Was the Resurrection a Hoax?

  The Resurrection of Jesus Christ, believed by roughly 2.4 billion people across the world, is the foundation of the world's largest religion. In the Biblical narrative, Jesus of Nazareth was crucified by Roman soldiers and buried in a sepulcher (tomb). Three days later Jesus miraculously rose from the dead to proclaim His divinity and declare the redemption of all mankind. The reality of this event is the cornerstone of all Christianity, without which Christianity would cease to exist. But could the Resurrection have been a hoax? Is it possible that Jesus was not resurrected, but that his body was stolen in the night and hidden by his disciples to fake his resurrection? Unfortunately, there are no history books that can shed light on this subject - the only records of the Resurrection that exist are the four gospel accounts recorded in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Despite popular opinion, these gospels were not eyewitness accounts of the Resurrection. In fact, all four gospel accounts were written decades after Jesus' death by people who had never known Jesus and who relied on the sayings of others. As the author of Luke confessed, he was not a witness to the resurrection. Instead he "carefully investigated" the accounts that were "handed down" by Jesus' earliest disciples in order to write his own account to convince his readers to believe in Jesus. (Luke 1:1-4). In other words, the gospel accounts were not precise historical records so much as they were persuasive arguments in support of increasingly popular beliefs written by believers in order to codify the story and to...