The resurrection of Jesus is a historical fact. Here are some viewpoints critics say about the resurrection of Jesus, and why there are problems with these viewpoints. The simplest answer to explain the resurrection is the only and real answer, and that answer is that Jesus resurrected from the dead.
That answer is that Jesus really did resurrect and left an empty tomb behind him.
As for the other viewpoints, here are some criticisms and reply comments.
Here are a few of the problems to the criticisms of unbelievers.
1. If Jesus did not really die, the Roman soldiers could lose their lives for not making sure he died. They had to make sure he was dead at the cross.
2. If the tomb was not really sealed by the soldiers, and they let Jesus escape, it would have cost them their lives. They were charged with protecting the tomb.
3. Some, trying to deny the resurrection, put forth a “swoon theory”. This is the idea that Jesus only fainted or swooned on the cross, and never really died. This, by implication, means that a man who endured a scourging and crucifixion and who could not carry the weight of his own cross, but needed help to carry the cross, would, after having his hands and feet nailed to a cross, and his side pierced, and enduring the suffering and pain of the crucifixion, the prior scourging, the crowning of thorns, and dehydration, and later, being taken down from the cross and wrapped in linen and put in a tomb, would somehow overcome all that and then go on to roll an one to two ton stone away from the cave. This weight is estimated by experts based on burial customs of the time. A healthy man could not do that, much less one who has been crucified. In today’s word of glib statements, that don’t take much thought to make, and less thought to receive, the non-thinker who doesn’t know the all the facts of Jesus’s suffering and crucifixion might be deceived by that. But a study of the facts and some common sense indicates that the swoon theory is impossible.
Beyond that, it dangerous business to not sincerely study and comprehend Jesus’s life, death, burial, and resurrection and to come to Jesus and receive the finished work of Christ for oneself. To simply write it off as a “swoon” or “faint” for lack of interest or desire to comprehend the truth has serious consequences.
Revelation 22:18 I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book, if anyone adds to them, may God add to him the plagues which are written in this book. 19 If anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, may God take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, which are written in this book. 20 He who testifies these things says, “Yes, I come quickly.”Amen! Yes, come, Lord Jesus.
The truth of the resurrection is the fundamental truth of Christianity. It is the resurrection of Jesus from the dead that makes him more-than-unique among all religious leaders. Jesus is more than a prophet, more than a religious leader, more than a teacher. He the only begotten Son of God. He is the resurrected Lord and is alive today. All who have come to Jesus and who are born again testify to that, that He is alive. The only way to explain the empty tomb is that Jesus rose from the dead. There is no other explanation no matter how hard atheists try to create one.
The Lord is risen. The Lord is risen indeed. Paschal Greeting
4. Back to whether Jesus was dead or not…soldiers’ business in war was killing people, they knew when someone was dead.
5. All the disciples who saw Jesus testified to seeing a resurrected Christ, in other words, they did not testify to Christ that was torn and bleeding, but to a Christ who was resurrected.
6. The Apostles and believers of the early church paid a high price for their belief. Many were killed for their faith in the resurrected Lord Jesus. Nowadays, kids may play a prank stunt, and as long as the price is not too high to pay, they will go along with the stunt. When it comes to dying for a stunt or joke, whom do you know who will die for a prank joke? Why did so many give their lives? They knew it was true, that Jesus had risen from the dead and that He is the resurrected Lord.
7. Another criticism is that people saw a hallucination. Hallucinations are individual, not group. It is testified that Jesus appeared to groups of people, including one group of 500. They all saw the same thing.
People go through all sorts of convoluted theories to explain the resurrection, but in the end, the only theory that makes sense is the one which is true…that Jesus resurrected from the dead.