That has to be the foremost question in the belief for the existence of Christ. Did he live? To defend your belief the first question is was He real, did He live where is the proof? You have sat too long in the church not knowing what or why you believe only that someone with a college degree is telling you the truth.
Did Christ live I am going to give you 12 outside sources that attest to Christ life? The first one comes from Josephus Flavius a first century Jew that wrote for the Roman Empire.
About this time there lived Jesus, a wise man if indeed one ought to call him a man. For he was one who performed surprising deeds and was a teacher of such people as accept the truth gladly. He won over many Jews and many of the Greeks. He was the Messiah. And when, upon the accusation of the principal men among us, Pilate had condemned him to a cross, those who had first come to love him did not cease. He appeared to them spending a third day restored to life, for the prophets of God had foretold these things and a thousand other marvels about him. And the tribe of the Christians, so called after him, has still to this day not disappeared.
The next one; the Talmud
The Talmud contains passages that some scholars have concluded are references to Christian traditions about Jesus (through mentions of an individual called “Yeshu”, a derivative of Jesus’ Aramaic name Yeshua)
The next one is Tacitus
The Roman historian and senator Tacitus referred to Christ, his execution by Pontius Pilate, and the existence of early Christians in Rome in one page of his final work, Annals (written ca. AD 116), book 15, chapter 44.
The context of the passage is the six-day Great Fire of Rome that burned much of the city in AD 64 during the reign of Roman Emperor Nero. The passage is one of the earliest non-Christian references to the origins of Christianity, the execution of Christ described in the canonical gospels, and the presence and persecution of Christians in 1st-century Rome.
Scholars generally consider Tacitus’ reference to the execution of Jesus by Pontius Pilate to be both authentic, and of historical value as an independent Roman source.
Historian Ronald Mellor has stated that the Annals is “Tacitus’s crowning achievement” which represents the “pinnacle of Roman historical writing”.Scholars view it as establishing three separate facts about Rome around AD 60: that there were a sizable number of Christians in Rome at the time, that it was possible to distinguish between Christians and Jews in Rome, and that at the time pagans made a connection between Christianity in Rome and its origin in Roman Judea.
The next one is Thallus
- Jesus of Nazareth existed.
- Some people believed Him to be the Messiah.
- He had many disciples from both Jews and Gentiles.
- He was condemned to death by crucifixion under Pontius Pilate.
- His disciples testified that Jesus rose from the dead three days after His death.
- His disciples proclaimed the resurrection of Christ.
Thallus (c. A.D. 52)
The next one is Lucian of Samosata
“The Christians, you know, worship a man to this day,—the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites, and was crucified on that account…and then it was impressed on them by their original lawgiver that they are all brothers, from the moment that they are converted, and deny the gods of Greece, and worship the crucified sage, and live after his laws.”
The next one is Pliny the Younger on Jesus Christ
They were in the habit of meeting on a certain fixed day before it was light, when they sang in alternate verses a hymn to Christ, as to a god, and bound themselves by a solemn oath, not to do any wicked deeds, but never to commit any fraud, theft or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to deliver it up; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble to partake of food–but food of an ordinary and innocent kind.
The next one is Celsus
Jesus had come from a village in Judea and was the son of a poor Jewess who gained her living by the work of her own hands. His mother had been turned out of doors by her husband, who was a carpenter by trade, on being convicted of adultery [with a soldier named Panthra (i.32)]. Being thus driven away by her husband, and wandering about in disgrace, she gave birth to Jesus, a bastard. Jesus, on account of his poverty, was hired out to go to Egypt. While there he acquired certain (magical) powers which Egyptians pride themselves on possessing. He returned home highly elated at possessing these powers, and on the strength of them gave himself out to be a god.
The next is Mara bar Serapion
What else can we say, when the wise are forcibly dragged off by tyrants, their wisdom is captured by insults, and their minds are oppressed and without defense? What advantage did the Athenians gain from murdering Socrates? Famine and plague came upon them as a punishment for their crime. What advantage did the men of Samos gain from burning Pythagoras? In a moment their land was covered with sand. What advantage did the Jews gain from executing their wise king? It was just after that their kingdom was abolished. God justly avenged these three wise men: the Athenians died of hunger; the Sumerians were overwhelmed by the sea and the Jews, desolate and driven from their own kingdom, live in complete dispersion. But Socrates is not dead, because of Plato; neither is Pythagoras, because of the statue of Juno; nor is the wise king, because of the “new law” he laid down.
These are 12 of the great historians of the 1st thru the 2rd-century folks who acknowledge that Christ lived. The historical Christ and the Christ of Faith.