Scripture tells that “We are to walk by faith, not by sight,” yet the Lord Jesus while he walked on the face of the Earth performed miracles before the eyes of the people, whether it was the miraculous catch of fish before the eyes of Peter, the healing of the blind or crippled, the raising from the dead of a 12-year-old girl, or of Lazarus who had been in the tomb for four days. The miracles, especially in the Gospel of John, have a deeper purpose, acting as signs that revealed who Jesus is, the Divine Son of God, who has come in power.
Jesus has also left clues to the reality of His resurrection in the empty tomb stories. His apostles come to the tomb and it is empty. In the Gospel of John they find the burial wrappings of Jesus on the ground then the piece that had covered his head rolled up in a place by itself. Upon rising from the dead he rolled it up neatly. Some Bible scholars recall the tradition of the times. If a person at a table was not coming back they would just leave their napkin crumbled up on the table, but if they were coming back they would roll it up or fold it up neatly to indicate to the waiter that they would be returning.
St. Paul records that Jesus appeared to 500 people at one time, saying that some have fallen asleep but most of them were still alive. In other words, go talk to them and get their testimony. Jesus has been appearing to countless people over the centuries causing conversions and life-changing encounters.
Then there is the Shroud of Turin, the burial cloth, bearing His image on both sides. Numerous scientific tests have been done on it. It was discovered when cameras were invented and the first photographs were taken that it was a negative image on the cloth, but the photograph revealed a clear and detailed image — positive image — of His crucifixion.
It was not painted on but was produced by the most powerful laser — like light emanating from every point in His body in a three-dimensional way.
Pollen that comes from plants that grows only during Passover time in Jerusalem were found, as well as the images of Roman coins used to close the eyelids. Scientists who were unbelievers who studied the Shroud became Christians. Yet Jesus said, “Blessed are those who have not seen and still believe. Jesus has truly risen! Indeed, He has!
Fr. Frank Karwacki
Pastor, Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church