Examining the Evidence of Easter

Author Lee Strobel is a skeptic by nature. As legal editor for the Chicago Tribune for many years, he was trained not to accept anyone’s word at face value. Every fact was confirmed by at least two sources before it was printed. They even hung a sign in their newsroom which said, “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.”

Lee’s skepticism eventually became cynicism … and then atheism. “If there is no God,” he reasoned, “if there is no heaven, and no ultimate accountability, then the most logical way for me to live is as a hedonist, someone who only pursues pleasure.” And that’s what he did. He lived “an immoral, drunken, profane, narcissistic, and self-absorbed life.”

When his wife became a Christian and her life radically changed, his skepticism and journalistic training kicked into high gear. He decided, “I’ll disprove Christianity over the weekend, and we can go back to our life the way it was.”

A year and nine months later, he reached a very different conclusion.

For centuries, skeptics have argued that faith in Christ’s resurrection is nothing more than a blind step into thin air. Lee says the evidence for Christ’s resurrection is strong, persuasive, powerful, and based on a solid foundation of historical truth.

He summarizes his findings in the “Four E’s”:

  • The Execution of Jesus. Jesus was truly dead after His crucifixion, not merely passed out or “swooned.” The peer-reviewed, secular Journal of the American Medical Association said, “Clearly, based on the medical and historical evidence, Jesus was dead even before the wound to His side was inflicted.”
  • The Early accounts of Jesus’ resurrection. The resurrection is not legend, make-believe, or mythology. The earliest Christian creeds proclaim Christ’s resurrection date to within months of the events of Passion week.
  • The Empty tomb. Even Jesus’ opponents admitted the tomb was empty. Their excuses were an attempt to explain how it got empty.
  • Eyewitnesses. Ancient sources inside and outside of the New Testament corroborate the conviction of the disciples and others that they encountered the resurrected Jesus. In terms of ancient literature, there is an avalanche of historic data.

The Resurrection is the foundation upon which all of Christianity rests. In 1 Corinthians 15:17, the Apostle Paul said, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.”

We’re airing a recording of Lee Strobel on our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Examining the Evidence of Easter” where he shares his findings about the death and resurrection of Christ. If you’re skeptical, I encourage you to join us as we examine the facts.

Lee Strobel’s book, The Case for Easter: A Journalist Investigates Evidence for the Resurrection, was a bestseller and the basis for a movie of the same name about Lee’s search for the truth. Lee is teaching pastor at Woodland Church and has written more than 20 books exploring the reality of faith and Christ’s impact on our lives. For more information, visit our website.

Listen to our full conversation on your local radio station, online, on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or on our free phone app.

You may also be interested in a free online booklet we’ve written called, “Coming Home: An Invitation to Join God’s Family,” which explains what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

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