The resurrection is the central, most important, truth taught in the Bible. The unbelieving world often want to embrace the love standards and ethical teachings of the Bible as valid while dismissing or rejecting the historical claims of the Bible. Paul teaches us in 1 Corinthians 15, that if the resurrection of Jesus is not true, then all who look to Christ for Salvation are indeed a people with a useless and futile faith. Actually, without the resurrection of Jesus there is no Christianity and as Morgan puts it, “…what we believe is mere philosophical rhetoric taught by a man who was either crazy, a liar, or both.”

When we read the Gospel accounts we find that contrary to liberal theology today, it wasn’t faith that created the appearances of Jesus to His apostles and followers, it was His appearances that created the faith. The Apostles were hiding in an upper room, afraid of their future, worried about the consequences they’d suffer because they had been His followers. He had been executed, what would happen to them? The night of Jesus’ execution Peter, the “chief” follower, denied that he even knew Him. No, it took the reality of His resurrection and appearances to them to bring them from fear to faith. No, faith did not create the appearances, the appearances created the faith.

In verse 17 of 1 Corinthians 15 Paul tells us that without the resurrection we have no forgiveness of sins. The holiness and love of God was seen on the cross, but forgiveness and grace were seen in the empty tomb. If Christ would not have risen from the dead, He could not have forgiven sins. In verses 18-19 we learn that without the resurrection we have no future. If Jesus was not raised from the dead, those who have died before us would be lost and those perishing and would have no hope. Without hope for a future there is no meaning for today. So because of the resurrection we have life, real life, abundant life today, and eternal life beyond the grave. Since the resurrection is a certain, clear, historical doctrine of our faith we can live, not just in the moment but with the light of eternal life that shines in the darkness. Baker’s New Testament commentary puts it this way, “The Lord is risen indeed! Here all changes. The Cross, the very instrument of despair, becomes an object of glory. The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is the source of a living hope. Listen to the message of exuberant joy, praise, and thanksgiving. Hear it from the lips of one who experienced the deepest darkness of despair and remorse. Says Peter: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy begat us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3).