I was in Eucharistic Adoration this morning and this question crossed my mind: "What makes me different? I mean, out of all the religions practiced through the world, what makes me as a Catholic different? If they are all the same, there is not point, so why is Christianity so great?"
The answer can be found in one word: The Resurrection.
There are a lot of ways to "disprove" the Resurrection. Today I'm going to look at the top four lies and the top four ways to disprove them in defense of what makes Christianity different from everyone.
Lie One: The Apostles stole the body while the guards slept
Picture this. Romans Guards are guarding, of course, and then they fall asleep (all at once, so conveniently.) Peter and John sneak in, roll away the stone, snatch the body of Jesus, and go and hide it somewhere. They come back, push the stone closed, and snicker as they run back home, knowing that the "Resurrection" will defiantly make Jesus the teacher He said He was going to be. To bad He wasn't - but that's OK because now everyone will believe Jesus was really the Son of God; but in reality, He is buried in some field somewhere.
Now, stop laughing. Because really, this theory is completely bogus. What is the chance that all the guards would have fallen asleep at once? Think how many guards there would have been. The scribes and pharisees were worried about the apostles stealing the body, and so they asked for guards to be posted at the tomb.
Look at Acts 12:4. Herod then sent "four squads of four soldiers each" to guard Peter. Peter. Not Jesus - but Peter. If Herod felt that threatened by one of Jesus's followers, how worried do you think they would have been about the body of Jesus? There were eleven disciples, so they might have logically sent out eleven guards for precaution. And then, beings that the Romans were military minded, they would have sent a little bit more than eleven, to keep down any riots that might spring up.
This is also not even including the fact that the penalty of falling asleep on your guard as a Roman soldier was basically being clubbed and stoned to death. I'm going to guess that guards would avoid this punishment and stay awake.
Also, the apostles were locked up in the upper room, cowering out of fear that they might be killed, too. They were in no shape to be out doing midnight body runs, especially on a tomb guarded by Roman soldiers - the exact men they were trying to avoid.
Lie Two: Everything was a hallucination
Others claim that the apostles and all other witnesses were hallucinating the appearances of the risen Christ. Yet even enemies of the risen Christ attested to the empty tomb.
Christ appeared to over five hundred believers, according to 1 Corinthians 15: 5-8. Paul also said that Peter and the twelve (now including the new Matthias) had seen Him.
Minimally five-hundred and twelve people were all hallucinating about the same thing - and all their testimonies matched up? That's quite impressive. I cannot collaborate with one of my sisters to tell a lie without one of us slipping up and getting found out. So five-hundred and twelve is pretty impressive.
Lie three: Christ Never was Dead
The third lie is that Christ never died but only pretend to be dead. He then emerged from the tomb on the third day and faked his Resurrection.
Roman soldiers were noted for their extreme cruelty. They would never have taken an alive man down from the cross. They would break the legs of those who had lived to long, causing them to suffocate. Yet Christ's legs were not broken, but his heart was pierced. This itself would have caused death if it had not already occurred.
If you have seen the Passion of Christ by Mel Gibson, you know that Christ endured an incredible amount of loss of blood and unimaginable physical pain. No man could have endured that much destruction, not died, but lived, and then walked out of a tomb three days later, able to convince others that he had come back to life? Not only come back to life, but gloriously arisen? Able to walk through walls and converse? The only signs of the previous struggle: the wounds on his hands and feet? No man.
Lie four: The apostles were only speaking symbolically
The final lie is that the Apostles did not mean their accounts to be taken literally, but were only giving symbolic expressions to state that they believed that Jesus lived in their hearts.
Symbols can never explain the lack of body on the third day.
Also, there is this thought: If you told a lie, and people got angry at you, and then decided to kill you for that lie, you would want to let them know that you were just kidding. But when the apostles were being skinned alive, hung upside down, crucified, and run through with swords, not one of them said: "STOP! We really don't believe that Christ rose from the dead! You misunderstood! We just know He is alive in our hearts!" Not One.
The Resurrection can be explained with the Bible and historically. If we believe as Christians that Jesus rose from the dead, than we believe He is God. If He is God, we have to give our whole lives time him: we have to know Him, love Him, and serve Him - even to the point of giving our lives for Him.
With these stakes, it is no wonder why so many do not believe in the Resurrection.
Do you have any thoughts on the topic of the Resurrection? Have you been questioned on your belief? Do you question it? Let me know inthe comments below!
Thanks and God Bless,