Religion Magazine

Would A Court of Law Affirm the Historical Jesus?

By Sjbedard @sjbedard

There is a fellow on the Internet who has been promoting the idea that no court of law would affirm the existence of Jesus Christ based on the available evidence. I refuse to debate him on this issue as it is such a silly claim.  Would a legal court affirm the existence of Jesus?  No they would not.  But neither would they affirm the existence of Alexander the Great, Caesar Augustus or Constantine the Great.  Why?  Because legal courts do not go around affirming the existence of historical figures.  That is not what they do.

The question of how courts would deal with the historical evidence is completely irrelevant.  The question is: what would professional historians do with the evidence.  I don’t mean just conservative Christians or zealous atheist historians but historians across a wide range of religious and philosophical positions.  And how would the historians respond?  Professional historians, almost unanimously, accept the historicity of Jesus Christ, just as they do for Alexander, Augustus and Constantine.  We need to keep this discussion focused and keep it as a historical question and not a legal question.

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