ASSIGNMENT 3 1
Maier,P.L., & Seibert, R H. Did Jesus Really Exist?
Maier and Seibert’s article Did Jesus Really Exist?discusses the controversial issue of the existence of Jesus Christ.The existence of Jesus on earth as a human being has been part ofscholarly research for several years. Jesus is considered one of themost influential figures in the history of religion, havinginfluenced the Christian religion based on his teachings (Maier &Seibert, n.d.). The accounts of His life are well documented inChristin theological books and sacred scriptures. However, provingHis existence would require one to go beyond relying on sacred booksof Christianity since that may not be adequate evidence to convincenon-believers of the Christian faith. Scholars have sought toestablish secular or external evidence of the existence of Jesus inaddition to the internal or religious evidence.
Maier and Seibert (n.d.) argue that Jesus existed as a human being.The authors state that there is adequate evidence, both secular andreligious, that proves the existence of Christ in ancient Israel.They state that the amount of evidence available to prove the humanexistence of Jesus Christ is so vast and real that even the‘shallowest intellectuals’ cannot refute (Maier & Seibert,n.d.). As such, the authors doubt the validity or soundness of anyevidence that claims the contrary.
To prove their point, the authors derive their evidence from multiplesources. They classify their evidence as internal and external.Internal evidence comes from within the Christin faith, mostly fromthe Old and New Testaments of the Christian Bible. They claim thatThe Prophesies of the Old Testament, The Gospels, and the other booksof the New testament all give accounts of the life of Jesus Christ(Maier & Seibert, n.d.). These books were written by well-knownpersonalities, most of whom were contemporaries of Jesus Christ. Forexample, writers of the Bible such as Paul and the other disciples ofJesus would not have written about Jesus and suffer in His name hadHe not existed. The bible also gives accounts of many otherhistorical events that occurred at the time of Jesus, such as theOrder by Herod to murder newborn males in an attempt to kill Jesus(Maier & Seibert, n.d.). Herod would not have gone to this extenthad Jesus never existed. The article also discusses a wide range orsecular or external evidence to prove the existence of Jesus. Theexternal evidence is subdivided into secular, Christian, and Jewishevidence.
The main concepts the authors define are external and internalevidence used to prove the existence of Christ Jesus. They defineinternal evidence as sacred evidence, which is mainly derived fromscriptures. On the other hand, the authors define external evidenceas secular evidence, which emanates from other sources apart from thescriptures.
The article is very informative as it brings out several kinds ofevidence to prove the existence of Jesus. One of the most interestingfacts from reading the article is the amount of secular proof for theexistence of Jesus. Many people who believe in the existence of Jesusbase their beliefs on their faith in the Christin Religion(Siniscalchi, 2016). However, the authors show that one can prove theexistence of Jesus independent of the Christian faith. The authorshave provided three different accounts of external evidence derivedfrom within Christianity, Judaism, and secular history.
I agree with the authors’ conclusion that Jesus existed on earth inhuman form. They have been excellent in presenting their argument andbacked it up with credible evidence. I also like the fact that theauthors have gone beyond Christianity or the Christian faith toextract meaningful evidence to support the existence of Christ. Theyhave adequately addressed the controversy by illustrating beyondreasonable doubt that Jesus existed in human form on earth as alludedto in the scriptures and other historical books.
Nonetheless, upon reading the article, a few questions came up thatneed further research to be addressed elaborately. Some of thequestions I have been pondering while reading the article include,does the existence of Jesus imply that His miracles were real? DidJesus predict His death? Did He die and resurrect as alleged in thescriptures? Is He the messiah that was promised in the Old Testament?Having proved the existence of Jesus, these critical questions focuson His life in relation to what Christians believe.
Maier, P.L., & Seibert, R H. (n.d). Did Jesus Really Exist? –.NAMB. Retrieved 7 April 2017, fromhttps://www.namb.net/apologetics/did-jesus-really-exist
Siniscalchi, G. B. (2016). Did Jesus Exist? The Historical Argumentfor Jesus of Nazareth. Heythrop Journal, 57(1),208-209.
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