Resurrection of Christ - Establishing the Importance
The resurrection of Christ is the linchpin of the Christian faith -- the historical event upon which Christian doctrine stands or falls. The apostle Paul makes this clear in his first letter to the Corinthians: But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is futile and your faith is empty. … For if only in this life we have hope in Christ, we should be pitied more than anyone (1 Corinthians 15:13-14, 19).
In fact, the New Testament insists that belief in the bodily resurrection of Christ is a necessary condition of the Christian faith -- no one can be saved apart from it. This insistence is found in verses such as Romans 10:9: Because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
The importance of the resurrection of Christ is further demonstrated in the frequency and enthusiasm with which it is preached as the early church grows (e.g., Acts 2:31; 4:33; 17:18; 26:23). Nearly every public witness to the Gospel points to the resurrection of Christ as the hope for all who desire salvation.
Resurrection of Christ - Simplifying the Issue
An individual's belief in the resurrection of Christ (or lack thereof) can generally be summarized in the answers to three questions:
Resurrection of Christ - Making the Case