Why the Resurrection?

Last week, Dr. Juan Valdes responded to questions asked about the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. This week, he continues along this line answering questions about the need for the resurrection of Christ, especially in relation to salvation.

Can you be a Christian and not believe in the resurrection?

Was the resurrection of Jesus Christ necessary? Can you be a Christian and not believe in the resurrection? The key to answering these questions is to first consider what it means to be a Christian. Since there are two very distinct ways of defining what it means to be a “Christian,”  we need to understand why one definition does not require belief in the resurrection, and the other definition demands it.

Which One Are You?

1. An Admirer of Christ's Ideas and Philosophies

If by “Christian” one means a fan of the teachings of Christ, then the answer  to "Can you be a Christian and not believe in the resurrection?" is YES. In this case, you can be a “Christian” and not believe in the resurrection. It is no different from people who consider themselves “Thomist” (followers of Thomas Aquinas’s philosophy), and we all know he did not rise from the dead. Likewise, others call themselves “Buddhists,” “Platonists,” “Marxists,” etc., and by this they mean to say they admire, agree with, follow, or adhere to the philosophies and ideas espoused by these men.
Since all of these men are dead, it is only their ideas that live on. Most importantly, this type of “following” does not demand that one adhere to everything these men said, nor does it require they be resurrected—one may simply be a fan of some of their ideas.

2. A Beneficiary of Christ's Redemptive Sacrifice

HOWEVER, if by “Christian” we mean a born-again person redeemed by the blood of Christ, adopted by God, who will enjoy eternal life in Heaven, then the answer to the above question is NO. A Christian in this sense is someone who is a fan of Christ and not just his ideas. Because He is no longer dead, Christ—and not just His ideas—lives on. A Christian in this sense is someone who reaps all the benefits of Jesus’ life, death, and most importantly His resurrection. Christ himself made this abundantly clear.

John 11:25 NKJV
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

In this passage, Jesus explains what sets Him apart from all the other teachers, philosophers, and religious leaders. Belief in Him is belief in His resurrection, and thus ours, as well. One must believe that Jesus rose from the dead, or else this passage is meaningless.
Many in fact doubt the resurrection, but they do so in spite of the strong and overwhelming historical evidence for the resurrection. Paul’s teachings, throughout his letters, are emphatic about the centrality of the resurrection. To the Romans, he explains the reason why we must believe in the resurrection in order to be saved.

Romans 10:9-10 NKJV
That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Why is the resurrection so important? Namely, if Christ did not rise from the dead, then He was not God. If Christ did not rise from the dead, then there is no resurrection for us. If Christ did not rise from the dead, then He was just another charlatan who promised what He could not deliver. If Christ did not rise from the dead, then we are wasting our time. Consider Paul’s argument in 1 Corinthians 15.

I Corinthians 15:12-19 NKJV

Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up—if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.

Paul describes Christianity without a risen Jesus as faith that is “empty” and “futile,” and it makes you among men “the most pitiable.” Even more important, if Jesus did not rise from the dead, then you cannot reap the benefits of His sacrificial death on the cross. Paul says you are “still in your sins.” Without the resurrection, we are still lost in our trespasses and alienated from God because of our sins. Without the resurrection of Christ, there is no eternal life and when we die, we “have perished.”


Yes, you can be an admirer of Christ and his teachings without believing in His resurrection. In that case, your relationship is primarily with the ideas, not with the person. However, that type of relationship is no different from the one you may share with Plato’s ideas or Buddha’s ideas. It is a relationship that has no outcome beyond one’s lifetime. It may affect how you live here on earth in varying degrees, but it all ends when you die. What’s worse, you are still lost in your sins and alienated from God, destined to an eternal existence without Him.
On the other hand, a relationship with the living, resurrected Christ is altogether different.  That type of relationship is accompanied by the benefits that follow Christ’s redemptive work of the cross and His resurrection. Not only are you saved from the penalty of your sins by Christ’s death, but you can accept the hope of eternal life through His resurrection. In other words, you are reconciled with God for all eternity. Unlike the admirer, the greatest benefits of this type of relationship are not found in this life, but they begin when the mortal body dies. In the words of Jesus, “though he may die, he shall live,” and that new life in Heaven is more glorious than could ever be imagined.
To learn more about Juan Valdes, or to book him as a speaker, please click HERE.
If you seek answers to questions you or others may have, we invite you to purchase Did Jesus Commit Suicide? And 27 Other Questions Teens Are Asking About the Bible (that adults want to know, too). To order, click HERE.
To encourage you in your walk with Christ, download our free app where you will find hundreds of digital resources to train and equip you in staying bold in your faith. Just click HERE, and look for the blue asterisk on the black background.

No Comments





1 Chronicles 16:8-12 1 Chronicles 22:14 1 Chronicles 29:11 1 Corinthians 15:12-19 1 Corinthians 15:33 1 Corinthians 9:26-27 1 John 2:15-17 1 John 4:10 1 Peter 3:15 1 Peter 4:12-13 1 Peter 5:10 1 Thessalonians 5:11 1 Timothy 6:10 1 Timothy 6:3-10 100 miles 1Peter 1:17-21 2 Chronicles 9:13-29 2 Corinthians 12:9-11 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 2 Timothy 1:7 2 Timothy 2:15 2 Timothy 3:12 2 Timothy 4:11 25% are staying 50k 55-mile race Abraham was very rich. Abuja Acts 11 Acts 13 and 15 Acts 17:11 Acts 9 Albert Einstein America waited too long. Barna poll Barnabas Be a Berean Be bold! Be bold Be happy! Best Evidence God Created Bible Bob Gillespie CRT Candace Nordine Carl Kerby Jr. Carl Kerby Choosing for Two Christian witness Chruch Colossians 2:14 Colossians 3:1 Columbo Tactic D. Mark Jacobs Jr. Dan Lietha Dave Glander David Tautofi DeBunked 15 DeBunked TV DeBunked Deuteronomy 6:6-7 Deuteronomy 6:6-9 Did Jesus Commit Suicide? Dr. Andrew Fabich Dr. Francis Schaeffer Dr. Jason Lisle Draa Mackey Easter Ecclesiastes 4:10 Ephesians 3:17-18 Ephesians 3:19-21 Exodus 33:14 Facing the Giants Frank Figueroa Galatians 5:22-23 Galatians 6:9 Gen Z Genesis 13:1-2 Genesis 1:14-15 Genesis 3:10 Genesis 3 God created you God is rich in mercy God loves you God-shaped vacuum God's character God's joy God's plan God's pursuit God\'s character God\'s joy God\'s plan God\'s pursuit God\\\'s character God\\\'s joy God\\\'s plan God\\\'s pursuit God\\\\\\\'s character God\\\\\\\'s joy God\\\\\\\'s plan God\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s character God\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s plan God\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s character God\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s plan Gods Word is truth Gods Word Gods care Gods character Gods light Gods plan of redemption Gods plan Gospel message Groggy Hawaii Heaven Hebrews 10:19-22 Hebrews 12:1-3 Hebrews 13:5 Hebrews 13:8 Hell His glory Holly Varnum How can I fight and overcome fear? Hubble I Peter 3:15 IMPACT Is it okay for a Christian to be rich? Isaiah 26:3-4 Isaiah 40:28-31 Isaiah 40:29 Isaiah 40:31 Isaiah 41 Isaiah 43:1 Isaiah 45:9a Isaiah 64:8 James 1:12 James 1:2 January 2022 Jeremiah 29:11 Jesus chose to die. Jesus saw their faith Job 1:3 Job 2:8 John 10:17-18 John 11:25 John 14:6 John 15:13 John 16:33 John 3:16-17 John 3:16 John 8:32 John Mark John Ray Joni Eareckson Tada Joni and Friends Joseph A. Kennedy Joshua 1:9 Juan Valdes Justice Kaimuki Bulldogs Kaimuki High School King David King Solomon Know It! Live It! Share It! Lacey Reitz Liberty Institute Listen Loose the Lion Luke 18:1 MTD Malachi 3:3 Malachi 3:6 Mark 2:3-5 Mark 6:31 Martin Luther Master Potter Matthew 11:28-29 Matthew 11:28 Matthew 11:29 Matthew 19:16-24 Matthew 19:23-24 Matthew 6:19 Matthew 9:35 Mere Christianity Mic'd Up Mic\'d Up Mic\\\'d Up Mic\\\\\\\'d Up Money is their god. Moralistic Therapeutic Deism Mosaic NRB National Religious Broadcasters Nigeria Pastor Baba Philippians 3:12-16 Philippians 4:6-7 Please say Yes! Please say "Yes!" Please say \"Yes!\" Please say \\\"Yes!\\\" Potter Proverbs 12:26 Proverbs 14:12 Proverbs 19:21 Proverbs 3:5-6 Psalm 119:105 Psalm 119:11 Psalm 119:160 Psalm 122:1 Psalm 138:1-2 Psalm 139:14 Psalm 147:4 Psalm 16:11 Psalm 18:1-2 Psalm 19:1 Psalm 23:1 Psalm 23:2 Psalm 23:4 Psalm 27 Psalm 34:19 Psalm 40:8 Psalm 69:9a Psalm 8:3 Psalm 8:4 Psalm 92:1-4 Pursued Reasons for Hope in the Mosaic of Your Life Reasons for Hope* Reasons for Hope Respond to God's voice Respond to God\'s voice Respond to God\\\'s voice Respond to God\\\\\\\'s voice Resurrection RforH Romans 10:9-10 Romans 12:9-21 Romans 3:23 Romans 6:23 Romans 8:26 Sanctity of Life Schaftlein Report Scriptures Spurgeon Stay bold! Stay bold Supreme Court Surprised by Joy The Screwtape Letters There is no truth TikTok Trust His heart Trusting God Wade Wacker Wealthy Christians What is a Christian? What is my purpose? Who Made God? Why am I here? Why did Jesus have to die? Wooed Word of God abortion absolute truth achieving the impossible antidote to fear apologetics astronomy astrophysics biblical creationist biblical perspective biblical worldview blindfold boldness bold brokenness butterfly caged called to encourage certainty character clay coercion come alongside compromised confidence critical race theory critical thinking curriculum cut the head off the snake debate defend depression design of the eye desperate passion don't stop don\'t stop don\\\'t stop don\\\\\\\'t stop dont stop doubt encouragement entrusted by God to do good eternal life eternity without God examine the scriptures eye fair and impartial family circle fearfully and wonderfully made fear filled with joy and worship football coach former athiest freedom of choice galaxies give a defense give thanks glory in His holy name good news of Jesus Christ good news gratitude grog heroes of the faith hope human eye humble ourselves illness impact lives impact your teammates positively incomprehensible God isolation keep moving keep progressing largest church in the world light year speed like Christ loss of loved ones love of money love made for another world made in His image memorization without application memorizing Scripture multiple meanings mystical truth never compromised no complaints no hope no pain no gain no quitting not a fetus objective right and wrong one foot in front of the other opened doors opportunity to bring hope overwhelming distance part of a team paying it forward persecution persevere physics postgame prayer potsherd pottery potter power of the Word progress quadriplegic reach the younger generation reality exists reality reassurance red cardinal redemptive work of Christ refining refocus what church looks like relentless forward motion resolutions rest root of all evil sacrifice salvation see God move seek the Lord shine a light silversmith slavery social media son of encouragement speak life speak your truth spiritual apathy stagnant church stand boldly on the Word of God star-gazing starstruck stars stress statistics stress study for yourself suffering symbol of God's love and reassurance symbol of God\'s love and reassurance symbol of God\\\'s love and reassurance symbol of God\\\\\\\'s love and reassurance symbol of Gods love and reassurance teaching science telescope thankful the apple of his eye the finish line the lion will defend itself the seeing eye thriving in Christ trials tribulation troubles truth turn to God ultamarathon ultrarunner unborn child uncage the Lion uncover the truth universe use your gift visual reminders wethering the storm where two worlds collide windows to the soul worldview your circle matters youth zeal for worship