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Sunday, 5 June 2011

When faith is questioned – An open letter to my Protestant friends


I  have a lot of Christian friends to share Jesus and grow further in faith. Yes, we all are Christians and have tasted Him with our entire conscious mind.  Yet, there are things which differentiate us. Some of my friends are Catholics. Some others have one denomination but believe in all other denominations too. And a few are having no denomination at all. Interestingly, I found a group of people for whom everything is The Bible. They take The Bible to explain almost all phenomena, even the rotation of earth. Why is there too much diversity among us?

When I was doing my pre degree classes, Einstein’s mass-energy relation was one out of the many things which I couldn’t understand well. Even now it is not fully known to me. But I believe that such a relation exists because it was proved. If this is the truth when I deal with a purely scientific theory, what would be my understandings when I come across with millions of times more complicated concepts of theology? I don’t think that you are far different from me in this aspect. Yes, there are things that we couldn’t understand. And, naturally we respond differently when we don’t understand the most divine concepts of theology. This ambiguity in our responses differentiates us though we are united in Christ. Let’s  examine some of our responses.

What was Martin Luther’s response? 

Luther had to go through a serious of states where he couldn’t understand the teachings of Catholic Church. He totally got confused more at one point. Rather trying to understand them further he just made his on doctrines. He had arrived at the principle of private judgment - of picking and choosing religious doctrines; and whenever any book, such as the book of Machabees, taught a doctrine contrary to his taste he rejected it overboard and overboard that book went because it says: 2 Mach. xii 46, "it is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead that they may be loosed from sins." He not only cast out certain books, but he mutilated some that were left. For example, not pleased with St. Paul's doctrine, "we are justified by faith," Luther added the word "ALONE" to make the sentence read: "We are justified by faith alone." His explanation of this insertion is found in his own words, "I know very well that the word 'alone' is not in the Latin and Greek texts; but Dr. Martin Luther will have it so, and I order it to be so, and my will is reason enough." St. Paul writes under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. But Luther creates a Lutheran Bible under his own audacity. He shows little respect for the Bible when he calls the Epistle of St. James "an Epistle of straw with no character of the Gospel in it." He spoke disparagingly about the Epistle of St. Jude, the Epistle to the Hebrews, and the beautiful Apocalipse of St.John.

How did you respond?

Some of my friends claim that Mary bore children other than Jesus in contrary to a catholic dogma. To support their claim, they refer to the biblical passages which mention the "brethren of the Lord." In fact ‘brother’ when addressed by the Bible doesn’t always mean a first order relation. It is used to call cousins and nephews In Old Testament. Tradition also proves her virginity. An important historical document which supports the teaching of Mary’s perpetual virginity is the Protoevangelium of James, which was written probably less than sixty years after the conclusion of Mary’s earthly life (around A.D. 120), when memories of her life were still vivid in the minds of many. According to the world-renowned patristics scholar, Johannes Quasten: "The principal aim of the whole writing [Protoevangelium of James] is to prove the perpetual and inviolate virginity of Mary before, in, and after the birth of Christ."

Some get confused with the statues kept in the churches and other catholic places. They believe that the Catholics are worshiping these statues. In fact Catholics worships neither those statues nor those saint or Mary if come alive but worship Holy Trinity and only The Holy Trinity. You keep statues in your states, right? Do you worship them? Definitely not. You keep their statues so that you can remember them. This very same is applicable when you come across with the statues of Catholic Church.

What most of you think today that Catholic Church teaches is just your misunderstandings about Catholic Church. You say that Catholic Church put indulgence as a permission to commit sin. But nothing is like that. These are some situations where you failed to understand The Catholic Church. And naturally you went misunderstanding the Catholic Church.

How to prevent this misunderstanding?

It is not possible to understand everything. We need not understand each and every teachings of Catholic Church to believe her, when most of the teachings are of dogmatic. There are teachings which I couldn’t understand. Say, I couldn’t understand fully how a few hours of physical and mental torture of Jesus Christ on the cross even if in the severe form save the entire humanity from all their sins. I mean how God equates our sins with a few hours of torture. Similarly I couldn’t completely understand the Holy Trinity. The Church has beautiful explanations for all these. The only thing is that I don’t understand. Can I simply blame the Church for I do not understand? Of course not. Still, I believe in whole process of salvation and Holy Trinity. Because the understanding is not a matter of necessity to believe the Truth. How is it possible? . It is because of the faith – belief even when not understood. it is this which grossly differentiates us. 

·                     What does The Bible say on this?


Jesus said to him, "Is it because you have seen me that you have believed? How blessed are those who have never seen me and yet have believed!" (John 20:29).

It explains the necessity of faith. It is fine if you understand and believe. But, what Jesus says about those who believe with out understanding? We can’t understand many things. Say, ‘everything about Eucharist’. We can expect only some possible explanations, but it need not make the whole truth. Truth is quite away from our intellectual capacity. These are all great mysteries. The only thing is that we should develop our faith.

·                     What do the great Doctors of Catholic Church say?


According to Saint Thomas Aquinas “faith is the act of the intellect assenting to a Divine truth owing to the movement of the will, which is itself moved by the grace of God" And just as the light of faith is a gift supernaturally bestowed upon the understanding, so also this Divine grace moving the will is, as its name implies, an equally supernatural and an absolutely gratuitous gift. Neither gift is due to previous study neither of them can be acquired by human efforts, but ‘Ask and ye shall receive’”. The faith is of divine. He says, "the assent of the intellect in faith is due to the will, and since the object to which the intellect thus assents is not its own proper object — for that is actual vision of an intelligible object — it follows that the intellect's attitude towards that object is not one of tranquillity, on the contrary it thinks and inquires about those things it believes, all the while that it assents to them unhesitatingly; for as far as it itself is concerned the intellect is not satisfied”

It also follows from the above that an act of supernatural faith is meritorious, since it proceeds from the will moved by Divine grace or charity, and thus has all the essential constituents of a meritorious act. This enables us to understand St. James's words when he says, "The devils also believe and tremble". "It is not willingly that they assent", says St. Thomas, "but they are compelled thereto by the evidence of those signs which prove that what believers assent to is true, though even those proofs do not make the truths of faith so evident as to afford what is termed vision of them"nor is their faith Divine, but merely philosophical and natural. Some may fancy the foregoing analyses superfluous, and may think that they savour too much of Scholasticism. But if anyone will be at the pains to compare the teaching of the Fathers, of the Scholastics, and of the divines of the Anglican Church in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, with that of the non-Catholic theologians of today, he will find that the Scholastics merely put into shape what the Fathers taught, and that the great English divines owe their solidity and genuine worth to their vast patristic knowledge and their strictly logical training.

It is utter clear that the faith is not based on our understanding. We just only need the will to assent the divine truth, and the rest comes as gratuitous gift; i.e. “the understanding” which is a gift of Holy Spirit comes to you if it is that needed. If we compel that we believe only according to the evidences and not because of our free will to assent the divine truth, then we are not different from Satan, as he believe everything of truth just because it is all known to him and not because of will. Friends we are to be perfect as our Heavenly Father and not to be like Satan.

Why the tradition is so important?

“Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” (John 20:30-31)

Who knows the things which are not written in the Bible? It is all known to the Catholic Church as it keeps the apostolic tradition.

“The Church is apostolic because she is founded on the apostles, in three ways:

*  She was and remains built on "the foundation of the Apostles, the witnesses chosen and sent on mission by Christ himself

*   With the help of the Spirit dwelling in her, the Church keeps and hands on the teaching, the "good deposit," the salutary words she has heard from the apostles

*     She continues to be taught, sanctified, and guided by the apostles until Christ's return, through their successors in pastoral office: the college of bishops, "assisted by priests, in union with the successor of Peter, the Church's supreme pastor"

You are the eternal Shepherd who never leaves his flock untended. Through the apostles you watch over us and protect us always. You made them shepherds of the flock to share in the work of your Son. (CCC 857)

The Church is one: she acknowledges one Lord, confesses one faith, is born of one Baptism, forms only one Body, is given life by the one Spirit, for the sake of one hope (cf. Eph 4:3-5), at whose fulfillment all divisions will be overcome.

One part of this great Catholic Tradition is – The Bible . Bible came from the Church and not Church from the Bible. Remember, there was Christianity without any Bible for 300 years.

In 397 A.D., the Catholic Church gave a definitive decision as to which writings and books should be admitted into the Bible and which should be rejected, and every book which is in the Protestant New Testament today, was put there by Pope Siricus and the Catholic Bishops in the year 397 A.D. If Christ had intended that men should learn Christianity from the New Testament, what about the hundreds who lived before the first Bible was given to the world by the Catholic Church?Luther's Protestant Bible came out 1520 and before his Bible the Catholic Bible had been translated into Spanish, Italian, Danish, French, Norwegian, Polish, Bohemian, Hungarian and English, there was exactly 104 editions in Latin; 38 editions in German language, 25 editions in Italian language, 18 in French. In all 626 editions of the Bible with 198 in the language of the laity, had been edited before the fist Protestant Bible was sent forth into the world.
Before the last book in the New Testament was written the Catholic Church celebrated her golden jubilee; 11 of the Apostles had died.

Hence, the bible is not everything. The Catholic Tradition is equally important.

Why the Catholic Church?

Bishop Fulton Sheen says “If I were not a Catholic, and were looking for the true Church in the world today, I would look for the one Church which did not get along well with the world; in other words, I would look for the Church which the world hates. My reason for doing this would be, that if Christ is in any one of the churches of the world today, He must still be hated as He was when He was on earth in the flesh. If you would find Christ today, then find the Church that does not get along with the world. Look for the Church that is hated by the world, as Christ was hated by the world. Look for the Church which is accused of being behind the times, as Our Lord was accused of being ignorant and never having learned. Look for the Church which men sneer at as socially inferior, as they sneered at Our Lord because He came from Nazareth. Look for the Church which is accused of having a devil, as Our Lord was accused of being possessed by Beelzebub, the Prince of Devils. Look for the Church which the world rejects because it claims it is infallible, as Pilate rejected Christ because he called Himself the Truth. Look for the Church which amid the confusion of conflicting opinions, its members love as they love Christ, and respect its voice as the very voice of its Founder, and the suspicion will grow, that if the Church is unpopular with the spirit of the world, then it is unworldly, and if it is unworldly, it is other-worldly. Since it is other-worldly, it is infinitely loved and infinitely hated as was Christ Himself. ... the Catholic Church is the only Church existing today which goes back to the time of Christ. History is so very clear on this point, it is curious how many miss its obviousness..."

Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the second Vatican Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through Baptism as through a door. Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.

All salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body (CCC 846)

I don’t expect that you understand what I am trying to say as everyone can not understand everything. I am again saying that what you understand is not a matter at all. It is what you believe more important. Let your understandings shall not determine your belief like Satan. Therefore I wish you to grow in faith. Continue reading The Bible as it is the word of God. And please don’t make blunders as you did like the entire one billion Catholics are on the way to hell. Jesus so loves that He won’t allow to perish even a single person. Read my just previous article to know a bit of salvation. As far as possible try to direct all your questions, comments, concerns, complaints, frustrations, irritations, aggravations, insinuations, allegations, accusations, contemplations, consternations or whatever it is to the Catholic officials and get it corrected.

May God bless you all

In Jesus name,

Your brother.



Saturday, 14 May 2011

Is Osama Bin Laden In Heaven Or Hell? - An objectively structured analysis based on Catechism of Catholic Church


We are quite aware of how one will be saved. It is through Jesus Christ. There is no point of debate about it among us. But, there is a matter which is not known to many – who all will be saved?

Let us discuss this doctrine of Catholic Church in detail.

Who is the savior?

God’s word says:

I am the Way, the TRUTH, and the LIFE, no man comes unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6).

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4:12) 

It is clear that Jesus Christ is the only savior.

Who all will be saved?

For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved (Romans 10:13)

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever doesn't believe will be condemned (Mark 16:16)

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 (Romans 10:9)

What does it mean?

The Lord himself affirms that Baptism is necessary for salvation… Baptism is necessary for salvation for those to whom the Gospel has been proclaimed and who have had the possibility of asking for this sacrament. (CCC 1257)

So, what is baptism?

Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit (vitae spiritualis ianua), and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: "Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the word." (CCC 1213)

How does one get saved through baptism?

By Baptism all sins are forgiven, original sin and all personal sins, as well as all punishment for sin. In those who have been reborn nothing remains that would impede their entry into the Kingdom of God, neither Adam's sin, nor personal sin, nor the consequences of sin, the gravest of which is separation from God. (CCC 1263)

No matter how one was before baptism. If Osama had been baptized just before death he would have entered into the kingdom of God even though he had murdered many. The same is applicable to all who receive baptism.

Remember what He said through the parable of Laborers in the Vineyard.
Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this last worker as I give to you. (Matthew 20:14)

Had Osama received baptism?

Don’t simply say “no” before reading the rest. To know this we should know the ways by which one can get baptized.

In catholic church there is a unique way of celebrating baptism with the following essential elements always  present: proclamation of the Word, acceptance of the Gospel entailing conversion,  profession of faith, Baptism itself, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, and admission to Eucharistic communion. There is no way for Osama had received it.

Apart from this, According to Catechism of Catholic Church, there is baptism in some special circumstances.

1.       Those who suffer death for the sake of the faith without having received Baptism are baptized by their death for and with Christ. This Baptism of blood, like the desire for Baptism, brings about the fruits of Baptism without being a sacrament.(CCC 1258)
Osama died but not for the sake of faith in Christ. So no way…

2.       For catechumens (group of people preparation for Baptism) who die before their Baptism, their explicit desire to receive it, together with repentance for their sins, and charity, assures them the salvation that they were not able to receive through the sacrament (CCC 1259). The catechumenate is to be "a formation in the whole Christian life . . . during which the disciples will be joined to Christ their teacher. The catechumens should be properly initiated into the mystery of salvation and the practice of the evangelical virtues, and they should be introduced into the life of faith, liturgy, and charity of the People of God by successive sacred rites. (CCC 1248).

Again there is no way for he had got baptized as he had not been preparing for baptism.

3.       Every man who is ignorant of the Gospel of Christ and of his Church, but seeks the truth and does the will of God in accordance with his understanding of it, can be saved. It may be supposed that such persons would have desired Baptism explicitly if they had known its necessity. (CCC 1260)


Had he sought the truth of God? Had he done the will of God? The family and culture in which he was brought up had good values enough to lead a person to do the will of God. He had none of the good values from that culture. 

No matter even if the surroundings were wrong as each person has a sense to discriminate between good and evil. Did he has such a good sense? 

So I wish to stress the word “understanding of it”.  We should consider the understanding level also as it differs from person to person. His leadership in organizing murders show that he had a good intelligence and hence a good understanding capacity. So he might had some sense to discriminate good and evil. That is he is not an insane to be considered under McNaughton Rules.

I hardly find any way by which he would have baptized as he did not seeks the truth and do the will of God in accordance with his understanding. So with this I am concluding that he was not baptized. And hence he is not likely to be entered into the kingdom of God. It is an incomplete argument as we could not assess his understanding level fully.

Only God can estimate one’s  sense of discrimination between good and evil and hence only He can Judge. And in His judgment if He finds something congenitally wrong with his sense of discrimination then, he may enter into His kingdom. 


To God alone be all the Glory, Honor, and Praise. In Jesus' name. 


 PS:
1.       Baptism is essential for salvation
a.       All salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body: Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through Baptism as through a door. Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it. (CCC 846)

b.       This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church:
c.       Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation. (CCC 847)

d.       But church continues her mission, going around the world, baptizing all in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. So that all can take part in the celebration of liturgy and receive all sacraments. This enables them to wrestle with the sin and hence to enter into the eternity.

2.       All baptized will not be saved
a.       Yet certain temporal consequences of sin remain in the baptized, such as suffering, illness, death, and such frailties inherent in life as weaknesses of character, and so on, as well as an inclination to sin that Tradition calls concupiscence, or metaphorically, "the tinder for sin" (fomes peccati); since concupiscence "is left for us to wrestle with, it cannot harm those who do not consent but manfully resist it by the grace of Jesus Christ." Indeed, "an athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules." (CCC 1264).
b.       Even though incorporated into the Church, one who does not however persevere in charity is not saved. He remains indeed in the bosom of the Church, but 'in body' not 'in heart.' (CCC 837)
c.       One should defeat his sinful nature and should receive the sacrament of Confirmation frequently to make sure his salvation


3.       Who can baptize?
a.       The ordinary ministers of Baptism are the bishop and priest and, in the Latin Church, also the deacon. In case of necessity, anyone, even a non-baptized person, with the required intention, can baptize, by using the Trinitarian baptismal formula. The intention required is to will to do what the Church does when she baptizes. The Church finds the reason for this possibility in the universal saving will of God and the necessity of Baptism for salvation. (CCC 1256)

4.       Baptism is the sacrament of faith. But faith needs the community of believers. It is only within the faith of the Church that each of the faithful can believe. The faith required for Baptism is not a perfect and mature faith, but a beginning that is called to develop.

5.       It is hardly impossible to enter into the Kingdome of God unless you try hard to do potentially mortal sins like worshiping Satan

6.       I was not judging Osama instead, was trying to convey my message through an example. No one shall judge one another.


a.       Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. (Romans 2:1)

b.       Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother (Romans 14:13)

c.       For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. (Matthew 7:2)


d.       I love all including Osama but, hate his sinful nature.

7.       I recommend you to refer Catechism of Catholic Church for better understanding. Click here to read CCC

8.       Feel free to correct me at any point if I go wrong.

Nelson T T










Thursday, 14 April 2011

A Psychological Autopsy Of Jesus Christ: A Telltale evidence for His Resurrection


His Resurrection… Is Our Celebration

We are in the Passiontide of His crucifixion, death and resurrection. We are very sure that His resurrection is the very basic stone of our faith and this forms the elixir of the resurrection of our body.

Yet, the resurrection of Jesus Christ has become a matter of debate for many. A large number of scholars have come forward to disprove the resurrection of Jesus Christ, but in vain.

There are definite historical evidences pointing for His resurrection.

  • The scriptures…
  • The broken seal…
  • The empty tomb….
  • The large stone (1-2 tone) which was moved, in spite of the Roman guards and seal
  • The behavior of Roman soldiers guarded the tomb and who went on absent without leave…
  • Appearance of Jesus Christ at several places after resurrection…. witnesses to Jesus' appearances
And much more which you might have learnt because of your enthusiastic mind.. Here I’m not going to explore all these historical evidences again but, to approach the event of resurrection logically and psychologically -- a psychological autopsy.


Let us begin…

The frightened disciples

The moment when Jesus Christ was arrested all the disciples who were with Him for three years left Him immediately. They lost their courage to accompany Him in public.
Then all the disciples deserted him and fled ( Mathew 26:56)

Jesus was brought before Pilate, and there He was spit upon, cursed, he was laughed at, whipped, beaten. And He was sentenced to die by the most extreme, shameful form of capital punishment ever devised — crucifixion.

Disciples were frightened like anything. They thought that they will be also murdered and killed for of was being with Him. The first disciple Peter even denied that he knew Jesus.  After Jesus was crucified and buried, they remained in hiding, afraid and depressed, and even thought of going back for fishing. 


What happened on the third day ?

Mary and others came to tell them that Jesus had risen from the dead.

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared.  And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb,  but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.  While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men suddenly stood near them in dazzling clothing;  and as the women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, "Why do you seek the living One among the dead?  "He is not here, but He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee,  saying that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again."  And they remembered His words,  and returned from the tomb and reported all these things to the eleven and to all the rest.  Now they were Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James; also the other women with them were telling these things to the apostles (Luke 24:1-10)

But these words appeared to them as nonsense, and they would not believe them. 12 But Peter got up and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings only; and he went away to his home, marveling at what had happened.(Luke 24:11-12)

What happened later ?

Something happened to that small band of frightened and humiliated men. Less than two months later, they went back into Jerusalem boldly preaching, at the threat of death, that — JESUS CHRIST WAS RISEN!!

Why would these men, who had displayed such cowardice, risk their lives in going from city to city proclaiming the resurrection ? Had there been any visible benefits accrued to them from their efforts--prestige, wealth, increased social status, material benefits or anything ??

They certainly gained nothing for doing so.

In fact, as a reward for their efforts they were beaten, stoned to death, thrown to lions, tortured, and crucified for their preaching. Every conceivable method was used to stop them from talking.

Yet, they laid down their lives as the ultimate proof of their complete confidence in the truth of their message—The resurrection of Jesus Christ.





They were brave as a lion


Acts chapter 4:18-19, reads, "And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said unto them, whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye."

And verse 20 reads, "For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard".

What did transform this cowardice into, bold lions?

It’s nothing but the

THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST!

There is no event in the history of universe other than the resurrection of Jesus Christ which could explain this.

After the resurrection, Jesus met with his disciples on a mountain in Galilee and gave them a command to go out and evangelize to all people;

Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matthew 28:16-20).

After he had told his disciples to go out into the world and preach the word of God, Jesus ascended into Heaven;

After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it. (Mark 16:19-20).

Do you still think that this whole episode was planned by Jesus and his followers?

Dear friend, just safely forget about the historical evidences and See that these men had sealed their testimony with their blood! They died a horrible and martyrs death! Do you think that it was for a lie, knowing it was a lie ? if so, can you even imagine a group of people in the history of universe who forsook all, were beaten, were jailed and even went so far as die for a lie — KNOWING it was a lie!
So there is no way, these 12 men could have all been deceived.
Still you can’t belive ?
There's the man called Saul of Tarsus.Saul of Tarsus thought Jesus was a false messiah, a fake, a blasphemer. And to exterminate Christianity totally, became his passion! The Bible describes him:
"As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison." (Acts 8:3)
"And Saul, yet 
breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, . . ." (Acts 9:1)
Saul of Tarsus was one of Christianitys' most rabid persecutors. One day traveling the dusty road to Damascus, Saul burning with vengeance, with documents authorizing him to capture all the followers of Jesus. But on the road to Damascus something happened to Saul of Tarsus. . .
"And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest". (Acts 9:3-5)
And on the road to Damascus, the greatest conversion in history took place! For Saul of Tarsus, among the greatest enemies of Jesus Christ, that ever lived — became the Apostle Paul, THE GREATEST CHRISTIAN THAT EVER LIVED! 
What could so transform this man, that he completely dedicated his life to spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ? And was later beheaded at Rome in 67 A.D. for his faith in Jesus Christ. 
There is only one possible explanation
THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST!
Denying the resurrection of Jesus Christ is equivalent to creating darkness by closing eyes. You have to close your eyes to these facts and to the overwhelming facts of history which I did not explained here.
What is next?
If Jesus Christ has died and resurrected, you need to do an important and serious task - Receive Jesus Christ as your Savior.
  • Know that you're a sinner.

"As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:" Romans 3:10
"... for there is no difference. For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;" Romans 3:23

  • Know that Jesus Christ died on the cross to pay for your sins.

"Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, ..." 1 Peter 2:24
"... Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood," Revelation 1:5

  • Trust Him, and Him alone as your Savior. 

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

I mean trust only. The rest – religion, baptism, sacraments.. will later become the part of life style.
But the moments you fail to trust Him, you could be one year, one month, one hour, one minute, one heartbeat, away from the eternity.

Let’s take a firm step ahead into eternity.

HAPPY EASTER…