Today’s Reading: 2 Samuel 4, 1 Corinthians 15, Ezekiel 13, Psalm 52.
“For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep.” 1 Corinthians 15:3-6
Why does Paul tell the Corinthians that Jesus appeared to more than 5oo believers at one time? What significance does that have?
If you think about it – A BUNCH.
Paul is careful to add that “most of (them) are still alive.”
In other words, “Want to know if Jesus REALLY did rise from the dead? Go ask some of the people who ACTUALLY SAW HIM!”
It’s one thing to say, “Oh, I think it really happened.”
It’s another thing to say, “Oh yeah. It happened. Saw it with my own eyes. Saw Jesus die. Saw Jesus buried. Saw Jesus alive.”
Paul is pleading with the Corinthians to give themselves to this thing called Christianity. It’s not a myth. It’s not a joke. It’s not an idea. It is reality. Jesus is God. Jesus died. Jesus was buried. Jesus came out of the tomb. Jesus is Lord over everything. Jesus deserves and is worthy of full worship from every living thing in all of creation. Christianity is worth living and giving your life for. Jesus is Lord. We saw Him with our own eyes. We are eyewitnesses of His majesty.
Let that little phrase “most of whom are still alive” grip your heart.
They aren’t alive still today. But they were when Paul wrote it. It was Paul’s way of verifying, authenticating, giving reality to Jesus as being the single most important Being in all the universe. Christianity is not a made up myth. Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection is not an idea. It is reality. It is of utmost importance.
It is a cause worth giving your life for. He is a Person worth surrendering everything to.
What will you do today, this week, this month, this year that gives evidence of your commitment to the reality that is the resurrected Jesus – who is Lord, God, and Savior over all?