Four Facts about the Resurrection (A)

  • Text: I Corinthians 15:1-4,14, KJV
  • Series: Four Facts about the Resurrection (2016), Pt. 1
  • Date: Sunday, March 13, 2016 — AM
  • Venue: Trinity Baptist Church — Seminole, Oklahoma
  • Speaker: Jared Byrns
  • Download Audio: mp3

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The following rough transcript has not been edited, proofread, or corrected. It is a draft transcript and is not certified to be true and correct. It has been produced by AI and may contain inaccuracies. It is presented here primarily to enable users to search the audio by keywords.

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All right, if you haven’t looked in this already, this is a little booklet if you don’t want to use it, don’t use it. But if you do want to use it, I know that when I’ve given this presentation in the past, people sometimes like to take notes, because it’s a lot of information and filling in the blanks keeps people awake during church, and, and there’s also room underneath that there’s other stuff that you want to take notes on. Feel free to do that. We will use this this Sunday morning and next Sunday morning. So go ahead and hang on to it in your Bible, if you would, at least till next Sunday. But I know a lot of times, I’ll go to things and hear presentations and think, Man, I wish I could remember what that guy said. And I don’t tell you that because I think my presentation is going to be so wonderful this morning that you’re going to wish you could remember all the wise things I said, but the material was important. And hopefully something even if you don’t remember every point I make this morning and next week, hopefully something in here will stick with you and and give you something to be able to say when you run a run up against people in the community and your family even who might say oh, what you believe is just a fairy tale. And give you something to say, Well, what about this, I don’t profess to be able to make the case that’s going to convince a hardened atheist or convince a hardened skeptic. But I can take you through this and explain to you how I came to be persuaded, at least in my own mind that the resurrection is absolute, scientific historical fact. And I say persuaded in my own mind, because I’m not much of an argue or, or much of a debater I used to be. And then I just realized that people tend to dig in their heels in their own positions and not get dislodged. And I do the same thing. And really, it’s up to the Holy Spirit to break down those walls, not me. But I can still give people something to think about. And I will tell you in this my intent is not for it to just be a history lesson. And or sometimes i will i have in the past preached on this or the evidence for this, or how do we know this is true. And on at least one occasion, I think maybe more I’ve had had a man come to me afterwards and say, you know, you really don’t need to talk about that history stuff. You don’t really need to talk about that evidence. just preach the gospel. I’m sorry, I thought that’s what I was doing defending the resurrection. I hate to break it to you, ladies and gentlemen, but we don’t live in the same world we did 50 years ago. I say we did I wouldn’t here but we don’t live in the same world. That was your 50 years ago. We’re surrounded by people who have bought into all sorts of ideas that the Bible is not true that the resurrection never happened, the virgin birth never happened. Part of my job is as the pastor of a church is spelled out in Ephesians chapter four. It says that pastors and teachers were given, along with other others in the church, were given for the perfecting, or the completing of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God into a perfect man, and to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, that we henceforth be no more children tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of man and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie, they lie and wait to see part of my job as a pastor is to teach the truth. And and not just that, not just to expect you to give me blind faith, but to expect that I would teach the truth and tell you the reasons why you should, why you can know that the truth is the truth until we all come to completion in Jesus Christ. And I don’t think any of us are there yet, so that we’re not tossed in every every wind of doctrine, you go turn on TV, and from week to week, you’re going to hear somebody who’s come up with some new word from God. Well, the word from God is what the Word of God says. And and it’s my job to teach it and defend it and to help you to be able to defend it. And to that end, if you can take one or two things away from this presentation that will help you in talking to somebody who says, well, it’s just a fairy tale. Well, that’s not what the evidence says and and present, even even one point to them, that gives them some reason to think about the claims we make, then then I’ve done my job. This all started several years ago when i when i started it, oh, you nobody had told me. Nobody had told me back in 2004, that now that they had the internet that you registered for classes online, and so I kept waiting and waiting and waiting to hear for when you’d go to the registrar my dad had. My dad took 20 years to graduate from college and he’ll tell you that because he went several places, changed his major several times and went back to school after we came along. And he really sort of helped me navigate the red tape and you bureaucracy, bureaucracy I owe you. And so he was telling me, you know, you wait till they let you know you can come to the registrar and and pick which classes you want. Well, nobody told me that they started enrolling online. So by the time I got to it, there was nothing left, but philosophy classes. As a freshman in college, fresh out of high school, I got dumped in philosophy classes, because I just had to take 12 hours of something. And so I took philosophy classes, and even the next semester, being a freshman, you’re the last to get to enroll, all that was left were philosophy classes. So I got I got to trial by the fire my first year in college with philosophy, and my favorite class, and that was taught, as I’ve shared before, with a few of you, was taught by a professor who was a a militant atheist. And I think he would wear that bat that that title is a badge of honor, and was a was a homosexual, and had some very far out ideas about about justice and about the, the sanctity of life or the, whatever the opposite of sanctity is the non sanctity of life. And and we went back and forth through the whole semester, and I got a chance to examine a lot of my beliefs. At that point, I was raised to believe the resurrection and went into college thinking I could defend Christianity, I knew everything I needed to and found out very quickly, I did not know all the things that I thought I knew. And so it forced me to do research on my own forced me to do some digging on my own. One of the things that these professors would ask is whatever the position was, is there anything that could convince you that it’s not true? Is there any piece of evidence that could be shown to you that if they could say this, this is this is the way it is that you would that you would change your mind and think your position is not true? Well, of course, of course, my my position my my knee jerk responses somebody raised in churches, no, there’s nothing that could ever be shown to me that would convince me Christianity is not true, then I had to take an honest look at it. Because if that’s your position, not not just on Christianity, but on anything, if that’s your position, nothing can convince me it’s not true, then what you have is not faith, what you have is blind faith. And and we we want to praise the idea of blind faith. But the honest truth is you can have blind faith and put it in the wrong thing. We want to make sure that we’re taking our faith, and we’re putting it in something that that there’s some evidence for God, God has not left us without evidence. And I came to realize that the Bible has the answer to that question that I was asked, Is there anything that could prove to you that, that your position is not true? The Bible says in First Corinthians chapter 15, if you’ll turn there with me, in First Corinthians 15, it talks about the resurrection of Christ, and talks about the resurrection of Christ being the basis for the gospel. And I think I talked about this a couple of Sunday nights ago. First Corinthians chapter, chapter 15, starting in verse one says, moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which you have also which you’ve received, excuse me, which also you have received, and wherein ye stand by which also ye are saved, if you keep in memory, what I have preached unto you, unless you believed in vain. He said, The apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth and said, here’s, here’s the basis, here’s the essence of the gospel that I presented to you. And here’s the the basis of the gospel by which you were saved. And and please be warned not to drift away from that and forget what you’ve been taught. He says, here’s, here’s the basis of it, For I delivered unto you, first of all, that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day, according to the Scriptures, and that that really right there outlines the first you know, I told you this presentation was four facts on the resurrection that really outlines the first three facts that we’ll get into today. And next week, that Christ died, according to the Scripture, he died for our sins, according to the Scriptures. And he was buried, and he rose again, according to the Scriptures. Now, he goes on to talk about Jesus being seen alive again by eyewitnesses. But then he as he goes through that list of eyewitnesses, and talks about all these things, and then talks about the implications of the idea of the resurrection. He goes down to verse 16, and says, For if the dead wise not then is Christ not raised, and if Christ be not raised your faith has been, you’re setting your sins. And there’s really the answer to that question. Can anything could anything be presented to you that would convince you that Christianity is not true? And I came to realize, okay, if the resurrection is not true, then Christianity is not true. And folks, you may be you may be sitting there gasping in your mind, nobody’s doing it openly. But you may be the pastor said that, that Christianity could be, you know, theoretically disproved. That’s not me. That’s the Apostle Paul, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. If the resurrection is not true, there’s no point to any of this. And I’ll just be honest and tell you that if the resurrection is not true, we just need to close down and go home because there’s no point in any of this. Our faith is vain. There’s no salvation for sins. There there are there’s no forgiveness of sins. There’s no salvation. There’s no eternal life. There’s no reason even to follow Jesus Christ. Let me say this and hopefully it does not sound Just respectful because I don’t mean it sound that way. Anybody can get themselves killed. Okay, we talked about Jesus died on the dying on the cross, and I don’t want to trivialize that. I hope you know, I believe in the importance of that how vitally important it is there, we would not be saved without his shed blood on the cross. But if that’s all it was, anybody could get himself killed. How do we know that he really was able to seek and save that which was lost. Like he said, he came to do books, the resurrection, the resurrection proved it, the resurrection. The resurrection put that that stamp of proof that evidence right on everything he had said and done, he claimed to be God. Some people say, Well, Jesus never claimed to be God that some of his followers made up later on. Really, then what was that exchange about? When he says before Abraham was I am, he was identifying himself with the God of the Old Testament, he claimed to be God, he claimed to be able to raise the dead, he claimed to be able to forgive since How do we know he was able to do that? Because he proved it. When he conquered death. He proved it with the resurrection. And what I intend to share with you this morning and next week are for just four facts. I know there are some people who can give a much better presentation, have more information, have a more philosophical approach, that’s fine. But for me, it came down to these four facts that, that show me at least there’s no other explanation for all of this than the fact that Jesus Christ rose again from the dead the way the Bible said that he and by the way, if he did that, then Christianity is true. Everything else follows. Because not only that, that doesn’t only have implications for Jesus that proves that Jesus was the Son of God, it proves that he was able to forgive sins like he claimed to, it proves that what he said was true in other places, because he’s God, then who can’t lie. He affirmed the he affirmed the the authority of the Scriptures. Every book of the Old Testament, you see, everything follows from the resurrection. That’s sort of the Keystone that holds everything together. So these four facts proved to me that Jesus Christ really did rise from the dead, we may get through Fact number one, and maybe Fact number two this morning, and we’ll continue this next week. But the first fact you’ll see and if you’re following along in the blanks, Fact number one is Jesus existence and death are historically verifiable. Okay, if there was, follow me on this, if there was no such person as Jesus Christ, he couldn’t die. And he couldn’t rise again. Right? If he didn’t exist, then none of this could happen. Okay, there’s there’s not a pink elephant in the aisle. Therefore, he can’t charge up the aisle and stump me to death. Well, how do I know he can’t stop me? Because there is no pink elephant nia. So if Jesus Christ never existed, then he couldn’t have risen from the dead. But the fact is that Jesus existence, his life and his death, his existence and his death are historically verifiable they are fact we can we can be as certain of the existence of Jesus Christ and the death of Jesus Christ as we can just about any other fact, in ancient history. Now, not everything in ancient history was written down by hundreds and hundreds of people, they just didn’t do that. I mean, it’s not like today where they follow these presidential candidates around and they write about what they had for breakfast. It’s insane. If you want to know what Donald Trump had for breakfast, I’m sure you can go find an article about it online. Somebody try that I’ll give you extra credit. I’m sure you can find it out. If you’re that curious. They didn’t record every detail of everybody’s life. And you know, unless you were the king. And so there’s a lot about ancient history that we don’t know. And so some people will say, well, there’s not much evidence about Jesus life. Well, consider that it’s ancient history. If we start throwing out, well, we don’t have that many copies of the Bible, or we don’t have that many writings about Jesus Christ, we pretty much have to throw out everything we know about ancient history, because there aren’t that many writings left of anything. There aren’t that many written accounts of anything. And yet for somebody like Jesus, there was there’s a lot of evidence, and most you’ll hear this tonight, you’ll hear this today where people have come up with the idea. Well, Jesus, Jesus never existed. Even even the man Jesus was a fairy tale. That’s not what modern scholarship says. That’s not what people who study this out both Christians and non Christians, that’s not the conclusion that they’ve come to I want to give you a few quotes from from people who’ve studied this out and know D. James Kennedy. Many of you may remember him from being on the radio and TV when he was alive down at coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Florida. He wrote the evidence for the historicity that means Jesus, that him being a historical fact the evidence for the historicity of Jesus is so great that I know of no historian in the free world who would dare place his or her reputation on the chopping block by denying that Jesus Christ ever existed. So D James Kennedy, who went on to found a seminary said anybody who stands up and tries to claim that Jesus never really existed instantly loses credibility in the historic in the in the community of historians. There’s a man named FF Bruce, who was a professor of biblical criticism and exegesis at the University of Manchester. He says whatever else may be thought of the evidence, and this whole thing is not just me reading quotes, so don’t be don’t think, okay, I’m not going to be able to stay away through this, whatever else may be thought of the evidence from early Jewish and Gentile writers as summarized in this chapter in the proceeding, when it does at least establish for those who refuse the witness of Christian writings, the historical character of Jesus Himself, some writers may toy with the fantasy of a Christ myth, but they do so they do not do so on the ground of historical evidence. The historicity of Christ is axiomatic. That means it’s it’s foundational for an unbiased historian as the historicity of Julius Caesar. It’s not historians who propagate the Christ myth theories. And what he’s saying is, you know, some people say, Well, you can’t believe the Gospel accounts. They were biased. So we have to look at non Christian accounts. And what he’s saying here is there are plenty of non Christians from that time who say that Jesus existed, and some people will try to say Jesus never existed. But he said, it’s not real historians who do that. And then I thought this one was interesting is a man named Neil Carter. He’s an atheist. He’s an atheist writer, he writes a blog called godless in Dixie. So he lives somewhere here in the Bible Belt, I don’t know where it’s not like I’m trying to track him down. There are so many atheists in town, and we know where they live. I’m not trying to track him down. But he went to seminary and wasn’t evangelical Christian before. For some reason, he walked away from the faith. But even he has been irritated by by atheists promoting the idea that Jesus never existed. Now, Neil Carter believes that Jesus was just a man, not God. But he says there’s plenty of evidence to believe Jesus existed, he says, There are at least a handful of things about the origins of the Christian religion, which we can reasonably conclude based on the things that we know. Among them are that there was most likely a guy named Jesus who preached and was killed outside Jerusalem. And after his death, a diverse following emerge, which built around that and that event, and narrative which grew to become the Christian faith, too much has been made about contemporary silence on Jesus line. And he makes a great point here, he says, exactly how much notoriety? would you expect a Jewish peasant to have in his context? How worthy a public record was the life and execution of an itinerant Rabbi from Galilee? Here’s just a homeless traveling preacher from from the backwoods. How much writing would you expect there to be? would you expect there to be monuments built to him by the powerful, he says, It’s true that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. But it’s not extraordinary to claim that such a man got in trouble with the law and was executed, nor in that day and age, would it be extraordinary to see a following emerge around his life and teachings, even this, this atheist writer says, You know what, there’s, there’s plenty of evidence to believe that Jesus existed whatever else you believe in, believe about him, there’s plenty of evidence to believe that he existed, okay? these are these are modern guys. And you may be sitting there thinking, Well, what what is there? What other evidence? First of all, I refer you to the Gospels. Now, I know that skeptics would say, well, they’re Christians, they had an agenda. And I’m going to go ahead and say, most people are not pathological liars. Okay. I’m a Christian, I have a bias. I have an agenda. My agenda is believing in Jesus Christ. But I’m not going to stand up here and knowingly lie to you. Okay? And most people will will say, I’m not going to knowingly lie to you. There are some people who do it, but most people are not pathological liars. So I think we can’t ignore the Gospels. These were, these were guys who were eyewitnesses who wrote about the life of Jesus, and many of them died, rather than deny what they saw. But if, if people don’t want to believe the Christian sources, there are plenty of others. ancient sources document Jesus life and death. ancient sources document Jesus life and death. The first is Pliny the Younger Roman magistrate. You know what, if you want to see these quotes later on, I’ll get them to you. But I’m not going to stand here and read them to you. But I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you basically what they say. Just for the sake of time, Pliny the Younger, who was a Roman magistrate, he was a judge. He was a governor at different times. In the year 112. He wrote a letter to the Emperor Trajan complaining about the Christians complaining about those who follow Christ. Say it’s not just it’s not just today that people gripe about the Christians, they’ve been doing it all along. His biggest complaints about them were that they refused to renounce Christ, and that they refuse to renounce or they refuse to worship the pagan gods. I think those two should go hand in hand. If you believe in Jesus Christ, you should refuse to worship the gods of this world. While what he wrote focuses primarily on the Christian community, and he’s not specifically writing about Jesus, he’s writing about the Christian community. He never raises a question whether Jesus Christ was a real person, he says they follow Christ and because of that, they refuse to worship our pagan gods. He doesn’t say they believe that this Jesus Christ guy was real. And because of that, they worship the pagan gods. He just says they follow Him and so they Won’t worship them, they won’t do what we say because they follow him. He assumes that Jesus was a real person. There’s another one named Sue atonia is a Roman historian and they get better after this. Any one of these, on their own, provide kind of a weak foundation. But Taken together, we have pretty good evidence from ancient Sue atonia was a Roman historian. He wrote a history about how the Jews created trouble in the Roman Empire so much trouble that the that the Emperor Claudius kicked many of them began to kick many of them out of Rome. Now, what’s interesting about this is that the Romans initially considered Christianity Christianity to be just a denomination of Judaism. So when he’s talking about the Jews who were and that’s what the Council of Jerusalem was about in at 50, in the book of Acts, where they tried to decide, did you have to keep the law did you have to do this, they were trying to decide, is this just a branch of Judaism or one. So when he writes about the, the Jews who cause so much trouble in Rome, he’s really talking about the Christians. And so much so that Emperor Claudius began expelling lots of Jews from Rome in the 40s ad. And when he records that they made the trouble when he writes about the Christian or with about the Jews causing so much trouble, he makes a point of saying, and Christ made them do it. They’re doing this because they follow that Jesus Christ. They follow him. And so they make so much trouble, he made him do it. And so again, he’s talking about the Christians, but again, with the assumption that Jesus Christ is a real historical figure. And this is not long after the life of Christ either. So even early on these Roman historians had no doubt that Jesus Christ was a real person. tacitus The third one we’re talking about this morning, was a Roman senator, and historian is a Roman senator and a historian. So by the way, all of these pretty well respected, reputable guys in their time. tacitus wrote about the actual life and death of Jesus Christ and recorded his history. It’s not just implying it because he’s writing about the Christians. I will tell you he wrote this one. He said hints to suppress the rumor that he had burned Rome Nero falsely charged with the guilt and punish the most with the most exquisite tortures. The persons commonly called Christians who were hated for their enormities. They were hated because they grew. They grew, the community had grown so fast, they were hated because they cause trouble, as Sue toniest wrote, and Christ are kristus He says, the founder of that name was put to death as a criminal by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberias, but the pernicious superstition, that means the belief in the resurrection he didn’t, by the way, not a fan of the resurrection, or that message, he calls it a pernicious superstition, represented for a time or repressed for a time broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief originated, but through the city of Rome also, he said, These people follow Jesus Christ, you know, the one who lived in Judea, got himself killed, put to death under Pontius Pilate, and then they believed he rose again and even that, that, that awful superstition, and even though we tried to stamp it out, that teaching of the resurrection broke out again, not only in Jerusalem, but in Rome to. And so tacitus one of their one of their greatest Roman historians, records Jesus Christ as having been a real person and gets all these details, correct that that we see in the Gospel, he affirms what we see in the Gospels. Josephus was a Jewish military leader and a Roman historian, he kind of tried to play both sides of the fence. He worked for the Jews, and he worked for the Romans, and was never quite trusted by either. And yet, I mean, in terms of where his loyalties lie, but he’s trusted as a as a historian. And Josephus wrote some things about Jesus Christ that as I as I read them, I thought, that doesn’t sound like Josephus because he never became a believer. None of these guys that I’m talking about right now are believers. Josephus never became a believer, but there’s this quote, that that includes things talking about him being the son of God and includes things talking about him rising again, and I’m thinking, if he believed if he believed those things, he would be a believer. Some of these things seemed like they were probably added later on. And I went through and as I’m reading this, I sort of highlighted the things that I thought that sounds like it might have been added later on by an overly zealous Christian saying, I’ll just correct the history. And as I looked at this, I did some more research on it and some historians, some experts on Josephus identified the same parts of it that I did, and I thought, Okay, then I’m on the right track here. But even if we take out those parts that sound way too Christian for Josephus, he still wrote, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, he drew over to him both many of the Jews and of the Gentiles. And when Pilate at the suggestion of the principal men among you had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at first did not forsake Him. And the tribe of Christians so name from him are not extinct at this time. So he says, still, there’s a man named Jesus, He taught lots of Jews and Gentiles followed him. When the Jews put him to death under Pilate on the cross, he died, and yet there are still people following him to this day. So even Joe said, He’s a real person. Some of these names are a little hard to pronounce. There’s another man named Mara bar serapion, who’s an Assyrian historian. That’s a tongue twister say that five times back five times. I can’t even say five times fast once, five times fast a Syrian historian, he wrote about Jesus, he talked about him being the wise king of the Jews and being put to death by his own people. And he compares him to Socrates. He compares him to Pythagoras, a few other guys that we only know from a few writings that they existed and yet nobody doubts that Socrates and Pythagoras are are real that they existed. And this man Mara wrote about Jesus being killed by the Jews as their wise king, which Jesus claimed to be, or the that was the claim that was attached to him, wrote about him as being as real as Socrates or Protagoras. Then there’s the Babylonian Talmud was a Jewish religious tech, Jewish religious text. It didn’t, it didn’t like Jesus very much. whoever wrote the Babylonian Talmud did not like Jesus. And so we it’s not just Christians who say he was a real person, even people who didn’t like him, wrote down and recorded that he’s a real person. The Babylonian Talmud talks about how on the eve of Passover, he was killed for 40 days before the execution took place. And Harold went forth and cried, he’s going forward to be stoned because he’s practiced sorcery, and enticed Israel to apostasy and that he was killed on the eve of the Passover. Now, some of these details differ from what the Gospels say. But they they agree with the Gospels on the fact that Jesus was real, that he taught there in in Judea, that he caused trouble by challenging the religious views of the of the religious leaders at the time, and that he was killed for it. And that’s what we’re looking for from history did those events really take place? And then there’s a Greek satirist named Lucien of Santa Susana, he wrote satirical plays, but he also wrote historical historical records. And he talked about one one named Christ, being the law giver, persuaded the Christians to abandon their worship of the pagan god. Okay, that’s, that’s just seven of them. But that’s it for now, with the quotes that gives you some idea that there there were people in ancient history that wrote about Jesus recorded him as a historical figure, because they even even right there, in his own time, they believed and they knew that he was a real historical figure. They didn’t like him very much, but they knew he was real. And so if you know, you’ll get on the internet today. And you’ll you’ll read on Facebook or reading the comments section, some website, some guy living in his mom’s basement who think is convinced Jesus never existed, he was a myth. I’m sorry, I’m going to take the word of the guys who live back in that time and didn’t like Jesus very much, who said, we didn’t like him, but he was real. I’m going to take the word of people 2000 years ago first. And we see too, that biblical accounts of his death are consistent with history. Now, some people have claimed that the whole story was made up because they said, well, the story of his death just doesn’t make sense. There are some things with history where it just doesn’t make sense. But you know, what the Gospel accounts were written within about 25 years of his death. And I know that sounds like, that sounds like a long time. I mean, I have a very fuzzy, of course, I was five years old at the time, but I have a very fuzzy memory of things that happened 25 years ago, those of you who are older may look back and you remember a little bit more, but your memory may be kind of fuzzy about things 25 years ago. And so we might say, well, that that doesn’t seem that doesn’t seem all that credible, they wrote down things. 25, after 25 years after the fact, these Gospel accounts were written within 25 years, okay, that doesn’t mean that parts of them work. You know, I might write down notes. Here’s what happened today, and write down notes somewhere else. Here’s what happened tomorrow. And 25 years from now, I might compile them into one record of what happened. And for all we know, that could have happened, but nobody questions the truth of what we know about Julius Caesar. Nobody questions the truth about what we know about Nero, or you take any money from ancient history. And it seems like the records were written down years and years later, 25 years by ancient standards, is just that long. Some of these guys history was written about them hundreds of years after the fact. And yet we don’t question those. So why do we question the history the Gospels written within 25 years of Jesus death by by people who were still alive? And by the way, there were multiple people around who who witnessed these events who could have corrected them if they’d gotten something wrong? But people will say, Well, he, you know, the scourging doesn’t make sense. We know that criminals were scourged if you’re following along this one of your blinks, as well, criminals were scourged. We know that, you know, this wasn’t just some story made up by the gospel writers to sound really good and to tug at the heartstrings. You know, I remember as a child growing up hearing stories about the crucifixion, close to Easter. I have one pastor in particular, I remember him him explaining the crucifixion, he brought out things that would look like the crown of thorns not not rosebush thorns, but thorns like this big spiky things that would have been driven into the, into the scalp and brought out a replica of a cat of nine tails that they would have been whipped with and, and, and brought out a railroad spike. And he walked down the aisle as he was talking banging on that spike with a hammer, as he talked about the nails being driven in and I remember just being gripped to the heart, hearing about this, the details of what was done to our lore books that wasn’t just made up to make the story more emotional, and more gripping. We know from history that the Romans scourged criminals, I mean, they had it down to a science we know from history that they did this, they had a cat of nine tails or whatever it was known by various names, but they would have these whips that had leather straps, several straps on the on the whip, and they would have pieces of broken glass or bone or pottery embedded at the in the end. So that or sometimes even a ball, metal ball or a rock embedded in. So either way, it was going to either grip into the flesh and tear or it was going to cause bruising, and it was going to cause significant damage. And they were very good at this. They knew how to give as many links of the whip as possible to inflict as many blows as possible to put the person through as much torture as possible without killing them. These guys were pros at this, they could get somebody as close to the point of death as they possibly could, without killing them. And and this was not this is it’s not something that gospel writers made up we know we know from their own records that the Romans did this. We also know that under under Roman law, this practice was was saved mainly for foreigners and Jesus would have been considered a foreigner not a Roman citizen. And and in all likelihood he would have been bound to a post and beaten with a leather whip and this lichter would have come in and beaten him, just as the Justice the gospel account say that he would have been beaten as severely as possible without killing him, because they wanted. Oh my goodness, you know what the Romans made so many advances in civilization and technology. We really owe the Romans a debt of gratitude for a lot of things. But for other civilization, they were pretty barbaric. When it came to things like this, they wanted you to be as alive as possible and feel as they wanted to keep you alive. So you felt everything they didn’t want somebody dying on them in the middle of the punishment. And so Jesus would have gone through this excruciating agony as a criminal he would have been Scourge, there’s no reason to doubt that that took place. And crucifixion was reserved for the worst offenders. It was reserved for the worst offenders. They didn’t crucify everybody. They I don’t think they crucified Roman citizens. They crucified the thieves. They crucified some people who did just heinous things. Jesus, you know, some people have said, Well, why would he have been crucified? He broken Jewish law he had, he had, he didn’t really break Jewish law. He broke the Pharisees rules. He, he claimed to be God, he basically he was he had run afoul of the Jews. Why would the Romans put him through cross crucifixion? It was that claim. It was that claim that was made that he was king of the Jews. It was that claim that he was the Messiah, that he was the one there to, to be the ruler of God’s people. You know, the Romans two were fairly tolerant, were fairly tolerant of other systems of belief, as long as it didn’t interfere with their power. You know what you let us be in charge, he can pretty much do whatever else you want, as long as you respect our authority. What the Romans didn’t like, was somebody else coming along and saying, you know what, I’m the leader of this group. We don’t recognize Caesar, we recognize this king. Why do you think Herod? Why do you think Herod put the babies to death when the when the wise man came along and said, Where is he who is born kingdom. So it was that claim that he was that he was the king of the Jews. That’s why it was inscribed over him on the cross. That was the charge that was put there on him. When it said, King of the Jews, they weren’t identifying him as that they that was a sarcastic thing. That’s what he’s up there for, because he thinks he’s the king of the Jews. And so as somebody who was, in their minds, inciting a rebellion, committing treason against the Roman Empire, he would have been one of the worst offender, they were going to come down on him as hard as they could. And so it makes it makes sense that Jesus would have been crucified for that. We may only make it through point 1%. I don’t want to leave off in the middle of a point, or a fact, we’re still on the fact that his life and death are historical fact. So that’s consistent with history, the idea that he would be scourged is consistent with what we know about history. The fact that he would be crucified is consistent with history because he would have been considered a rebel against the Roman Empire. And we also know that the biblical accounts of his death are consistent with medical science. We know they’re consistent with medical science guys, this is not something that the details of the crucifixion it’s not something that somebody could that the gospel writers could have made. up, okay, none of them had medical training except Luke, who was a doctor. And even Luke didn’t have modern medical training. Okay, so it’s not like I would think today the the twisted minds that write CSI and some of these other things could could write a story like this and get all the details, right? It’s unbelievable to me that that’s a doctor and some other educated guys 2000 years ago, could come up with a story that meets all the details that modern medical science would tell us to expect when they were 2000 years removed from that the details of his death are consistent with modern medical science. Believe it or not, people really can sweat blood. That always grossed me out when I was a child. That always seemed weird to me. I thought I’ve never seen that happen. How could that be possible? People can sweat blood. There’s a the the Bible talks about him praying in the Garden of Gethsemane. And with the stress of his impending crucifixion, he began to sweat drops of blood. We sing about it, too. He bore no no tears for his own griefs, but sweat drops of blood for mine. Well, that’s a that’s an unusual but documented medical condition called Himmat. atrocious. According to one of the consultants at the National Institutes of Health. severe anxiety causes the release of chemicals that break down capillaries in the sweat glands. As a result, there’s a small amount of bleeding into these glands and the sweat comes out tensed with blood. Now you got to be under severe stress. Okay, hear me in this. It’s not just it’s tax time, I’m going to start sweating drops of blood. I don’t know unless you can’t think maybe it might be under that much stress. But when you’re under severe stress can do weird things to your body. When I was finishing up college, I spent the last three semesters I was there writing a thesis I didn’t know you had to write a thesis for a bachelor’s degree, but I happen to pick the one bachelor’s degree you didn’t have to write a thesis for. That was such a big undertaking, and so stressful for me that my fingernails started to grow funny. I started to grow ridges in my fingernails horizontally, not vertically, which comes from nutritional imbalance that horizontally, there were ridges growing in my fingernails because of the stress. Stress does weird things to your body. It can release chemicals under this extreme stress that would break down those capillaries we know they’re there. They’re delicate. Anyway, that’s why you you can bump into something and it can bruise you as those capillaries breaking. Well, the chemicals can break those capillaries into your your sweat glands, and sweat and blood canal and modern medical science knows that this is possible and knows how it happened. I don’t think they would have known about him at hydrosis 2000 years ago to make that up. Second of all, we know that blood loss affects the whole body. Modern modern medical science would tell us to expect it okay in the in the story of the crucifixion. This explains several things that took place and I am almost through with with fact one blood loss affects the whole body before he was even nailed to the cross Jesus would have suffered extreme blood loss just from the scourging he would have been in what they call hypovolaemic shock. Shock we know what that means. hypo means low vol for volume and iimak for the blood shock from low blood volume, he would have lost so much blood his body would be going into what modern medicine calls hypovolemic shock. Now it’s a form of shock caused by the loss of massive quantities of blood it leads to leads to extreme forms of hypotension, which is low blood pressure, which is typically better than hypertension but not extreme low blood pressure, he would have had extreme low blood pressure, tachycardia, which means an elevated heart rate. And polydipsia, which means extreme thirst. I know these are a lot of medical terms. Just remember extreme thirst, low blood pressure, low blood volume, elevated heart rate, as as you lose blood, your heart has to pump faster and faster and faster to try to keep the blood going because there’s not as much of it. So your heart begins to to go very fast. You get very thirsty because there’s not you’re losing moisture in your body, your body’s trying to take what moisture has and make more blood. So it would explain why he collapsed on the road carrying the cross he didn’t have enough blood he blacked out. And it made it necessary for Simon of sirene to carry the cross for him. It also explains it also explains why he would cry out on the cross I thirst. I always wondered why they put that in there. And when I was a child we were taught well it just shows us that he was human. We already knew he was human. I think that’s one of those things God put in there first see 2000 years later and realize this fits with what modern medical science tells us to expect. And finally this morning, he knew that his end was coming. He knew that his end was coming on the cross the instant before he died just before he died he he declared that the end had come when he said it’s finished. He cried out several things. It’s finished father into your hands. I come in Come in my spirit. He knew he was going to die and and i I’ve always questioned not not in a way that I doubted it, but just how does that work? How do you know when he was going to die? How did he know it was going to be that moment? Some people question it and say, well, that story doesn’t make sense. How could he know that he was about to die in that moment? Well, you know, I mentioned one of the things that I mentioned was the elevated heart rate, I don’t know bedtimes, my something can happen, my adrenaline goes up, I can feel my heart rate go up. That’s something I can feel even as a presumably healthy individual. Last last checkup I had I was anyone, we can feel our heart rate increase under those extreme conditions, that tachycardia, he would have felt his heart rate increase, he would have felt an increase and increase and increase until just knowing that he couldn’t, it couldn’t increase any more, he’d suffered this immense anguish. He’d been up there for six hours, going through this as fixie ation. Because when you when you’re on the cross, when somebody is crucified, they don’t die from blood loss, they die from suffocation. When your arm, I can’t even really do the position, but your arms are pulled behind you and up. And you’re placed in that it’s hard to even breathe right there. And his would have been pulled even further back, your arms are put into that position. And it makes it hard to breathe your diaphragm is sort of is what’s the word paralyzed a little bit, it makes it hard to breathe. And he would have had to pull up against the nails or push up against the nails and his feet for every breath he took. And having been there for six hours and being so completely exhausted, and realizing he didn’t have the strength anymore to pull himself up. And realizing his heart rate was increasing to a speed that it just didn’t feel normal. There’s no reason for me at all to think that he would not have known that he was about to die. And the same expert from the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Alexander methyl, wrote, as the person slows down his breathing, he goes into what’s called respiratory acidosis, the carbon dioxide in the blood is dissolved into carbonic acid, causing the acidity of the blood to increase. Eventually, this leads to an irregular heartbeat. And with his heart beating radically, Jesus would have known that he was at the moment of his death, which is when he was able to say Lord into your hands, I committed my succumb in my spirit, and then he would have died of cardiac arrest. I’m still out of breath from just holding my hands in that position for a few seconds. And it makes me it makes me imagine what he went through for us, folks, as believers. As believers, we can know it’s not just a story, we’ve been told that he lived and he died. Because you see, modern scholars believe most of them, most of the critical ones, anyway, believe that he really was a real person and died. The people in his own day believed he was a real person that he and that he died. And medical science, the story of his death meets up with everything medical science tells us we should expect from such a story. everything we know about history, and science tells us that the story of Jesus Christ dying on the cross is as accurate as if we were recording it today. If we were looking at it today, we couldn’t paint a more accurate picture. And folks, this is the if you’re thinking how we’re going to get through all these four facts, the other three are shorter than the first one. But that lays the foundation because if he was not real, then he couldn’t have died. If he didn’t die, he didn’t rise again. And as I made the point at the very beginning, if he didn’t rise again from the dead, then there’s no point to any of this. But folks, as I will present next week, there is a point for all of this. He did live, he did die and he did rise again. And because of that everything that he said is true. Everything he taught is true. Everything he did accomplished all the things that he said it would. And this morning talking about him dying on the cross. He did that, as he said to seeking to save that which was lost. He did that for us. This passage in First Corinthians says he died for our sin. Each of us has sinned against a holy gun. And each of us deserved the punishment that Jesus took and more we deserve separation from God in hell after death. And yet Jesus came and took responsibility for our sins, folks, everything he went through on the cross all this horrible suffering, everything that he went through beforehand, was him bearing the punishment that we deserved. He took responsibility for it, and he was punished in our place. And then after that he he died and he rose again, proving that he had the power to forgive.

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