Did Jesus really come back from the dead? 

Part 2 – Proof historically 

Paul pins a large target on the back of every Christian that anyone can take potshots at to poke holes in Christianity. Come up with proof that Jesus was not raised from the dead and Christianity can be rightly rejected.

But how on earth do you prove or disprove the resurrection of Jesus when it happened so long ago? 

Well, is there any HISTORICAL evidence first of all? Because if Jesus’ resurrection really happened, then surely such an amazing event would have stirred all sorts of people to write about it. So, were actual records of Jesus’ resurrection written down and preserved by people near to the time it happened?

Yes, there were – in the letters of Paul, in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, and in the Book of Acts. And they all contain everything a historian looks for in validating an event in history, such as:

1) People who saw and heard what happened, who then wrote down what they saw and heard very soon afterwards.

2) Living witnesses at the time who could corroborate and confirm what these people wrote down as true (or reject it as false).

3) Preservation of those witness reports and records that have survived the passage of time and criticism.

The New Testament provides all three of those points in spades. But, some critics claim, the New Testament is biased, so it can’t be trusted as a valid historical document. 

But bias hasn’t made historians reject the writings of other men from that era, like Josephus, Cicero, and Seneca. Josephus was obviously biased in favour of the Jews, but historians are well aware of that and still greatly value his insights into New Testament times. Bias, therefore, is no reason for treating the New Testament differently to any other historical document describing what happened in that era.

Some critics, however, claim that the reports of Jesus’ resurrection were just inventions to prove the legitimacy of Christianity. So does that argument hold water?…(continues tomorrow)

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