Pitiful People

Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:19

Working on a very secular university campus brought many challenges to my Christian faith. Speaking Biblical truths without flinching shocked acquaintances over lunch. Believing in the Resurrection was one of those Truths. In academia, believing in Jesus rising from the dead is really not considered to be very “smart.”

Fortunately, the Bible gives us all sorts of evidence of Jesus’ death and Resurrection. Here are just a few…

  • Roman soldiers knew how to kill. Jesus was dead.
  • The tomb was sealed by a large stone; it would have taken many men to move it. And, they would have had to overcome Roman guards, who would have had to at least look like they’d been in a fight.
  • Roman guards faced death (without due process, a trial, or rebuttal) for falling asleep. They didn’t fall asleep.
  • Paul issues the bold challenge to skeptics to ask the 500 people who saw Him alive—“some have fallen asleep, but most are alive—go ask them for yourselves!”

Chuck Colson, President Nixon’s “hatchet man” and lawyer, tells how the Watergate scandal came to a head when suspicions of wrongdoing started to fall on about seven high-level Nixon officials. After just two weeks, each man had abandoned their collective defense (i.e., their agreed-upon lies covering up Watergate) and had obtained individual counsel in order to attempt to plea bargain for lower sentences.

Colson describes the White House job—a luxury lifestyle, significant power, private jets to worldwide destinations, fame and riches for life. What did the disciples get for proclaiming the Resurrection? Isolation, torture, stoning, imprisonment, ridicule, hardship, poverty, death. Colson’s conclusion: If, for all the riches of the world, seven highly accomplished men couldn’t keep a lie together for 14 days to save their positions and fortunes, then 11 uneducated lowly men would never have defended a lie all the way to their deaths. It is inconceivable.

1 Corinthians 15 tells us that we are either a pitiful people or the resurrection is True. If it is not true, we are wasting our short lives. If we say we believe the resurrection, then we have to ask ourselves, ‘What are we going to do about it?’

Fellow Believers, are we living like pitiful people or are we living like Jesus is really ALIVE? If He is alive, well, that changes everything!


Written by Brandon Russell