“Sometimes its just easier to believe the facts than create fiction”
Editor’s note: The credibility of the Christian faith has been brought into question since before the birth of the Church at Pentecost. For over 2000 years opponents of Christianity have done everything they could think of to discredit the truth about Jesus. Today, the tactics for attacking Christianity have changed. Instead of denying Christ they have co-opted Jesus to suggest that He was a great teacher, a charismatic leader, or simply a prophet. What the world has done is deny the power, deity, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Some time ago in talking with Bobby Conway, One Minute Apologist, regarding the validity of Jesus’ own claims, he explained to me that we have to start with the resurrection. Because if you can prove the resurrection, you can work backwards to point out the significance of His death, His own teaching about Himself, His miraculous birth, and the promises in the Old Testament about a coming redeemer.
So I asked Bobby to write a short defense of the resurrection to equip you with a confidence in your faith so that you can defend Christ in a world that has subtly rejected Him. - Adam Miller
Following Easter Sunday, it didn’t take long for people to come up with fictitious claims to debunk the resurrection of Jesus Christ. They knew that if they could cast doubt on the resurrection, Christianity would crumble. In fact, Paul writes, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins” (1 Corinthians 15:17). Here are a few theories.
Jesus’ body was stolen.
This was the first proposed theory. But think about it, if Jesus’ body was really stolen, don’t you think the thieves would have brought the body to bear once the disciples were claiming, “He has risen?” They would have called their bluff. No doubt. And if the disciples stole the body, do you think they would have died martyr’s deaths for a hoax? Of course not! Many will die for what they think to be true, but no one will die for what they know to be false.
The people were hallucinating.
Scoffers said that the witnesses who saw Jesus after His death must have been hallucinating. However, Jesus appeared on several different occasions, and on one occasion, He appeared to 500 people at once. Now in my past, in my pre-Jesus days, I understood hallucination, and I can tell you something: 500 people don’t hallucinate like that.
Jesus Passed Out.
This is known as the “swoon theory.” Popularized in the 18th century and suggests that Jesus never died on the cross, but merely passed out. Then once inside the tomb, He was restored to consciousness and He Himself rolled the tomb stone away. But ponder this. Jesus had been severely scourged, His wrists and ankles were nailed to a cross, His head punctured by a crown of thorns, His side stabbed, and His body wrapped in 75 pounds of linen following His death. Do you think Jesus could have regained consciousness, unwrapped Himself, and moved a two-ton stone out of the way, when after His beating He couldn’t even carry the cross on His own without the help of Simon of Cyrene?
The fact is, Jesus is alive! Sometimes it’s just easier to believe the facts than create fiction. So, go ahead; stick your head in the tomb. You see, it’s empty and Jesus is ready to change your life. Today.
Bobby Conway is the pastor of Life Fellowship Church in Huntersville, NC. Learn more about the "One Minute Apologist" by visiting his website.