A number of issues surrounding Easter are dubious: the importance of the crucifixion, the uniqueness of Jesus’s sacrifice, contradictions in the Bible’s own stories about the events, the women at the tomb, the Shroud of Turin, and more.
(Easter news! John Loftus is the prolific force behind the fantastic Debunking Christianity blog. In a curious fit of Easter enthusiasm, he’s giving away Kindle copies of his book The Case Against Miracles. The offer is just for 24 hours, Easter only, Pacific Daylight Time. Click here!)
What’s the first Sunday after the first full moon after the March equinox? It’s Easter! Here are some Easter articles.
- The Moon Isn’t Made of Green Cheese … Is It? We all know that the moon isn’t made of green cheese. But is this knowledge justified? And what can this process tell us about more provocative claims such as “Jesus rose from the dead”?
- How likely was the empty tomb? A critique of “12 reasons to accept the empty tomb as a historical fact.” Jesus’s empty tomb is a key claim of most Christian arguments for the resurrection. Let’s critique a 12-point argument for the empty tomb.
- Christians Reveal! How to Defeat Christianity: Apparently, the Achilles heel is the Bible verse that says that if Jesus was not raised, “we [Christians] are of all people most to be pitied.”
- Jesus: Just One More Dying and Rising Savior: Mythology has many precedents to the story of the resurrection of Jesus. Let’s look at some of these gods and see if they’re any less compelling than Jesus.
- Response to “Top 10 Myths About Jesus’ Resurrection”: Mike Licona, a Christian apologist, has identified what he says are 10 myths about the resurrection. Is he right?
- 10 Reasons the Crucifixion Story Makes No Sense: The crucifixion story? Not that big a deal. Here are 10 reasons why it makes no sense.
- Scholarly Consensus for the Resurrection? Not Really. Gary Habermas is well known for his “minimal facts” case for the resurrection of Jesus. He says that most critical scholars agree with him, but his argument collapses with investigation.
- Responding to the Minimal Facts Argument for the Resurrection: With this argument, Gary Habermas hopes to make a short and sweet case for the resurrection. I’m not impressed.
- 8 Lessons Learned from the Minimal Facts Argument: We’ve explored the five claims in the Minimal Facts argument for the resurrection. Now let’s extract the lessons learned.
- So How Does an ATHEIST Explain the Resurrection Story? We’ve been debunking Gary Habermas’s claims in favor of the resurrection. But now it’s the atheist’s turn to explain the facts.
- Women at the Tomb Are Weak Evidence for the Resurrection: Apologists love to bring up the women at the tomb. Women weren’t reliable witnesses in Jewish culture at the time, so why would the gospel authors place them there … unless the story were true? But the claim unravels with a little scrutiny.
- Dr. Craig and the women-at-the-tomb argument Dr. Craig argues that the embarrassing fact that women found the empty tomb was central to bolstering historians’ accepting the empty tomb. I am not as impressed.
- Shroud of Turin: An Easter Miracle? What are we to make of the Shroud of Turin? Is it a miracle or a fake?
- 500 Eyewitnesses to the Risen Christ? 9 Reasons Why It’s Not Likely: The apostle Paul claims that 500 people saw Jesus alive after his crucifixion. This claim is popular among apologists who imagine this as convincing evidence that the crucifixion is historical. This argument crumbles under scrutiny.
- Easter Critique: The Bible Can’t Even Get its Punch Line Straight (Infographic): The Easter story is the Bible’s punch line. It’s claimed to be the solution to Mankind’s problem. But is it history or fiction? Untangle the elements of the story to see that the gospels radically disagree with each other.
- The Bible Defeats Its Own Resurrection Story: A popular Christian apologetic argument backfires, and the Bible doesn’t help. This makes the Bible’s resurrection argument even weaker.
- Dr. Craig replies: William Lane Craig gave a Christian response to the previous article.
- Contradictions in the Resurrection Account: How many days did Jesus teach after his resurrection? Was it 40 days as Acts says or less than one as Luke says? Matthew writes about an earthquake that opened graves and sent reanimated corpses walking around Jerusalem. Why didn’t the other gospels write about this remarkable event? These and many more contradictions make us wonder if the gospel account is history or merely legend.
- The women spread the word of the empty tomb (or did they?): The women went to the tomb on Easter morning, saw angels, and hurried back to tell the other disciples, right? One gospel disagrees.
- Jesus finds a new home for Mary. But why? Jesus makes sure that after his death, his mother will be taken care of by “the disciple he loved.” But this makes no sense.
- What day was Jesus crucified on? Jesus participated in the Last Supper and was crucified the next day. But the Bible disagrees.
- Resurrection contradictions: Another look at the pieces of the story that don’t fit.
- Jesus predicts his death and resurrection, but everyone forgot: Why was everyone morose after the crucifixion when they knew about the resurrection?!
- Jesus and the zombies: Remember the dead who leave their graves and walk around Jerusalem after the resurrection? Think about what that does to the Doubting Thomas story.
- Women brought spices to the tomb (or not): Who put spices on the body? The gospels differ.
- Peter’s denials: Each of the gospels has Peter denying Jesus three times. But put these stories together, and they contradict.
I regard the brain as a computer
which will stop working when its components fail.
There is no heaven or afterlife for broken-down computers;
that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.
— Stephen Hawking