Nobody accepts Christianity who doesn’t also embrace at least part of its faith — the resurrection of Jesus. It takes faith to believe Christianity, without which it is untenable.
The overwhelming majority of evangelical Christians, or any Christian for that matter, inherit their faith from one or more parents or family member. Rarely does one enter the faith through a sincere and objective investigation because such does not lead to the claim of Christianity. It is a religion that exploits the weak, young, vulnerable, desperate or depressed.
Often I feel I am stating the absolute undeniable truth and no one believes me or perhaps is listening to me. It is frustrating. But here we go again:
Christianity is a primarily an irrational belief system built on fear and fueled by false hope.
No rational person should disagree with this statement since it is perfectly accurate when thoroughly evaluated. Those who do either haven’t thought through the basis of their faith or don’t want to.
There are a hundred reasons why belief in the literal resurrection of Jesus from the dead is irrational and they all go back to whether the Bible is a reliable authority on it and the other things it affirms. After decades of exhaustive study and analysis, I can state with certainty it is not a credible source.
It then falls to those who disagree to support their claim beginning with a single piece of rational evidence. A presuppositional belief in the supernatural is a deductive argument that must be proven logical. However, when examining the biblical record, we find contradictions, incongruences and implausibilities among the gospel accounts which are the only evidence Christians have.
The so-called “eyewitness” defense which Christians most often cite is fraught with difficulties since not a single person actually saw Jesus physically walk out of the tomb. Furthermore, biblical scholars (not evangelical “scholars”) agree the four gospels were written by non associates of Jesus. The names they bear are traditional apellations not original autographs.
The deeper our investigation goes the greater one’s facility with literary and textual criticism must be. It has become much too easy for Christians to discount data that challenges their faith simply because they are unaware of it a never taken the time to learn it. It is convenient to dismiss and discount real scholarship as anti-God and anti-supernatural without first considering the alternative.
Being uninformed about the nature of critical biblical studies is the lifeblood of Christians especially evangelical protestants who adamantly profess belief in the inerrancy and infallibility of the biblical text. In its place, is a wealth of misinformation which masquerades as rational faith. Intellectual inbreeding provides constant reinforcement of evangelical ideology giving believers the illusion of objectivity.
However, even the most biblically minded evangelical cannot escape the fact their faith boils down to experientialism as its ultimate defense. At some point every believer defaults to their own experience with God through his holy scriptures as proof of their divine authority. It is the only means to defend the myriad textual issues found throughout the Bible whether factual, chronological, scientific or logical.
Let’s use one simple example. There is no archeological support for the mass Exodus of enslaved Israelites from bondage in Egypt having died by the millions in the Sinai desert. Conservative Christians will defer to a miraculous explanation in defense of biblical integrity which leads one back to why the Bible merits such authority. Christians will claim because it is the inspired Word of God which begs the question, “Why do we accept it as God’s word?” The answer comes back, “Because it contains data which makes this claim.” Eventually this endless circle of fallacious reasoning must be broken with indisputable evidence upon which inerrancy rests.
The cornerstone of Christianity is the resurrection of Jesus. We should expect the only records (the gospels) of this momentous event to be unanimously consistent in the details surrounding it — they are not. My departure from Christianity is traceable to the many disparities among these accounts. To suggest God truly inspired these men to record an accurate account of His Son’s resurrection from the dead via His Holy Spirit is a gross insult to God.
In other posts I have taken considerable time working through all the material in exacting detail to show how utterly improbable and implausible belief in the resurrection is. I refer those interested in evaluating the material themselves to these earlier posts. Suffice it to say, an honest yet critical analysis leads inexorably to the conclusion these contain several traditions in conflict.
Lest the reader think this is the only evidence against biblical authority, it is only one of many but arguably the most important. The corpus of New Testament teaching when subjected to rigorous analysis yields the same conclusion. The resurrection of Jesus is an ancient superstition around which was built primitive Christian thought. It began as a sect of second temple Judaism and was eventually subsumed by Paul’s version of the gospel which operated outside the law and traditions.
Many Christians will naturally ignore these findings to preserve their faith. Evangelicalism from its inception has placed a premium on emotionalism over intellectualism considering the latter an enemy of faith. Tragically, this sentiment has remain embedded within the evangelical psyche throughout its history and to this day.