One could easily argue that the historical, physical resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth is the defining moment upon which the truthfulness of Christianity hangs. No other religion rests all of its validity on one historic claim quite like Christianity does regarding the resurrection of Jesus. It is the moment that gives weight and truth to all of the other moments and truths proclaimed and prophesied about in the Bible.
If the physical resurrection of Jesus is so central to the claims of Christianity, then I am convinced it is crucial for followers of Jesus to thoroughly understand why we believe and profess this truth.
Here are four helpful resources for researching and understanding the historical claims about the resurrection of Jesus.
1. The Gospel Accounts
If you want to understand not only the theological claims regarding Jesus’ resurrection, but the historical claims of it as well, then there is no more important place to start than with the gospel accounts as recorded by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
Matthew 28 / Read online here.
Mark 16 / Read online here.
Luke 24 / Read online here.
John 20 / Read online here.
2. I'm Glad You Asked
by Ken Boa & Larry Moody
In addition to the gospel accounts, Ken Boa and Larry Moody have written an amazing book, I'm Glad You Asked, that helps answer and navigate some of the biggest challenges and critiques pertaining to the Resurrection of Jesus and the trustworthiness of the scripture’s historical witness. Although the entire book is fantastic, in regards to the resurrection, I recommend reading the following pages first:
Pg 72-96 - “Is the Bible Reliable?”
Pg 44 - 54 - “Why believe in miracles (like the Resurrection)?”
3. The Case for Christ
by Lee Strobel
This book, The Case for Christ, has become the gold standard in regards to introducing and explaining the critical claims of Jesus’ physical resurrection. This book was written by an investigative journalist who became researching the evidence of Jesus’ resurrection to prove it was a hoax only to be overwhelmed by the reality that Jesus did indeed physically raise from the dead.
4. The Case for the Resurrection of Jesus
by Gary Habermas & Michael Licona
Nearly every author and speaker on the Resurrection of Jesus over the past 40 years has been heavily influenced by Habermas’ teaching and research. In this volume, The Case for the Resurrection of Jesus, he and Licona give the bare-bones version of his Minimal-Facts approach.
As you continue to explore the reality of Jesus’ physical resurrection, I pray that God will open your heart, your mind, and your life to the earth shattering implications of what it means for King Jesus to be alive and well!