Can we know there is a God? One way we can know that God exists and calls everyone to turn to him is through the resurrection of Jesus. “For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead” (Acts 17:31). The resurrection of Jesus is central to Christianity. The Bible says “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied. But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead…” (1 Corinthians 15:17-20).
If Jesus really rose from the dead, it transforms both the way we think of the future and the way we live in the present. Among other things it means forgiveness, hope, meaning and power to change are possible. But can we be sure Jesus rose?
‘Nothing in history can be proven the way we can prove something in a laboratory. However, the resurrection of Jesus is a historical fact much more fully attested to than most other events of ancient history that we take for granted. Every effort to account for the birth of the church apart from Jesus’ resurrection flies in the face of what we know about first-century history and culture. If you don’t short-circuit the process with the philosophical bias against the possibility of miracle, the resurrection of Jesus has the most evidence for it … first-century people … found the resurrection as inconceivable as you do. The only way anyone embraced the resurrection back then was by letting the evidence challenge and change their worldview, their view of what was possible. They had just as much trouble with the claims of the resurrection as you, yet the evidence-both of the eyewitness accounts and the changed lives of the followers-was overwhelming.’ (Tim Keller, the Reason for God)
Below William Lane Craig presents some of the historical evidence for Jesus’ resurrection:
The New Testament documents give us reliable, eyewitness, historical accounts of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. As John writes: these are written so that you may believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing you may have life in His name (John 20:31).
Isn’t believing in the resurrection ridiculous? (Christianity Explored)