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Definition

The claim of the bodily resurrection of Jesus is central to the Christian message as the cornerstone of all claims to divinity and salvific efficacy, and although it has been hotly contested by those with naturalist presuppositions, the historical data supports the Christian claim of the resurrection.

Summary

The claim of Jesus’s bodily resurrection is central to the gospel message. Without his bodily resurrection, Jesus’s claims to divinity would be empty, and the gospel’s claim to be the power of God for salvation would be false. Although many with naturalistic presuppositions have questioned the legitimacy of the claim of resurrection, six facts support the credibility of the historical claim. First, death by crucifixion was not something that the followers of Jesus were likely to invent. Second, burial account fits with all historical evidence that we have. Third, the claim of the empty tomb was easily verifiable, but there are no contradictory accounts. Fourth,  the apostles claim to have met the resurrected Jesus face-to-face. Fifth, these apostles were willing to suffer and die for these claims. Sixth, those who were very unlikely to be converted to this belief were, nonetheless, converted by means of personal experiences of the resurrected Christ.

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