There has only been one religious leader in history that was predicted to die, predicted to rise again and then did so. Jesus Christ.
All of the others remain in their graves; Mohammed, Buddha, Gandhi, Confucius, Zoroaster, Zeus, Apollo, on and on I could go. All are dead…just bones. Lifeless and worthless.
But Jesus overcame death and lives today.
It’s funny how the world today hates Jesus and his followers. Just as He predicted they would by the way in John 15:18 when He told his disciples, “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.”.
Boy do they! The spike in angst and hate towards those of us that believe in the name of Jesus is once again something that sets Jesus apart from the rest. When was the last time you heard someone rant and rave about Buddha or Gandhi or even Mohammed and his crazy followers? It just doesn’t happen. The world seems to embrace all of those but runs from even mentioning the name Jesus. A great example is the recent Disney movie “A Wrinkle In Time” staring Oprah (who in the past has claimed to be a Christian) when throughout the movie they characters referenced powerful quotes from past philosophical and religious leaders. Not one quote from Jesus, the one with the biggest following in the history of mankind. Go figure.
Why does the world embrace and celebrate the others but have gag reflex when it comes to Jesus? Because they are lifeless and dead. They aren’t a threat and because in their mind there is no accountability for their deeds, good or bad. They can live howsoever they choose.
Jesus didn’t say He was “one of the ways to get to God”. He didn’t say “I can help you get to God”. No Jesus said to him, “I am the [only] Way [to God] and the [real] Truth and the [real] Life; no one comes to the Father but through Me,” in John 14:6.
Now you know why He is hated.
They key to all of this however, is the resurrection. Without it He too is still dead and His words just become neat little phrases to share and live by. Him rising from the dead however changes everything. For everyone.
Lee Strobel, a reporter for the Chicago Tribune and a graduate of Yale Law School, wrote “The Case for Christ” among some other investigative writings about Jesus. Lee had formerly been an atheist and was compelled by his wife’s conversion to evangelical Christianity to refute the key Christian claims about Jesus.
What he learned changed his life forever. He too now believes.
I could spend hours breaking down facts about the resurrection…including historical witness and testimonies to the fact and scientific research that emboldens the idea. But in the end, it must be accepted by faith. Paul says in Ephesians 5:28, “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.”
And that step is one that every person on the planet will one day face. What did you do with Jesus? Think about standing before God one day and being asked that. You might should have the right answer…
For the most part the world chooses to hate Him. Others hold Him at a distance as a “good man….part of our history”, and still others do choose to believe with many risking their lives to do so.
Without the resurrection Jesus would be just another April Fools. With it, those who don’t believe are foolish for not. It is a game changer.
Believe in Him today and let Him change your life from the inside out. He will.
Then you too will know the power of the resurrection.
And that’s no April Fools.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
No Bones About It