Was the Tomb Really Empty?
In his essay “Was the Tomb Really Empty?” Robert H. Stein believes that Christianity without resurrection of Jesus Christ is no more gospel or “good news”. The foundation of Christian faith is laid on the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. The gospel without resurrection has no hope and future. For this very reason, the authenticity of the empty tomb of Jesus transformed the lives of the disciples – turning them to bold, courageous, and confident men as well as assuring and guarantying of their victory over death and of salvation. Despite historical evidences, non-Christian scholars have been rationalizing against the foundation of Christian faith for thousands of years regarding the resurrection of Jesus.
In defense of the historicity of the resurrection, Stein writes that evangelical apologetics have supported the fact of resurrection by the rational arguments of periodical resurrection appearance. Secondly, the existence of the Church also testifies the bodily resurrection. Thirdly, he says that the transforming life of believers around the world is also the “existential experience of the risen Christ”. Fourthly, the witness of the empty tomb is the evidence of the bodily resurrection of Jesus. Continue reading Was the Tomb Really Empty?
Character Sketch: Isaiah
Isaiah, the prophet borne this name as Yesha’yahu, signifies “the salvation of Jehovah”. His name itself magnifies the ample scope of his forthtelling and foretelling messages. However, this name was very common one in his time. Some other biblical characters also had borne this name. David’s head singer had the same name (1 Chronicles 25:3, 15); a Levite with the same name is also recorded in the book of Chronicles 26:25; a companion of Ezra who returned from exile to Jerusalem (Ezra 8:7), and a Benjamite in Nehemiah (11:7).
Isaiah 1:1 tells us that he was the son of Amoz. The name seems very confounding to be distinguished from the prophet Amos. We have no further information about him. The Jewish traditional maintains that Isaiah might have royal bloodline, as he had regular access to the kings of Judah. Nevertheless, the access to the court can hardly validate the claim that Isaiah belonged to royal lineage, since prophet Nathan had also appeared to the royal court (2 Samuel 7:2-17; 12:1-15; 1 Kings 1:22-27). He was a scribe and official historiographer of the king (2 Chronicles 26:22). Continue reading Character Sketch: Isaiah
Evaluation: “The Problem of Pain” by CS Lewis & “When Bad Things Happen to Good People” by Rabbi Harold Kushner
The preliminary observation on CS Lewis’ work does not pose one definite position on the problem of pain. He is careful enough not to draw a conclusion based on one proposition. He does not claim that suffering is directly connected, as a judgment from God, to one’s sin. Nor does he assert that God uses pain as a means to bring people to him.
Lewis introduces Divine Goodness before he enters the topic of pain and makes some comments to disclose the possible range of meanings of the word ‘goodness’. He does not simply jump into the conclusion by affirming that righteous suffers. He examines the divine nature of God and his entities. He builds his own world through analogs and set forth how a created being is different than Creator. Continue reading The Problem of Theodicy (III): Evaluation