Skip to comments.The Historicity of the Resurrection of Christ
Posted on 12/26/2013 6:15:06 PM PST by Olympiad Fisherman
Unlike all other religions that emphasize mysticism, myth, fables, legends, or even allegories, Christianity is a historical religion that upholds the facticity of its revelatory events that becomes the very object of faith. Not only is the crucifixion of Christ the most historically attested fact of the ancient world, but believe it or not, the resurrection of Jesus is not far behind. The test of faith in Christianity that so many have a hard time with is not that believing is a leap out into an irrational world of myth, but that believing is based on historical facts, the exact opposite of what most people presume to be the case. When the apostle Paul presented the gospel in Pisidian Antioch (Acts 13:16-42), he gave a history lesson, and then concluded, Behold, you scoffers, and marvel, and perish; For I am accomplishing a work in your days, A work which you will never believe, though someone should describe it to you (Acts 13:41)."
(Excerpt) Read more at 1024project.com ...
Although I am a believer the very simplicity of the main and the plain is what often trips me up in one way or another...leading to..sin.
I see this thread is in the Religion Forum and has no tag, therefore it is an open thread.
This recent thread on a similar subject was posted to a caucus tag but the tag seems to have been removed.
Did Jesus Claim to be God?
http://knowwhatyoubelieve.com/index.php ^ | 2013 | Richard Helsby
Posted on Mon 23 Dec 2013 05:14:49 AM PST by Kevmo
And this thread was locked:
Is Jesus Christ God?
Christian Answers ^ | 2012 | Various
Posted on Sun 22 Dec 2013 07:28:20 AM PST by DouglasKC
The religion moderator’s page is straightforward on what to expect out of these threads.
But the religion mod doesn’t have enough time to stay on top of these threads, and they are getting polluted by folks who have an idealogical agenda.
Why is this article excerpted? Also, the link you provide does not have the paragraph you posted.
Here’s the article, in case it vanishes into the dark reaches of the internet a few years from now.
The Historicity of the Resurrection of Christ
The Historicity of the Resurrection of Christ
By Mark Musser
The crucifixion of Jesus Christ (33 A.D.) is the most attested historical fact of the ancient world. In addition to the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, it is also widely attested by Greco-Roman and Jewish writers. Closely related, history also confirms that the tomb of Jesus Christ on that first Easter morning was indeed empty. Every vested party knew where Jesus was buried after he died. Yet on Easter, the tomb was found empty, and nobody has ever been recovered.
In fact, the gospel of Matthew showcases that there was a still a heated debate going on between certain Jewish leaders and the Christians in the apostolic church over whether or not the disciples had stolen the body (Matthew 28:1-15). As such, both sides knew full well that the tomb was empty. More surprising, both sides also knew of the presence of Roman guards.
With a plethora of similar historical details connected to the empty tomb, Greco-Roman historian Michael Grant concedes, The historian cannot justifiably deny the empty tomb if we apply the same sort of criteria that we would apply to any other ancient sources, then the evidence is firm and plausible enough to necessitate the conclusion that the tomb was indeed found empty.
Once the reality of the empty tomb sinks in, this stubborn fact substantially narrows down the historical possibilities of what transpired on Easter morning. Outside the resurrection itself of Jesus Christ, only a handful of other historical scenarios have been propagated in its place all of which can be routinely dismissed through a quick process of elimination.
One of the most popular answers to explain the empty tomb over the centuries is that the disciples stole Jesuss body during the night. The biggest problem with this supposition is it cannot explain the later behavior of the disciples, who became stalwart apostolic pillars in the church founded upon the preaching of the resurrection of Christ. The apostles lived very difficult lives. Many of them were martyred. If they had stolen the body of Christ, they would have known that Jesus was not raised from the dead. They thus would not have spent the rest of their lives sacrificing themselves for a lie.
Others have tried to implausibly advocate that the women who first visited the tomb Easter morning went to the wrong one. The very fact that the gospels admit that women were the first ones to visit the empty tomb gives historical authenticity to the entire account. In such a male-dominated world, no one in his right mind would ever want to acknowledge that women were the first to notice the tomb was empty especially when a new religion was essentially founded upon such an embarrassing fact.
Some have tried to suggest that Jesuss death was staged, or that it was a hoax. This is impossible for the simple reason that no one could have survived the cross. Jesus was beaten to a pulp and whipped out of his mind before he was crucified. Once he was nailed to the cross, his fate was sealed.
Others have tried to say that the resurrection appearances of Jesus to his disciples were hallucinations. Hallucinations, however, are individual occurrences by definition. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Paul wrote that whole groups of people, along with hundreds of eyewitnesses, saw the resurrected Lord. In 1 Corinthians 15, the apostle Paul tells his followers in Corinth that more than 500 witnesses saw the resurrected Christ at one time, most of whom were still alive at the time of Pauls writing (1 Corinthians 15:1-8).
Still others have tried to venture the idea the resurrection accounts were based on fictitious folklore. However, such legends typically require 200-300 years in order to be established which is precisely what did happen with all of the fanciful apocryphal gospels that have helped spur the modern interest in The Da Vinci Code. In great contrast, the apostles were preaching the resurrection of Christ from the very outset, and even some of the most radical skeptical scholars of the German Protestant Enlightenment, like Ferdinand Christian Bauer (1792-1860), admitted that Galatians, Romans, and the Corinthian epistles were penned by the apostle Paul who emphasized the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Bauer believed that much of the New Testament was written much later by pseudo-authors.
However, one of the most eminent ancient church historians of all time, English scholar J.B. Lightfoot (1829-1889), established very early dates for two important church fathers Clement and Ignatius both of whom quoted or alluded to most of the New Testament around the turn of the 1st century. Sir William Ramsay (1851-1939) then established the surprising accuracy of the book of Acts, stating that Luke was one of the greatest historians of the ancient world. In 1976, John A.T. Robinson (1919-1983) demolished the entire edifice of Protestant Germanys skepticism by writing a book called Redating the New Testament. Robinson placed the entire New Testament back to the 1st century because it everywhere presumes that the Jerusalem Temple was still standing. Since the Romans destroyed the temple in 70 A.D., the New Testament must have been written before that time.
This leaves modern man faced with the startling conclusion that Jesus Christ may have indeed been raised from the dead. A little more than a century ago, Dr. W.H. Griffith Thomas wrote an outstanding book entitled Christianity is Christ, where he strongly concluded that the resurrection of Jesus was one of the best-attested facts of the ancient world. Much later in the 20th century, Josh McDowell compiled a vast array of Christian evidences that demand a verdict, and Lee Strobel has an excellent Case for Christ. In fact, Strobel persuasively contends that the very historical existence of Christianity cannot be explained apart from the historicity of the resurrection of Christ.
Just because the resurrection of Christ cannot be placed in an experimental scientific test tube does not mean that it is an irrational fairy tale. In 1 Corinthians 15, one of the longest chapters in the New Testament, the apostle Paul strings together a series of arguments for the resurrection of the dead everything from the authority of the Old Testament to historical eyewitness accounts to his own apostolic authority and personal life and even for the sake of morality itself. Paul even points out that nature itself teaches the resurrection of the dead every year a farmer plants his garden anew (1 Corinthians 15:36).
It was Jewish German scholar Karl Lowith (1897-1973) who acutely observed, The Christian hope is almost rational, for it rests on faith in an accomplished fact. However, because the apostolic writers depicted the historical events of the gospels as a decisive once-for-all cosmic salvation event, the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ invariably offends, contradicts, and upsets the normal historical consciousness of both ancient and modern times. The Christian faith offended the classical mind because it rendered a onetime historical event with ultimate significance. The Christian faith offends the modern mind because it exempts its own specific history of salvation from the generalized history of multicultural godlessness. Such unforgivable offenses are why the resurrection of Christ will often continue to be ignored and attacked in spite of its historicity.
This seems like a pretty benign article to me. Who do you think would have a problem with it?
Based on my experiences on 3 recent threads, there is a contingent who dislike the fact that Jesus was condemned to die because He claimed equality with God before the sanhedrin. As the article states, “the crucifixion of Jesus Christ (33 A.D.) is the most attested historical fact of the ancient world. “ But there are some freepers who have deep idealogical issues with that, and twist history & scripture to push their case.
SUPERIOR article! THANKS for posting!
A word to the wise is sufficient... just be prepared. When they come, they will try to poison your thread.
I would recommend putting this into the [ecumenical] tag under the religion moderator’s guidelines... From the RM’s home page:
Ecumenical threads are closed to antagonism.
To antagonize is to incur or to provoke hostility in others.
Unlike the caucus threads, the article and reply posts of an ecumenical thread may discuss more than one belief, but antagonism is not tolerable.
More leeway is granted to what is acceptable in the text of the article than to the reply posts. For example, the term gross error in an article will not prevent an ecumenical discussion, but a poster should not use that term in his reply because it is antagonistic. As another example, the article might be a passage from the Bible which would be antagonistic to Jews. The passage should be considered historical information and a legitimate subject for an ecumenical discussion. The reply posts however must not be antagonistic.
Contrasting of beliefs or even criticisms can be made without provoking hostilities. But when in doubt, only post what you are for and not what you are against. Or ask questions.
Ecumenical threads will be moderated on a where theres smoke, theres fire basis. When hostility has broken out on an ecumenical thread, Ill be looking for the source.
Therefore anti posters must not try to finesse the guidelines by asking loaded questions, using inflammatory taglines, gratuitous quote mining or trying to slip in an anti or ex article under the color of the ecumenical tag.
You are very welcome!
Historicity? Is that a word?
Yes. And a keyword.
Thanks for posting this. The articles regarding why there are four Gospels are excellent, too. In these latter days I sense there is some ecumenism in the USA, for which Christ is to be praised, since He is the ultimate Head of the Church.
The Romans and the Jewish leaders looked for Jesus’ body. They did not want an uprising so they wanted to show that He was really dead. They couldn’t find it.
I wrote a paper with this title in college. Enjoyed the experience very much...
“But there are some freepers who have deep idealogical issues with that, and twist history & scripture to push their case.’
I didn’t realize that just wow
Just look at the last 4 or 5 threads under the keyword “historicity” and you’ll see it. Spiritually sickening.