1 Corinthians 15
11 Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.
12 Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?
In a court of law witnesses play a key part in determining what really happened. One viable witness can turn the tables. Five viable eye-witnesses establish the truth of what happened, if they all agree on the details of the event. But what happens when you have 512 eye-witnesses to an event? If 512 people gathered in a courtroom and one by one gave the same eye witness account of what happened, no one could ever doubt what really happened. There would be no further need for testimony ever. That case would be rock solid and settled for all time.
If this is so, then why is there such debate over the resurrection of Jesus Christ? In the days that it happened a lie was fabricated and soldiers were paid off to go along with the lie. Throughout history there have been men and women who not wanting to live under the authority of God’s word, made up a different outcome and published it as fact. Religions who want to believe that death is annihilation deny the resurrection of Jesus Christ. In fact, you don’t have to look very far to find those who deny it.
According to Paul’s teaching, there is no denying the resurrection of Jesus. They saw it and Paul saw it and so they preached it and so we believed it. We are not following a cunningly devised fable. We are not following the greatest first century lie. We are following the established facts of the case. Jesus Christ rose from the dead and was seen by more than 512 people! When Paul wrote 1 Corinthians most of those eye-witnesses were still alive and were still giving eye-witness testimony to the facts of the resurrection from the dead.
My point is that this is 100% believable. We can believe in the resurrection of Jesus from the dead because it happened and not just in the minds of His followers but they all saw Him in His risen body. Jesus Christ rose in bodily flesh, not just His spirit, but His body rose, the tomb was empty and His body was touchable, He ate, He walked, He talked and reasoned with them all after His resurrection. Therefore, we can know Him in the power of His resurrection and have the hope of our own resurrection as He taught.