That can’t be true

I once came across this saying, “If you tell a man that there are 581,678,934,341 stars in the universe he’ll believe you. But if a sign says, “Fresh Paint,” he has to make a personal investigation. Why do we do this? Why don’t we just believe the things we are told?

Sometimes it is out of curiosity. Other times it’s because what we are told is blatantly not true. Then there are also those things we are told that seem too incredible that they just can’t be true.

By the time this magazine drops onto your doormat it will almost be Easter. This is a time where Christians all around the world will celebrate Jesus dying on the cross for sin and then, on a Sunday morning, rising from the dead. Yet, can that really be true? Is it really possible for Jesus to die and then, three days later, be alive again? Can I really believe that?

I wonder if these are questions that you have ever asked. I know I have and I continue to do so. When I do I remind myself of the evidence that the Bible gives us for the resurrection of Jesus. Here are a few of them:

First, the Bible tells us clearly that Jesus died. Jesus received a Roman flogging and then was crucified. I will spare you the gruesome details, it’s sufficient to say that this was an extremely painful and brutal process. While he was still on the cross the Roman soldiers, seeing that he was dead, pushed a spear through his side into his heart. Even if he had of survived all that, he would not have been walking around just a few days later.

Second, the tomb was empty. When some women went to finish preparing Jesus’ body for burial they found his tomb empty. Maybe they went to the wrong place? However, the Bible is clear, these women had seen where Jesus’ dead body was buried. They knew the way! Similarly, the authorities in Jerusalem did not like Jesus or his disciples. They could have scuppered everything by just producing the body. They couldn’t because it wasn’t there.

Then, thirdly, the Bible tells us about people who actually saw Jesus after he had been raised from the dead. Much of the New Testament was written by people who claimed to have seen the resurrected Jesus. Yet, they weren’t the only ones. We are told that once Jesus appeared to 500 people in one place and the first readers are reminded that many of those 500 were still alive as they read those words. That’s a lot of eyewitnesses.

The resurrection may seem unbelievable as an event. It is outside of the norm of daily life and not something we would expect. Yet, does that mean that this Easter we are celebrating something that just isn’t true. The evidence would suggest otherwise. Jesus has risen and that’s something we can celebrate!