Why Akathleptos?

Why Akathleptos? Because it means Uncontainable. God is infinite. Hence, the whole universe cannot contain Him. The term also refers to the incomprehensibility of God. No man can know everything about God. We can know Him personally but not exhaustively, not even in Heaven.

Why Patmos? Because the church is increasingly marginalized and exiled from the culture.

Why Pen-Names? So the focus is on the words and not who wrote them. We prefer to let what we say stand on its own merit. There is precedent in church history for this - i.e., the elusive identity of Ambrosiaster who wrote in the 4th century A.D.

“Truth is so obscured nowadays, and lies so well established, that unless we love the truth we shall never recognize it." Blaise Pascal

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Investigation Of The Shroud Of Turin

Over the years, my research has led me to increasingly believe the Shroud of Turin is the authentic burial shroud of Christ. Some Protestants wrongly tend to treat the Shroud as a threat to the authority of scripture. It seems odd at first that even conservative Protestants who argue for the resurrection don’t mention the Shroud. They muster detailed (and often quite good) historical arguments as to why Jesus was actually raised. You’d think they would give their eye teeth for something like the Shroud, which could turn out to be real, scientific evidence of the very thing they are arguing for. Yet it’s not on their radar screen.

Dr. Gary Hebermas [Distinguished Research Professor of Apologetics and Philosophy at the Rawlings School of Divinity] is the premier Protestant evangelical authority on the Resurrection of Christ and in fact believes there is little chance the Shroud is a forgery (see here.) As he concludes,

Scientific inquiry reveals that there is little chance that it is a fake. In particular, experiments show that there is no foreign substance that could account for the image. Historical inquiry provides much good material for a very early date that is seldom mentioned. Studies of the pollen samples have refuted historical agnosticism, while scientific studies of the material and especially the coins over the eyes point to a probable first-century date.

On the other hand, the shroud is consistent with the Biblical data concerning Jesus' burial. What appears at first to conflict turns out, on further investigation, to be interwoven. At any rate, there appear to be no contradictions and even some Biblical and extra-Biblical evidence for the type of burial seen in the shroud. Further, a study of probabilities reveals that it is highly probable that the man buried in the shroud is Jesus. Both have many intricate and unusual points in common, with no discrepancies. In addition the shroud has been preserved throughout its history as the actual burial garment of Jesus, and legend links it with the apostles themselves.

Most interesting, at least for this writer, concerns the evidence for the resurrection of Jesus. The man of the shroud was not buried in the material for more than a few days, but neither was he unwrapped. Instead an image on the cloth is clearly visible, probably caused by a burst of radiation from a dead body. True, we do not have absolute proof for the identity of the man of the shroud. Neither do we need it to demonstrate the reality of the death and resurrection of Jesus (or for anything else in the Christian faith). But it appears to provide strong empirical corroboration for Jesus' resurrection, and when combined with the historical evidence for this event I would submit that we have a twofold apologetic from both science and history.

As such there is good warrant for further study of the shroud. It appears that it can provide continuing confirmation of the most treasured of our beliefs: the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Dr. Habermas gives his presentation below on the Shroud from several years ago (the link above is his current and latest position) .......

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