Summary: Proof of the resurrection of Jesus is found in the Bible not just by the witness narratives but also in the spiritual transformations of Jesus' half brothers, James and Jude.
Jesus Is Risen! He Is Risen Indeed!
That’s not something we just chant and repeat mindlessly over and over to convince ourselves of some unprovable fact. There are eye witness testimonies; over 500 eye witnesses at one time, in fact.
Luke 24:1-12 NIV
“On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
“While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He has risen!
“Remember how He told you, while He was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again?’” Then they remembered His words.
“When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense.
“Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, He saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.”
This isn't something that was just invented to make Jesus look great! One of the most compelling accounts is given by Luke who was a highly educated physician who later became an investigative reporter in order to give an accurate accounting what what was seen and heard by a multitude of eye witnesses.
Luke 1:1-4 NIV
“Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word.
“With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.”
Acts 4:20 NIV
“As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
Acts 13:31 NIV
“But God raised Him (Jesus) from the dead, and for many days He was seen by those who had traveled with Him from Galilee to Jerusalem. They are now His witnesses to our people.”
1 John 1:3 NIV
“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched - this we proclaim concerning the Word of life.
“The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us.
“We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.”
“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
“And that He appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. After that, He appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have died.”
Sometimes we as pastors struggle to find something new and interesting to preach about on the Sunday specifically set aside to remember and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
That is a crazy thought! What on earth could be more important than to proclaim.
Please stand and recite The Apostles Creed with me
I BELIEVE in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ His only Son, our Lord;
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried;
He descended into Hades; the third day He rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven, and now sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I BELIEVE in the Holy Spirit; the church universal;
the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins;