Imagine if you saw a man on the street today that you saw executed three days ago. Then imagine you watch that man levitate off the ground and continue ascending into the sky until he was out of sight. You would have to ask yourself if you just witnessed the laws of nature being completely suspended in this one instance, or if you were mistaken and under some kind of grave misapprehension. Which of the two is more probable? And that’s if you saw it with your own eyes. We would all have to ask ourselves this if we witnessed something of the kind.
Now imagine if you are told that this violation of all known laws of nature occurred only once, long ago, and the only knowledge of it comes from four ancient texts written by unknown authors who were also non-eyewitnesses and the varying accounts of the event are entirely different from one another. If you believed that this unnatural event took place, based on that information, you are essentially advertising that you would believe practically anything.
However, many people do believe exactly that. If you are one of them, one of the people who believe that Jesus of Nazareth was killed, rose from the dead and then flew away, you owe it to yourself to take this challenge:
Read the four accounts of this event in the four Gospels of the Bible. It won’t take very long as they are quite short. Start at these sections and read to the end.
- Matthew 28
- Mark 16
- Luke 24
- John 20-21
As you read, take notes about the event. When did it take place? Who saw it? What did Jesus do and say? To whom did he say it? Who discovered his resurrected self? Who was at his tomb?
Once you read this, I think you’ll see the dilemma immediately, but if you want to really get a sense of what I’m describing, after you’ve finished reading and taking your notes, write your own description of the events using all of the information provided from the four Gospels. Write it as if you were going to publish it and tell everyone exactly what happened on Easter Sunday.
For more information on this, see Dan Barker’s Easter Challenge