History and the Christian Faith

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Michael Gleghorn — Can we really know anything at all about the past? For example, can we really know if Nebuchadnezzar was king of Babylon in the sixth century B.C., or if Jesus of Nazareth was an actual historical person, or if Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address? Although these might sound like questions that would only interest professional historians, they’re actually important for Christians too.

But why should Christians be concerned with such questions? Well, because the truth of our faith depends on certain events having actually happened in the past. As British theologian Alan Richardson stated:

"The Christian faith is...an historical faith...it is bound up with certain happenings in the past, and if these happenings could be shown never to have occurred...then the...Christian faith...would be found to have been built on sand."

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"I wanted to write this program because for many people in our world today 'history,' as Henry Ford once said, 'is bunk.' Indeed, some people go so far as to say that we really can't know anything at all about the past! But since the truth of Christianity depends on certain historical events (like the resurrection of Jesus, for example) having actually occurred, I wanted to show why there is no good reason to be so skeptical about our knowledge of the past."

Michael is a research associate with Probe Ministries. After earning a B.A. in psychology from Baylor University and a Th.M. in systematic theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, he is back at DTS pursuing more suffering a Ph.D. in theology. The joy of Michael's life is his wife Hannah, and their two young children.

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