After being dead for 3 days Jesus amazed everyone by coming back to life claiming victory over death offering everyone who believes in him a new life. This is what Easter is all about. Easter changes everything. According to Scripture, the resurrection of Christ is the centerpiece of the Christian faith.
Paul wrote First Corinthians to deal with those who were questioning if Jesus was resurrected from the dead. Paul writes:
“Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep [died]. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.” 1 Corinthians 15:1-8
Without a risen Christ, we have no gospel at all. But because he was raised from the dead, we will also be raised to eternal life and that’s amazing and impacts how we live today. Paul gave three compelling reasons why they should believe that Jesus Christ is risen from the dead.
The first compelling reason is the faith of the believers, who were so convinced that Jesus did rise from the dead that they would rather die for what they believed to be true than deny it.
The second compelling reason to believe in the resurrection is the Old Testament Scriptures foretold that the resurrection would take place. Isaiah writes: “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5-6
These two verses foretell that fact that Jesus had to die so that all who believe in him may live. There are literally hundreds of prophecies that point to the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ in the Old Testament. Some were written thousands of years before he walked the earth.
Jesus told his disciples and subsequently you and I: “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.” That is written in John 3:16.
The third compelling reason to believe in the resurrection is found in the witnesses who saw him after his crucifixion. After the resurrection Jesus was seen by many of the same eyewitnesses that watched him die. Peter saw him and so did the disciples collectively. James was Jesus half-brother and he put his faith in him only after he saw Jesus risen. There were 500 plus other people who saw Jesus alive at the same time. There were eyewitnesses and they shared that Jesus was alive.
Paul tells the Corinthians that unless they believe in the resurrection their faith is a waste of time. “But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.” 1 Corinthians 15:12-14
Jesus is as real as life itself. And he wants you to put your faith in him by believing that he died on the cross and was raised into life on your behalf. That is why Easter is so amazing.