“Resurrection Did Not Happen, Say Quarter of Christians”

by Simon Turpin on April 13, 2017
Featured in Simon Turpin

A recent survey commissioned by the BBC suggests that “a quarter of people who describe themselves as Christians in Great Britain do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus.”1 For secular media organisations like the BBC, these statistics are apparently meant to be meaningful, but if a quarter of Christians in Great Britain do not believe in the Resurrection, then guess what? They were not Christians to begin with, as Scripture makes clear:

For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! (1 Corinthians 15:16–17).

that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

Belief in the Resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, is central to the Christian confession of faith. To deny it is to deny the faith. But in a culture that is basically “Greek” and evolutionary in its thinking it should not surprise us that many people reject the Resurrection of Jesus. The Resurrection has always been something that “Greek” thinking people have been philosophically opposed to and see as foolishness (see Acts 17:32; 1 Corinthians 1:23).

Interestingly, the article quotes Reverend Lorraine Cavanagh from the Modern Church, which promotes liberal Christian theology, saying:

I think [people answering the survey] are being asked to believe in the way they might have been asked to believe when they were at Sunday school.

You're talking about adults here. And an adult faith requires that it be constantly questioned, constantly re-interpreted, which incidentally is very much what Modern Church is actually about.

Science, but also intellectual and philosophical thought has progressed. It has a trickle-down effect on just about everybody's lives.

So to ask an adult to believe in the resurrection the way they did when they were at Sunday school simply won't do and that's true of much of the key elements of the Christian faith.

Dr Cavanagh’s promotion of modern or liberal Christianity is not Christianity at all; it is altogether another religion. It is the result of the secularization of Christianity. But, notice, for Dr. Cavanagh it is science (which no doubt in her mind includes evolution) that ultimately rules out belief in the Resurrection. Because in the secular worldview there is no room for the miraculous. This is the lasting effect of the church in Great Britain succumbing to the philosophy of the age.

Ultimately, those who deny the Resurrection do so not because they have looked at the evidence, such as the eyewitness testimonies of those who saw the risen Lord, and found it wanting, but because of the worldview that they bring to the evidence. As Jesus pointed out, evidence is not the problem: “But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead” (Luke 16:31).

If you want to answer critical challenges to the Resurrection of Jesus, then I recommend Tim Chaffey’s In Defense of Easter and He Is Risen.

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. (John 11:25)


  1. “Resurrection Did Not Happen, Say Quarter of Christians,” April 9, 2017, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-39153121.

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