We have heard the story. We probably know it better than most stories in the Bible. And it may be safe to say many who are not Christians know the story also. It is such a familiar story, yet one that is hard to comprehend. Let me tell you the story of Jesus. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Life is full of stories and story tellers. The more we tell it the better the story gets. Sometimes it grows to legend status. Do you remember the time….?
I cherish the joy and smiles I see on the faces of those who tell the stories. Obviously this was something important to them. It is interesting how every story has a happy ending. I guess we forget the ones that don’t end so well. That’s okay, if we learned from them.
What separates truth from fiction? What do we believe and what do we discount as fable? Sometimes things are not what they seem; the story seems too farfetched to believe. How can we understand something we have never seen, let alone believe it?
How many of us have seen someone raised from the dead? How hard is it for us to believe it?
Think of the Disciples; Christ gave them an example with Lazarus, as John records for us in his Gospel. They saw many miracles and wondrous signs, yet, they still found it hard to believe.
The events recorded in the Bible have their foundation in the facts. The evidence is overwhelming; Christ appeared to over five hundred people after his resurrection over forty days. He didn’t limit his appearances to those who wanted him to be alive. He appeared to his enemies also. Many times the groups included those who were against him and didn’t want to acknowledge His resurrection. Lee Strobel said; “If we listened for just 15 minutes to each person Christ appeared to after his resurrection it would take over five days.” Five days of eyewitness testimony, 125 hours!
The fact remains, the tomb is empty; He’s not here.
Luke 24:5-6; NLT; The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee
Such an interesting question the men posed to the women that came to the tomb; “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive?” Why do we look for life in things that will only lead to death?
Many times in our life we focus on attaining something. We are taught to set goals and we focus on attaining those goals. But I wonder, how much life do we sacrifice on our way to getting someplace? How much life do we miss because our focus is in the wrong place?
Luke 24:13-15; Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them;
That same day, Jesus was walking along with two of His disciples, yet they did not recognize Him. They were so focused on the disappointment of watching Him die they failed to understand that He would rise up and have victory over death.
I don’t think it is because they hadn’t seen it before; they were there when Jesus called Lazarus out of the tomb after four days. I think it was just human nature, when we are disappointed we go into this shell of self-pity, what are we going to do now?
Christ not only revealed himself to them but to others, is that enough for us to believe? Or maybe we are like Thomas.
John 20:26-29; A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
This is not just a story, it is a fact, Christ has risen from the dead. Some of us need to see to believe. Some of us do not believe anything we cannot reach out and touch. Let me share with you that having the presence of God in your life is real, you can feel it and it will change your life. If you need proof, ask someone who has received forgiveness from God through Jesus Christ.
As we walk down the road of life and our story is written; having someone by our side can make all the difference. Jesus is willing to walk alongside and guide us along the right path. But He won’t do it without our asking. He is waiting for us to seek Him out and ask Him to reveal the truth to us. There is no doubt that this story is true.
Christ revealed Himself to us in His resurrected form. He wanted to make sure we knew He had victory over death. He spoke with us, ate with us, let us inspect his wounds. He made sure there were no questions, He is Risen, He is Risen indeed!