June 18 – Crucifixion and Resurrection


Do 1 OR 2; and then do 3 OR 4:

1. Looking at the accounts of Jesus’ arrest in just Mark and John (obviously, you should feel free to consider Luke and Matthew as well, but you don’t have to address their versions in your writing), discuss how the very different portraits of Jesus that Mark and John provide for Jesus during the scene of the arrest (and you should include in this the time of prayer just before the arrest), explain how those portraits are carried through into the scene of the crucifixion itself (you might note, for example, what Mark’s Jesus or John’s Jesus say while he is dying on the cross).

2. What does it mean to say that the Gospel writers “searched the scriptures” for the account of Jesus’ crucifixion (see Crossan pp. 143-52).

3. Although Crossan himself doesn’t appear to believe in the historical reality of Jesus’ resurrection, he’s more than willing to admit that some (though not all) early followers of Jesus understood “what happened” in terms of resurrection as a bodily fact. That said, Crossan is at pains to show that, whatever the Gospel writers believed about resurrection, the accounts themselves are about something else. What is Crossan’s point about this and what is his evidence?

4. “How many years was Easter Sunday?” That’s the title of the chapter 7 of Crossan’s book. What is the point of that question and how does the chapter attempt to answer it?

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