We are looking at the core belief of Christianity which is the physical resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. As Paul wrote to the Corinthian Christians –
“And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty … And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!” 1 Corinthians 15:14, 17
In yesterday’s article we looked at whether Jesus of Nazareth had a physical body that could die on a cross since some say Jesus was an apparition or illusion. Today, we want to look at whether Jesus still had a physical body after His resurrection. Did Jesus shed His humanity after He rose from the dead?
Jesus’ Post-Resurrection Body
“Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men. But the angel answered and said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.’ So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word. And as they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, ‘Rejoice!’ So they came and held Him by the feet and worshiped Him. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.” Matthew 28:1-8
An angel of the Lord spoke to the women who had come to see the body of Jesus. He told them that Jesus, who had been crucified (killed by means of crucifixion), had risen from the dead and was alive. Jesus met the women and told them to “rejoice!” Notice – “they came and held Him by the feet and worshiped Him.” The women “held” Jesus by His feet. That is physical. Jesus was still in the Physical Body He had before His death, but He had been Raised and was alive.
What other proofs of His Humanity after Resurrection do we see in the Gospels? He continued to appear human and did physical things that humans do. Here we see Jesus walking, sitting at a table, picking up bread, blessing it, breaking it, and giving it to others to eat. They Jesus did something humans don’t do – He vanished into thin air. It is a demonstration of the abilities of the Glorified Body of Christ.
“Then they drew near to the village where they were going, and He indicated that He would have gone farther. But they constrained Him, saying, ‘Abide with us, for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.’ And He went in to stay with them. Now it came to pass, as He sat at the table with them, that He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and He vanished from their sight. And they said to one another, ‘Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?’ So they rose up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together, saying, ‘The Lord is risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!’ And they told about the things that had happened on the road, and how He was known to them in the breaking of bread.” Luke 24:28-35
The following verses are some of the most powerful proofs of the Humanity of Jesus after His Resurrection. Jesus knew His disciples thought He was a spirit, so He proved to them that He was physically present with them.
“Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, ‘Peace to you.’ But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit. And He said to them, ‘Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.’ When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet. But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, ‘Have you any food here?’ So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb. And He took it and ate in their presence.”
Here is another interesting aspect of the Lord’s Resurrection – He still carried some of the marks of His Crucifixion. Those marks convinced Thomas that Jesus had indeed risen from the dead.
“Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ So he said to them, ‘Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.’ And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, ‘Peace to you!’ Then He said to Thomas, ‘Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.’ And Thomas answered and said to Him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:24-29
The Holy Spirit, the Writer Who inspired the writers of the Gospels, has carefully crafted the story of Jesus Christ so that we would know everything He wanted us to know, for that is the Holy Work of the Spirit.
“I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.” John 16:12-15
We Christians have the finest documents ever written. We have the Holy Writer living inside our body. He will guide us into all truth, tell us of things to come, and glorify the Great God and our Savior Jesus Christ. We have much to thank Him for. When someone questions why you believe what you believe, you have the answers in the Holy Word. Speak what you have heard with great confidence and joy.
“Then He said to them, ‘These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.’ And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. Then He said to them, ‘Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And you are witnesses of these things. Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.’ And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen.” Luke 24:44-53
Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, is both Human and Divine. What He did for us 2,000 years ago and what He is doing for us today is the greatest thing our God could do for those He loves.
We invite you to watch this video about what kind of body Jesus had after He rose from the dead.
Rejoice! Jesus is Risen!!
“Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”