Can you believe it happened?
Christian Churches often promote the death of Jesus and then question the truth of the resurrection. Is this a reasonable idea? Can you both believe in Jesus as the son of God, recognise the sacrifice and then question the resurrection?
Apparently so. Yet, this is not what the Apostle Paul expressed in 1 Corinthians 15: 12 “Now if it is being preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how is it that some among you say there is no resurrection of the dead?13 If, indeed, there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised up.14 But if Christ has not been raised up, our preaching is certainly in vain, and your faith is also in vain.”
If we believe that the soul is immortal there is no need for the resurrection and certainly no need for Christ to act as our ransom. Paul continues the reasoning with these words in verse 16 “For if the dead are not to be raised up, neither has Christ been raised up.17 Further, if Christ has not been raised up, your faith is useless; you remain in your sins.18 Then also those who have fallen asleep in death in union with Christ have perished.19 If in this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are to be pitied more than anyone.
Christians without a cause and reason to remain faithful. This simple denial emboldens those who subvert the Christian teachings to water down the bible’s message. For example, we only have to accept Jesus as our saviour. The New Testament repeatedly warns us against this complacent attitude. Because we are working for our own salvation through our dedication and the evidence of this. To understand how we perform works that demonstrate our faith we need to study the Bible.
As a young person, I was pressured by peers and teachers to look hard at the reasons for my faith. They explained my parents were using religion and its rules to control my life and that I was missing out. Also, flattery played a part, being told you are intelligent and completing the challenging problems set, solving complex situations quickly led them to say I was wasting my life.
So I began to question what I had been taught to believe. Read extensively, the ancient history of the period the Bible was written, studied Archaeology, Natural History and theology.
Then I began to look at the record of modern science, the people who wrote and thought about how we arrived on the planet, our evolution and the development of society.
I began to realise there was something missing – the “why?” factor. Having reviewed the probability factors of events over billions of years we come back to the same question, if you allow for random chance, why did the cells of the body develop the way they have? How did they realise that the environment would change (sometimes rapidly) why were they able to make the transition? and why isn’t there a clear record of all the intermediate life forms that failed?
Then it came down to why do we require a moral code or set of rules? The evidence presented demonstrated a stark contrast, the Bible led moral code versus our modern approach. If I chose to follow the Bible code what damage will that do me? Set the contrast and ask the same question about none bible standards.
I came to the conclusion that God exists, we can see the works of Gods hands everywhere if we choose to perceive note the words of the Apostle Paul again to the Romans 1: 18 For God’s wrath is being revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who are suppressing the truth in an unrighteous way,19 because what may be known about God is clearly evident among them, for God made it clear to them.20 For his invisible qualities are clearly seen from the world’s creation onward, because they are perceived by the things made, even his eternal power and Godship, so that they are inexcusable.21 For although they knew God, they did not glorify him as God nor did they thank him, but they became empty-headed in their reasonings and their senseless hearts became darkened.22 Although claiming they were wise, they became foolish23 and turned the glory of the incorruptible God into something like the image of corruptible man and birds and four-footed creatures and reptiles.
The result of this dichotomy is expressed in Romans 1: 24 Therefore, God, in keeping with the desires of their hearts, gave them up to uncleanness, so that their bodies might be dishonored among them.25 They exchanged the truth of God for the lie and venerated and rendered sacred service to the creation rather than the Creator, who is praised forever. Amen.26 That is why God gave them over to disgraceful sexual passion, for their females changed the natural use of themselves into one contrary to nature;27 likewise also the males left the natural use of the female and became violently inflamed in their lust toward one another, males with males, working what is obscene and receiving in themselves the full penalty, which was due for their error. read on in verses 28 -32 many Christians who reject the resurrection and fail to put faith in Jesus as the redeemer of humanity tolerate they approve of acts that the Bible identifies as unacceptable to God.
So to accept the resurrection of Christ requires an understanding that there are answers to the big questions, however, it is up to us to decide just how we respond. Salvation is through Jesus Christ the Son of God, he died for a reason and each of us needs to understand that for ourselves.
Those who accept the bible standards and God’s right to tell us what to do can show where the evidence is but like myself you have to prove it for yourself. So starting with the resurrection of Jesus you can begin to build a real picture of what the meaning of life is and why we can be certain that all of humankind has hope for the future, including those living today.