Each year, I look at the evidences for the bodily resurrection of Jesus on what is now called Easter Sunday almost 2,000 years ago. During that time, various reasons have been given as to why Jesus did not rise from the dead. During this week after Easter I want to examine them.
Part 1 examines: Jesus did not actually die on the cross.
It is safe to say that if Jesus went up on that cross, he didn’t come down alive. No where in history do we have any kind of support for this position. In fact, all we have is support for the opposite – Roman guards were trained killers. They would know how to kill someone. What type of evidence is there that Jesus was not dead when he came down from the cross?
The Romans took great pride in their ability to bring about a torturous death. (In fact, death by the cross was so intense and painful a new word had to be made up just to describe it – excruciating literally means out of the cross.) Did they just happen to mess up with Jesus of all people?
If there was any doubt that Jesus died from the crucifixion, the spear to the side should have done the trick. In John’s Gospel, he describes “blood and water” flowing out of Jesus’ side after the spear was thrust through his side and was removed. This is consistent with what we know today about what would happen if a spear goes through the lung and into the heart. The pericardial effusion and pleural effusion would appear as a clear fluid, like water, followed by a large amount of blood.
The Gospels talk about Pilate asking about Jesus’ death. Do you honestly believe Pilate would not be certain of Jesus’ death after all that just transpired – the crowds screaming for Jesus’ crucifixion, the potential for a revolt and chaos, etc.
There is no evidence, logical or otherwise, to support the assertion that Jesus did not die on the cross just as the Gospels and other non-Christian period sources claim.
The “swoon theory” would fall under this. Can supporters of this theory please explain how Jesus survived a scourging and crucifixion, then laid in a cold, damp sealed tomb for a couple days, and somehow he managed to remove the heavy grave clothes, roll away a giant stone, over power trained Roman guards and appear to his disciples all over Jerusalem in such a state as to inspire them to leave their locked doors behind and go and preach His resurrection, ultimately giving their lives for it? That takes way more faith to believe that than what historical Christianity teaches.