Was Jesus real?

Jesus

Yes, he was a real person (born of a virgin).

There are numerous records of Jesus existing. There is the historically accurate and archaeologically verified firsthand accounts of his life, death, and resurrection by his followers Matthew and John. And there are the narratives taken directly from those who knew and lived with Jesus. There are also accounts written by those hostile to Jesus. People who wished he never did exist testified that he did and that he was killed and many believed he was later alive again. These include Jewish leaders and Roman historians. To say Jesus did not exist, it would be the same thing as saying George Washington did not exist.

He was killed by crucifixion (and he did it for you).

Jesus was crucified (a form of death by torture) by the Roman ruler of the province of Judea who was Pontius Pilot. This was at the request, in fact the determined effort, of the Jewish leadership of the day who were afraid of Jesus upsetting their privileged positions. These religious leaders were allowed to show their true colors when as the leaders of “God’s people” they proclaimed they had no king but the pantheistic self-deified Roman ruler Caesar. Jesus gave himself over to the authorities for crucifixion by returning to Jerusalem, at the time of the Passover celebration, after three years of teaching and working of miracles throughout the area. The record shows he was whipped, crucified, and placed in a sealed tomb.

He rose from the dead (so you will too).

That is what we celebrate at Easter instead of chocolate bunnies. Jesus destroyed death and was the first to rise from the dead. He was the first to rise before all others who will rise at the end of time as we know it. (Christians say he was first fruits.) He did this just as he told others he would, and as the historical official canonized Jewish writings known as the Old Testament predicted he would. Besides the written record, we know he rose from the dead by the radical events occurring around him. His mostly fisherman followers initially went into hiding, denial, and fear after their leader was captured and killed. But they instantly and radically changed spending the rest of their lives (until they were killed or in one case banished after torture) proclaiming he was indeed alive. There is no record of any wavering even in the slightest from their accounts.

There was other evidence: The moving of a heavy stone sealing the body in the tomb, the overcoming of Roman guards, and records of earthquakes occurring at the same time period that match the record of events. The record was written in a way a fictional narrative which never would have been written at the time. The first identification of the risen Jesus was by women who in the first century were not believed as reliable witnesses. (The disciples themselves didn’t claim to believe these first witnesses in their own writings). There was the change in the life of Jesus brother James who had previously questioned his claims. Add to that the change in the Jewish leader Saul, who before seeing a risen Jesus, was in the popular business of arresting and putting to death those who claimed that Jesus rose from the dead. Jesus also appeared to 500 family leaders whose claims were never countered. Etc…

He is God (and he is Jesus).

Jesus was both completely human and completely divine. An honest study of the Bible shows that God exists in three persons. The Father, the Son (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit. (People don’t make this stuff up. The tensions that exist in what is real are sometimes more difficult to understand than fiction.) The amazing thing about this is that Jesus could relate to our pain by having become human and experienced temptation and suffering greater than we experience. The Father showed us how much he loved us by willingly allowing Jesus to come to be with us. The third part of the Trinity is the person of the Holy Spirit, which now dwells with believers of God, and minsters to them day in and day out.

Jesus now sits at right hand of the Father and prepares a place for you.

Jesus came to destroy the prince of this world’s (the devil’s) work. He also came that we could have eternal life with him in Heaven. Jesus death on the cross was the propitiation (a piece of flesh given in exchange) for our sins making it possible that we could dwell in Heaven with God our Father. When God sees followers of Jesus, he now sees the holiness and works of Jesus and not our rebellion against him. (Yes, we have rebelled against God….be honest.) If you genuinely believe in the real Jesus, you can have eternal life with Him. He is the only truth. The prince of this world is a liar. You may have experienced that once or twice.

Jesus is not neutral to evil and is in the process of destroying it (but hasn’t yet for our sake).

Jesus is patient. He is much more patient than we are. He is so because he is love itself. He wants more of us to come to him and love him. He now allows the devil a short reign in eternity as more people come to believe on him before he will destroy all evil. We are living in the days (sometimes called the last days) when he calls out on all the nations to believe on him. These are the days we can repent and be made brand new (regenerated or born again) by him. There really is no alternative solution. There is really no other way to overcome death. That is why they call him a Savior.