The Resurrection of Jesus: History, Experience, Theology

The Resurrection of Jesus: History, Experience, Theology

The Resurrection of Jesus: History, Experience, Theology

The Resurrection of Jesus: History, Experience, Theology

Synopsis

This book, which has sparked a storm of controversy in Germany, embarks on an exhaustive examination of all the New Testament and Apocrypha texts realting to the Resurrection. Provocative, stimulating, and courageous, Luedemann's work will occasion re-evaluation of just what the New Testament--and we--affirm in the Resurrection of Jesus.

Excerpt

The theses of this book caused quite a stir even before its publication. They were passionately rejected in circles which regard any disputing of the bodily resurrection of Jesus as a betrayal of the gospel, which thought it quite natural to call for legal proceedings to be taken against the author. Others, who present themselves as modern Christians, thought that it was going too far to say that the body of Jesus decayed, and criticized the book for overestimating history and underestimating theology. But despite all the objections and opposition, the book has already started something, and introduced a process of fermentation which will serve to clarify what is meant by 'resurrection'.

The book seeks to teach, to stimulate and to offer a reasonable human approach to 'resurrection'. This is all the more important since the 'resurrection' of Jesus has largely become both an indispensable requisite of theology and an empty phrase. So today many Christians have fallen victim to a schizophrenic split in their consciousnesses. The hallowed precincts of the tradition of the church and theology are often set abruptly over against the natural human feeling for truth. Unless a bridge is built here, the credibility of theology and the church will disappear, and the two, for all their apparent splendour, will become petrified. So this book is specifically not written with a view to its results being useful for the church; its main aim is to investigate the historical truth–honestly and regardless of other factors. Only on the basis of such quasi-empirical work is a theological reflection possible, though the emphasis here is not on such reflection.

The first two chapters describe the lay-out of the present work and the need for it. Readers who are not so interested in theology but primarily in history can begin at Chapter 3. At all events, I would like this book to be read not only by theologians and rising theologians, but above all also by reflective men and women who have some interest in Christianity and want to investigate the Christian case thoroughly at its central point.

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