Jesus Christ is risen from the dead. Actually risen. This is not a metaphor, he physically rose from the dead.
We invite all—especially you!—to come and witness this. Our Twelve Apostles’ Church in Eastleigh proclaims to all that the Resurrection is real and we can participate in it too. If this claim is real, if it is True, it is the most important Truth in existence and everyone has the right to hear it.
The Truth of the Resurrection
In what we now call the first century, a group of people went around claiming that their teacher, Jesus of Nazareth, had been crucified but rose from the dead. This was not a resuscitation, he was not dead merely for a moment, but actually dead and buried in a tomb.
Many of these followers would suffer hardships, imprisonment, torture and even cruel deaths rather than say it was a lie. There are only a few options about this.
It was a lie
The followers knew it was not true, they agreed that they would pretend it was true. But who would voluntarily suffer for the sake of a lie? This seems so unlikely.
They were fooled
They believed it to be true but it wasn’t. It is claimed that at one time Christ appeared to five hundred, that is a lot of people to fool at one time, it would be difficult to say the least. And we would suppose they would still have suspicions: would they really be willing to suffer and die for this?
It was made up
In other words, what happened in the first century has been changed in the history books by Christians later. If this happened it would constitute the greatest cover-up in history—there doesn’t seem to be any credible evidence of this.
It was true
If we remove all other outcomes then what remains must be true. And this is our experience, the experience of the Orthodox Church, which from Pentecost to today—and forever—proclaims the Resurrection as a reality.
Jesus rose from the dead, but so what?
Our life can be a series of fears and worries. We fear death and its finality: you will die. We try to ignore it, we try to distract ourselves from it, but in the end it is inescapable. And we worry—we worry about food, money, jobs, clothing, health: in a sense we are enslaved to them.
Christ’s rising is not just a historic event, it shows that we will rise too: that we will defeat death and live. And knowing that my life and your life has eternal value we start to place the worries of our life—food, money, jobs, etc.—in there proper place: they are there to serve us, not for us to serve them.
But why the Church?
If Jesus is risen, can’t I just get on with my life while knowing this fact? Christ’s Resurrection is not just a fact to know, it is something to be experienced. Christ invites us all to take part in his Resurrection by being joined to the Church which we also call his Body. He calls us to a higher standard of living—your death won’t be the end, what you do is of eternal value—and trains us through his Church where we can live in a community of faith with other believers and be in communion with God.
So, what now?
Take the step, come and discover Jesus Christ risen from the dead. We warmly invite all to a life which not even death can destroy.
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Come and see!