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This review is from: The Jesus Inquest: The Case For and Against the Resurrection of the Christ (Paperback)
I was given a copy of this book to read by the publisher, Thomas Nelson.
This a case for and against the resurrection of the Christ.
Charles Foster is a writer, barrister, tutor in medical law and ethics at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Green Templeton College, Oxford. He has written, edited, or contributed to over thirty books.
This book is a debate between two characters: X and Y.
X presents the non-Christian view. He presents all the positions he thinks are arguable, plus some others that are too popular to be ignored.
Y presents the Christian view. Normally he uses the same headings that X has used. When that doesn't work, he adds headings of his own.
X and Y don't disagree on everything. Sometimes, in their zeal to cover the ground comprehensively, they have deployed arguments that are inconsistent with one another.
It may be that the evidence presented in this book will be insufficient to permit any conclusion at all. This book contains many arguments and facts, but it has only skimmed the surface. Behind each of the points raised by X and Y lies a huge scholarly hinterland: a mass of journals, conference proceedings, footnotes, and debate.
By and large, even the most skeptical scholars agree that Jesus existed. Most presume that He met His death by crucifixion in more or less the way described in the Gospels.
The battle lines are clearly drawn along five fronts: explanations for the empty tomb, the positive assertions about the Jesus family tomb, the evidence about post-resurrection appearances, the evidence for early belief in the "physical" resurrection of Jesus, and the influence on the development of the resurrection story of other "dying and rising gods" stories.
After all is said and done, one still has to ask, "How did the disciples come to believe that the man Jesus was the first one to emerge so shockingly from the grave?" For rightly or wrongly, they certainly seem to have believed it.
I found this book to be written in a very technical manner. In my opinion it is too difficult to understand in many areas to hold the interest of the average reader. It would probably be of more interest to a biblical scolar. I would give this book 2 stars.