StoneBridge Community Church
UNEXPECTED #1: The Miracle of the Resurrection
Pastor Jeff Cheadle
Locations & Times
  • StoneBridge Campus
    4832 Cochran St, Simi Valley, CA 93063, USA
    Saturday 5:30 PM, Sunday 9:00 AM, Sunday 10:30 AM
  • Growth Groups
    Simi Town Center Way, Simi Valley, CA 93065, USA
    Sunday 12:00 PM

Online "Connection Card"

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Matthew 28

Bob Utley, "Matthew 28" from the series The First Christian Primer: Matthew

Lee Strobel

Lee Strobel, Wikipedia article.
1. Christianity rises and falls on…
1. Christianity rises and falls on the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ.

"The Incredulity of St. Thomas" 1601-1602. Caravaggio. Oil on canvas. Sanssouci, Potsdam.

For reflection/discussion
Some skeptics argue that Christians believe in the resurrection of Jesus because they want it to be true. Does the argument cut both ways? Are there any reasons why those who don't believe in the resurrection might not want it to be true? Obviously truth isn't based on what people wish were true, but on facts. Is it possible to discover the truth about the resurrection?
2. Becoming a Christian is…
2. Becoming a Christian is an informed decision, not a blind leap of faith.

JAMA Article

William D. Edwards, MD; Wesley J. Gabel, MDiv; Floyd E. Hosmer, MS, AMI, "On the Physical Death of Jesus Christ" Journal of the American Medical Association, March 21, 1986—Vol 255, No. 11.

Historical Evidence for the Resurrection

Matt Perman, "Historical Evidence for the Resurrection" Desiring God, 9/12/2007.

Ancient Evidence for Jesus from Non-Christian Sources

Michael Gleghorn "Ancient Evidence for Jesus from Non-Christian Sources" Probe Ministries.

The Testimony of the Women

"Celsus, a Greek philosopher who lived in the 2nd century AD, was highly antagonistic to Christianity and wrote a number of works listing arguments against it. One of the arguments he believed most telling went like this: Christianity can’t be true, because the written accounts of the resurrection are based on the testimony of women—and we all know women are hysterical…
Do you see what that means? If Mark and the Christians were making up these stories to get their movement off the ground, they would never have written women into the story as the first eyewitnesses to Jesus’ empty tomb. The only possible reason for the presence of women in these accounts is that they really were present and reported what they saw."
—Timothy Keller, King's Cross, Dutton, Penguin Group (USA) 2011. Quoted in Relevant.

The Three Marys at the Tomb of Jesus, Tanner

"Faith is not a leap in the dark; it is the exact opposite. It’s a commitment based on evidence… It is irrational to reduce all faith to blind faith and then subject it to ridicule. That provides a very anti-intellectual and convenient way of avoiding intelligent discussion."—John Lennox

Alternate Explanations to the Resurrection

An article that discusses and critiques alternative explanations to the resurrection including the swoon theory, the hallucination theory, the spiritual resurrection theory, the theft theory, and the unknown tomb theory. —J. Hampton Keathley III, "False Theories Against the Resurrection" website
For reflection/discussion
(1) What is the difference between blind faith and evidence-based faith? (2) Some of the arguments for the historicity of the resurrection include the medical evidence, the empty tomb, the unimpeachable testimony of eyewitnesses, the changed lives of the disciples, the existence of the church and the New Testament, and the role of women in the account of the resurrection. Which if any of these arguments do you find most compelling? (3) Unlike other religions which are primarily based on the teachings of their founders, Christianity is based on an historical event— the resurrection. In what ways does this make Christianity both more compelling and more vulnerable? (4) What are the strengths and weaknesses of the various alternative explanations for the resurrection?
3. God's plan is…
3. God's plan is that we become followers (disciples) of Jesus to become like Jesus.

What is a Disciple?

"Discipleship" Theopedia.

Disciples/ Discipleship

Michael J. Wilkins, "Disciple, Discipleship" Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology
For reflection/discussion
Jesus instructs his followers to "go and make disciples of all nations…" What is a disciple? What is the difference between believing in God and being a disciple? What are the marks of an authentic disciple? StoneBridge Community Church holds three core values: worship, community life, and service. How do these three values contribute to our members and attenders growing as disciples?

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