The Case for Christ

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The Case for Christ is a popular book on Christian apologetics by Lee Strobel.


Counter-apologetics issues

Although Strobel claimed to be an atheist when he started this book, many readers have pointed out that he did a very bad job supporting the atheist position. Furthermore, he conducted interviews only with Christian apologists, and none with atheists or skeptics. He has claimed that the book is balanced because he himself is arguing against the apologists, but at many points in the book he appears extremely reluctant to challenge his subjects.

Further, if Strobel proved the existence of Christ as a historical fact then there would be no room for "faith". Therefore, he is satisfied to give the reader a "case" as to not negate the importance of faith.

Formula for the book

Basically, each chapter goes like this:

  1. Insert an anecdote about modern criminal cases and how they were solved by a piece of evidence
  2. Introduce somebody to serve as the Christian apologetic
  3. Describe every facet of their education and work history (a classic appeal to authority in hopes the reader will trust the validity of the next few pages)
  4. Strobel plays devil's advocate and asks the person "tough questions" posed by skeptics
  5. Strobel accepts weak argument
  6. Strobel asks personal questions about the subject's religious convictions (i.e. "How much do you love Jesus now?" "A lot!")

Rebuttals by Chapter

1. The Eyewitness Evidence: Can the Biographies of Jesus Be Trusted? (p16)

2. Testing the Eyewitness Evidence: Do the Biographies of Jesus Stand Up to Scrutiny? (p38)

3. The Documentary Evidence: Were Jesus' Biographies Reliably Preserved for Us? (p55)

4. The Corroborating Evidence: Is There Credible Evidence for Jesus outside His Biographies? (p73)

5. The Scientific Evidence: Does Archaeology Confirm or Contradict Jesus' Biographies? (p92)

6. The Rebuttal Evidence: Is the Jesus of History the Same As the Jesus of Faith? (p110)

7. The Identity Evidence: Was Jesus Really Convinced That He Was the Son of God? (p131)

8. The Psychological Evidence: Was Jesus Crazy When He Claimed to Be the Son of God? (p144)

9. The Profile Evidence: Did Jesus Fulfill the Attributes of God? (p155)

10 The Fingerprint Evidence: Did Jesus - and Jesus Alone - Match the Identity of the Messiah? 171 11 The Medical Evidence: Was Jesus' Death a Sham and His Resurrection a Hoax? 191 12 The Evidence of the Missing Body: Was Jesus' Body Really Absent from His Tomb? 205 13 The Evidence of Appearances: Was Jesus Seen Alive after His Death on the Cross? 225 14 The Circumstantial Evidence: Are There Any Supporting Facts That Point to the Resurrection? 244 Conclusion: The Verdict of History: What Does the Evidence Establish - And What Does It Mean Today? 259

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