Throughout history, Christians have taught that the man Jesus Christ was crucified on a cross, buried in a tomb, and rose from the dead — not only spiritually, but in a glorified body that people could see and touch, yet which could defy the laws of physics by appearing and disappearing from this world.
In modern times, this story became embarrassing for many Christians. The advancements of science during the Enlightenment and Industrial Revolution gave rise to the concept of the “clockwork universe,” with God as a remote “watchmaker” who set the gears of reality in motion, thereafter letting deterministic physical laws take over in all situations. According to this worldview, the Easter miracle would be impossible.
As a result, many people today shy away from the traditional Christian proclamation of the resurrection of the dead. Instead, growing numbers of Christians interpret the Biblical testimony of the empty tomb and the resurrected Christ as only a metaphor, a beautiful myth intended to teach us that good triumphs over evil and our spirits live on, in some mysterious way, after physical death.
I believe the story of Easter is indeed a powerful metaphor, but I also believe the seemingly supernatural events of Jesus’s resurrection as reported in the Bible could be literally true — and the latest advancements in science and technology make it possible for an intellectually sophisticated person in the 21st century to affirm this.