Monday, April 21, 2014

BookPastor >> "Alive!" (J. Warner Wallace)

TITLE: Alive: A Cold-Case Approach to the Resurrection
AUTHOR: J. Warner Wallace
PUBLISHER: Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook Publishers, 2014, (22 pages).

Christ is risen! Christ is risen indeed!

The world all over celebrates and remembers the resurrection of Christ. With Easter Sunday yesterday, millions of Christians around the world celebrated the great occasion of faith, of joy, and of hope. Yet, there are skeptics who refuse to accept the validity of the Resurrection of Christ. There are also many who point to the lack of evidence to support Christ's resurrection claims. This book is one book that attempts to take a "cold-case approach" to investigate the resurrection claims like a detective. Written by a former investigator well trained in the technical field of "death-scene investigation," he begins by pointing out the cold facts of any murder scene. Gradually, he proceeds to the ancient story of how Jesus was killed and highlights four "minimal facts" that both "friends and foes of Christianity" will agree upon.

  1. Jesus died on the cross and was buried
  2. Jesus' tomb was empty, and no one ever produced his body
  3. Jesus' disciples believed that they saw Jesus resurrected from the dead
  4. Jesus' disciples were transformed following their alleged resurrection observations
The rest of the book looks at the different objections made my skeptics.

Accusation #1 - The disciples were wrong about Jesus' death

  • How then do we explain the actual pulling of Jesus from the cross and the witnesses then of Jesus' death?
  • The mixture of blood and water that poured out of Jesus' body when pierced is a scientific evidence of a dead body. A living body will only have blood.
  • Roman guards face serious consequences if they allow a living person to be removed from the cross
  • and others.
Accusation #2 - The disciples lied about the resurrection
  • How do we explain the many other witnesses who can testify the resurrection of Christ?
  • Jewish authorities were thorough about making sure no one can steal the body of Christ
  • Disciples lacked motive to lie.
Accusation #3 - The disciples were delusional
  • Why then the empty tomb?
  • Are large groups of people capable of hallucinations together?
  • Why the absence of the body?
  • People like Thomas were skeptical, but he too finally believed.
 Accusation #4 - The disciples were fooled by an imposter
  • It will take someone who is closer to Jesus than the disciples to pull off such a stint
  • Impersonator would need miraculous powers to continue tricking the disciples
  • Does not account for missing body
Accusation #5 - The disciples were influenced by limited spiritual sightings

  • How to explain the many sightings by hundreds of people?
  • What about the missing body and the empty tomb?
 Accusation #6 - The disciples' observations were distorted later

  • The earliest activities of the disciples is centered on the resurrection of Christ. The "later" argument thus contradicts the evidence
  • The testimony of the disciples were based on the resurrection
Using the system of abductive reasoning, Wallace finally moves toward concluding that Jesus has risen. The accusations hold no water as they seem more incredible than to trust the resurrection of Christ. If you are looking for a quick study and arguments to support the resurrection of Christ, this book will be a fine read.


No comments:

Latest Posts