Historical Facts About Easter
There is a good chance that, christian or not, you may have wrestled with the historical backing behind the events surrounding Jesus life, death and resurrection.
If you're not familiar with the story, what happened is this: Jesus is the son of God who came and lived on the earth around 2000 years ago. On earth he laid aside his divinity (His God-ness) yet lived the only perfect, sinless human life ever lived ever - before or since.
Despite that, Jesus ruffled the feathers of the religious leaders that made up the institution at the time and they had him arrested, tried and executed on a Roman cross - a public death normally set aside for the worst criminals.
Because of His absolute purity, Jesus was able to substitute in for us taking the punishment for all of the sin, wrong doing and spiritual debt amassed by all mankind before God. He paid our debt that was causing seperationg between us and God and died with it. When He died with it, He disarmed the power of our stray human nature.
Jesus' body was laid in a tomb and a giant rock was rolled across the entrace. Was He really dead? Yes. Not only had nine inch nails been driven through his wrists and ankles, Jesus hung bleeding and suffocating for a day. Once He was presumed dead, a spear was thrust into His side and blood and water poured out. So yes, He was dead.
Three days later, some women went to visit His tomb but He was not there. His burial wrappings were there but Jesus' body was not. Subsequently, Jesus was seen and spoken to by many people.
Why is that important? Because He was literally risen from the dead.
What most people don't realise is that there are MANY universally accepted historical FACTS (or as factual as anything that happened in the past can be) surrounding Jesus' resurrection. Here's some examples:
- Jesus was a real person.
- Jesus was executed by Roman crucifixion.
- Jesus died and was buried in a rich man's tomb.
- The Sunday following Jesus' crucifixion his tomb is found empty.
- Jesus appeared to many different people after his resurrection (up to 500 people saw him).
- His followers believed him to be risen from the dead, and were later persecuted and tortured for saying this.
- No better explanation exists for what happened on easter Sunday than: Jesus rose from the dead.
The most surprising thing about easter, is that it's very difficult to disprove. It really happened.