“For we did not follow cleverly devised stories when we told you about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in power, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.” (II Peter 1:16 NIV)
There are many modern historians and scholars with large IQs that devote a large portion of their lives to trying to figure out how the early Christians came up with the stories about Jesus, and fooled so many people into believing them so quickly.
However, as a Christian, I believe that Peter is telling the truth here. All the earliest Christian writings tell the same story about Jesus: that he performed thousands of miracles in public, that he died for our sins, and that he rose on the third day. Even some nonChristian sources such as Josephus confirm this.
Many historians will never accept the truth of the New Testament, because to accept the possibility that miracles might have actually happened would damage their professional standing. Therefore they are constantly coming up with new hypothesis about how the early Christians changed all the gospels retroactively and rewrote significant sections of Josephus in order to make all the historical documents match the Biblical account.
But the Bible offers plenty of evidence that Jesus’ death and resurrection were real. The Apostle Paul, for example, offered irrefutable proof to his readers:
“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sinsaccording to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.” (I Corinthians 15:3-6)