Sounds like a trick question, doesn’t it? What if…me?! Raised from the dead—yeah, right—and while we’re at it, can I be taller, too?
But Jesus told His disciples in John 14:19, “Because I live, you will live, too.” Seven simple words with the power to change the world.
There are many religions, but only one claims that its founder returned from the grave. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the foundation on which Christianity is built. If it isn’t true, we are (as the apostle Paul said), “dead in our sins. We might as well eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die.”
But what if it is true? Consider the following excerpt from Lee Strobel’s The Case for Easter:
“When Jesus was crucified, His followers were discouraged and depressed. So they dispersed. The Jesus movement was all but stopped in its tracks. Then, after a short period of time, we see them abandoning their occupations, regathering, and committing themselves to spreading a very specific message—that Jesus Christ was the Messiah of God who died on a cross, returned to life, and was seen alive by them.
“And they were willing to spend the rest of their lives proclaiming this, without any payoff from a human point of view. They faced a life of hardship. They often went without food, slept exposed to the elements, were ridiculed, beaten, imprisoned. And finally, most of them were executed in torturous ways. For what? For good intentions? No, because they were convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that they had seen Jesus Christ alive from the dead.
“Yes, people will die for their religious convictions if they sincerely believe they are true. Religious fanatics have done that throughout history. While they may strongly believe in the tenets of their religion, however, they don’t know for a fact whether their faith is based on truth. They simply cannot know for sure. They can only believe. In stark contrast, the disciples were in the unique position to know for a fact whether Jesus had returned from the dead. They saw Him, they touched Him, they ate with Him. They knew He wasn’t a hallucination or a legend. And knowing the truth, they were willing to die for Him.
“The disciples didn’t merely believe in the resurrection; they knew whether it was fact or fiction. Had they known it was a lie, they would never have been willing to sacrifice their lives for it. Nobody willingly dies for something that they know is false. They proclaimed the resurrection to their deaths for one reason alone: they knew it was true.”
The good news is that Jesus is still alive. And…if He lives, we can live too. Seven simple words with the power to change your world.
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