Who raised Jesus from the dead? This is a question that gets asked a lot concerning the Trinity Doctrine and if Jesus is God. Those who believe that Jesus is God affirm that Jesus raised Himself from the dead along with God the Father and the Holy Spirit. Those who believe that Jesus is not God affirm that it was only God the Father that raised Jesus from the dead. (groups like Jehovah’s Witnesses, Unitarians) Let’s look at what the Bible teaches concerning Jesus’ resurrection.
- God raised Jesus from the dead
This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses (Acts 2:32 NASB)
In Acts 2 we read about the Pentecost experience with the apostles speaking in tongues and glorifying God, and proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus Christ. In Peter’s first sermon he testifies that God raised Jesus from the dead, and there was over 3000 people that day that came to believe in Christ Jesus.
- God the Father raised Jesus from the dead
3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. (Romans 6:3-4 NASB)
The apostle Paul in the book of Romans covers many topics about salvation, the gospel message of justification by faith apart from works, the Deity of Jesus Christ, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and much more. Paul taught in Romans chapter 6 that God the Father raised Jesus Christ from the dead.
- The Holy Spirit raised Jesus from the dead
But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you (Romans 8:11 NASB)
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead, which teaches the Holy Spirit is a distinct personage. There are Cults like the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Unitarians that do not believe the Holy Spirit is God or a personage. This verse along with other verses in the Bible affirm the belief that the Holy Spirit is God and a personage of the Trinity.
- Jesus raised Himself from the dead
19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 20 The Jews then said, “It took forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” 21 But He was speaking of the temple of His body. 22 So when He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered that He said this; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had spoken. (John 2:19-22 NASB)
In John 2:14-18 we read about Jesus turning over tables in the temple, drove out the oxen and sheep with the a scourge of cords, and poured out the coins from the money changers. Jesus declared to them, “stop making My Father’s house a place of business”. The Jews said to Jesus, “what sign do you show us as your authority for doing these things”? They challenged Jesus’ actions, and Jesus replied by stating “destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up”. (John 2:21) The Jews were thinking Jesus was speaking about the temple that took 46 years to build, but Jesus was speaking about the temple of His body.
The Bible teaches that Jesus claimed that He would raise Himself from the dead, thus this affirms Jesus’ Deity and that Jesus is God. Groups like the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Unitarians would do well to read theses Scriptures and see that the Bible teaches that Jesus is God.
17 “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. 18 “No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” (John 10:17-18 NASB)
In John 10 we see Jesus again claims that He would raise Himself to life from the dead. Yes, Jesus was sent from the Father to this world to die for the sins of the world, but we also learn that Jesus laid down His life willfully with unconditional love for mankind.
If Jesus Was Dead How Did He Raise Himself From The Dead?
That is also a good question that is understandable. Jesus physically died upon the cross but His spirit went to the Father. Check out the following:
John 10:14-18 “14 I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me, 15 even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 “I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd. 17 “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. 18 “No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” Jesus clearly states that He is going to lay down His life for the sheep and that He is going to also rise from the grave. Jesus says no one takes it from Him but lays it down on His own initiative freely. Jesus says He has the authority to lay it down and to take it up again which means Jesus knew exactly what He came to do and what was going to happen both in His death and resurrection. This He received from the Father which Jesus knew from the beginning.
John 14:1-6 “1 Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. 3 “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. 4 “And you know the way where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” Jesus told His disciples He is going to prepare a place for them for which they can be one day. Jesus said the only way to the Father was through Him which Jesus had to give His life as a ransom for which one could be saved and go to the very presence of the Father. Jesus was confident that He was going to the Father and one day would bring them also which indicates Jesus knew exactly what was going to happen in advance.
John 19:28-30 “28 After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had already been accomplished, to fulfill the Scripture, said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar full of sour wine was standing there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop and brought it up to His mouth. 30 Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.” Here is the final part of Jesus ministry in reference to His coming to make atonement. Jesus knew that all was fulfilled and said “It is finished” which paid our dept in full. All was fulfilled and Jesus completed that which He came to do from the Father.
Jesus gave His life as atonement for sin upon the cross, died physically, but His spirit went to the Father. This is important to understand because there are those who claim Jesus could not be God if He was dead. They say things like, was God dead for 3 days? The Bible teaches that Jesus is by nature God, eternally Deity, and His Divine nature never died.
For those interested check out this article and video Was Jesus Separated from God the Father on the Cross
The Bible teaches that Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father, Himself, and the Holy Spirit. This affirms the Trinity Doctrine and that the Bible teaches there is one God who has been revealed as three distinct persons as the Father, the Son, (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit. If you have any questions concerning this information you can leave a comment or by an email.
Check out for more information:
Proof and Evidence from the Old Testament on the Trinity Doctrine link
Who is Jesus? Jesus is God and Savior link
What is the Trinity Doctrine? What does the Bible teach? link