Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Central London Dean of Women's Ministry says physical resurrection of Jesus doesn't really matter

The Dean of Women's Ministry in London, Rosemary Lain-Priestly, sits remarkably light to the notion of Jesus' Resurrection in this interview on Radio 4's Sunday Programme.

5 minutes in:

Roger Bolton: [...] Do you believe it doesn’t matter whether it was about a body or not, or do you believe it definitely wasn’t?

Rosemary Lain-Priestly: The Scriptures tell us that the tomb was empty and it may well have been. Who am I to limit what God might choose to do? But my faith in the resurrection doesn’t stand or fall on whether there were human remains in Christ’s tomb. [...] So perhaps it doesn’t matter whether or not Jesus took his [physical body] with him.

RB: [...] Would it matter to you, would it shake your faith if a tomb was opened up and the bones in it were confirmed as those of Jesus? Your answer to that is it wouldn’t matter at all ...?

R L-P: I don’t think it would matter because the resurrection that I believe in, I think has continuity with what we experience in this life but in some very profound sense is about transformation, its about something other than what we have already experienced.

Listen to the broadcast here (limited time)

No comments will be posted without a full name and location, see the


Sam Norton said...

Hmm - your headline is a little misleading. I'm not sure there's a vast amount of difference between what you have quoted her as saying and the implications of 1 Corinthians 15 (St Paul never mentions the empty tomb after all). That is - surely it's possible to affirm that the resurrected body was physical (and even had some physical continuity with the pre-resurrection body) and yet there was still a pre-resurrection body left behind.

Revd John P Richardson said...

Well, that's just b******d my sermon for the weekend. I was going to make something of Luke 24:12, "Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened."

Guess I'll have to rethink that one.

Sam Norton said...

Ha! fair comment. I had my historico-critical hat on, not the exegetical...

Revd John P Richardson said...

So tell me, if you put your other hat back on, does Jesus' body reappear? ;-)

Sam Norton said...

John - I've written a bit more about this here.