Monday, July 07, 2008

And beginning at Moses and all the prophets...

"A three-foot high tablet romantically dubbed 'Gabriel's Revelation' could challenge the uniqueness of the idea of the Christian resurrection. The tablet appears to date authentically to the years just before the birth of Jesus and yet — at least according to one Israeli scholar — announces the raising of a Messiah after three days in the grave. If true, this could mean that Jesus' followers had access to a well-established paradigm when they decreed that Christ himself rose on the third day — and it might even hint that they they could have applied it in their grief after their master was crucified."

"This, in turn, undermines one of the strongest literary arguments employed by Christians over centuries to support the historicity of the Resurrection (in which they believe on faith): the specificity and novelty of the idea that the Messiah would die on a Friday and rise on a Sunday. Who could make such stuff up? But, as Knohl told TIME, maybe the Christians had a model to work from. The idea of a 'dying and rising Messiah appears in some Jewish texts, but until now, everyone thought that was the impact of Christianity on Judaism' he says. 'But for the first time, we have proof that it was the other way around. The concept was there before Jesus.' If so, he goes on, 'This should shake our basic view of Christianity... What happens in the New Testament [could have been] adopted by Jesus and his followers based on an earlier Messiah story.'"

full story

Luke 24
18 One of them, named Cleopas, answered and said to Him, "Are You the only one visiting Jerusalem and unaware of the things which have happened here in these days?"
19 And He said to them, "What things?" And they said to Him, "The things about Jesus the Nazarene, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word in the sight of God and all the people,
20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to the sentence of death, and crucified Him.
21 "But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel. Indeed, besides all this, it is the third day since these things happened.
22 "But also some women among us amazed us. When they were at the tomb early in the morning,
23 and did not find His body, they came, saying that they had also seen a vision of angels who said that He was alive.
24 "Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just exactly as the women also had said; but Him they did not see."
25 And He said to them, "O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!
26 "Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?"
27 Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.

Acts 2
22 "Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know--
23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.
24 "But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.
25 "For David says of Him,
'I SAW THE LORD ALWAYS IN MY PRESENCE;
FOR HE IS AT MY RIGHT HAND, SO THAT I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN.
26 'THEREFORE MY HEART WAS GLAD AND MY TONGUE EXULTED;
MOREOVER MY FLESH ALSO WILL LIVE IN HOPE;
27 BECAUSE YOU WILL NOT ABANDON MY SOUL TO HADES,
NOR ALLOW YOUR HOLY ONE TO UNDERGO DECAY.
28 'YOU HAVE MADE KNOWN TO ME THE WAYS OF LIFE;
YOU WILL MAKE ME FULL OF GLADNESS WITH YOUR PRESENCE.'
29 "Brethren, I may confidently say to you regarding the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day.
30 "And so, because he was a prophet and knew that GOD HAD SWORN TO HIM WITH AN OATH TO SEAT one OF HIS DESCENDANTS ON HIS THRONE,
31 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that HE WAS NEITHER ABANDONED TO HADES, NOR DID His flesh SUFFER DECAY.
32 "This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses."

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