Rarely is it the case but some actually doubt that Jesus ever lived.
History, however, is not without its anomalies. G.A. Wells was just such a skeptic who denied Christ lived and even asserted that Paul’s writings developed before the Gospel’s and that he actually knew little, if anything, of Christ. This argument fails at the mention of a single text in the first Pauline epistle to the Corinthians. Paul states:
1 Corinthians 15:3 NKJV, For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
Paul makes it adamantly clear that he has delivered something that he had received beforehand, not prior to his writings. What he delivered is that “Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures.” This indicates Paul’s familiarity with Jewish messianic prophecy and their fulfillment in Jesus Christ. Only God forgives sin and can remove them from our account; therefore to associate Jesus with atonement is to associate Him with deity.
The evidence is compelling that Christ lived not far from the times of Paul himself, in fact it could be called recently. “Paul refers to Jesus’ contemporaries: Cephas and the twelve (1 Cor. 15:5); the apostles, brothers of Christ, and Cephas (1 Cor. 9:5); James, the brother of the Lord, and the apostle Peter (Gal. 1:18–19); the apostles Peter, James, and John (Gal. 2:8–9); Peter alone (Gal. 2:11). The best explanation for the phrase “the third day” (1 Cor. 15:3–4) is that Paul had temporal interests in mind, and that these witnesses began to see Jesus three days after he was raised from the dead.”
To further complicate such an hypothesis, Paul lets us know that many of the 500 people who saw the resurrected Christ were still alive for investigation (1 Corinthians 15:6). Paul wrote 1 Corinthians around 55-57 AD.
Recently, while preparing to build a new prison in Israel, an ancient church at Megiddo with the mosaic stating "the God, Jesus Christ" was found. This basically debunked delusional authors like Dan Brown (Da Vinci Code) and others who purport that Jesus was not viewed as God in the early church. It should even silence the rare critic who might suggest that Christ never lived. This ancient mosaic speaks volumes concerning Jesus Christ as God Himself.
1 Rudolf Bultmann, “The Study of the Synoptic Gospels,” in Form Criticism, transl. by Frederick C. Grant (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1962), p. 60.
Habermas, G. R., & Habermas, G. R. (1996). The historical Jesus : Ancient evidence for the life of Christ. Rev. ed. of: Ancient evidence for the life of Jesus. (27). Joplin, Mo.: College Press Pub. Co.
Habermas, G. R., & Habermas, G. R. (1996). The historical Jesus : Ancient evidence for the life of Christ. Rev. ed. of: Ancient evidence for the life of Jesus. (31). Joplin, Mo.: College Press Pub. Co.