Craig Hazen – Evidence for the Resurrection
Tomorrow in our apologetics class (Lord willing) I will be having the students watch the excellent lecture by Dr. Craig Hazen on the evidence for the resurrection of Jesus, which includes a discussion of 12 facts agreed upon by scholars, both liberal and conservative. He then evaluates those 12 known facts against 13 theories about what happened to determine each theory’s explanatory power (which of the 12 facts it doesn’t account for). The only 2 theories that account for all 12 known facts are:
- Jesus was an alien
- Jesus was bodily resurrected
Great video, great analysis! Here’s the video:
Here is the note taking form, along with the chart showing the 13 theories which attempt to explain the 12 known facts:
Notes for “Evidence for the Resurrection” by Craig Hazen
(Professor of Comparative Religion and Christian Apologetics at Biola University)
- Outline for talk at U.C.L.A. Jesus was:
- A___________ at point A
- D___________ at point B
- Alive a_______ at point C
- Student said, “You’re making it sound like its true true! You’re making it sound like I can k__________ i___ to be true.”
- Pudd’nhead Wilson (Mark Twain book): “Faith is believin’ what ya know a______ so”
- This idea that Christianity is t___________ sets it apart in dramatic fashion from the other great world religious traditions.
- University of Miami talk – “if I’m going to address the topic of science and religion, it would probably be very helpful if I perform a miracle” – he proceeded to raise his arm and challenged his audience to explain what just happened. Someone shouted, “You did it!” (I am not my b________)
- There’s something more to life than the stuff of the p______________ world.
- We’ve got “the goods” on this – you are well within your e____________ rights to say “I know the resurrection happened”.
- One of the strangest passages in all of religious literature: 1 C____________ 15:12-17
- He (Jesus) doesn’t just live in my heart, He lives in His body, which came back from the grave on the 3rd day, exactly as the S____________ declare!
- Scholars confirm, Jesus was indeed a real historical figure and He died by Roman crucifixion in 1st century J___________.
- Same scholars (except for the conservatives), regarding the resurrection, based on the same body of evidence, said, “Well, who can possibly know what h_____________ so long ago?”
- This is not about evidence – this is about people’s w________ v_______ – these people were not open to the idea of a miracle.
12 Minimal Facts about the Resurrection of Jesus That Most Scholars Agree On
- Jesus died by cr_______________
- He was b_____________
- Jesus’ death caused the disciples to d____________ and lose hope, believing that his life was ended
- The tomb was discovered to be e____________ just a few days later
- The disciples had experiences which they believed were literal a___________________ of the risen Jesus
- The disciples were tr_______________ from doubters who were afraid to identify themselves with Jesus to bold proclaimers of his death and resurrection
- This message (the resurrection) was the center of pr_____________ in the early church
- This message was especially proclaimed in J_____________, where Jesus died and was buried shortly before
- As a result of this preaching the church was b____________ and grew
- S_______________ became the primary day of worship
- J____________, who had been a skeptic, was converted to the faith when he also believed he saw the resurrected Jesus
- A few years later, P________ was also converted by an experience which he, likewise, believed to be an appearance of the risen Jesus
- Would an unbiased observer conclude that the best explanation for the facts about Jesus is that He was raised from the dead? Why or why not? (there are no unbiased observers – most people have an anti-supernatural bias) – John 12:37 says “Even after Jesus had performed so many signs in their presence, they still would not believe in him”
- If there was so much evidence for the resurrection, then why didn’t the Jewish leaders believe? (John 12:42-23 – they loved praise from men more than praise from God) – also, the Bible says that “it was out of envy that the chief priests had handed Jesus over to him (Pilate)” (Matt 27:18; Mark 15:10)
- Why is it considered a piece of evidence that the disciples believed they saw Jesus risen from the dead? (Liars make poor martyrs. No one dies for a known lie. The disciples were in a position to know whether their beliefs were true or false).
Here is the chart