Wolfhart Pannenberg’s Case for the Resurrection

Bonn, CDU-Friedenskongress, Pannenberg

03.02.1983 Friedenskongrefl der CDU im Konrad-Adenauer-Haus, Bonn.

WP notes that the church’s rejoicing over Jerusalem’s destruction (as perhaps in modern preterism) forgets Jesus’s own weeping over it, as well as Paul’s ministry.  It also the future restoration (342).

The Case for the Resurrection

  1. The starting point for the work of Christ must be the in-breaking of God’s kingdom (329).
  2. Those who believe in them have this future already.
  3. It is much more difficult methodologically to begin with Jesus’s own understood authority for his message, for then we are faced with the problem of why he kept it a secret for most of the time (338).
  4. The Resurrection of Jesus forms the starting point of the apostolic message (343ff). The Easter-event determines the pre-Easter message.
  5. Metaphorical language was necessary because this was a unique event.
  6. The Resurrection is a Jewish concept.
  7. WP starts with the biblical material relating to the Lord’s appearance to Saul (354), as it is the earliest testimony.  Saul’s testimony also links the resurrection and ascension. The disciples also accepted Saul’s testimony, which means they saw it as similar to their own experiences.
  8. The earliest critics of the Resurrection acknowledged the empty tomb.  The debated question was what it meant.
  9. If there were no empty tomb, the Christian message couldn’t have spread (modus tollens).

About J. B. Aitken

Interests include patristics, the role of the soul in the human person, analytic theology, Reformed Scholasticism, Medievalism, Substance Metaphysics
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