Recant or be tortured to death. Sound like ISIS? Many Christians have faced that choice at their hands, but for the original disciples, it was the government who made that threat. None of them caved. All but John were executed. How could they have been firm, so brave and so unwilling to change their story? They were first-hand eyewitnesses. They knew how outlandish their claims seemed. But they seen, heard and touched Jesus before and after His resurrection.
For we did not follow cleverly devised stories when we told you about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in power, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (2Pe 1:16-17)
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. (1John 1:1-3)