Mar 30 2013

Dan Barker’s Easter Challenge

Leave No Stone Unturned


By Dan Barker

I HAVE AN EASTER challenge for Christians. My challenge is simply this: tell me what happened on Easter. I am not asking for proof. My straightforward request is merely that Christians tell me exactly what happened on the day that their most important doctrine was born.

Believers should eagerly take up this challenge, since without the resurrection, there is no Christianity. Paul wrote, “And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.” (I Corinthians 15:14-15)

The conditions of the challenge are simple and reasonable. In each of the four Gospels, begin at Easter morning and read to the end of the book: Matthew 28, Mark 16, Luke 24, and John 20-21. Also read Acts 1:3-12 and Paul’s tiny version of the story in I Corinthians 15:3-8. These 165 verses can be read in a few moments. Then, without omitting a single detail from these separate accounts, write a simple, chronological narrative of the events between the resurrection and the ascension: what happened first, second, and so on; who said what, when; and where these things happened.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.corvallissecular.org/2013/03/30/dan-barkers-easter-challenge/


  1. Martin

    This is a very nice piece. Since the resurrection is presented as (and required to be) a fact, Christians have a hard time wiggling out of the contradictions about the “facts” that supposedly serve as evidence.

  2. Robert Neary

    When people assert that the Bible is the inerrant word of god, I like to ask them if they also believe the Book of Mormon is as well. Unless they themselves are LDS, they usually say no. I point out to them that, unlike the Bible, we KNOW who wrote the Book of Mormon AND that it is supposedly his first-person direct testimony testimony of what he (claims) he witnessed… not a third-hand collection of “somebody told me that…” or hearsay, as it is referred to in the legal system.

    If the Bible can be considered an accurate account of the claims therein, then there is also a King Arthur, Robbin Hood, Moby Dick… all first-person written stories are then factual accounts.

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