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The Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ [Paperback]

By Kirsopp Lake (Author)
Our Price $ 22.95  
Retail Value $ 27.00  
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Item Number 111454  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   300
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.02" Width: 5.06" Height: 0.69"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 1, 2004
Publisher   Wipf & Stock Publishers
ISBN  1592446973  
EAN  9781592446971  

Availability  0 units.

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Paperback $ 27.00 $ 22.95 111454
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Item Description...
Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER II THE NARRATIVE OF THE RESURRECTION IN MARK AND THE PARALLEL SYNOPTIC PASSAGES As was said in the Introduction, the result of modern criticism is to emphasise the close connexion between the Synoptic Gospels, and to explain it as due to the use of a common source. This fact has to be taken into account in considering any narrative which is found in more than one gospel. Many of the details still remain in many ways doubtful, but it is now generally held to be proved that the first and third evangelistsi made use of a document which was, both in language and contents, so closely related to Mark that the only question is whether it was or was not quite identical with it. Mark 1 As a matter of convenience, I have adopted the custom of writing St Matthew, St Mark, etc., when I mean the persons, and omitting the St when I mean the books, independently of their authorship, or the redactors who produced the canonical text. xvi. 9-20 is an undoubtedly later addition, which has to be considered separately. It seems probable that this document was already in existence about the close of the seventh decade of the first century, and it was used by the two other synoptic writers, probably before, and certainly not long after, the beginning of the second century. When, therefore, we find a narrative which is given in all three gospels, we have no right to say that we have three separate accounts of the same incident; but we must take the account in Mark as presumably the basis of the other two, and ask whether their variations cannot be explained as due to obscurities or ambiguities in their source, which they tried to clear up, though they did not do so always in the same way, or in ways which were consistent with one another. Thus, since Matthew and Luke, so far as they a...

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Product Categories
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Challenges of Textual Criticism  Oct 14, 2007
"The Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus" by Kirsopp Lake seems to offer no Historical Evidence for the re-embodiment of Jesus. Lake's method in textual criticism reduces the accounts of the Resurrection of Jesus to something close to (but not quite) a subjective experience by followers of Jesus, that on some level they really experienced. I say on some level, because Lake, by the first chapter has poured a different meaning into resurrection; moving it from some understanding of re-embodiment (the use of which has been studied extensively by N.T. Wright and documented in The Resurrection of the Son of God ) to something that is only a transubstantiation from the "flesh and blood" to "spirit." While some do give support to such a notion, Lake does nothing to show that this is not the only view that can be understood from the text, and in fact this is the less popular view in light of all that is said about resurrection in the Bible and Jewish literature. Wright gives many reasons, even from Baruch, why transformation from physical to spiritual is not the intended meaning.

On this view Lake takes us on a journey that professes to explore "the testimony of the early Christians and is not primarily concerned with the spiritual evidence of religious experience." Unfortunately, his method does not permit success. Instead his method attempts to compare the extant material, to recover the original written materials and try to draw conclusions on what the true original traditions looked like. He gives no explanation why the Gospels themselves are not the original traditions.

Lake's method of textual criticism at times draws incorrect conclusions from texts, always assuming a deeper tradition to the ones currently being studied. Lake measures the Gospels, Paul, Acts, and Apocryphal gospels against one another using his own reasons to construct the most likely texts and from there the most likely traditions. Now, sometimes Lake may have something important to contribute, but I took issue with two things in the beginning (things that someone less versed in textual criticism or the Bible may have not immediately rejected.) These made me question how Lake is treating these texts. The first is mentioned above; the understanding of the word resurrection. Had I not just encountered the in depth word study done by Wright, I would have accepted Lake's variation based on only one of Paul's writings where it does seem Paul speaks of a spiritual resurrection. However a complete understanding of resurrection and how it was used in antiquity forces Paul's explanation in 1Cor. to refer to a change that we probably don't completely understand yet. But it is safe to say there is physicality to resurrection, any resurrection. Second, and this is less technical, Lake understands the end of Luke to give a very strict understanding that Jesus Ascended on the evening of the Resurrection. Now is this truly the only way this can be taken? Do the Gospels have to be understood in a strict chronological sense? Are we to understand that nothing else happened in the three years of Jesus' ministry if it is not recorded in the comparatively short Gospels? Lake calls the ending of Luke and the beginning of Acts a "contradiction." Is there really no way to harmonize and understand the two to be highlighting the same event and specifying different details in each (Acts specifically denoting time and Luke not.) This happens in other areas too. One does not have to be a Greed scholar to see that some of Lake's conclusions do not follow. This begins to hurt Lake more and more as his case does depend on a gathering of such conclusions to move to his next points.

Lake also seems to give little support as to why some texts are pivotal while so many must be interpolations. Reading this book was difficult and puzzling at times, it is difficult to make rhyme or reason to how the stories we take from the Gospels are nothing more than writers using some common traditions and their freedom to embellish where they see fit. This does not at all seem to be their intent if words indeed mean what they mean. Luke is pretty explicit about his intentions at the beginning of his Gospel, and also John at the end of his. Peter is also expressive in his letters when he submits that they did not make up cleverly crafted stories. Yet, these texts must be dismissed in order to allow the freedom of what Lake purports to have taken place in the writing of these documents. When should this method be used? Could I use it to evaluate Lake's writings?

In the end, Lake devastates the historical accounts of the Resurrection of Jesus and instead opts for a real spiritual experience, that by logical deduction (for those who accepted certain traditions) made such things such as and empty tomb, third day resurrection, and professed appearances necessary to help sustain what would likely be the case if a resurrection would have happened. In essence the expectation of a type of resurrection helped create a tradition that, with the analysis of textual criticism, really didn't happen.

I think there are better resources that, even if harsh towards the resurrection, speak better to the accounts we have.

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