“Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; for ‘All flesh is like grass and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord remains forever.’ And this word is the good news that was preached to you.” (1 Peter 1:22-25)
Peter preached the certainty of the resurrection as the foundation for faith and holy living. The trouble with our world today is that most people do not share this belief.They think that Jesus’ resurrection is essentially a myth that conveys the idea that death is not the end of life; that we will continue to exist in another form. At the same time there are millions and millions of people across the world who live in the fear of death, either because they do not think that there is life after death or else they are uncertain about what will happen to them on the other side.
Consequently, these poor folks lack the comfort we Christians share in the certainty of the Resurrection. They have all chosen not to take seriously the claims the Word of God makes about who Jesus is. They do not think He is God as he claimed but perhaps, at best, just a good man. They do not believe then what the Bible says He has done for mankind, or about sin or the wrath of God. They do not think that Jesus did all that the Bible claims He did. The events recorded in the gospels are greatly exaggerated or made up. And many do not even believe that Jesus actually existed. They claim that Bible is a collection of religious stories made up to explain life, stories that are not the Word of a sovereign God, not facts or history, but fables and legends, superstitious nonsense created by over-anxious and uneducated minds. Thus the worldly religious experts, psychologists and philosophers all tell us that our faith is blind for it has no basis in reality. This allows them to reject our claim that Christianity is the only true faith. Our religion, they say is no better than any other and in fact may be worse because Christians are so intolerant.
But the Bible is not a bunch a made up stories. It is not myth. The accounts regarding the events of the resurrection as told by the gospel writers are not fiction. They are based on eyewitness testimony, told by the very people who experienced the events of Jesus life, His suffering, crucifixion and His resurrection. Their testimony carries great weight despite the fantastic and supernatural character of the events they describe. This only conveys the sense that the story they tell could not have been made up: it is too vivid, too awe-inspiring. And in addition we know the witnesses are reliable because they believed what they said. They believed it so passionately that most of them suffered martyrdom for their faith. They were absolutely certain of the truth they believed, saw and experienced. And so we can trust that what they had to say happened as they said it did for it has been given to us with the authority of the Word of God.