Call – Opelika-Auburn News
Is the story of the
resurrection a fairy tale?
You are not alone if you have thought
the story of the resurrection of Jesus is a fairy tale. Even devout believers sometimes
wonder if what the Bible says is actually true. It seems impossible that a man
killed on Friday could walk out of his grave three days later. And in every age
there are those who insist the resurrection of Jesus was a hoax.
James Cameron, director of the movie Titanic, filmed a recent documentary
about “The Jesus Family Tomb.” Cameron wants us to believe that two stone
ossuaries (bone boxes) found in Jerusalem contain the bones of Jesus and Mary
Magdalene. But he offers no convincing proof of the identity of the bones.
Frank Morrison, an attorney, was
taught to question everything and to reach a logical conclusion. Convinced that
the resurrection was a fairy tale with a happy ending, Morrison determined to
write a book proving that the resurrection was a myth. But after extensive
study he reached a different conclusion. The weight of evidence compelled him
to conclude that Jesus really was raised from the dead.
Tour the world and you can visit the
graves where the bodies of famous people were buried. Annually one million
people visit the grave of Abraham Lincoln who was buried in Oak Ridge Cemetery
in Springfield, Illinois. After attempts were made to steal Lincoln’s body, his
coffin was encased in four thousand pounds of concrete ten feet deep beneath a
Visit St. Paul’s Cathedral in London
and you can see the impressive sarcophagus in which is buried the body of the
Duke of Wellington. In honor of his victory over Napoleon, the Duke is dressed
in his striking military regalia.
In India we visited the Taj Mahal, a
marvelous mausoleum built by Shah Jahan to house the body of his favorite wife,
Mamtaz, who died young while giving birth to their 14th
What makes Christianity unique is the
empty tomb. There is no body in the place where Jesus was buried because he was
raised from the dead by the power of God. The tomb is empty!
Read the New Testament and you learn
that the message of the resurrection was the great theme of the preaching of
the apostles. On the day of Pentecost, when the church was born, the man who
had lied about even knowing Jesus stood and preached about the resurrection.
Peter boldly proclaimed, “God has raised this Jesus to life and we are all
witnesses of the fact.” No longer a coward, Peter cried, “God has made this
Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ!”
The three thousand people who were
saved at Pentecost became millions and for more than 20 centuries the followers
of Christ have been willing to die rather than renounce their faith in the
resurrection of Jesus.
I love the story of Nikolai Ivanovich Bukharin. He was a powerful Russian Communist
leader during the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917. In 1930 Bukharin traveled from
Moscow to Kiev to address a huge assembly on the subject of atheism. For one
hour he snarled one insult after another at Christianity. Finishing his talk, he
asked if there were any questions. Deafening silence filled the auditorium but
soon one man walked up to the microphone. He looked the crowd over silently,
then shouted the ancient greeting known well in the Russian Orthodox Church,
“Christ is Risen!” The crowd rose to their feet and shouted a thundering
response, “He is Risen Indeed?”
So on this resurrection day dig a
grave for your doubt and bury it deep. Then join the chorus of Christ followers
who in faith dare to believe Christ is Risen! He is Risen Indeed! Hallelujah! +