The resurrection – fact or fable
by Gene Holman
The rationality and proof of Christian faith rests in whether the resurrection of Jesus Christ is fact or fiction. Even the great Apostle Paul acknowledged this reality in his letter to the Corinthian church when he wrote, “-If Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty, and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up. — And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable. (1 Cor 15:13-19)
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is validated by such an abundance of irrefutable evidence that historians regard it as one of the mysterious facts of history. In his book, “The Book Of Books” William Kimball quotes the words of Thomas Arnold, one of the world’s great historians who said, ”I know of no one fact in the history of humanity that is proved by better and fuller evidence of every sort to the understanding of a fair inquirer that Christ died and rose again from the dead.” Another noted scholar said “Taking all the evidence together, it is not too much to say there is no historic incident better or more variously supported than the resurrection of Christ.”
The abundance of credible evidence regarding the miraculous resurrection of Jesus is enough to convince the most skeptical inquirer. Thus, millions of Christians are not merely following and perpetuating “cunningly devised fables”, but the true facts based on reliable evidence.
But, as convincing and satisfying to our reason as the evidence for the reality of the resurrection may be, in the final analysis, it is neither scientific, nor physical evidence that accounts for the millions of people who worship, believe, and follow the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ. Instead, it is the deep desire of satisfying the souls’ hunger for righteousness, the meaning of mortal life, and the hope for a better and permanent future that drives men, women, and children alike, to the pursuit of God and the search for the divine. If you are one of these, regardless of your past or present spiritual state or confusion, you can be greatly encouraged by a promise of Jesus in Matt 5:6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”
There is another important promise in John 7:17 regarding the great human need for an inner affirmation as opposed to hard external evidence. Jesus said, “Anyone who wants to do the will of God will know whether my teaching is from God or is merely my own.” Of course, He is referring to the promised confirmation of the Holy Spirit God faithfully gives to all sincere seekers.
Pastor Gene Holman of Living Word Fellowship in Gardnerville is a member of Carson Valley Ministers’ Association.