an astonishing
event: Jesus’ future death and resurrection. This, of course, may have been
hard to believe at first but, in time, it became obvious to the disciples of
Jesus that anything was possible for someone who had resurrected the dead
before their very eyes.
If Jesus had died and had stayed in the tomb,
as unbelievers insist happened, the psychological consequences on the
disciples would have been undeniably devastating.
They would have felt let down, lied to,
deceived and manipulated. Their egos would have been dramatically deflated;
they would have become the focus of ridicule by family, friends and others.
All of the above would have led to understandable anger at the one who had
played games with their minds, had lied to them callously for three and one
half years, and who was the cause of all the derision they had to bear.
Believing that such a disillusioned, betrayed
and angry bunch would intentionally pass around false information meant to
“elevate” the “deceiver” and the “charlatan” to the divine plane is the
ultimate folly. Angry and bitter
people do not elevate a despised enemy--they tear him down. In fact
some even end up venting their anger at anything remotely connected to him
and to his memory. Furthermore, some would besmirch the man’s name for years
to come and would do anything and everything possible to get back at the
person, even if the only thing they could do is attack his memory.
Believing that all of them would react
otherwise and that they would “harmoniously” persist in dedicating their
lives to celebrating a liar is nothing short of incongruous and bizarre.
But the disciples were neither disillusioned
nor angry. In fact they acted and talked like people who had received a
powerful confirmation that their hopes and dreams were based on a totally
firm foundation. They were filled with zeal and excitement, like they had
never exhibited before, and the reason was what that they had witnessed the
seemingly impossible. After three days and three nights, the dead corpse of
their beloved leader had come out of a “sealed” and “guarded” tomb, alive
and brimming with vitality -- just as he had promised, on more than one
Furthermore, Jesus exhibited “supernatural”
powers, such as walking through walls, that only a “supernatural”
being could exhibit.
In view of the above, unbelievers’ treasured
rationalization that Jesus’ disciples concocted the story of Jesus’
resurrection, even though he had “lied” to them, had used them, had
manipulated them, and had “betrayed” them, is nothing short of foolish and
TRUTH IS FUNDAMENTAL TO CHRISTIANITY
From its inception, Christianity was sown in
truth, was framed in truth and was based on absolute truth.
Most opponents of Christ seem to have little
awareness of how strong and how "foundational" truth was to the
Christian message from the very inception.
Jesus Christ firmly emphasized its critical
importance, and his disciples continued to do the same for decades to
come. Now let’s look at the evidence to this aspect in detail.
IT STARTED WITH JESUS CHRIST
The critical importance of truth received strong
emphasis with Jesus Christ. Jesus taught his disciples the necessity of
being “truthful,” if they were to enter the Kingdom of God.
But if you want to enter into life, keep the
Jesus Christ taught, protected and defended the value and sacredness of the
Ten Commandments. The ninth commandments was
“Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness against thy neighbour” (Exodus 20:16).
Jesus also insisted that lying was evidence
of the presence of an evil spirit who opposed truth. He told his persecutors
that this being was working in them, and that they served his purposes.
"You belong to your father, the devil, and
you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the
beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he
lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of
Thus Jesus Christ was the incarnation of
truth; He preached its necessity and value and labelled lies as issuing from
the father of lies: Satan.
To validate this reality He not only preached
it – He died and did not compromise with it.
TRUTHFUL UNTO DEATH
Jesus was captured and
was brought to the religious leaders in Jerusalem to be interrogated. The
accusations were serious enough to merit death.
who had laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas the high priest,
where the scribes and the elders were assembled. 58
But Peter followed Him at a distance to the high priest’s courtyard. And he
went in and sat with the servants to see the end.
59 Now the chief priests, the elders, and all the
council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death,
60 but found none. Even though many false witnesses
came forward, they found none. But at last two false witnesses came forward
61 and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able
to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’”
62 And the high priest arose and said to Him, “Do
You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?”
63 But Jesus kept silent (Matthew 26: 57-63).
kept silent.” This was his opportunity for a charlatan to hastily lie his
way out of a very dangerous situation, but he stayed silent and said
He was going to fulfill His destiny and did not
lie. Actually, He then went on to make
things worse for himself by confirming some of the accusations.
high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living
God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!”
64 Jesus said to him, “It is as you said.
Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at
the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
65 Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying,
“He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look,
now you have heard His blasphemy! 66 What do you
think?” They answered and said, “He is deserving of death.”
67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him
with the palms of their hands, 68 saying, “Prophesy
to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?” (Luke 22:64).
Jesus Christ had a mission to accomplish and,
in spite of the verbal and physical abuse, He remained undaunted, firm
the same man who had promised to His disciples that death would not have
defeated Him; He would have been resurrected after being dead in a tomb
three days and three nights.
Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified,
and the third day rise again.”
As He had promised, Jesus Christ was resurrected the third day, and death
had no power over Him. He did fulfill His promise and He fulfilled the
prophecies of the Old Testament as well. Furthermore, he set the example for
his disciples to follow:
Truth must be upheld, even if it will lead to death – and the
transformed disciples faithfully followed His example.
WITNESS TO THE RESURRECTION
AND RISK CERTAIN DEATH
The disciples saw Jesus Christ taken down as
an inanimate corpse. The dead body was taken to a nearby tomb and was placed
into it. A huge round stone was rolled over it and the entrance was sealed.
Several soldiers were placed in front of the tomb, and it was guarded for
three days and three nights. The disciples waited patiently until the guards
would have finally left, and then they went to help embalm Jesus’ dead body.
What they found was an empty tomb and angels who confirmed Christ’s
resurrection. Finally they saw the resurrected Christ Himself.
This is one of the most momentous event ever
witnessed by any human being, as its occurrence confirms with absolute
certainty that Jesus indeed died for the sins of humanity, and that the
resurrection of the dead is possible -- and is indeed certain,
because Christ led the way.
Because of the tremendous importance of the event, the reader is encouraged
to read the whole account as it appears in the Gospel of Luke chapter 24.
Now on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they,
and certain other women with them, came to the tomb bringing the
spices which they had prepared. 2 But they found
the stone rolled away from the tomb. 3 Then they
went in and did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4
And it happened, as they were greatly perplexed about this, that behold, two
men stood by them in shining garments. 5 Then, as
they were afraid and bowed their faces to the earth, they said to
them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? 6
He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still
in Galilee, 7 saying, ‘The Son of Man must be
delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day
rise again.’”8 And they remembered His words.
9 Then they returned from the tomb and told all
these things to the eleven and to all the rest. 10
It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the
other women with them, who told these things to the apostles.
11 And their words seemed to them like idle tales,
and they did not believe them. 12 But Peter arose
and ran to the tomb; and stooping down, he saw the linen cloths lying by
themselves; and he departed, marveling to himself at what had happened.
13 Now behold, two of them were traveling that same
day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from
Jerusalem. 14 And they talked together of all these
things which had happened. 15 So it was, while they
conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them.
16 But their eyes were restrained, so that they did
not know Him.
17 And He said to them, “What kind of conversation
is this that you have with one another as you walk and are sad?”[18
Then the one whose name was Cleopas answered and said to Him, “Are You the
only stranger in Jerusalem, and have You not known the things which happened
there in these days?”
19 And He said to them, “What things?”
So they said to Him, “The things concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a
Prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people,
20 and how the chief priests and our rulers
delivered Him to be condemned to death, and crucified Him.
21 But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel.
Indeed, besides all this, today is the third day since these things
happened. 22 Yes, and certain women of our company,
who arrived at the tomb early, astonished us. 23
When they did not find His body, they came saying that they had also seen a
vision of angels who said He was alive. 24 And
certain of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it
just as the women had said; but Him they did not see.”
25 Then He said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow
of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!
26 Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter
into His glory?” 27 And beginning at Moses and all
the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things
28 Then they drew near to the village where they
were going, and He indicated that He would have gone farther.
29 But they constrained Him, saying, “Abide with
us, for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.” And He went in to
stay with them.
30 Now it came to pass, as He sat at the table with
them, that He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them.
31 Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him;
and He vanished from their sight.
32 And they said to one another, “Did not our heart
burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the
Scriptures to us?” 33 So they rose up that very
hour and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven and those who were
with them gathered together, 34 saying, “The Lord
is risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” 35 And
they told about the things that had happened on the road, and how He
was known to them in the breaking of bread.
36 Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself
stood in the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you.”
37 But they were terrified and frightened, and
supposed they had seen a spirit. 38 And He said to
them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?
39 Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I
Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you
see I have.”
40 When He had said this, He showed them His hands
and His feet. 41 But while they still
did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, “Have you any food
here?” 42 So they gave Him a piece of a broiled
fish and some honeycomb. 43 And He took
it and ate in their presence.
44 Then He said to them, “These are the
words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must
be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets
and the Psalms concerning Me.” 45 And He
opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.
46 Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and
thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from
the dead the third day, 47 and that repentance and
remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning
at Jerusalem. 48 And you are witnesses of these
things. 49 Behold, I send the Promise of My Father
upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power
from on high.”
50 And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He
lifted up His hands and blessed them. 51 Now it
came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and
carried up into heaven. 52 And they worshiped Him,
and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, 53 and
were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen. (Luke
After the joyful pause and the receiving of
the Holy Spirit, the time came to spread the Good News. Death had been
defeated by Jesus Christ, thanks to His death and resurrection. Humans could
now hope in being resurrected themselves. The first location where the
message would be preached was the same den of lions where Jesus had been
killed: Jerusalem. The High Priest and the religious leaders that had
demanded Jesus’ death were still there ready to squash anything that
pertained to their hated enemy: Christ.
But that did not discourage them. They had
seen Jesus Christ alive, and they understood the magnificent significance
for all of humanity,
and no human being was going to deter
them, even if it would have meant potential beatings, scourging and even
The Book of Acts tells us that the leading
force behind the spread of the Good News was Peter, the one who had rejected
Jesus Christ just days before. But he would reject Christ no more and, in
spite of the dangers that might have faced him, he stood before the
multitude of foreigners, locals and local leaders and asserted the truth of
Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them…’Men
of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you
by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as
you yourselves also know— 23 Him, being delivered
by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by
lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; 24
whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not
possible that He should be held by it. 25 For David
says concerning Him:
I foresaw the LORD always before my face,
For He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken.
26 Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue
Moreover my flesh also will rest in hope.
27 For You will not leave my soul in Hades,
Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
28 You have made known to me the ways of life;
You will make me full of joy in Your
29 “Men and brethren, let me speak
freely to you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and
his tomb is with us to this day. 30 Therefore,
being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of
the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ
to sit on his throne, 31 he, foreseeing this, spoke
concerning the resurrection of the Christ, that His soul was not left in
Hades, nor did His flesh see corruption. 32
This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are
all witnesses. 33 Therefore being exalted to the
right hand of God,
and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He
poured out this which you now see and hear” (Acts 2:
The transformed Peter continued spreading the
message and healing people, giving evidence that the power that had worked
in Jesus Christ was now at work in him as well.
as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran
together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed.
12 So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: “Men of
Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though
by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?
13 The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers,
glorified His Servant Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied in the
presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go.
14 But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer
to be granted to you, 15
and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised
from the dead, of which we are witnesses (Acts
bewildered religious leaders did not hesitate to react and quickly had them
arrested. They threatened Peter and John with severe consequences, if they
persisted in preaching about Christ’s resurrection.
Both could have changed their minds and could have gone home in peace,
but they did not. What they had witnessed
demanded that all know about the momentous event.
Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and
the Sadducees came upon them, 2 being greatly
disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection
from the dead. 3 And they laid hands on them, and
put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening.
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they
were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that
they had been with Jesus. 14 And seeing the man who
had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
15 But when they had commanded them to go aside out
of the council, they conferred among themselves, 16
saying, “What shall we do to these men? For, indeed, that a notable miracle
has been done through them is evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem,
and we cannot deny it. 17 But so that it
spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that
from now on they speak to no man in this name.”
18 So they called them and commanded them not to
speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19 But
Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight
of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. 20
For we cannot but speak the things which we
have seen and heard.” 21
So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way
of punishing them, because of the people, since they all glorified God for
what had been done.
22 For the man was over forty years old on whom
this miracle of healing had been performed (Acts 4:1,3; 13-22).
The Apostles’ confident attitude and courage
made the High Priest and the leaders very angry. How dare ignorant men speak
like that to such lofty personages. Thus the result was prison once again.
But they remained unafraid and did not
turn to lies to escape punishment.
high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the
sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with indignation,
18 and laid their hands on the apostles and put them in the common
19 But at night an angel of the Lord opened the
prison doors and brought them out, and said, 20
“Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this
21 And when they heard that, they entered
the temple early in the morning and taught. But the high priest and those
with him came and called the council together, with all the elders of the
children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.
But when the officers came and did not find them in the prison, they
returned and reported, 23 saying, “Indeed we found
the prison shut securely, and the guards standing outside[a]
before the doors; but when we opened them, we found no one inside!”
24 Now when the high priest,[b]
the captain of the temple, and the chief priests heard these things, they
wondered what the outcome would be. 25 So one came
and told them, saying,[c]
“Look, the men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and
teaching the people!”
26 Then the captain went with the officers and
brought them without violence, for they feared the people, lest they should
be stoned. 27 And when they had brought them, they
set them before the council. And the high priest asked them,
28 saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to
teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine,
and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!”
29 But Peter and the other apostles answered
and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men. 30
The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a
tree. 31 Him God has exalted to His right hand
to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of
sins. 32 And we are His witnesses to these things,
and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who
When they heard this, they were furious and plotted to kill them.
34 Then one in the council stood up, a Pharisee
named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law held in respect by all the people, and
commanded them to put the apostles outside for a little while.
35 And he said to them: “Men of Israel, take heed
to yourselves what you intend to do regarding these men.
36 For some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody. A
number of men, about four hundred, joined him. He was slain, and all who
obeyed him were scattered and came to nothing. 37
After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the census, and drew
away many people after him. He also perished, and all who obeyed him were
dispersed. 38 And now I say to you, keep away from
these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it
will come to nothing; 39 but if it is of God, you
cannot overthrow it—lest you even be found to fight against God.”
40 And they agreed with him, and when they had
called for the apostles and beaten them, they commanded that they
should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.
they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were
counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.
42 And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease
teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.
(Acts 5: 17-42)
Not even beatings could now stop them. In
fact, to the Apostles, suffering for Jesus Christ had become an honour.
Stephen, too, had the same unstoppable
attitude. He too was bent on bringing the Gospel to all, and he too was
taken and imprisoned. But he had a different final punishment: death by
And Stephen, full of faith
and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.
9 Then there arose some from what is called the
Synagogue of the Freedmen (Cyrenians, Alexandrians, and those from Cilicia
and Asia), disputing with Stephen. 10 And they were
not able to resist the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke.
11 Then they secretly induced men to say, “We have
heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God.”
12 And they stirred up the people, the elders, and the scribes; and
they came upon him, seized him, and brought him to the
council. 13 They also set up false witnesses who
said, “This man does not cease to speak blasphemous words against this holy
place and the law; 14 for we have heard him say
that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs
which Moses delivered to us.” 15 And all who sat in
the council, looking steadfastly at him, saw his face as the face of an
angel” (ACTS 6: 8-15).
At this point the High Priest asked him to
confirm or deny the accusations. "He could have lied" and by so doing he
could have escaped certain punishment. But his response was shockingly
direct and honest.
51 “You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in
heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did,
so do you. 52 Which of the prophets did your
fathers not persecute? And they killed those who foretold the coming of the
Just One, of whom you now have become the betrayers and murderers,
53 who have received the law by the direction of
angels and have not kept it.”
When they heard these things they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed at
him with their teeth.
But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory
of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, 56
and said, “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the
right hand of God!”
57 Then they cried out
with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and ran at him with one accord;
58 and they cast him out of the city and stoned him.
And the witnesses laid down their clothes at the feet of a young man named
And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, “Lord Jesus,
receive my spirit.” 60 Then he knelt down and cried
out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And
when he had said this, he fell asleep. (Acts
Stephen, therefore, could have lied and could
have denied having had any involvement with Jesus and he certainly could
have denied having seen the resurrected Christ. But he did not, because
the glorious “truth” had to be defended to
A VEHEMENTLY UNBELIEVING
OPPONENT TURNED SUPPORTER
The Apostle Paul today would be the equivalent of a
militant atheist, such as Richard Dawkins, turned Christian evangelist.
He, like today’s unbelievers,
did not and would not accept the resurrection of Christ.
To him Christians were liars, charlatans and deceivers who deserved to be
killed. In his anti-Christian zeal, he made sure that as many Christians as
he could find would be imprisoned and then killed. In fact he had been one
of Stephen’s accusers, and he too wanted him dead.
“Now Saul, (Paul’s name before conversion) was consenting to his death”(Acts
Paul had been a blind follower of the
religious leaders. He was, you might say, their blindly committed secret
agent, who zealously sought to eradicate this dangerous and fanatical new
sect that was spreading lies and heresy.
At that time
a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem;
and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria,
except the apostles. 2 And devout men carried
Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
As for Saul, he made havoc of
the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing
them to prison.
Later on Paul confessed to his blind zeal and
to his horrible crimes, before the very group of leaders he had previously
supported, who stood before him in disbelief.
and fathers, hear my defense before you now.” 2 And
when they heard that he spoke to them in the Hebrew language, they kept all
the more silent.
Then he said: 3 “I am indeed a Jew, born in Tarsus
of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, taught
according to the strictness of our fathers’ law, and was zealous toward God
as you all are today.
I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering into prisons both
men and women,
5 as also the high priest bears me witness, and all
the council of the elders, from whom I also received letters to the
brethren, and went to Damascus
to bring in chains even those who were there to Jerusalem to
He then explains the transforming experience
he had experienced, due to his encounter with Jesus Christ, and goes on to
explain what happened afterwards.
“Now it happened, when I returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the
temple, that I was in a trance 18 and saw Him
saying to me, ‘Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, for they will
not receive your testimony concerning Me.’
So I said, ‘Lord, they know that in every synagogue I imprisoned and beat
those who believe on You. 20 And when the blood of
Your martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by consenting to his
and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him.’
Then He said to me, ‘Depart, for I will send you far from here to the
Gentiles’” (Acts 22: 17-21).
Paul became so convinced of all that
pertained to Christ and His resurrection from the dead that he was willing
to endure the most gruesome consequences to announce Jesus’ death and
resurrection. In his Epistles to the Corinthians, he shares some details as
to what awaited his choice.
From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one.
25 Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was
stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the
deep; 26 in journeys often, in perils
of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own
countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city,
in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in
perils among false brethren; (2 Corinthians 11:24-26)
Here is the same man who had previously opposed
Christ, his followers and everything they preached and stood for, who now
was joining the opposition and was preaching the same message he had opposed
was even willing to bear great sufferings and risk death, so as to announce
the death and resurrection of Christ, and all that it entailed for humanity.
Yet unbelievers would love to rationalize away the
zeal of this brilliant and fervent man as the consequence of “another”
But if so, they have to explain how his
also saw the hallucination, and then they have to explain how the
same hallucination gave Paul great miraculous powers, which lasted
throughout his life. Of course, in their
blind zeal against Paul and Christ, they can rationalize them away as well
as being skillfully crafted “lies;” but this attempt can be quickly rendered
void by the fact that Paul consistently
taught against lies, and by the fact that he had been a fanatical
follower of the Torah who knew and obeyed God’s commandment against lying
fanatically. It is not a coincidence that
later on in his Epistle to the Colossian Church he firmly confirmed the need
to be truthful.
“Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with
his deeds…” (Colossians 3:9).
Such a man would not lie.
Luke, an objective and
Some might wish that someone had done an
objective investigation of the events surrounding Christ so as to
provide an account of what transpired during the early days of
Christianity. Well, we have such an account. Luke, “ the beloved
physician,” as he is called in the Bible, went to Jerusalem and the
surrounding area; he interviewed many witnesses of the events that
surrounded Christ’s life and then wrote a thorough historical account of
the events surrounding Christ’s life, His death and resurrection. This
account we know as the Gospel of Luke. We must also mention that
Luke went a step further and later accompanied and watched first hand
the works of one of Christ’s foremost Apostles, Paul of Tarsus, and then
wrote a thorough, detailed account of his observations.
Thanks to Doctor Luke, we have an
unparalleled and totally reliable, first-hand account of the first
foundational decades of Christianity.
Luke is objective, methodical and “truthful,”
and as such he is not well liked by some “objective” intellectual
unbelievers who probably wish that Luke’s two works would simply
disappear. But disappear they will not.
Luke and Acts are outstanding and totally
reliable historical works which testify to the existence of Christ, His
mighty works, His death and His resurrection and the power His Spirit
had in transforming lowly people into bold and powerful preachers of the
The resurrection of Jesus Christ was a
momentous event for all of humanity. Because of it we have a hope that Satan
would love to destroy, and this he attempts to do through the works of
atheists, agnostics, and others that are openly anti-Christian.
Common sense dictates that an all-wise God
would not allow such a critical event to rest of flimsy evidence.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ rests of
the witness of many “truthful” men that had no reason whatsoever
to lie on behalf of a callous and cunning deceiver and manipulator.
Their witness sufficed for the first
Christian; it sufficed for the great multitudes through the ages and up to
our days who have accepted the reality of Jesus’ resurrection, and it
suffices for those who today are willing to objectively look and accept the
The reader is encouraged to ponder this most amazing and transforming fact
and to recognize that although accepting Jesus as a living Saviour means
changing one's way of life, the result of this transformation will mean
tremendous joy and a longing for the day when, because of Christ’s death and
resurrection, the multitudes will come to life for evermore.
Recommended Free Booklet offered by UCG.org
(No follow up)
Jesus Christ: The Real Story
RESURRECTION WEB SITES