Houston Baptist University Introduction to The Christian Faith Essay

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For this assignment you need to watch and report on the debate between Michael Licona and Yusuf Ismail on the question of whether Jesus was crucified. The debate is available at https://vimeo.com/39439298. Please note that the debate 2 hours in length, thus, it is important to set aside time to view the video and take notes in anticipation of writing your essay as described below. Contents of assignment The essay should have the following parts: 1) Write a summary of each presenters' position. Your summary should be 750 words for each person (that is one section on Licona and one on Ismail). Your summary should identify and explain the main arguments used by each person. This section of the essay should be 1,500 words total. 2) Write a 500 word summary of the rebuttal between Licona and Ismail. (This is just one summary of the exchange not a report of each presenter.) 3) Drawing on your readings for the semester and this video, in 500 words state your own view on whether Jesus was crucified. You should include at a minimum references to two different sources in addition to the debate between Licona and Ismail. Guidelines The essay will be 2,500 words total and clearly identify the three sections noted above. Provide the word count at the end of each section. The essay should be written in either MLA or Turabian format and must include a citations/reference page for the references used to support your view. The essay must be submitted in Microsoft Word file format (.doc or .docx) via this assignment link.
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Running head: DEBATE


Mike Licona vs. Yusuf Ismail Debate
Institutional Affiliation


Mike Licona vs. Yusuf Ismail Debate

Summary of Licona and Ismail Arguments
The moderator introduces dr. Mike Licona and immediately starts with the opening
statements. Although he believes in Christianity and is actually a Christian, he removes any bias
towards Christianity and argues from a historic standpoint how Jesus died by being crucified on
the Cross. He begins his arguments by stating that Crucifixion is a pinnacle axis of Christianity.
Proving that Crucifixion did not happen would automatically mean that Christianity is a false
religion. It would also support the assertion that Islam is right. He quotes a verse in the Quran
that clearly states that Jesus did not die on the Cross. "That they said (in boast), 'We killed Christ
the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah, but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was
made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no solid knowledge,
but only conjecture to follow, for surety the killed him not; -Nay, Allah raised him up unto
Himself; and Allah is exalted in power" Sura 4: 4 157-158. Licona also states that proving that
Jesus was indeed crucified does not confirm Christianity or Islam religions. He bases his
arguments on different contentions. Licona argues that there are perfectly good reasons for God
allowing Jesus to die by Crucifixion, and there no good reasons whatsoever for refusing the
believed that Jesus did die by Crucifixion. Licona cites different reasons for this, including
unsympathetic reports, embarrassing reports, multiple reports, chances of enduring Crucifixion,
as well as the prophecy of the death of Jesus. His points are defended by the Scriptures of Mark,
Matthew, Paul, and Corinthians. Licona only approaches his arguments from a historical
perspective; he also includes theology.
The early reports mentioned above include the Scriptures of Corinthians. These reports
also mention Paul, who was a trusted apostle. Paul is definitely a reliable source of information

because he was approved by other apostles. His teachings were free of bias and exaggerations,
and he preserved the traditions of Jesus as they were passed on to him. Paul changed the
teachings of Christ because he hated Christianity and Jesus himself and was consistently
persecuting anyone who believed in Christianity. However, two or three years after Jesus was
crucified, Paul converted to Christianity and became of the most reliable servants of the Gospel.
Consequently, during his missions, he met James and Peter to converse on what happened to
Jesus. After some years, as mentioned in Galatians 2, Paul returned again after about fourteen
years to talk to James, John, and Peter. During these events, Paul verified that what he was
teaching was indeed the Gospel of Christ which Peter, John, and James were teaching. In the
Corinthians, Paul refused vehemently to call his teachings, "Jesus's Teachings" when a fema...

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