Q: If Jesus was really God, does this mean that God somehow died or ceased to exist when Jesus was put to death on the cross? Our young son asked this after the Easter sermon at our church, and we didn’t know how to answer him. — S.F.
A: I’m thankful for your young son’s curiosity about this, and I hope you’ll encourage him to keep seeking answers to his questions about God. When Jesus was 12, the Bible says, his parents discovered him in the Temple, “sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions” (Luke 2:46).
No, God did not die or cease to exist when Jesus was put to death on the cross. He was truly God in human form — fully God and yet also fully man. And as a man his body could die, but not his divine nature, because God is eternal. In other words, when Jesus was killed, his human body died and was placed in the tomb, but his divine nature lived on, just as someday your earthly body will die, but your soul or spirit will live on.
But Jesus was different from every other human being who has ever lived or ever will live, because his body did not stay in the grave! By the power of God, the chains of death were broken, and Jesus rose again from the dead. As Peter declared, “God raised him from the dead … because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him” (Acts 2:24).
Make sure of your commitment to Jesus Christ, the risen son of God. Then make him the foundation and center of your family, from this moment on. Through him we have forgiveness, and through him we have hope, both now and forevermore.
Write “My Answer,” Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; or go to BillyGraham.org.