“Seeing what was to come, he spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah, that he was not abandoned to the realm of the dead, nor did his body see decay. God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it. Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear” (Acts 2:31-33).
The resurrection narratives are not a picture of survival after death; they record how a totally new mode of being has arisen in the universe. Something new had appeared in the universe: as new as the first coming of organic life. This Man, after death, does not get divided into “ghost” and “corpse.” A new mode of being has arisen. This is the story. What are we going to make of it? The question is whether any hypothesis covers the facts so well as the Christian hypothesis. That hypothesis is that God has come down into the created universe, down to manhood—and come up again, pulling it up with Him. The alternative hypothesis is not legend, nor exaggeration, not the apparitions of a ghost. Unless one can take the second alternative, one turns to the Christian view.
“What are we going to make of Christ?” There is no question of what we can make of Him; it is entirely a question of what he intends to make of us. You must accept or reject the story. The things he says are very different from what any other teacher has said. Others say, “This is the truth about the universe. This is the way you ought to go.” But He says, “I am the Truth, and the Way, and the Life.” He says, “No person can reach absolute reality, except through me. Try to retain your own life and you will be inevitably ruined. Give yourself away and you will be saved. If you are ashamed of me, if, when you hear this call, you turn the other way, I also will look the other way when I come again as God without disguise. If anything whatever is keeping you from God and from me, whatever it is, throw it away. If you put yourself first you will be last. Come to me everyone who is carrying a heavy load. I will set that right. Your sins, all of them, are wiped out; I can do that. I am Rebirth. I am Life. Eat me, drink me, I am your Food. I have overcome the whole universe.”
Adapted from Bread and Wine (C.S. Lewis)