DEAR REV. GRAHAM: Was Jesus a real person? How do we know He even existed? After all, no one was around to take His photograph or interview Him or anything like that. Maybe someone just made Him up. —L.J.
Dear L.J.: You can be absolutely certain that Jesus wasn't a myth or the product of someone's imagination, but a real person. In fact, the details of His life and ministry are documented more thoroughly than those of any other person in the ancient world.
After all, shortly after His death and resurrection thousands of people in Jerusalem — the city where He had been put on trial and executed by the Roman authorities — became His followers. Would they have done so if no one had seen Him or heard Him, or even witnessed His death only a few weeks before? No, of course not. As Peter declared to the crowds there, "Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs ... as you yourselves know" (Acts 2:22).
Never forget, too, that from that point on Jesus' followers were willing to risk prison and even death because of their faith. Do men and women willingly die for something they know is a lie? No, they don't. They had heard Jesus teach and seen His miracles, and many of them had been witnesses of His resurrection.
But why have you asked this question? Is it because you're hoping to avoid Jesus and His claim on your life? Don't turn your back on Him, but face your need for God's forgiveness, and then repent of your sins and give your life to Christ.
He alone could say, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6).