Continuing with the exploration and reflection through a series of articles written in a conversational language about Catholicism, about God, about Jesus, about the Church and many other faith related topics. Here we present:
Question 12 – Did Jesus really exist?
Whether Jesus* really existed is not really an open question. There are enough historical sources that show that Jesus existed. The most important is the New Testament*, the second part of the Bible*. This is a collection of books and letters from the first century of our era. It contains a lot of historical information about Jesus. In addition, writings of Jewish and Roman historians from the second half of the first century and from the beginning of the second century tell about Jesus and Christians. Finally, there are the results of archaeological research. These sources prove that Jesus existed. Most historians agree that he was born between 6 and 4 BCE and died in the year CE 30.
The fact that Jesus actually lived, died on a cross and then rose from the dead, is of great importance for the Christian faith. For Christians, this means that God* has shared our human life, down to the smallest details, up to and including death. The infinitely great God did not only create the humans. He went to live in the body and spirit of a human person. God has become equal to man. If you think about it, it seems totally unlikely, but it is the core of the Christian faith.
Some other religions look differently at the question of whether the stories about their own heroes really happened. In Hinduism, for example, there are all kinds of wonderful stories about the gods. Whether they actually happened is not so important for a Hindu.
– Do you believe that Jesus really existed?
– If you meet Jesus now, is there something you would like to ask or say to him?
Feel free to leave your thoughts, reflections or comments below.
Watch this space! Coming up: Question 13 – What is the importance of the hidden life of Jesus?
Follow these links to go back to Question 1 – Is believing exceptional? , Question 2 – Is Faith for simple souls? , Question 3 – Can you be a Christian and yet doubt your faith? , Question 4 – Can a believer be critical? , Question 5 – Can faith and science get along? , Question 6 – Are you born a Christian?, Question 7 – Can a human being meet God?, Question 8 – Did God create the world in seven days?, Question 9 – What did God do before he created the world?, Question 10 – Is God a man or a woman? , and Question 11 – Can you be a Christian without believing in Jesus?
If you wish to learn more about this resource follow this link “52 Questions and Answers about faith”
About the author:
Nikolaas Sintobin, SJ, joined the Society of Jesus in 1989, following a short career as a lawyer. He was trained as a Jesuit in Brussels, Paris, and Santiago de Chile. Today he is a spiritual director who is keenly interested in online ministry and discovering new ways to help people find God.
This text is republished with the permission of Messenger Publications, Ireland. To buy a hard copy of the book click here.