Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Evidence that Demands a Verdict: Chapter 10, part 4

Don't worry, it's the end of this chapter. There's a whole other third part still to go! Bear with me.

The Hallucination Theory: all post-Resurrection appearances were hallucinations. But...
  • Being an eyewitness was extremely important.
  • Visions? Meaning: seems objective, but no actual, physical object is observed.
  • The overwhelmingly typical type of person who hallucinates is "high-strung." However, the people who saw the risen Christ were psychologically diverse; very few were "high-strung."
  • Hallucinations are very subjective and individualistic, brought on by familiar settings and wanting to see something. How could more than 500 people, for example, hallucinate the same thing at the same time?
  • There are many textual examples (vide: Thomas) of physically seeing/touching/hearing the risen Christ.
  • Familiar surroundings and certain time periods lead to hallucinations. But the actual circumstances were diverse and unlikely to induce visions.
  • People who hallucinate generally want to. But the disciples saw Christ without wanting to - against their will.
  • Hallucinations fade gradually, over months. But Christ's risen appearances stopped cold at the Ascension.
The Wrong Tomb theory: everybody forgot where Christ really lay. But...
  • The women had seen the grave firsthand three days before (Matthew 27:61, Mark 15:47, and Luke 23:55).
  • Upon hearing the women's report, the disciples ran to check (John 20:2-8).
  • The angel attested that it was the right tomb (Matthew 28:6).
  • Christ's enemies would definitely have gone to the right tomb for the body!
  • AND Joseph of Arimathea - it was his tomb, after all.
  • The women were purposeful and clear-headed, unlikely to mistake the tomb for another.
The conclusion: CHRIST IS RISEN! He is risen indeed!

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