Easter, is for Christians, a celebration of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. There are some atheists and skeptics who not only don't believe that Jesus was raised from the dead, but they also question whether or not he was crucified. These people however are very few and no historical authority gives them any credence. It is a historical FACT that Jesus was crucified and died on the cross.
Since I want to talk about history, not speculation, here is a significant FACT. The writer of 1 Corinthians, who is believed to be Paul, wrote his letter sometime between 52 and 56 AD. What is significant about the date, is that it is only about 20 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus which was somewhere between 30 and 33 AD. To put it in perspective, the attack of 9/11 was 2001 or 17 years ago. An eye witness of the attack could give you a very precise and accurate description of what happened on that day. There are a lot of people alive today who were eye witnesses of those events and well able to corroborate what happened.
I mention this because Paul gives in the first letter to the Corinthians in chapter 15 verses 3-8, an impressive list of people who saw Jesus die, get buried and live again.
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:
After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.
After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time."
So according to Paul there were over 500 people that saw Jesus alive again after the crucifixion. People who were eye witnesses to his death and eye witnesses to the fact that he was alive again afterward. You can trick one or two people, you might trick 30 or 40 people, but there is no way you could trick 500 people into believing a lie.
Why does this matter? Simply because if Jesus did not rise from the dead, then he was a liar and a charlatan. But he wasn't a liar, he didn't perpetrate an elaborate hoax. Just like the events of 9/11, the events of Jesus' resurrection took place in the open where people could see for themselves the truth of it. You, yourself know about what happened on 9/11, or if you're too young, you know of several people that can tell you what happened because they experienced it first hand. 9/11 is roughly as far in our past, as the death and resurrection of Jesus was in Paul's past, when he wrote that letter to the Corinthians. So we're not talking ancient past, we're talking about a current past.
If Jesus didn't rise from the dead, Christianity is a vain hope. 500 eye witnesses makes for very reliable information. Jesus DID rise from the dead and since He did we have hope for our own resurrection from the dead.
1 Corinthians 15:55-57 goes on to state, "O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
Death has no power over the person who puts their trust in Jesus.
Do you know where you will spend eternity? If you're not sure, you can be. Romans 3-23 says "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" You've sinned. If you've ever lied, stolen, or cheated, you've sinned. Romans 6:23 states, "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." So you've sinned and the penalty for sin is death, BUT God gives you the gift of eternal life. Romans 5:8 tells us, "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Jesus paid the penalty for OUR sin by sacrificing himself. Romans 10:9 says, "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." The penalty has already been paid, you just have to avail yourself of it by confessing the Lordship of Jesus and believing in your heart the God has raised him from the dead. Then go share with someone what you have done. The Gift of everlasting life is yours just for believing on Jesus.
John 3:16 "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."
If you have followed those steps you have passed from death to life everlasting. You belong to Jesus and He'll never let you go, you will spend eternity with him. You don't have to doubt about where you'll be, you'll be in heaven with Him. There's no better time than Easter to make that decision that will change your life forever and you too can be resurrected.