1. if Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, then He’s dangerous as well as deluded. He’s not a nice bloke who got a bit confused. He’s a megalomaniac and a perpetrator of lies. His followers are to be pitied as well as despised.
2. if he didn’t rise from the dead, then He’s not the Son of God. He’s not a Saviour. And the gospel may be a ‘good’ way to live – but it’s completely ineffectual against death. And suffering. And despair. And most of all, sin.
3. if Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, then this my friends, is it. Which is okay if you’re healthy, wealthy and happy. But not so hot if you’re battling with sickness or sadness. If your life hasn’t turned out like you’d planned. If you’ve lost loved ones or struggle to make sense of who or what you are. If you’re human.
4. if Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, then I’m following a corpse. I’m praying to the ceiling. I’m worshipping thin air. I’m teaching little children lies. And I’m lying to you.
If Jesus did rise from the dead.
If the resurrection is a historical fact. Then;
1. He is who He says He is. The Son of God. The Creator and Saviour of the world. The hope of mankind. The light of the world. The doctor for the sick. The only way to the Father. The meaning of life. Life itself.
2. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then He is alive today. I can know Him and you can too.
3. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then He is Lord – over sin and death and suffering and every skerrick of creation. Nothing can snatch us from His hands. Nothing can separate us from His love. And one day we will see Him face to face. Because He rose, we will be raised too.
4. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then there’s hope – no-matter what I’m facing. There’s a future of indescribable joy. There’s justice – and mercy. There’s purpose to our lives. There’s forgiveness for sin and redemption – whatever I’ve done. Whatever I do.
5. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then the same power that raised Him from the grave is at work in me. Through Him, I can defeat an eating disorder. I can deal with the past. I can challenge my addictions. I can reach out to those who have hurt me. I can take risks. I can start again. I don’t have to fear death. Instead I can have life – and life to the full.
5. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then he ‘forced open a door that had been locked since the death of the first man. He has met, fought and beaten the king of death. Everything is different…a new chapter in cosmic history has opened’. (CS Lewis,’Miracles’).
Thank God for the resurrection.