There is only one Gospel.
You can’t have the crucified Christ without the risen Lord. Neither can you have the risen Lord without the crucified Savior.
Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians provides so much truth to our resurrected Savior: Christ died … he was buried … he rose again (1 Cor 15:3,4). This is the Gospel by which we are saved (1 Cor 15:2).
In this great chapter Paul faces the question, “what if?” What if there is no resurrection? What if it’s a hoax?
If there is no resurrection then all our preaching is in vain (v14).
If there is no resurrection, then our faith is in vain (v14). There is nothing to believe. Our trust in God ended in defeat. No victory.
If there is no resurrection our Christian witness is a lie (v15). The Gospel becomes a fantastic story created by some delusioned peddlers of the faith.
If there is no resurrection, then we are not forgiven (v17). That makes the cross the final word. Death. And only death.
If there is no resurrection then those who have died are only dead (v18). There is nothing more. No life eternal.
If there is no resurrection we have no hope (v19) for our resurrection from the dead.
Can you see how drastic the “what if’s” become?
But there is a resurrection. Our preaching is real. Our testimony has stood the test of time – over 20 centuries, now. Our forgiveness is certain. Our promise of life everlasting is sure. Our hope to live with Jesus is true. That’s the promise of the resurrection.
The “what if’s” have been removed by our Risen Savior, Jesus Christ, our Lord!
So, what if everybody believed this good news?