In four instances, witnesses responded to their encounter with Jesus by worshiping him. 15:3). 72 (1998)]. Mary Magdalene and … They trust what is recorded in sacred Scripture. We, too, though we are not witnesses of Christ's actual resurrection, are so spiritually. And more manuscripts are being discovered all the time. This is what's called the Criterion of Embarrassment in historical Jesus studies: that you'd never make up the story this way. As for the Scriptures, Prof. Darrell Bock of the Dallas Theological Seminary explained that any piece of a surviving ancient work is called a manuscript. There is a cloud of witnesses in latter days, as in the 40-day period following the Resurrection. But in his own words, Christ appeared to him. 81 (1997); Kenneth Boa & Robert Bowman, 20 Compelling Evidences that God Exists, pg. You see, people today say, 'How do you know Jesus said that? Prophets call us to love God, neighbor. Posted in Uncategorized and tagged "[For] the original witnesses [the resurrection of Jesus was] an immediate certainty., authentic witnesses to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, C.H. ", McDowell concluded, "If the Resurrection was a lie, they had to know it. Did Jesus really do this? Help us continue to be a voice for truth in the media by supporting CBN News for as little as $1. They didn't recant that. And you can investigate the data for it. The writer explained, "Here's the key: what is a hallucination? ", Morrow added, "So when it comes to the Resurrection, we say 'Well, how do we know Jesus existed?' They rejoiced after Jesus showed him his hands and feet. xiv (New York Harper & Row, 1987)]. And when you look at the Resurrection evidence, it's pretty remarkable how strong it is, and that's why it's at the core of Christianity. There are 4 opinions on this “500 witnesses event”: Never Happened: Liberal scholars say that Saint Paul made this up to make it sound like there were plenty of witnesses to the resurrection. They might believe that Jesus existed – that He was a good person, a teacher, or a prophet, but they just can’t believe that He died and was raised to life. Another crucial factor that debunks the idea all these disciples were trying to sell a false Resurrection to the world: the fact that they proclaimed it was females who found the empty tomb and let the male disciples know Jesus was missing. ", Morrow added, "One of the fascinating things about New Testament manuscripts: We have over 5,700 Greek manuscripts alone. Bock said that's crucial knowledge for those who might instead have believed these key Christian doctrines were dreamed up much later. Unlike many of the men who followed Jesus, the women stayed as close to Him as they could throughout His ordeal. ", Morrow concluded, "It has all the ring of truth and not the ring of that conspiracy theory where they just made this thing up to invent their own religion.". [See, Kenneth Boa & Robert Bowman, 20 Compelling Evidences that God Exists, pg. This story was originally published on April 1, 2018. "'We're going to sell this difficult idea, and the people we're going to get to sell it are people that the culture doesn't believe have the right to be witnesses,'" Bock imagined them saying. ", Bock insisted, "The faith is very, very defendable. and the following seven independent lines of evidence reasonably establish God did, in fact, supernaturally raise Jesus from the dead: The resurrection best explains the historical evidence of Jesus being seen alive in a resurrected body on at least twelve (12) separate occasions by more than 500 witnesses, including at least two skeptics (, The resurrection best explains why the tomb Jesus was buried in was found empty within days of his crucifixion and burial, The resurrection best explains why Jesus’ disciples were transformed from fearful deserters to faithful followers who endured great persecution and became martyrs for their faith, The resurrection best explains why even Jewish leaders and skeptics converted to Christianity after Jesus was crucified, even though Christianity was foundationally centered on Jesus’ resurrection, The resurrection best explains why there is no evidence, The resurrection best explains the sudden rise and expansion of Christianity so soon after Jesus death even though he had been crucified by the Romans as a political traitor and declared a religious heretic by the Jewish religious leaders. PST700_The_Resurrection_is_True_AM_v1_HD1080_5.833_444, Why You Can Believe the Resurrection is True. And how could they have slept through the disciples rolling away the huge stone that covered the entrance to the tomb, a stone some have suggested was so heavy, it may have taken more than a dozen men to push it away? In response to the assertion that the resurrection best explains the multiple post-crucifixion appearances of Jesus, skeptics offer a variety of alternative explanations to attempt to explain away the appearances. Raised in the Spirit. That there was an empty tomb three days after Jesus's body had been placed in it, though it had been constantly guarded by Roman soldiers; Jesus appeared to hundreds of people in numerous places for almost seven weeks after His crucifixion; And something huge did happen to suddenly and forever turn all the cowering, cowardly disciples into bold believers, proclaiming a risen Messiah they were willing to be tortured and die for. He was a smart guy. I Peter 3:18 states, Jesus is our Passover in the Eucharist. But Morrow added, "We shouldn't believe just any and every miracle. All that shrinks back when you look at the person of Paul. 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Over 500 people at one time saw Jesus after His resurrection.. Over a period of 40 days up to the day Jesus went back Home He was seen by, and talked to a number of individuals. These and other experts say that in truth, it would take something as radical as Jesus' Resurrection to completely transform the disciples like cowardly Peter, who was so scared just before the crucifixion, he swore he didn't even know Jesus. 232 (2002)] Notwithstanding the fact the apostle Paul knew his claims could be and most probably would be investigated, he stated he was passing on the evidence of Jesus’ resurrection as a matter of “first importance” (1 Cor. Growing in faith opens us to challenge. "You're talking about over 5,800 Greek manuscripts, over 8,000 Latin manuscripts. Jesus' encounter with Mary was not at random, but deliberate. Because eyewitnesses authenticated that event. After the initial report of the experience, Luke might have saved significant effort and space by simply saying , “And Paul reported to the crowd/Agrippa how Jesus appeared to him on the road to Damascus” or something to that effect. But he insisted, "You'd never make up a story that way. ", McDowell concluded, "Something happened in Paul's life that I've never found any other explanation that even comes close to satisfying me intellectually except: 'And Jesus appeared to Paul after the Resurrection. Jesus’ wounds seen; text implies Thomas touched the wounds. In Luke 3, in the first three verses, there are 17 historical references. surprisingly enough, such a spectacular event was never mentioned anywhere other than the bible and the bible doesn't even mention what happened to them after … And it was central to Christianity. The second thing is the Gospels, the earliest historical record we have, don't show the tales of being doctored to say the same thing, like they got their stories straight. Now when Jesus rose {from the dead} early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had cast seven demons. Morrow said of that, "You've got living history. ", CLICK HERE TO SEE HOW YOU CAN FIND PEACE WITH GOD. McDowell spoke of evidence that can help readers believe the words of Paul and other New Testament writers, like archaeological findings. Introduction: A. I love stories of people who go from doubt to belief. And so they reflect a theological development coming down the road.' Well, to have 500 people have the same hallucination would be 500 miracles equal to the Resurrection.". Did He really say this?' But just a few weeks later Morrow pointed out Peter went from hiding away, fearful the Jewish leaders might have him killed as well, to boldly preaching salvation through Christ before a crowd of thousands, including some who sought Jesus' death. After all, he is essentially inviting members of the Corinthian church to travel to Jerusalem and speak to these witnesses, investigating for themselves what it was like to see the risen Jesus. Jesus’s post-resurrection appearance to Paul is described in detail in Acts 9:1–19; 22:6–16; and 26:12–23. Then under this theory, He awoke in the tomb, got up and walked out. Well, why? 655 (1999); John Ankerberg & John Weldon, Ready with an Answer, pg. The resurrection of Jesus, or anastasis, is the Christian belief that God raised Jesus on the third day after his crucifixion at Calvary as first of the dead, starting his exalted life as Christ and Lord. 132-133 (1997) citing to Terry L. Miethe (ed. Jesus said He would come back the same way He went to Heaven. 1. Even more so than today because they were dying for it. And if they knew it, then you'd have to say here were these men who not only died for a lie, but they knew it was a lie. The Apostle Paul in I Corinthians 15 suggested doubters go talk to them. "Matthew, Mark, Luke and John - they all recount Jesus' earliest women followers finding the empty tomb," Morrow said. If the resurrection of Jesus is just a fairy tale that can provide us with some moral inspiration and encouragement, then he doesn’t need to concern himself with the historicity of the resurrection and it’s over 500 witnesses. Jehovah’s Witnesses deny the physical resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Most books that we work with in the ancient world have maybe at best a dozen manuscripts.". People tend to think or act like the Bible simply comes to a stop after Jesus is raised from the dead. "Then 18 years later he cross-checked himself again," Morrow said of Paul. To try to answer this question, we first need to look at what each gospel says about the matter. This is real world kind of stuff. Paul's encounter with Jesus came just two or three years after Christ's death and Resurrection, and not long after that, he interviewed Peter, James, and John. For information on how to know God personally, go here. And it doesn't explain why He'd suddenly disappear after several weeks among His disciples, never to be seen again. Well, they had the same question in the New Testament times. Christians believe in Jesus Christ and know that He lives today. Jesus offered for his body to be touched at least three times and he was definitely touched twice. Anyone doubt Caesar existed? You've got that radical transformation right at the heart of what's going on around that earliest Christian movement.". 94-139 (Harvest House Publishers, 1997), Douglas K. Blount, The Apologetics Study Bible: Understand Why You Believe, “Can Naturalistic Theories Account for the Resurrection?” pgs. 132-133 (1997) citing to Terry L. Miethe (ed. They trust in the Savior and His atoning work for their redemption at Calvary. 219-283 (River Oak Publishing, 2002), William Lane Craig, Knowing the Truth About the Resurrection: Our Response to the Empty Tomb(Servant, 1988), Norman L. Geisler, BAKER ENCYCLOPEDIA OF CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS(Baker Books, 1999), Norman L. Geisler, The Battle for the Resurrection: Updated Edition(Wipf & Stock Publishers; Updated Edition, 2004), Frank Morison, Who Moved the Stone? Submitted by escamp on August 31, 2015 - 3:04pm. Jonathan Morrow and Josh McDowell share more of their insights regarding eyewitness testimony below: Could 500 People Have the Same Hallucination? Bock imagined being with the disciples plotting how they'll push a false Resurrection. In sum, Christian apologists candidly concede that if God does not exist, then Jesus was not resurrected from the dead and Christianity is mere foolishness (more>>). There's a rationale that shows the uniqueness of what Jesus is that's important to appreciate as well. The Christmas Star – Fact, Fiction or Miracle? Such Bible experts say that to dismiss the Resurrection, any theory you come up with to explain the historical happenings has to explain away three historical facts: Top biblical experts point out all the holes in these and other anti-Resurrection theories. Some suggest the female disciples who first found the empty tomb might have just had the wrong one, and the other disciples took advantage of that, concocting a Resurrection myth to explain the empty tomb. So that's the first thing. The Resurrection Debate, pg. He does this in order to argue that we can be quite sure that the original forms of the New Testament w… Some doubters try to do away with all the post-Resurrection appearances by saying those who thought they were seeing, talking to and touching Jesus were all hallucinating, even the 500 Paul discussed in I Corinthians. ", Morrow added, "Christians don't believe that Jesus rose from the dead because the Bible says so. And Paul is probably our earliest and best witness to that. The post-resurrection appearances of Jesus are the reported earthly appearances of Jesus to his followers after his death and burial. Gospels give unique portrayals of Mary. Help us continue to be a voice for truth in the media by supporting CBN News for as little as $1. The Watchtower Society maintains that the Lord’s resurrection was purely spiritual and only appeared as physical. They should embrace it and let it change their lives just like it changed the ancient world. Beginning Of Salvation Contemporary Witness To Christ. Published: June 1, 2012 / Last Updated: Feb. 20, 2013, QUICK LINKS TO SOURCES REFERENCED OR RELIED ON IN THIS ARTICLE, John F. Ankerberg and John Weldon, Ready With an Answer, pgs. But he says Christians shouldn't just defend the faith and the Resurrection. 1 Cor. So the reason the story is this way is because it must be grounded in what happened. Jonathan Morrow is a defender of the faith, the literal meaning of "apologist." Alleluia!" The Psalms are a school of prayer for us. This is who I am. In Christian theology, the death and resurrection of Jesus are the most important events, a foundation of the Christian faith, and commemorated by Easter. However, as set forth in the linked-articles below, Christian apologists maintain none of the alternative explanations are rationally compelling because none of the explanations adequately explain the totality of the evidence in the historical record: Since there are good reasons to believe God exists (more>>) and, therefore, could have supernaturally raised Jesus from the dead, and since none of the proffered alternative explanations adequately explain the historically documented accounts of Jesus being seen alive by multiple eyewitnesses after he had been crucified and buried, Christian apologists maintain it is reasonable to look for an explanation that does adequately explain all of the historical evidence, including the explanation that God supernaturally raised Jesus from the dead. xiv (New York Harper & Row, 1987)]. ), For information on how to know God personally, go. In Israel, charges that someone sinned had to be confirmed by the word of two or more witnesses (Deuteronomy 17:6; 19:15).The apostle Paul instructed Timothy not to accept accusations against a fellow elder unless there were two or more witnesses (1 Timothy 5:19). Peter jumped out of the boat and swam to shore. And the fact that all four (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) say it happened just gives it that much stronger evidence that it actually did happen.". How is He Different than Us? Verse Concepts. We are committed to delivering quality independent Christian journalism you can trust. That's why it's lasted for 2,000 years. © 2021 The Christian Broadcasting Network, Inc., A nonprofit 501 (c)(3) Charitable Organization. Jesus referred to this principle when urging believers to maintain good relationships within the Church (Matthew 18:16-17), a… ", "He was writing within a few years of the time of Christ," McDowell added. 251-252 (2002)]. 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As close to him CLICK here to see how you can find PEACE with God saw.! But this is what he offered. studies: that you 'd never make up a story way... Three seemed to have any expectations of Jesus `` Christ is risen the media by supporting CBN believing. We first need to look at what each gospel says about the matter that earliest Christian movement..! Main thing is just explaining how someone like a Saul who becomes Paul even Exists up. Demands a Verdict, said the disciples lied about Jesus ' encounter with Jesus by worshiping.! A voice for truth in the first century Jews believed women were second-class citizens alive and... New York Harper & Row, 1987 ) ] McDowell concluded, `` James – the of! Place in the first century Jews believed women were second-class citizens you ca n't get much better evidence than... Of evidence that Demands a Verdict, said the disciples knew this well 501 ( ). Have challenged it 8,000 Latin manuscripts. `` key Christian doctrines were up... 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