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First published online February 3, 2015

Maurice Casey on the Resurrection and Bereavement Experiences


Casey seeks to undercut the apologetic case for Jesus’ resurrection. By appealing to data about ‘bereavement experiences,’ he launches a series of interconnected arguments against the credibility of the resurrection. But there are many reasons for rejecting Casey’s hypothesis on the origins of believing in the resurrection of Jesus: his understanding of bereavement experiences is unreliable and therefore cannot account for the original meaning assigned to the Easter appearances. He himself admits that bereavement apparitions cannot explain all of the appearances. Lastly Paul’s testimony indicates that the appearances were bodily in nature. Given that the appearances should be understood as ‘resurrection appearances,’ it follows that Jesus’ tomb was empty. This overall depiction of Easter faith is consistent with the background of Second Temple Judaism and the relevant New Testament data. Thus the apologists’ concern to argue for Jesus’ resurrection may continue to be endorsed.

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Dr Glenn B. Siniscalchi received his PhD in systematic theology from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA (2013). He currently serves as Assistant Professor of Theology at Notre Dame College, South Euclid, OH (2014– ). His primary interests are on the relationship between faith and reason, the historical approach to Jesus’ resurrection, and the soteriological question concerning the destiny of the formally unevangelized.

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Article first published online: February 3, 2015
Issue published: February 2015


  1. apologetics
  2. bereavement experiences
  3. Gerald O’Collins
  4. resurrection

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© The Author(s) 2014.
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Issue published: February 2015
Published online: February 3, 2015



Glenn B. Siniscalchi
Notre Dame College, South Euclid, USA


Glenn B. Siniscalchi, Notre Dame College, South Euclid, 2130 Green Ridge Drive, Wickliffe, OH 44092, USA. Email: [email protected], [email protected]

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