And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain. Moreover we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised.
1 Corinthians 15:14–15
If there is no resurrection and Christ has not been raised from the dead, then our preaching is useless.
Not only that, if there is no resurrection and Christ has not been raised, then all Christians are liars. Look at verse 15, “Moreover we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised.” If there is no resurrection and therefore Jesus has not been raised from the dead, then every one of us who has testified of that is a liar.
Paul is saying that everything the apostles, including himself, had testified about Jesus would be a lie if Jesus had not risen from the dead. The apostles would be part of the greatest hoax ever been perpetrated upon mankind. They stole the body of Jesus and then claimed He had been raised from the dead.
Now, people do not willingly die for a lie. Yes, there are religious fanatics in other religions or cults who sacrifice their lives for a lie all the time. But they think they’re dying for the truth. Nobody willingly dies for something that they know is absolutely false—and certainly not these apostles.
Think about it: The apostles were cowards three days before the resurrection. They had deserted Jesus. But then suddenly they were transformed by something that gave them the courage to die for their faith. What was that something? They had seen the resurrected Jesus Christ.
Not only are all the apostles liars if there is no resurrection, but also everybody since the apostles who has claimed a resurrection is a liar. If Christ has not been raised from the dead, they are all false witnesses. That means everyone in history who ever testified to the power of the resurrected Jesus Christ is a liar. That means Augustine was a liar. John Calvin was a liar. Martin Luther was a liar. D. L. Moody was a liar. Billy Graham is a liar. And not only that, your godly grandparent or godly parent is a liar. Do you believe that? Do you believe those men and women who have preceded us in faith are liars? That is the consequence of believing in no resurrection of Christ.
But look at verse 14: “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain.” That means all of the time you’ve wasted in church has been wasted time. All the sermons you’ve ever listened to were worthless. The Bible is reduced to nothing but an elaborate lie if Christ has not risen from the dead.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “If Christ Has Not Been Raised,” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2012.Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Simple Answers to Sincere Questions,” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2011; and “If Christ Has Not Been Raised,” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2012.
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.