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In "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," by C.S. Lewis we have a story of the power of resurrection. When Aslan the Lion came back to life, it meant hope for those who were enslaved by the White Witch. Resurrection introduced new life--the hallmark of Christianity. Some time ago Time Magazine carried a story about two archaeologists who found bone fragments on the clifftops above the Dead Sea in Israel. Sifting the dust through a small sieve, Dennis Walker, a researcher from California State University at Long Beach, discovered two tiny fragments of bones. As he and his partner Ron Dubay carefully dug deeper, they found three vertebrae, skull fragments and the brittle remains of at least one human body. The researchers think their discovery is important because among some 1,200 simple graves at the site of their dig, this was the only one found inside a purpose-built structure. They concluded the bones must have belonged to an important person. Maybe the bones once comprised the skeleton of a Maccabean king of Judea, or perhaps the apostle James. Maybe it was John the Baptist. Or, who knows, perhaps it was even Jesus, they speculated. Israeli experts, on the other hand, have a different interpretation. Yossi Nagal, the head of anthropology for Israel’s Antiquity Authority, says the bones are the remains of two Bedouin women who were buried about 200 years ago. An Israeli archaeologist says the Cal State team "got overexcited." Others say the Israelis play down such discoveries because rabbinical authorities forbid digging up Jewish graves. Who’s right? Who knows? I can tell you this--whoever the bones belonged to, it isn’t Jesus. Christians believe that although He was crucified on Friday, He rose from the dead on Sunday morning. He appeared to several individuals and small groups and then to more than five hundred at one time, most of whom were still living at the time St. Paul wrote about it. His resurrection is one of the best-decumented facts in all of history. So, if you look in the right place in Israel, you might be able to find the tomb of John the Baptist. If you search diligently in Saudi Arabia, you might find the bones of Mohammed. If you hunted long and hard in China, you might discover the remains of Confucius. But visitors to the tomb of Jesus always observe that it’s empty. He arose again!

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