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The Peculiarities Of Christianity As A World Religion

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Claim

The claim for Christianity states that 2,000 years ago God the Son came to the earth to reveal the earth to reveal the Father to us and then to die to save us from our sins; the resurrection is the evidence which supports this claim. Throughout this book, Dr. Ford refers to Jesus as, “God the Son”. Usually he is referred to as the Son of God, even in the bible. Ford refers to Jesus as God the Son because it puts more emphasis on Jesus’ state as a deity. However, not only as a deity, but a deity that is equal to God. The title of the Son of God insinuates that he is beneath God when he is in fact on equal terms with God as a deity.

Jesus was specifically chosen by God to reveal the father to us. According to Ford and Christianity, Jesus is the perfect son. God saw traces of the Father in Jesus in the spiritual sense. Being the God is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. With Jesus being the mirror image of the Father, God, he could be the only one to reveal him to us. He was also meant to bring us salvation from our sins. This salvation comes from us accepting him into our lives so that he can transform us into the sons and daughters of God. This transformation is done through our relationship between Jesus and leads to our sonship and daughter-ship with the Father, God. This personal and spiritual relationship with Jesus gives us an eternity of peace after death in God’s home, Heaven, and saves us from Lucifer’s dwelling grounds, Hell.

However, none of this could be accomplished without the resurrection of Jesus. If it is to be true, then it is indisputable evidence that Jesus is the son of God. This is an action that only God could make because his resurrection was over a three-day period, and not a human caused resuscitation. This is a transformation in his body from being a mortal to a deity that will never be able to die again. If God did resurrect Jesus then it could only mean either Jesus is the son of God, or God revived a non-righteous person. The ladder of which being something a perfect God could never do.

Evidence and Logical Support for Christianity

Throughout history there have been many discoveries that point to Christianity being true. The resurrection of Jesus being a true event would solidify this as fact. However, if the resurrection didn’t occur then there would be no solid evidence that Jesus is who the Christian community believes he is. However, if there is a great amount of evidence that can make you believe it is true then it would be up to the people to decide for themselves if Christianity is true.

One of the many pieces of evidence that is presented in favor of Christianity being true is the empty tomb that was discovered in which Jesus’ body was supposed to be in but was nowhere to be found. However, this empty tomb does not definitively prove that Jesus rose from the dead. This piece of evidence is necessary, but not sufficient evidence. This doesn’t prove that he was resurrected, but If we didn’t have this evidence it would be proof that he still laid in his tomb and that there was no resurrection. There have been many counter arguments to the evidence that there is an empty tomb where Jesus was supposed to lay. One of the most common rebuttals is that the women went to the wrong tomb. However, there were many people who knew were the tomb was kept. Also, if they did go to the wrong tomb all they would need to do is go to the correct tomb and present a body. Christianity naysayers didn’t attempt this and there is no evidence of his body being in another tomb anywhere else. Other theories about the missing body is that disciples of Jesus came and stole the body and hid it in an undisclosed location. This explanation holds little weight because it insinuates that a group of cowardice disciples overpowered the trained Roman guards, collected the body, the Romans doing nothing to stop them, and then finally spreading the gospel of Jesus’ resurrection. All of this would have been done in the Roman empire without any repercussions to the disciples. This is a stretch seeing what they did to Jesus after him being portrayed as a “political threat”.

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Another claim for the resurrection of Jesus being a true event is that there are many eyewitnesses to the resurrection. Although this isn’t concrete evidence, it certainly is sufficient evidence. If this is to be true it would be clear-cut evidence proving that Jesus rose from the grave. Paul a spreader of the word, wrote a letter in the book of Corinthians accounting his experience which stated, “Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep” (1 Cor 15:3-8). This is very important because it was written within the 25-year span in which the event occurred and there were over 500 people to witness it. The main people who were able to witness the event were Peter, The Twelve, James the stepbrother of Jesus, the 500 brethren, the apostles, and lastly Paul. Throughout this list there is one big omission that wasn’t mentioned. The women who checked Jesus’ tomb.

The eyewitnesses of Jesus’ resurrection had a lot of credibility behind them. Peter, or Cephas, was the first to see Jesus after the resurrection and he was told to build church on the rock he was standing on, which he did. Next were the Twelve Disciples (excluding Judas of course) which were the original disciples that Jesus called during his public ministry. After that it was James, Jesus’ stepbrother, who didn’t accept him as the savior at first. According to Christian texts, it was the resurrection that made him change his mind. Next was the group of 500 people. There has been claims that this was mass hysteria which caused them to see the same thing. However, this has been disproven because if that were the case then it would be a mass hallucination which is impossible. Lastly, Paul saw his resurrection. Initially Paul was hostile towards Christians however, witnessing the resurrection caused Paul to convert to Christianity and spread the gospel. The credibility of eyewitnesses are put into question by Simon Blackburn by saying you cannot simply trust someone who said they just saw a miracle because of certain circumstances. However, there is a problem with Blackburn’s reasoning when it comes to this. Blackburn states that people usually claim fake statements to gain something however, the people who saw Jesus’ resurrection were put through incredible suffering afterwards. Paul accounts people being put in labor, being imprisoned and beaten mercilessly. Another point of credibility of the eyewitnesses being credible is that they were Jews. These would be the last people to claim that Jesus is the son of God and rose from the dead. Finally, the last point of credibility is mentioning the women. In these days’ women were not looked at as credible sources, so they were not included in legal documents. However, they were mentioned in the gospel. This means they were willing to hurt their credibility to tell the truth about what happened which shows they have strong confidence in their sightings.

Response to Challenges to Materialism

Even with all the evidence in favor for this, recently people have still been questioning if Jesus Christ existed. Hitchens makes an argument that there isn’t enough evidence to prove the existence of Jesus. He claims that he isn’t mentioned in any works outside of the New Testament. He takes this stance even though in his argument he directly mentions sources that mention Jesus that are outside of the bible such Suetonius and Pliny the Younger. Hitchens also claims that these writing that mention Jesus are forgeries which takes him into a circular argument making his argument based on an assumption and not a fact. Another claim that Hutchens makes is that we can’t know he lived 2,000 years ago because we are living 2,000 years after he supposedly did. This is met by a rebuttal stating that people of Jesus’ time never said that Jesus didn’t live, they just tried to discredit him by saying things such as his miracles are performed in the power of Satan. Finally, if Jesus never existed then Jews would have created a Jesus that doesn’t coincide with their beliefs. They claimed he was God the Son, but he did things such as seem weak at times and cried.

Another author, C.S. Lewis, posed a challenge that the Christian community needs to answer. This question is an obvious, but hard to answer question. If Christianity and God are real, then why is there evil and suffering in the world? Christians claim that through all this suffering God is planning something for each and every one of our lives which will be wonderful. However, we do have to go through seasons of tough times to get to the gift that God has waiting for us.

While defending Christianity, Lewis gets attacked by Hitchens who regards him as the primary defender of Christianity. Hitchens claims that Lewis’ biggest problem is that he trusts the documents (The New Testament). Hutchens goes on to paint Lewis as naïve and Lewis confirms his beliefs in that the New Testament is a reliable document. Hitchens makes a claim that the New Testament contradicts the other gospels. However, this isn’t true because they are in fact all identical. Hitchens then tries to use the similarities in the gospels to say that there would be at least some differences in the writings however, they were all from the same event so there would be no need to have differences. He then tries to make an argument that Luke never said Jesus went to Egypt and that Matthew referred to Jesus as a child and not a baby. These are both logical fallacies and aren’t valid arguments for his position. Another challenge he takes against Christianity is the dates of which the New Testament was written which was 150-200 years after the events. However, new evidence shows that John the Baptist wrote his book in the New testament around 80 A.D. so, the books before it had to be written between 25-50 A.D.

Another common claim that is brought up to discredit Christianity is that there are many similarities between Christianity and Mythology. Even after C.S. Lewis converted to Christianity he believed Jesus was a myth just like other religions. However, this isn’t the same because Jesus and the things he did were historical events and can be verified whereas mythological events can’t be. There have been similarities between myths and Christianity though. This is because some myths have actually been based off Christianity. One of the such being The Beauty and the Beast. This is one of the many myths that followed the Christian ending of a, “happily ever after”. Even through all this, Lewis’ view on Christianity is still something he believes in. He states, “I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because I see everything else.” He says that Christianity gives people a moral element, historical claim and a claim related to sensory perception to believe in. He then states that most myths come from Christianity and that if it is true then it gives credence for other similar religions to also have a chance to be true as well.

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The Peculiarities Of Christianity As A World Religion. (2022, February 24). Edubirdie. Retrieved January 28, 2023, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/the-peculiarities-of-christianity-as-a-world-religion/
“The Peculiarities Of Christianity As A World Religion.” Edubirdie, 24 Feb. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/the-peculiarities-of-christianity-as-a-world-religion/
The Peculiarities Of Christianity As A World Religion. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/the-peculiarities-of-christianity-as-a-world-religion/> [Accessed 28 Jan. 2023].
The Peculiarities Of Christianity As A World Religion [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Feb 24 [cited 2023 Jan 28]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/the-peculiarities-of-christianity-as-a-world-religion/
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