by Bill Nugent
The Bible mentions the Hittites, a people not mentioned at all by ancient historians such as Herodotus or Tacitus. Critics regarded the Hittites as myth and by extension regarded the Bible as myth. Archaeologists later discovered the remains of an extensive Hittite empire in what is now Syria. They even uncovered the Hittite capital called Hattusa. The critics made an embarrassing retreat.
Some critics even regarded King David as myth. The Bible mentions certain musical instruments that David played. The critics argued from very limited evidence (as is often the case) that the musical instruments were not in existence in 1000 BC when David reigned. The critics regarded the Bible accounts as anachronistic and hence false. Archaeology again confounded the critics by unearthing evidence that the musical instruments in question were widely used even centuries before King David. I could go on with many more examples like this.
In the Gospel accounts of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, women are the first witnesses. Women were the first ones to the empty tomb and also the first to see the risen Christ. This is just more evidence that the resurrection accounts are not fabricated myths.
The status of women was so low in the ancient world that the testimony of a woman was not admissible as evidence in many courts of law. If the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were fabrications or exaggerations written decades later then the writers would certainly have put themselves or other prominent males as first witnesses of the resurrection. They would not have put women in the resurrection story as the first witnesses!!
Another proof of the resurrection of Christ is the fact that the overwhelming majority of the early church leaders died as martyrs. If the resurrection was a myth made up by the early church leaders then the church leaders would have known it was a lie. Many people have been willing to die for a lie but no one has been willing to die for a lie knowing that it was a lie!!!
The fact that the early church leaders lived lives of self sacrifice followed by torturous death at the hands of persecutors is further proof that they were in fact witnesses of the very real resurrection of Jesus Christ!
The Bible itself declares its authenticity in 2 Peter 1:16 &19: “For we did not follow cleverly devised tales when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty…..And so we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place…..” (NASB).