THE CONSPIRACY ABOUT RESURRECTION – Part 2
While they were going, behold, some of the guards went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.” So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day.
From the above scripture, it is clear that the whole story of the body being stolen was therefore, absurd and a conspiracy to hide the truth. On the other hand, the account given by the disciples was
(1.) They account for the reason why the soldiers did not see the Saviour when He rose. The soldiers were terrified at the vision of an angel. They became as dead men. Matthew 28:2-5
(2.) They affirmed that they saw Him. All the apostles affirmed this, and many others.
(3.) They affirmed it in Jerusalem, in the presence of the Jews, before the high priest and the people – see the Acts of the Apostles. If the Jews really believed the account which they themselves had given, why did they not apprehend the apostles, and prove them guilty of the theft, and of falsehood: things which they never attempted, and which show, therefore, that they did not credit their own report?
(4.) In regard to the Saviour, they could not be deceived. They had been with Him three years. They knew Him as a friend. They, again, ate and drank with Him; they put their fingers into His hands and side; they conversed with Him; they were with Him for forty days. There were enough of them to bear witness. Law commonly requires not more than one or two competent witnesses; but here were twelve plain, honest men, who affirmed in all places, and at all times, that they had seen Him. Can it be possible that they could be deceived?
(5.) They gave possible pieces of evidence of their sincerity. They were persecuted, ridiculed, scourged, and put to death for affirming this. Yet, not one of them ever expressed the least doubt of this truth. They bore everything rather than to deny that they had seen Him. They had no motive in doing this, but the love of truth. They obtained no wealth by it; no honour; no pleasure. They gave themselves up to great and unparalleled sufferings: going from land to land; crossing almost every sea; and enduring the dangers, toils, and privations of almost every clime, for the simple object of affirming everywhere that a Saviour died and rose. If they knew this was an imposition–and if it had been, they would have known it and one of them would have cracked along the line.
(6.) The world believed them. Three thousand of the Jews themselves believed in the risen Saviour, on the day of Pentecost, fifty days after His resurrection – Acts 2:41. Multitudes of other Jews believed during the lives of the apostles. Thousands of Gentiles believed also, and in three hundred years, the belief that Jesus rose had spread over and changed the whole Roman empire. Had the apostles been deceivers, that was the age in which they could most easily have been detected. Yet that was the age when converts were most rapidly multiplied, and God affixed His seal to their testimony that it was true.
Furthermore, in 1 Corinthians 15:1 to the end, Paul the Apostle wrote about all the people that Jesus appeared unto physically after His resurrection, most of whom were still alive when he wrote the letter and none refuted it. Then, he further wrote in verse 16; For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.
Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruit of those who have fallen asleep. Friend, this is what we believe and by this we are saved. We celebrate resurrection today because Christ died for the sins of the world and rose on the third day for our justification. We have received Him and we are saved. Some have not because of unbelief but I am positive that now, they believe!
For further Study
1 Corinthians 15
Personal declaration for the day
The resurrection of Jesus guarantees my resurrection.
Questions for you to reflect on
Do you k now you are meant to live a resurrected life in Christ?