A newspaper report says John Crabtree is an American army veteran who was wounded in the Vietnam War. As a result of his injuries, he receives benefits from the Government for his disability.
One day, John received a notification from the Government telling him he was now deceased. John wrote a letter to the Government, insisting he was very much alive and expressing appreciation for them continuing to send his benefits. But the letter did no good.
So then John tried to ring the Government, but his phone calls didn’t remedy the situation.
Growing frustrated, John rang a TV station and persuaded them to run a human-interest story about his situation. During the interview, the reporter asked: “How do you feel about this whole ordeal?”
John Crabtree laughed: “I feel a little frustrated by it, having to try to prove I’m still alive.” How can one prove that one is really alive?
We sometimes forget Jesus had to face such a problem.
He had risen from the grave as he had forewarned his disciples. Yet none of them were prepared to greet him at the tomb where his body was buried.
None had read the scriptures thoroughly enough to be ready for this miracle of resurrection.
The disciples didn’t witness the earlier appearance of the Risen Lord to Mary Magdalene, and wouldn’t believe Mary when she told them the tomb was empty. So the appearance of Jesus inside the locked room that first Easter evening was, to them, a total surprise.
A Jewish New Testament scholar, named Pinchas Lapide, has another viewpoint. Lapide does not believe Jesus is the Messiah, but he does believe Jesus rose from the grave. He sees this miracle as the reason Jesus’ disciples became galvanized in telling the story of their risen Lord. Their firm faith once they had seen Christ that Easter evening transformed them into a great movement. Lapide said: “No vision or hallucination is sufficient to explain such a revolutionary transformation.”
Some people today think they are modern when they raise doubts about the Resurrection. They need to realise they are not original in their doubts.
The original apostles were the first people who doubted, and who required a lot of convincing.