Three Questions Concerning the Resurrection
1st Corinthians 15:1-19
If someone were to ask me which of the great doctrines from Scripture is most important, I would have no trouble answering, “The Resurrection!” The Apostle Paul tells us most plainly that Jesus’ resurrection from the dead is the Gospel’s master link. If Christ did not rise then everything we believe, hope, and trust is a lie!
Is it then any wonder that Satan has trained all the heavy artillery of Hell against this great doctrine? If men should quit believing and preaching the Resurrection then the throne of God must fall and Heaven be destroyed.
There are few today that do not believe that a man named Yeshua of Nazareth lived sometime in the first century. Evidence for His existence exists in the secular record of both Philo and Josephus. Both mention Him by name and give details about the growth of Christianity in the first century A. D. Rather than denying His existence, enemies of Christianity now choose to question the works attributed to Him. His miracles are explained away as exaggerations or misrepresentations and His resurrection they proclaim a lie.
This morning, I want to ask and answer three questions pertaining to the Resurrection:
1. Could God raise Jesus from the dead?
2. Did God raise Jesus from the dead?
3. Why did God raise Jesus from the dead?
I. Could God Raise Jesus From the Dead?
A. Paul to Agrippa, “Why should it be thought a thing incredible that God should raise the dead?”
1. Admit the existence of God and the impossibility argument is moot
2. If He could not do it then we have no God and all is hopeless
B. If He is the origin of life, how difficult would it be for Him to restore life?
II. Did God Raise Jesus From the Dead?
- Depends on whom you believe!
A. An angel said He did
B. Jesus appeared at least ten times after His resurrection. More evidence for His resurrection exists than for the life of Julius Caesar
C. The disciples said He did. What had they to gain by their testimony? Riches? Fame? Only suffering and death.
D. None of His enemies has ever been able to present evidence that He did not rise
1. Some say the disciples stole the body. Will
a man die for what he knows is a lie? Would men that fled the Temple guards face 16 Roman soldiers?
2. Some say He did not die and that the cool air of the tomb revived Him. He had a four-inch spear thrust through His heart and lungs. A deer is slain with a two-inch broad head arrow.
3. Some call it mass hallucination – What? A walking, talking, eating man? Give me a break!
III. Why Did God Raise Jesus From the Dead?
A. Because Jesus said He would. God cannot lie!
B. To make Him the First Fruits – guaranteeing every believer’s resurrection
C. To verify everything else He said – judgment of sinners and the Hope to come!
I have never had the opportunity to visit the Holy Land. If I ever do, there is one place I am not interested in seeing – the tomb. No work was done there. It was but a waiting room. His remains waited there the time required to prove the work of redemption had been accomplished. I choose to take Jesus at His word and praise the Lord of glory!