In his very thought-provoking book, Person of Interest, J. Warner Wallace asks a very good question: “Why, then, did Jesus have more impact than anyone else?”
Jesus was born in a tiny, irrelevant town in the Roman Empire and raised in another small village.
He had to walk from one place to the next, and as an adult he never traveled more than two hundred miles from the town where he was born.
He had none of the resources people use today to make an impact: no social media platform, no podcast audience, no clever videos, and no website. He didn’t even have the resources people used in the first century to make an impact: he never held a political office, never ruled a nation, never led an army, and never authored a book.
His family was insignificant. The locals suspected he was an illegitimate son, his mother was a poor peasant woman, and his father couldn’t afford much.
Jesus didn’t receive an expensive education, never married, never had children, never owned a home of his own, and didn’t possess much more than the clothes on his back.
As an adult, his own brother was suspicious of his ministry, a work that ended after just three short years.
Public opinion turned against him, most of his followers abandoned him, one disciple betrayed him, and another denied him. He was rejected by the religious, hunted by the powerful, mocked and unjustly persecuted by his enemies.
He suffered an unfair trial, was publicly humiliated, brutally beaten, and unduly executed in the most horrific way.
Even then, the few followers who remained had to borrow a grave to bury him.
Yet this is the man who changed history, inaugurated the Common Era and forever transformed the most important and revered aspects of human culture.
How is it possible that a single man—a man like Jesus—could have this impact?