Tag Archives: Bodily Resurrection

William Lane Craig vs. John Shelby Spong on the resurrection of Jesus

William Lane Craig is the greatest Christian debater in the history of the church, and Episcopal Bishop John Shelby Spong is a very liberal non-Christian.

Part 1 of 2: (61 minutes)

Part 2 of 2: (42 minutes)

The moderator is none other than the famous journalist David Aikman! The opening speeches are only 15 minutes, and the rebuttals are 10 minutes. This debate is accessible because Craig’s opponent is not really attacking him on a scholarly basis, but more as the pretty typical liberal atheist that you meet at work.

Craig spends all of his opening speech explaining historical methods, sources, dating and how he infers the resurrection as the best explanation of the minimal facts. The resurrection of Jesus is quite awesome to debate when people are given time to explain the historical methods and how the scholars use these methods to evaluate which facts are likely to be historical and which are not.

Is pre-suppositionalism a Biblical way of defending the faith?

I’m a classical apologist, so I do use pre-suppositional arguments to question my opponents about whether their non-Christian worldviews can ground rationality and objective morality, etc. But I also use evidential arguments from nature and history. Some people think that evidential arguments should not be used and that they are not as persuasive as pre-suppositional arguments.

When I look the Bible, I don’t see any Biblical support for the view that pre-suppositional apologetics is the only approved way of defending the faith. Instead, the standard method seems to be evidentialism.

In Romans 1, Paul writes that people can learn about God’s existence from the natural world.

Romans 1:18-23:

18The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness,

19since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.

20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.

22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools

23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

And in Acts, Peter appeals to eyewitness testimony for the resurrection, and Jesus’ miracles.

Acts 2:22-24, and 36:

22“Men of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know.

23This man was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.

24But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

And finally from the same chapter:

36“Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”

So, I see that God uses nature and miracles to persuade, which can be assessed using scientific and historical methods. Can anyone find me a clear statement that states that only pre-suppositional arguments should be used? I could be wrong, and I am willing to be proven wrong.

How good are you at defending the resurrection of Jesus?

Here is the link to a quiz on the resurrection of Jesus.

Here’s my score:

I scored 6210! Can you beat that?
I scored 6210! Can you beat that?

My former co-worker Todd actually beat my score, so let’s hope he doesn’t read this post and show me up in front of all of you!

More Gary Habermas

You might want to buy the book if you want to learn more.

And you can hear him explain “The Resurrection Argument that Changed a Generation of Scholars” on YouTube.

He debates a Duke University professor here: (one of my favorites)

Two Views on the Resurrection: Dialog with Dr. Joel Marcus, Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at Duke University Divinity School
PART I (8MB) :|: PART II (8MB) :|: PART III (8MB) [MP3 files]

And he responds to Dan Brown’s fictional novels here:

Cracking the Da Vinci Code
PART I (8MB) :|: PART II (8MB) :|: PART III (5MB) :|: PART IV (5MB) [MP3 files]
Lecture given at the 4th Annual Worldview Apologetics Conference

Here are some previous posts I wrote on the minimal facts case:

UPDATE: I was just browsing on The Resurrection of Jesus blog that is focused on the resurrection and found this video of Mike Licona.