It is a legitimate question to ask ourselves if we can know that Jesus existed. It is also important for us to base our faith in things we can know and confirm. Here are some reasons we can be sure that Jesus existed on this earth and that he is the Son of God.
The Prophecies of the Bible
No other book known to mankind contains the ability the Bible has to foretell the future. Daniel two predicts the rise of World Empires and of the church hundreds of years before it happened. Micah and Isaiah tell us multiple details of Jesus’ life six hundred years before his birth. In fact Jesus fulfilled at least three hundred prophesies in his life, death, and resurrection.
The Movement of History
In a matter of less than two hundred years, the Roman Empire outlawed slavery, became monotheistic and had it’s leaders convert to a form of Christianity. Such major economic and moral changes could only have been the result of something as powerful as the gospel, Acts 17:6 “These men have turned the world upside down.”
Writings of Pagan Historians
Men who had no agenda to promote Christianity have through the Ages told us that Jesus is real and powerful. Notice some of the following quotes: Mara Bar-Serapion (Jewish writer from Rome) wrote of Jesus’s death in in his writings dating back to AD 73. Cornelius Tacitus speaks of Christians in Rome in 112 AD as he discusses Nero and the burning of Rome. Pliny the Younger in 112 AD spoke of Christ and he discussed the torture of Christians. The Talmud (Jewish writings dating back to AD 70) is very hostile towards Christ saying he led people astray, added to the Law of the Jews and performed magic. But this opposition serves to confirm the identity of Jesus. Flavious Josephus sometime after 70 AD speaks of Christ calling him a miracle worker who won over many Jews and Greeks. Each of these writings confirms that Jesus existed and had a ministry like what we read of in our gospels.
The Power of the Scriptures
The Bible contains scientific foreknowledge, moral superiority, and unity of message that can only be the result of the authorship of the Holy Spirit. Mankind left to himself cannot produce such a mighty work.
The greatest story ever told is the one where an Almighty, Powerful God gives His Son as a sacrifice to save sinners whom He loves. The gospel will heal the broken, revive the fallen, and save the sinner. Jesus is real and He calls us to follow him today.