By Livinus Nnebedum
“One Big Question is; who will like to do good as Jesus Christ, suffer like Jesus Christ and die like Jesus Christ so that the whole world will celebrate his or her Easter?”
The death of Jesus Christ is not the end of Jesus Christ nor the end of Christianity because his death did not end in the grave. The resurrection of Jesus Christ differentiates Christianity from other religions of the world especially Islamic Religion. This is one of the major differences between Christianity and Islamic Religion. If Christ has not been raised from death, then we have nothing to preach and you have nothing to believe (1st Corinthians 15:14-15).
The Resurrection of Jesus from the dead is the foundation of the Christian faith. His resurrection is beyond human experience and the best attested fact and greatest event in human history.
Unlike all other religions Christianity alone has a founder who transcends death and promised that his followers will do the same. All other religion were founded by men and prophets whose end was in the grave.
At this juncture it becomes pertinent to look briefly on the life and times of the founders of Christianity called Jesus Christ and Islamic Religion Prophet Mohammed.
The mother of Jesus Christ is Mary and his foster father is Joseph the carpenter. Jesus the 1st son of Mary was born in Bethlehem in about the year 4B.C. Birth of Jesus was prophesized by Angel Gabriel in Nazareth, country home of Jesus and the birth of Jesus was predicted before the birth. The son of Mary was named Jesus that he will save his people from their sins (Matthew chapter 1 verse 21).
He had been acknowledged as the greatest man that ever lived. Jesus was 30 years in the year 29CE and he was crucified at the age of 30. He rose from death after three days. His life and times cannot contain in this write-up. It is all documented in the Holy Bible. The Holy Bible is the world’s bestselling and most widely distributed book. It is estimated that 3.88 billion copies of the Bible were sold between 1815 (207 years ago) and 1999. More are still being sold up till today. Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible with 176 verses.
Prophet Mohammed was the founder of Islam. He was an Arab of the Hashem clan in the Quraish Tribe. He was born in Mecca (Makkah) in about 570CE. The father of prophet Mohammed was Abdullah who died before Mohammed was born and his mother Amina died when he was only 6 years old (Ruquaiyyah, 1993).
He became well known for his outstanding honesty, kindness, and wisdom and fair dealings and was noticed by the wealthy widow Khadijah who employed him to look after her Merchant business for her. Khadijah was about 40 years old and Mohammed was 25. They got married and lived very happily for about 25 years until Khadijah died. They had 6 children – 4 girls and 2 boys, but unfortunately, all the boys died while very young. At last, he was called according to Islamic belief by “Allah” to be a prophet. By the time he died on 8 June, 632CE, a holy book called the Quran had been put together.
The Quran has 114 chapters called Surahs and 6,616 verses called Ayats. In the Holy Bible there are 39 books in the Old Testament, and 27 in the New Testament making a total of 66 books in the Holy Bible. From the Holy Bible, the Christians have 10 commandments. The Muslims have 5 pillars. The 5 pillars are the 5 religious disciplines of the Islam.
The founders of all other religions are dead and their bones lie in the earth. But Jesus Christ the founder of Christianity lives forever more. He appeared to John on the Island of Patmos many years after his death and said to him, “Don’t be afraid, I am the first and the last.
I am the living one, I was dead but now I am alive forever and ever. I have authority over death and the world of the dead. (Revelation 1:17 to 18). The Resurrection of Jesus proves that physical death is not the termination of human existence. God, who is the giver of life, had the power to reanimate the human body. Jesus Christ’s triumph over the grave is heaven’s pledge to us that we too shall be raised from death.
Livinus Nnebedum, Public Affairs Analyst, Author & Former Director in Anambra State Agricultural Development Program (ADP), writes from Federal College of Education (Technical) Umunze