Tuesday, August 10, 2010
The Case For Christ
The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel
I was asked to read this book by an acquaintance who is a devout Christian. My hunch is that she hoped that this book might convince me that not only was Jesus Christ in fact a real person who lived and breathed, but that he is/was the son of God, that he did, in fact, die nailed to a cross in order to save mankind from sin, that he was in fact resurrected, etc., etc., and of course, if all this is true, then it must be true that God exists. All of this is stuff of which I am not a believer; hence the attempt to convince me.
Written by a self-proclaimed life-long skeptic who finds God and converts to Christianity, the author uses his background as an investigative journalist to "investigate" the authenticity of Jesus Christ (and therefore, God). While he certainly has a flair for dramatic writing, he fails miserably to actually make anything resembling a solid case for the existence of Jesus, as the Messiah or anything else. While he purports to set forth "evidence," sprinkled liberally throughout the book are statements like "We must assume . . . " and "It is unlikely that . . ." and "It can be presumed that . . ." In other words, a lot of supposition, which is not evidence. His supposed "eyewitness accounts" of Jesus consist of the assumption that the gospels were written by Matthew, Mark and Luke; the fact is that (a) there is also no evidence that any of those men are anything more than mythical figures, and (b) there is no evidence that they wrote the gospels. Mr. Strobel sets forth his "case" by interviewing a number of "experts," all of whom, conveniently, are devout believers. He doesn't interview a single skeptic or secular scholar.
The fact is, there still is not a shred of forensic, scientific or archaeological evidence of the existence of Jesus Christ - and certainly not of any of the events the bible claims happened in this Jesus figure's lifetime.
This book is propaganda at its best. I simply cannot imagine that it could succeed in tipping the balance for a skeptic or convincing a non-believer; only someone who is already a firm believer will be able to swallow what the author sets forth.