Resurrection of Jesus

event in the Christian faith, Gospel episode represented in the cycle of the Passion of Christ Central teaching of Christianity; Luke 24:1-11

In the New Testament, Jesus is crucified, dies, is buried within a tomb, and resurrected (came back to life) three days later. Christians celebrate the resurrection at Easter. Easter and Christmas are the most important Christian holidays.

The Resurrection—Tischbein, 1778.
Major events in Jesus's life in the Gospels

Christians believe that Jesus is the son of God. They believe that the best proof of this is that he came back to life after his death. In Christian theology, the death, resurrection, and return to heaven of Jesus are the most important events of the Christian faith.[1][2] The Nicene Creed states: "On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures".[3] According to Terry Miethe, a Christian philosopher at Oxford University, the question " 'Did Jesus rise from the dead?' is the most important question regarding the claims of the Christian faith."[4] According to John R. Rice, a Baptist evangelist, the resurrection of Jesus was part of God's plan for forgiving people by paying the penalty for man's sin.[5] The Catholic church teaches:

Although the Resurrection was an historical event that could be verified by the sign of the empty tomb and by the reality of the apostles' encounters with the risen Christ, still it remains at the very heart of the mystery of faith as something that transcends and surpasses history.[6]

Compared to other ancient stories of men or Gods being resurrected from the dead, the historical evidence for the resurrection of Jesus is extensive and strong. [7]

All of these New Testament writers tell about the resurrection.


  • It is the event that led to the beginning of Christianity.[8] Matthew's Gospel (Chapter 28) says that after His resurrection Jesus told his followers to take His message to the whole world. Within 50 years, Christians were found in many parts of the Roman Empire.
  • If Jesus is alive, He is able to give power to His followers to live a good life. The Apostle Paul taught that the believer took part in the death and resurrection of Jesus. He said, "I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, and the life I live in the flesh (body) I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me". Epistle to the Galatians Chapter 2, verse 20
  • The Apostle Paul also says that the resurrection is proof that God has accepted the death of Jesus to allow for the forgiveness of sins. (1st Corinthians, chapter 15, verse 17) He also says that it proves that God will allow Jesus to judge the world in a future time. (Acts, chapter 17, verse 31)
  • Christians believe that the resurrection shows that all their dead will also come back to life when Jesus returns.[9] They believe that the bodily resurrection is the coming back to life of a transformed body powered by spirit,[10][11] as described by Paul and the Gospels.[12][13]


  1. Dunn 1985, p. 53.
  2. Dunn 2009, p. 149.
  3. Updated version of the Nicene Creed added at First Council of Constantinople in 381 AD, in Norman Tanner, New Short History of the Catholic Church, p. 33 (Burns & Oates, 2011). ISBN 978-0-86012-455-9
  4. Terry Miethe in Did Jesus Rise from the Dead? The Resurrection Debate, ed. Terry Miethe (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1987), xi. Quoted by Michael Martin, "The Resurrection as Initially Improbable". In Price, Robert M.; Lowder, Jeffrey Jay, eds. (2005). The Empty Tomb: Jesus Beyond the Grave. Amherst: Prometheus Books. p. 44. ISBN 1-59102-286-X.
  5. John R. Rice, The Importance of Christ's Resurrection in the Christian Faith. In: Curtis Hutson (2000), Great Preaching on the Resurrection, ISBN 0-87398-319-X pp. 55–56
  6. Catechism of the Catholic Church 647
  8. Wright 2003, pp. 685–723.
  9. Novakovic 2014, p. 153-154.
  10. Wright 2003, p. 272; cf. 321.
  11. Blomberg 1987, p. 253.
  12. Ware 2014.
  13. Ehrman 2014, p. 90.
Printed sources
  • Blomberg, Craig L. (1987), The Historical Reliability of the Gospels, Leicester, UK: Inter-Varsity Press, ISBN 9780877849926, OCLC 15415029, 2nd ed. 2007* Dunn, James D.G. (1985), The Evidence for Jesus, Westminster John Knox Press
  • Dunn, James D.G. (2009), Beginning from Jerusalem: Christianity in the Making, Eerdmans
  • Ehrman, Bart (2014), How Jesus Became God. The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilea, Harperone* Novakovic, Lidija (2014), Raised from the Dead According to Scripture: The Role of the Old Testament in the Early Christian Interpretations of Jesus' Resurrection, A&C Black
  • Wright, N.T. (2003), The Resurrection of the Son of God, Minneapolis: Fortress Press, ISBN 978-0-8006-2679-2