Rather than accepting the evidence given in the Scriptures that Jesus died and was raised from the dead, men have proposed various theories which attempt to “explain” what happened to Jesus. What follows is a brief explanation of the most popular among these theories.
Basically speaking, these theories must seek to explain reasonably the two primary facts that are put forth by the Scriptural accounts: (1) the empty tomb and (2) the eyewitness accounts of the risen Jesus. Failure to adequately and reasonably explain one of these ultimately leads to the discrediting of the proposed theory.
Now, in brief, the theories proposed by those who reject the evidence from the Scriptures.
The Theft Theory
Instead of being raised form the dead, Jesus’ body was stolen form the tomb. This explains why the tomb was empty. After the body was stolen, then the apostles began to preach the lie that He had been raised form the dead.
The Swoon Theory
Another theory asserts that instead of being killed by crucifixion, Jesus fainted on the cross. After being taken from the cross and placed in the tomb, He revived and escaped from the tomb. Then, He appeared to the apostles and they spread the lie that He had been raised from the dead.
The Hallucination Theory
This theory says that the apostles, rather than actually seeing the risen Lord, simply imagined that they saw Him. They wanted so much to believe the He was raised from the dead, they allowed their imaginations to control their reason until they believed the deceptive vision of the resurrected Jesus.
The Wrong Tomb Theory
The throe says that Jesus” body was placed in the wrong tomb. Instead of being put in Joseph’s tomb, they put the body in another tomb. Therefore, when they came to Joseph’s tomb, they found it empty because Jesus’ body had never been placed there to begin with. Then, they went about teaching that He had been raised from the dead.
Do any of these theories have any reasonable evidence to support their assertions. Whether they do or not, we should respond to them so that we can distinguish between what is reasonable and unreasonable.
By Gary Hunt