Skeptics discount the existence of Jesus as a mere myth. Bertrand Russell, a British philosopher, once remarked that “Historically, it is quite doubtful whether Christ ever existed at all…” When someone said to him, “What will you do, Mr. Russell, if after you die you discover there is a God after all? What will you say to Him?” Russell quipped with characteristic arrogance, “I will tell Him He just did not give me enough evidence.”
Even without reference to Scripture the case for the existence of Jesus is as axiomatic as the case for any other historical figure such as Julius Caesar. Extra biblical material compiled by historians and archaeologists is replete with attestations that the Lord Jesus walked on earth in the flesh. Bible students interested in studying further about the testimonies of non-Christian historical sources can look up the following:
1. Mara bar Serapion (Post A.D. 70) in a Syrian manuscript. 14.658. Serapion referred to Jesus as a wise King executed by his own people…
2. Tacitus (AD 56-120). Annals 15-44. Tacitus was a great Roman historian who wrote that “Christians derived their name from a man called Christ who during the reign of Emperor Tiberius had been executed by sentence of the procurator, Pontius Pilate. That checked the pernicious superstition for a short time, but it broke out afresh-not only in Judaea, where the plague first arose, but in Rome itself, where all the horrible and shameful things in the world collect and find a home.” (Excerpt from F. F. Bruce, Jesus and Christian Origins Outside the Gospels, Page 22).
3. Pliny the Younger (AD 61.113). Letters 10.96;
4. Suetonius (AD 120). Life of Claudius 25.4
5. Josephus (i) AD 37-100. Jewish antiquities 18.63-64;
6. Josephus (ii) AD 30-100. Josephus wrote that Now, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again at the third day; as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.”18.63.64.
7. Celsus (AD 175). Contra Celsum 1.32.33.
How is that for lack of evidence???