Ask Pastor Alex, Ep. 13
This is the Ask Pastor Alex podcast with your host, Pastor Alex.
All right, welcome back to the podcast. We’re here with another episode and another question,
and this is a special edition of the podcast, If I Sound Different. It’s because we are
recording in a new place using different microphones right now, and it’s also a special episode
for a number of reasons. First, it’s going to be a little bit longer than I typically
would do for one of these episodes. We are also doing a special Easter episode for this
one. The question is going to be, why should we believe in the resurrection of Jesus? And
then last, but certainly not least, is it’s special because we have with us today for
this episode, my good buddy, my partner in ministry, the associate pastor of Georgia’s
Creek Baptist Church, Pastor Jordan Massey.
Hey, I’m here too.
Yeah, Jordan. Welcome to the podcast, man.
It’s good to be here. I’m excited to talk about it.
Yeah. So I wanted to have Jordan on here because we end up almost every week at some point
hanging out in each other’s offices, talking about the sermons that we’re writing and bouncing
ideas off each other. And we thought, hey, man, it’d be a cool idea to record a podcast
together, especially for Easter, and talking about why we should believe in the resurrection
of Jesus. And as Jordan and I were talking, we were thinking, well, there are a lot of
different reasons, right?
Yeah, a lot of different reasons we should believe in the resurrection. But first and
foremost, I think the main reason, and I think Jordan would agree with me, the main reason
that we should believe in the resurrection of Jesus is because the Bible says Jesus rose
from the grave. Like at the end of the day, that’s what matters most, right? We have all
these great evidences and we are going to get into them in just a little bit. But at
the end of the day, we need to believe something because the Bible says it. And the Bible says
that after three days in the grave, Jesus rose from the dead. And that does bring a
little bit of a problem because for instance, someone might say to you something like, well,
I don’t believe the Bible, right? Like, I mean, that’s a common thing.
That’s what you hear a lot of people say. They’re like, well, that works out for you
Christians because you believe the Bible, but what about me? I don’t believe the Bible.
Yeah. And so if you’re witnessing to someone, if you’re talking with someone, that might
be a common thing that they end up saying is like, well, hey, that makes sense for you
as a Christian, but I don’t believe in your Bible. So that does nothing for me. And at
the end of the day, I mean, it sounds weird to say this, but like that doesn’t ultimately
matter because your belief in the Bible is not what makes the Bible true. The veracity
of the Bible is not conditioned upon your belief in it, right?
Yeah. And we always have to remember too, as modern day Christians, the Bible was here
way before us. And unless Jesus comes back beforehand, the Bible is going to be here
long after us too. It’s going to be just as true then as it’s always been.
Right. And so like an example that I would use, and I’ve had this conversation with some
people I used to work with is I told them, I believe in the resurrection because the
Bible says Jesus rose from the dead and they said exactly what we’re talking about. And
they said, well, I’m not a Christian, so I don’t believe in the Bible. And I said, well,
you could also believe that you don’t have to pay taxes. You could believe-
That would be nice.
Right. We’re around tax season. It would be nice. So like you might have that belief
that, hey, I don’t actually have to pay taxes. And that’s okay. You’re entitled to that belief,
but come tax season, the IRS is not going to go, oh wait, hey, this guy, oh, he doesn’t
believe in paying taxes. So we’re not going to do anything. That’s fine. Right?
Would that be considered a tax write-off?
No, it wouldn’t. So they’re going to come after you, right? You’re going to be audited
and they’re going to be like, where’s our money? You owe us money. We’re the United
States government. Give us our money. So like just because you don’t believe in something
doesn’t mean that it’s no longer true. Or you might think of if you get pulled over
for speeding and a cop pulls you over and you’re like, well, I don’t believe I was
speeding. And he’s like, well, I have you on radar and you were, and they’re like, well,
I don’t believe I am. So you can’t give me a ticket. He’s like, okay, you can not believe,
but you’re still getting the ticket, right? Because it’s documented and proved. So at
the end of the day, the Bible is the inspired and narrate and fallible word of God. The
Bible says in first Timothy three 16 that it is breathed out by God. And so if the Bible
says it, it is true. And if it is true and it comes from God, that’s all that we need
for belief. Yeah. So, but we understand that when you are talking to others, they are going
to want some other sort of belief in some, some other sort of evidence. And so Jordan
was going to take on some of these. Yeah. And right before we really jump into those
evidences, I think, especially to tag off of what you were saying, Alex, about how important
it is for us to understand what the Bible says is to even understand how important the
Bible itself says the resurrection is. Right. Cause there’s a lot of people out there. They’re
like, well, okay, well, you, what if we just took that out? There’s people that don’t want
to believe in miracles in the first place. Maybe they’re okay with Jesus, you know, but
they’re like, but they’re sad, but yeah, but they’re like, there’s no way he rose from
the dead. You silly Christians. Right. But what the Bible says in first Corinthians chapter
15 verses 17 through 19, it talks about how important it is. Right. It says, and if Christ
has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those
also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ, we have hope in this
life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. In other words, if Jesus is not alive
today, all this is in vain. Yeah. We have the wrong careers. Right. We’re wasting our
lives. Yeah. Literally staking our lives on this. Yeah. And all the people who have done
that over the centuries, the people who’ve given their lives for it, it means nothing
if Jesus didn’t actually rise from the dead. So this needs to be a topic that we as Christians
take seriously. Yes. We celebrate it at Easter time, but we need to know why we believe it.
Yeah. We need to know how foundational it is for our faith. Yeah. Like you said, that
does start with, for us, it starts with the Bible. We have to understand that the Bible
says it is true. And if we claim to believe that the Bible is God’s word, then we have
to believe that it’s true. Okay. So let me ask you this then. The Bible also says that
Jesus died on the cross. Yeah. And I know people, you know people, and we see it in
popular media. I mean, you think of like prominent atheists who will say, well, did Jesus actually
die then? I mean, like Muslims, for instance, Muslims believe that Allah spared Jesus from
the cross and there was someone substituted in his place. So, so what do you do with that?
I always felt bad for that person. Right. Like you get none of the glory, but you get
all of the, all the death. You just get the crucifixion part. Right. So, so what do you
do with that then? Like how, what do you say to those people who would say, well, I don’t
know that I’m even convinced Jesus actually did die on the cross. Yeah. It kind of plays
into that swoon theories. What I grew up hearing it being called, right? That maybe Jesus just
passed out on the cross. Totally common by the way, right? Yeah. And then got buried.
But no, so there are, there’s a good number of evidences for the fact that Jesus actually
did die. And I want to lead off with what crucifixion actually was in the first place,
right? The Romans created crucifixion as a mastery of the art of killing. It wasn’t just
torture. The torture was just the part of it. It’s like the preamble to the final part
there. Which is terrifying to even think about. Which is terrifying to think of, especially
when we think of the things Jesus went through, right? Before he ever even got to the cross.
Right. And then what the Romans would do is the purpose of it, you would hang on that
cross and the goal was, the goal that sounds bad, but the goal would be for the victim
to suffocate. Yeah. Because you’re hanging there and you’re hanging with your arms suspended
and it’s a fight to get every single breath. Yeah. Your body weight is literally crushing
your lungs at that point. Yeah. And so for Jesus in particular, he has the nails most
likely through the wrists. Yeah. Right. And every time he needs a breath at all, he has
to pull up against the cross, against those nails and also against the skin that was torn
off of his back to get every single breath. Right. And that wood, I mean, keep in mind,
they weren’t sanding it beforehand. So you’ve got rough wood and an open fleshed back with
just blood coming out. Right. And he’s up there for hours. And so then after Jesus died,
which by the way, there were eyewitness accounts of his last words right before he took his
last breath that the Bible says, right, that it wasn’t just the, his followers. It was
the Roman guard by the cross. It was other people that heard him say his last words,
take his final breath. And then after he died, they went to make sure they took the spear,
right. And they spear him into the side. And the purpose of that was to pierce the person’s
heart. Yeah. Right. It was like, Hey, if they’re taking too long and Jesus was for them, he
was taking too long to die. So they speared his heart, but at that point he was already
dead. Right. And we even, uh, it’s kind of a cool sciencey thing here. The Bible says
that blood and water came out, right. And a lot of modern scientists have pointed that
that’s seems like this is a really big term for me, Alex. I had to look this up. I’m not
a scientist by any means. Yes. It’s more than that, but it’s pericardial effusion, right.
Which is where at the point or after the point of death, that water starts to form or fluid
starts to form around the heart. And so when it was pierced, that was most likely scientists
believe what came out. Another scientific proof of death. But then even then, even after
that, they were going to come and break their legs. This was another tactic that we used.
Again, the purpose for the Romans was to kill the victim and to make sure that they died.
If they took too long, then they would also go and break the legs of the victim. Because
at that point you can’t lift yourself up anymore. Right. So you don’t get any breath. Yeah. But
when they found Jesus, he was already dead. They proclaimed, hey, there’s no need to break
his legs because he’s already dead. If they weren’t sure, the Romans wouldn’t have let
him go. Oh yeah, that’s a good point. The Romans would have definitely been like, this
is what we do in every other case. So we’ve got to break the legs. The only reason they
would not have broken the legs is if he was already dead. Exactly. And why would they
want in any way to keep him alive? This is a man who at least in their minds is a direct
threat to their own king. Yeah, that’s right. Right. Someone that’s being called the king
of the Jews, they’re not going to leave him alive. Right. But that’s even fulfilling a
prophecy. Right. Not that would be broken. That not a bone would be broken on Jesus.
So they didn’t even break his legs there on the cross. And then you can even take it as
far as let’s say, sure, somehow he survived all of that. Then he goes and gets laid in
a tomb. Right. If nothing else, sure, I guess he passed out. Maybe. Right. And he’s already
suffered. He’s already been on the cross for hours. He’s already, you know, had a spear
through him. All that kind of stuff. The Romans have pronounced him dead. Everybody who’s
looking on knows that he has died at that point. There’s even the Roman guard who says,
surely we’ve just killed the son of God. Yeah, we we’ve just done that. That that happened.
So if he survived all that and it was just passed out. Okay. Right. So then they’re going
to take this incredibly feeble and weak man, beaten, bruised, bloody, unrecognizably beaten
man and put him in a tomb by himself, wrapped in burial cloths. Right. And he’s going to
survive that. True. Good point. Yeah. He has no food, no water, no medicine, no one to
take care of him inside of that tomb. Right. So you walk out on a busy interstate and you
get hit by a transfer truck and you roll under under under it. The next few cars come and
get you to you. Just for good measure. Yeah. You bleed out on the highway and somehow your
body rolls off like onto an overpass or something. You’re on the ground. Are you surviving without
medical attention? I would not think so. Probably not. We’re not medical doctors, but you know,
I don’t think you’re surviving that. And yet that’s the claim is that maybe Jesus just
suffered something equally horrendous where he’s definitely dead, but in their theory,
he’s still alive. And you put him in a tomb without any medical attention whatsoever.
And they’re saying somehow he just happened to survive. Yeah. And that’s, that’s the difference
between what people are trying to do. The swoon theory or what I call the swap theory
with Islam. Right. Is most Islam’s will tell you they hold Jesus in a high regard. Right.
And they’re like, well, there’s no way that God would allow Jesus to die. Yeah. They have
a very high view of Jesus. The thing is though, that’s exactly what Satan wants us to believe.
Exactly. Right. Because Satan didn’t want Jesus to die either. Yeah. Just bow down to
me. I’ll give you all the kingdoms. I’ll give you the crown without the cross. Yeah. It’s
incredibly paramount for us that Jesus physically died. Absolutely. Because that is our atonement.
And so we can take what the Bible says about Jesus’s death literally. We can look at the
evidences that have been given, that have been shown from the Bible, from history, from
science, even to show us that Jesus died on the cross. Okay. So he died on the cross.
And part of the last kind of theory we were talking about is with this theory that, well,
maybe he didn’t actually die. We know that after three days, there was this giant stone
that not a single person on their own could roll away. Yeah. So they’re thinking that
someone who just suffered all of that and didn’t receive any medical attention miraculously
recovered after three days and rolled away that stone. Is that? Yeah. I mean, it’s adrenaline,
right? Right. At that point, I think I’m safe. Might as well get out of here. Yeah. Well,
the idea for that is ridiculous. And there’s all kinds of theories even to this day of
the stolen body that maybe the Jews stole the body or some will even claim that the
Romans themselves stole the body. Yeah. Which has always been a weird one to me because
that would completely undo the entire purpose of killing Jesus for them in the first place.
Right? Yeah. So this is something for me because like, I mean, you and I, we go back, we’re
actually friends outside of ministry. So we just get to do ministry together, which is
awesome. But growing up, I wanted to be Sherlock Holmes. I thought that’s going to be my destiny.
Never in a million years would have thought that I was going to be a pastor of a Baptist
church, but God has a sense of humor. So when I think of like the empty tomb, I think of
a mystery because here are the facts. Okay. If you’re just going to think about this very
logically, think of it as like a cool Sherlock Holmes mystery. The facts are Jesus is dead
and he is put in a tomb. And then that tomb is sealed with a ginormous stone that not
a single one person on their own could roll away. Right. And then outside of that tomb,
there’s an entire Roman guard. And we read about that in the Bible that they had placed
Roman guards because they were like, Hey, there was all this stuff he said about how
he’s coming back and all this, you know, we’re a little concerned. It could be true. And
so pilots like, okay, you’ve got the green light, go stand outside the tomb, make sure
you’re stationed there. The, you know, you can see the religious leaders came in there,
like he said all this. And so pilot sends a guard. And so the facts are dead. Jesus
is in the tomb that is sealed with a huge stone and there’s a Roman guard outside of
that tomb. And then after three days, the facts state that that tomb, the stone is rolled
away and the tomb is empty. Yeah. So my question is, you have to say the most obvious, if you’re
a detective, where’s the body? Right. What happened there? And as you pointed out, one
of the most common ones is people say, well, Rome stole the body. The reason that this
is ridiculous is, as you just said earlier, is because that would totally defeat the purpose.
Right? Yeah. The reason that Rome wanted to kill Jesus is because Jesus was claiming to
be a king of a kingdom. And that was a direct threat to Rome. And pilot even asked him,
are you the king of the Jews? And Jesus is like, you say so. My kingdom is not of this
world. Like very evasive answers, but like they were threatened by his kingship. And
so if you have a bunch of followers who have heard Jesus say, I’m going to die, but I’m
going to, I’m going to come back. I’m going to rise from the dead. I’m coming back after
three days. And then as Rome, you steal the body after three days, what are the disciples
going to think? Oh, Jesus is alive. We might not have gotten to see him, but this is exactly
what he said was going to happen. Yeah. The Romans would do everything they could to convince
everyone that Jesus is dead and he’s going to stay dead. Right. Yeah. That’s what they
want. They were proclaiming victory in Christ’s death. And so it would make no sense whatsoever
for Rome to steal the body because then that would start off hysteria of these Jewish followers
saying that Jesus is alive, that he actually did rise from the dead. And so naturally people
will go, well, okay, if it wasn’t Rome, then maybe it was the Jewish leaders. And literally
every suggestion for the stealing of the body falls on the same sword because the Jewish
leaders, they might’ve had an end with Rome, you know, and the guards and everything. They
possibly could have even gotten into the tomb if they wanted to. However, if they had stolen
the body, you end up with the same problem. It would have absolutely defeated their purposes.
They steal the body. There’s no Jesus. The disciples think he’s risen. We didn’t get
to see him, but we know that he’s risen because he’s not in there. And this is exactly what
he said was going to happen. Yeah. All the accounts show the religious leaders, the Jewish
leaders as the ones pushing for Jesus death more than Rome was. Right. They were the ones
pulling all the strings, trying to get Jesus killed. Why? What would they have to gain
from furthering a narrative that, hey, what if he’s alive now? Yeah, exactly. So it makes
no sense because they end up in this situation where they would want to preserve the dead
body so that if anyone thought Jesus was alive, they could say, nope, come back to the tomb.
I’ll show you his body. He is dead. There’s all your hope. And so I think kind of the
last one that people entertain is maybe the disciples stole the body. Right. Which is
hilarious because the Bible even mentions that. Yeah. Right. Yeah. That the Jewish leaders
are talking with the Roman guard and they’re like, Hey, what if we make up this story?
Just in case. What if we make up this lie and just say that the disciples stole it?
Right. But my other favorite thing that makes that one ridiculous is like you said before,
there is a Roman guard out there and that doesn’t mean one guard. That means a section
of soldiers that’s out there guarding this tomb for this very purpose. And a bunch of
fishermen and tax collectors are going to come beat these fully armored soldiers and
roll away the stone and get this body. The same people who out of fear deserted him when
he was being arrested in the first place. Yeah. Those guys, you think those guys are
now going to step up. They were afraid they’re going to be crucified with Christ and then
Christ was crucified. You think after seeing that all of a sudden they’re emboldened to
go and challenge Rome just to steal the body of Jesus. No, it doesn’t happen that way.
And the other thing that I think makes this ridiculous is if you look at the effect that
his resurrection had on the early church and on those first disciples and those first followers
of Christ is they go from these timid, scared followers to the most bold witnesses you can
imagine and literally all 12 of Jesus’s disciples apart from John end up dying a martyr’s death
and they’re willing to. Peter who denied Jesus three times because he was afraid that he
was going to be crucified with him when his time came, he said, do it upside down. I’m
not even worthy to be crucified in the same way. When I think of Peter too, I think of
his sermon at Pentecost, right? Peter went from, like you said, being so afraid of these
leaders from Rome and the Jewish religious leaders that he denied Jesus three times,
one of the times even calling a curse upon him because he was so afraid to be recognized
as a friend of Jesus. And then after he had seen the resurrected Jesus, he’s so emboldened
by it that he preaches a sermon flat out calling out those very religious leaders as the ones
that killed Jesus. Yes, you did this. He’s pointing the finger right at them. I mean,
you just read the first couple chapters of Acts and he’s always going, you did this.
This is on you. You messed up. You killed the anointed one of God. Yeah. That doesn’t
seem like the same kind of person who doesn’t have a solid reason to make that kind of change.
Right. And so I think that’s the point is if the disciples did steal the body, would
they have the type of courage that we read about in the gospels in, uh, in Acts in particular
in church history where we know that they go from being timid, fearful followers of
Christ to all of them dying martyrs deaths. And I just don’t think if you made that up,
if you stole the body, you’re not going to be willing to die for your life. Many people
will die for a lie, not knowing it’s a lie. Hardly anyone will die for a lie knowing that
it is a lie. Yeah. And again, these aren’t men that are like trained spies that are,
you know, that are trained and hardened and ready to make up a lie and go to the grave
for it. Like we said before, these were fishermen. These were tax collectors. These were lay
people that just happened to be chosen by Jesus. And then now they’ve become the most
bold men in the world. True, true. So, so I think when you look at that as a detective,
the empty tomb and you’re like, okay, what makes the most sense of the evidence that
we’re presented? Because let’s, you know, let’s, let’s follow the evidence to whatever
conclusion it leads us to. Right. And you look at the evidence and all of the facts
surrounding the empty tomb and you go away thinking, okay, I know this sounds crazy.
I know it sounds impossible, but literally the best explanation of all of the given data
is that on the third day, Jesus Christ rose from the grave by the power of God. Yeah.
So Jesus did rise from the dead on the third day. And that was witnessed not just by those
first disciples, but we know that Jesus had a number of resurrection appearances. And
I think what’s, we’re going to talk about this in a little bit is what makes those so
interesting is if he had only appeared to his own disciples, then that could be easily
dismissed. But the resurrection appearances of Jesus occurred in a variety of places to
a variety of people. Yeah. It wasn’t just his leaders that would really feed into the
idea of this being a made up story, right? Like the winners, right? History type deal.
Exactly. But history records, even outside of the Bible, even other historical sources
from that time show that there were over 500 eyewitnesses of a resurrected Jesus. Yeah.
And what’s interesting about that is, you know, well, sometimes I’ve heard people say
when you bring up the, hey, he appeared to over 500 people at one time, people have tried
to claim that was mass hysteria or delusion or some sort of like hallucination. And again,
if you want to just look at modern science, if you look at psychology, it has been proven
that there has never been a single instance of a joint hallucination or a mass hallucination
of any kind. People typically will hallucinate what they anticipate seeing. So I’ve read
it like this is that if a person is going through some sort of psychological episode,
they have all sorts of things that they anticipate that they’re going to see, you know, comes
from paranoia, things like that. And so they will have a hallucination based on what they
are thinking that they’re going to see or what they are afraid to see or what they expect
to see. Yeah. Well, the people that Jesus appeared to it that specifically the 500 people,
none of them were expecting to see the risen Christ. Like none of them were. You mean the
guy that was brutally executed publicly, publicly executed in front of, in front of all of us.
Yeah. Yeah. You mean, I don’t think, yeah, no, no one in that group of 500 was expecting
and anticipating Jesus to return and be risen like he was. Yeah. And again, besides that,
there are no cases of mass hallucinations. Right. And then the other thing about it is,
like you said, it was also a variety of people. It wasn’t just his apostles. It wasn’t even
just his followers. And we’ll get to that in a second. But this is something I’ve heard
a lot of apologists mentions. I think it’s really worth mentioning is that the very first
people that saw the risen Jesus and claimed to have seen the risen Jesus and took it back
and that are recorded in the Bible to have seen him were women. That’s right. Right.
And that was a big deal because in that time, in that culture, women were not seen as a
reliable source of information. So if you’re writing one of the gospels and, and again,
people today will say that it’s just made up stuff by Christians, by believers to, you
know, make a religion out of it. Right. If you were doing that, would you choose women
to be the first people to discover the risen Jesus in that time? No, exactly. Because as
soon as anyone wanted to take it seriously, then like any intellectuals, like we know
Paul and his missionary journeys would go to the intellectual sources of those cities.
Right. And if he was to lead off with that, if he would never do that, people would laugh
him out of the room. And we know obviously that’s completely wrong by today’s standards
as it should be. But in that time, it wasn’t right. And they just didn’t trust women. If
you were trying to convince, if you were making up a story and you were trying to convince
someone, you would say, Oh, Jesus was found by the high priest or by Pontius Pilate himself.
You know, Caesar, Tiberius Caesar visited Jerusalem and he, it was the first person,
like you would go to some prominent figure who had some sort of respect in that society
to be the one to find. Yeah. I mean, it sounds like a more epic story for Jesus to like appear
first to pilot, right? And pilot to be like, Oh, I was wrong. Let me bow down to show up
in Rome, right? And it’s Caesar’s doorstep or something. That would be a great story.
It would, but no, he shows up to a woman who was expecting him to be dead. Yeah. Right.
He shows up to her and she’s the first eyewitness of the resurrected Jesus. There’s no way these
men would have written this account and taken it seriously in that way, unless it was true.
That’s right. That’s a great point. But then it’s not just the, the woman, the women, it’s
also the other kind of people. When you think about that, Jesus physically appeared to Saul
of Tarsus, right? So this would take place a little bit later, right? Saul at that time
was one of the greatest enemies of the followers of Jesus. I mean, he’s literally traveling
to a city to arrest followers of Jesus. This is after he had overseen the stoning of Stephen,
by the way. Right. Yeah. He was actively hunting down these Christians. He had already just
executed Stephen. He was persecuting the way, as the Bible says. He was persecuting the
way. That’s right. And Jesus appears to him as the resurrected Lord. And immediately this
man who was a vehement enemy of Christians, the followers of Jesus, becomes one of our
greatest champions. That missionary to the Gentiles dedicates his entire life to Jesus.
What enemy does that? Right. Knowing that, hey, and Paul was a Roman citizen too, knowing
as soon as he makes that choice, hey, I can be tried for treason. I could be executed.
I’m supposed to arrest myself now, right? Because I’m a follower of the way. Yeah. He
had the approval of the high priest to go and do these things. Exactly. Yeah. So what
could transform a man like that? Just the truth. And I think what’s interesting in the
case of Paul is even where people would say, and I’ve seen some atheists today say this,
they’ll say, well, clearly Paul is an intelligent person. I mean, he was part of the Pharisees.
He was a brilliant scholar, just incredibly intelligent. And they’ll say the only thing
that could make him follow Jesus in this way is if he had some sort of psychological breakdown,
some sort of mental breakdown, or he had a traumatic experience. They might say, maybe
it did happen on the road to Damascus. He had a traumatic experience and it caused him
to basically go crazy and he became a Jesus follower. What’s interesting about that though
is you see the same rationality he had beforehand as you do after he becomes a Jesus follower.
He’s just as rational. He’s just as logical. And what’s even more interesting is that it’s
like his eyes are finally open. And he’d go on to say this in 2 Corinthians chapter two
and three, where he’s like, for a while, it was like we had this veil over our eyes, but
because of Jesus, the veil has been torn away and we’re seeing with clear eyes now. What’s
amazing, what I’m getting at here is that he was a Jewish scholar. He was a Pharisee.
And he would go on in Philippians chapter three to say, I was a Hebrew of Hebrews. I
was your guy, blameless before the law. And when he understands that Jesus is the Messiah,
and then he begins to look back on the Old Testament, he goes, it makes sense. It makes
total sense. This is not someone who lost his mind or had a traumatic experience or
a psychological breakdown. This is a man who met the risen Lord Jesus Christ and literally
everything made sense after that.
Yeah. And I think that’s really the point we’re getting at with this too. It’s what
makes Easter such a celebratory time for us. Because like we started just a little bit
ago in this very podcast is that the resurrection is everything for Christianity. Without it,
it’s nothing else. For Paul, he thought it was following the law at first until he met
the resurrected Jesus. And then everything changed for him. I think that can be said
for all of us, right?
Yeah. And I mean, literally that’s going to be my message this Sunday is that the resurrection
literally changes everything for us.
And we don’t need to be afraid to look into it. We should be excited. I’m a youth pastor.
I tell my students all the time to never be afraid to ask the questions.
Yeah, because here’s the thing. Those questions are going to be asked of you. And I know Christians
who are afraid to listen to atheist give talk. I know Christians who are afraid to listen
to anybody debate a Christian or question anything about the Bible, about the resurrection,
because they’re like, oh no, I guess what if they’re right or what if they prove me
wrong or something? And I always want to encourage Christians by saying, we already know what
the Bible says and the Bible is our ultimate authority. And so we don’t have to worry about
anything else. There’s no atheist who’s going to disprove the faith. Why? Because the faith
I mean, there’s even modern stories of that happening with some of our most famous modern
scholars, right? CS Lewis, true, tried to do that. Lee Strobel tried to debunk the very
resurrection of Jesus. And what did it do when he dove into the evidence? It converted
him. He became a believer. He became a believer and wrote a book called The Case for Christ,
which is about the evidences of the resurrection. We don’t need to be afraid of it. We should
dive into these things because it will always point us to the truth.
Right. Yeah. Since, since God’s word is ultimate truth, there’s nothing that’s going to contradict
it and improve it to be false. I mean, obviously things will go against it. People will raise
objections to it. But at the end of the day, as we’ve said here, we’ve just, you know,
we’ve just listed all of the main objections to the resurrection and all the ways it’s
tried to be dismissed today. And we’ve shown how they all fall flat. And at the end of
the day, what makes the most sense of literally all the evidence presented is that Jesus Christ
rose from the dead by the power of God. And that ultimate truth is found in scripture.
And so I think we have a very firm foundation. I think we have great reasons to believe in
Definitely. Yeah. So just trying to wrap this up, why should we believe in the resurrection?
Well, first and foremost, it’s because the Bible says Jesus rose from the dead. Also,
we know that Jesus did die on the cross for our sins and that he was definitely dead.
Once he was definitely dead, they put him in a tomb and there was absolutely no way
for him to get himself out of that tomb while he was dead. There was also no way for anyone
else to get him out of that tomb, nor would they have wanted to because it would have
defeated their purposes entirely. And so what makes the most sense is that Jesus rose from
the dead. And then we also have the validation of the post resurrection appearances where
he appeared to people like women, which you would not have made up if you’re trying to
make up a story. He appeared to fishermen, to everyday normal people, to people who were
trying to persecute his people and his mission and his church, and their lives are dramatically
changed. And again, I’ll get into this Sunday morning for my sermon, but ultimately what
ends up changing people’s hearts is not evidence. It’s Jesus. It’s a personal encounter with
Yep. And it’s just like if you were a judge in a courtroom and you had the evidence laid
before you, you then as the judge have to make that decision of what you do with this
evidence. For the resurrection, the evidences are there. And every single one of us are
going to be confronted with that evidence if we’re willing to look into it and see,
like you said, all logic, all evidence, all of it points to the most obvious answer being
that Jesus did rise from the dead. He came out of that grave. So it falls on all of us.
What do we do with that evidence? What do we decide to do with it?
Now I think like what we were saying earlier is the way that we would encourage people
is when you have all this evidence, well, for those who don’t believe, we hope that
this amount of evidence will encourage you to read the Bible, to search Jesus out for
yourself because I think this evidence, it can really captivate your mind. I think it
can challenge some, maybe some notions that you hold to now. It can confront some beliefs
that you have now. And when you experience that, that should force you and cause you
to seek out Jesus in search for ultimate truth. And if you are a believer, what we
hope it does is simply encourage your faith. Yeah, that would encourage your faith and
then make you want to tell others, right? That’s what it did for all the followers of
Jesus. If you truly do believe that Jesus rose from the dead, that’s not something you
keep to yourself. That’s right. This is life changing news. Exactly. You’re going to,
you’re going to have to tell somebody, you’re going to have to do something about it. Yeah.
So we really do hope that this has been a helpful podcast for you. We wanted to do this
around Easter. We wanted to, you know, just answer this question. Why should we believe
in the resurrection of Jesus? And, and I hope that you have been encouraged. I hope that
you have found this answer helpful and really excited that Jordan got to be with us for
this episode. So thanks Jordan for coming on. Yeah, it’s been a blast. I love getting
to talk about this stuff and just getting to hang out with you. Yeah. We’ll probably
do another one in the future. It’s gonna be awesome. So appreciate the question. Look
forward to answering more in the future.