J. Warner Wallace came to Jesus Christ after he tried to use the methods he uses to solve cold cases to determine the authenticity of the Gospel stories. When he noticed how closely the gospel writers’ accounts matched the profiles of actual eyewitness accounts he began to believe that the stories were true.
Fortunately for us, he did not stop there. He is now an active apologist for the Christian faith and is using the internet and other digital media to promote Jesus Christ.
This week at our service I shared his findings about how Jesus Christ is portrayed by ancient sources that were hostile to Jesus. These portrayals actually convey important information that confirms the biblical account of who Jesus is and what his disciples saw and believed about him from earliest times.
Among other things, they show that Jesus was considered a man with powerful “magical” abilities who did amazing works. He was thought to be a very wise individual who provoked a backlash from the Judean leadership that led to his crucifixion under Pontius Pilate during the reign of Tiberius Caesar. Most were puzzled by the claims of Jesus’ followers that he was resurrected from the dead and, most astoundingly, that they actually worshipped him as God.
You don’t have to believe any claims that Jesus did not exist. There is plenty of evidence that Jesus lived and died in Judea. The writings of both pagan and Jewish writers who were hostile to Jesus and what he stands for argue for his historicity. Not a single one of the early opponents argued that there was no such person.
Why would people write against somebody who never existed?