During the forty days after his crucifixion, he appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive. And he talked to them about the Kingdom of God. – Acts 1:3
What really is the resurrection? Let me define it like this. It’s not life after death. It’s not somebody died and, oh, they went to be in a better place. It’s not some sort of reincarnation. It is you’re dead, and then you’re alive again physically.
Jesus starts appearing to people, very much alive. Jesus’ occurrences are faithfully recorded shortly after his resurrection. Over the course of 40 days, before ascending back to heaven, Jesus appeared to small groups, large groups, individuals, family, friends, foes, strangers. He ate. He had dialogue. People embraced him. He was very much physically alive.
Paul says it this way in 1 Corinthians 15, beginning in verse 3. “For I delivered to you as of first importance” – most important fact in all of human history – “that Christ died” – first thing – “for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures” – it was predicted in the Old Testament, the Bible is trustworthy and true – “that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, then he appeared to Cephas” – after he rose he appeared to Peter, that is Peter – “then to the twelve” – the rest of the disciples. “Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time” – so large crowds see Jesus alive – “most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep” – we’ll come back to that in the next few days. “Then he appeared to James” – that’s his brother – “then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he also appeared to me.”
What he’s saying here is this: “Lots of people saw Jesus alive, walking around, fully resurrected, physically resurrected.” Now, Paul says, “If you don’t believe me, go ask them. They’re still alive.”
Jesus is still alive and reigns forevermore! Amen!