Pope Benedict’s recent book about resurrection and the hearsay rule

Now that the celebrations are over, let us examine the facts about the Christian Easter story.  It mounts to little more than hearsay as I will show in the Google knol linked here.  But, please do not get very upset.  Veneration and awe of the Transcendent is inherent in human nature, but we need to find the […]

Now that the celebrations are over, let us examine the facts about the Christian Easter story.  It mounts to little more than hearsay as I will show in the Google knol linked here.  But, please do not get very upset.  Veneration and awe of the Transcendent is inherent in human nature, but we need to find the most appropriate channels for that rather than insisting on myth and legend of resurrection.

So, buckle up for the bumpy ride!

In a recent book, ‘Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week: From the Entrance Into Jerusalem To The Resurrection;’ Pope Benedict XVI has tried to present the case for resurrection.  The case is based on the testimony of St. Paul and the apostles as recorded in the New Testament.  Saint Paul according to his own testimony came on the scene 20 years after Jesus was put on cross and the authors of Mark, Matthew, Luke and John were not eye witnesses, according to the best university based scholarship of  the New Testament. 

According to Encyclopedia Britannica:

“Hearsay,  in Anglo-American law, testimony that consists of what the witness has heard others say. United States and English courts may refuse to admit testimony that depends for its value upon the truthfulness and accuracy of one who is neither under oath nor available for cross-examination. The rule is subject, however, to many exceptions.”

So, the accounts we have for resurrection are only hearsay, by definition.

The Gospel of Mark is the earliest of the four canonical gospels and even that is not written by an eye-witness.
 
According to Encyclopedia Britannica: 
“The Gospel According to Mark, also called The Holy Gospel Of Jesus Christ According To St. Mark, second of the four New Testament Gospels (narratives recounting the life and death of Jesus Christ), and, with Matthew and Luke, one of the three Synoptic Gospels (i.e., those presenting a common view). It is attributed to John Mark (Acts 12:12; 15:37), an associate of Paul and a disciple of Peter, whose teachings the Gospel may reflect. It is the shortest and the earliest of the four Gospels, presumably written during the decade preceding the destruction of Jerusalem in ad 70. Most scholars agree that it was used by Matthew and Luke in composing their accounts; more than 90 percent of the content of Mark’s Gospel appears in Matthew’s, and more than 50 percent in the Gospel of Luke. Although the text lacks literary polish, it is simple and direct; and, as the earliest Gospel, it is the primary source of information about the ministry of Jesus.”

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Categories: CHRISTIANITY, Religion

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