Bible Truth FAQs
CHRIST ACTUALLY ARISE FROM THE DEAD?
Part I -The Bible Affirms It
Christian hope of eternal life in Christ is based on his resurrection from the
dead. If he be not risen, the resurrection story will be the most colossal hoax
ever perpetrated upon the minds of men. Many reject the Christ, his divinity,
and his resurrection. The Bible affirms all of these. Both the Old and New
Testaments are replete with divine assurances to those who accept the Bible as
the inspired word of God.
books of gospel give record of his resurrection. David prophesied (Ps. 16:10)
and Peter affirmed the fulfillment (Acts 2:31-32), adding "Whereof we are
all witnesses." Paul wrote to the church at Rome (Rom. 1:4) that Jesus is
declared to be the Son of God by the resurrection from the dead. To the church
at Ephesus (Eph. 1:19-20) Paul further stated that the exceeding greatness of
God's power was wrought toward us who believe when he raised Christ from the
stands or falls on the issue of the resurrection. Consider this fact and keep it
in mind as you follow the remaining parts of this series.
Part II -His Enemies Deny It
made known to the people that he would be betrayed; he would suffer many things
and be put to death, but that he would rise again the third day. Even though his
disciples were slow to believe, his enemies were not. After his crucifixion the
chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate saying, "Sir, we
remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, after three days I
will rise again." They requested the sepulcher be sealed to prevent the
disciples from stealing his body, and their request was granted (Matt.
the resurrection morning the tomb was found to be empty. The soldiers, assigned
to guarding the sepulcher as part of the security measures requested by the
chief priests and the Pharisees, went and reported the happenings to the chief
priests. The elders and chief priests convened for counsel, then gave large sums
of money to the soldiers, instructing them to say, "His disciples came by
night and stole him away while we slept." (Matt. 28: 11-15).
today his enemies not only deny his resurrection but also his divinity.
Part III- The Possibilities
the Bible affirms the resurrection of Christ, but his enemies deny it, we should
consider all of the possibilities, analyzing them so as to arrive at an
unmistakable conclusion. There are four possible dispositions of Christ's
It remained in the tomb.
2. The enemies of Christ removed it.
3. The disciples of Jesus removed it.
4. It was resurrected from the dead by the power of God according to the scripture.
one of these possibilities can be true; the others are necessarily false. If
three of these can be disproved, the one remaining possibility wl11 become
increasingly evident that it is the truth.
or not all our readers accept Christ as the Son of God, it may prove beneficial
to follow the remaining parts of this series.
Part IV -First Possibility Disproved
first possibility is that the physical body of Jesus remained in the tomb. The
Old Testament prophecies concerning the death, burial, and resurrection foretold
that his flesh would not see corruption. Peter alluded to David's prophecy (Ps.
16:10) in his sermon to the Jews on Pentecost (Acts 2:29-31).
Mary Magdalene came to the sepulcher (John 20:1-8), she found the stone rolled
away, the tomb empty. She ran to report this to Peter and John, saying,
"They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulcher, and we know not where
they have laid him." Peter and John likewise ran to the tomb and found the
grave clothes discarded, but no body.
recorded (Matt. 28:4) that through fear the soldiers on guard "did shake
and became as dead men. " When they came to themselves, they reported to
the chief priests and elders that the body was gone and accepted bribes to say
that the disciples stole it.
both the disciples and the enemies of Christ reported the body as missing from
the tomb, enough evidence is there to show, without doubt, that this first
possibility is disproved.
Part V -The Second Possibility Disproved
the body of Jesus was sealed in the tomb by authority of the Roman government
and was guarded by Roman soldiers at the suggestion of the Jewish leaders to
prevent the disciples from stealing it, in effect the body of Jesus was in
custody of his enemies during the time it remained in the tomb. Logically, if
anyone could have removed the body it would have been his enemies. The disciples
were effectively prevented from doing so.
Jewish leaders, Christ's enemies, were at a loss to explain the disappearance of
the body from the tomb. Because of their hatred, prejudice, and envy they bribed
the soldiers to say the disciples stole the body.
the apostles were preaching the resurrection (Acts 3 and 4), the rulers had
Peter and John arrested, imprisoned, and beaten, and commanded that they not
"speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus." (Acts 4:18}. If the
Jewish leaders had only produced the dead body of Jesus, they could have forever
silenced the resurrection story. Since they did not, it proves they could not,
and therefore the second possibility is disproved.
Part VI -The Third Possibility Disproved
disciples were denied access to the body of Jesus because of the great stone,
which sealed the entrance, and the military guard, both measures insisted on by
the Jewish leaders for the express purpose of preventing access until the three
days and 4 nights were past (Matt. 21:62-66).
disciples were responsible for placing the body in the sepulcher (John
19:38-42). They requested custody from Pontius Pilate so they could prepare the
body for burial “according to the manner of the Jews." If they had any
intentions of keeping and concealing the body, here was a great opportunity.
fraud and deception are exposed, all support will immediately disappear. Seldom,
if ever, will a person choose to die for a cause that he knows to be a hoax. Yet
all of the apostles except John were put to death because of the resurrection.
Thousands of disciples likewise gave their lives for the cause of Christ. If the
disciples disposed of Christ's physical body, are we to suppose that they were
willing to die for something they would have known to be a lie? The absurdity
disproves the third possibility.
Part VII -The Remaining Possibility
have examined three possibilities. Overwhelming evidence disproved the first.
The enemies of Christ could not produce the dead body to put the disciples to
silence. They certainly would have done so if they could, because this would
have dealt the deathblow to Christianity. We have seen also how that
Christianity could not have survived with the knowledge that the disciples stole
and destroyed the body. This leaves us with the only possibility that can be
true, and that is the resurrection from the dead by the power or God according
to the scriptures.
his ascension Christ made some eleven appearances to his disciples. Luke
recorded (Acts 1:3) that he "showed himself alive after his passion by many
infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things
pertaining to the kingdom of God." Paul revealed (I Cor. 15:6) that on one
occasion he was seen by over five hundred brethren at once.
resurrection gives hope for life beyond the grave. John wrote (I John 5:11),
"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this
life is IN HIS SON.” To enjoy eternal l1fe, one must be IN CHRIST!
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