Yesterday, in the Evangelical Channel of Patheos, Jack Wellman asked, Is There Evidence Jesus Really Rose from the Dead? He discusses historical evidence, biblical evidence and . . .
The Shroud of Turin has been scientifically examined and the conclusion was that whoever it was had been badly scourged, and was crucified, but it appears there was some sort of crown of thorns, and that there was a stab wound in the side. A retired professor from Duke Medical Center, Dr. Alan Whanger, spent nearly his whole life studying medicine and since 1978 has spent years studying the Shroud of Turin. Initially, he may have studied it to debunk the idea that it was genuine and might have hoped to provide evidence that it was a fake, however the more he studied it using scientific methods, the more he became convinced that it was real.1 Dr. Whanger states that this is the single, most studied object in human history. Unlike paintings which are two-dimensional, the image of the Shroud is three-dimensional. Several findings indicated that the Shroud’s images were from Israel and apparently in the spring of AD 30 due to the identification of 28 species, 20 of which grow specifically in Jerusalem and the other 8 within a 12 mile radius of Jerusalem, and with a common blooming time of March and April which would have been around the Passover, the time that Jesus was crucified.
In 2010, the History Channel investigated and used computer technology to add a third dimension and with generally accepted color schemes for the body: hair, eyebrows, and even the bloodied body and they concluded that the image on the Shroud was not painted, nor was it dyed, nor made by any human effort.3 Ray Downing was the computer artist who helped to create the image using powerful computer imaging and he says that this is about as close as you can get to it actually looking like the very person that was wrapped in the shroud. The Shroud was transformed by computer imaging and color scheme graphics or digital artists to produce a 3-D image from the 2-D image contained within the Shroud. The Shroud of Turin is only one of the many threads of methods which we can examine.
Dave Kinsella just this week uploaded this video of Gary Habermas presenting “a convincing argument detailing the arguments in favour of the Shroud’s authenticity,” as he puts it. “I was skeptical til I watched this,” he adds. The video runs 44 minutes. It looks good. I disagree with several points, like the discussion of the coin images over the eyes.
It is a good talk. I’ve never seen it before and I don’t know when this was recorded.
How influential is Gary Habermas when it comes to the shroud?
I don’t know. But if you search YouTube for “GARY HABERMAS SHROUD OF TURIN” you encounter 2320 videos. There are, of course, duplicates. But it is also evident, just by the numbers, that Dr. Habermas is an influential speaker out on the circuit and on the Internet. By comparison here are two other YouTube search counts:
- BARRIE SCHWORTZ SHROUD OF TURIN: yields 4660 videos
- RUSS BREAULT SHROUD OF TURIN: yields 750 videos
If I search Google directly for videos thus:
- GARY HABERMAS SHROUD OF TURIN: I get 13,100 videos
- BARRIE SCHWORTZ SHROUD OF TURIN: I get 7,550 videos
- RUSS BREAULT SHROUD OF TURIN: I get 5,160 videos
Something seems counter intuitive here. Well, anyway, Habermas is influential. (We really should count views but I have other things to do with my life).
And who is Gary Habermas?
And here is something I posted ten months ago:
Russ Breault writes:
I have completed phase one of a complete overhaul of Shroud University. The videos hosted there could only be downloaded. They have now all been moved over to YouTube and can now be easily streamed. There are close to 100 presentations from the 1991 St Louis conference, 1993 Rome conference and the 2008 Ohio State University conference. I will eventually link them all back to Shroud U but right now they can only be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/user/RussBreault2 I hope some of your participants find some real jewels here.
Indeed. There are some real jewels here.
. . . A Personal Perspective
From a special update to shroud.com, we learn of a new shroud related DVD. Barrie Schwortz writes in the site’s Online Store:
For years, people have asked me if there were DVDs available of any of my public presentations. Although my lectures have been videotaped many times, the results were never really professional quality and certainly did not have the production values necessary to make mass production and distribution of a DVD worthwhile. That is, until now. In July 2013 I was invited to speak at the Pikes Peak Prophecy Conference in Colorado Springs, sponsored by the Prophecy in the News (PITN) organization. They employed a professional video production company to record all of the main presentations and produced a beautiful set of DVDs of the entire event, which they graciously presented to each of the speakers. They also kindly granted us permission to distribute our individual DVDs via our own websites and lectures, so our sincerest thanks to PITN. Because of their generosity, STERA, Inc. can now make them available here on our Website Store.
In addition to my complete 92 minute presentation, the DVD also includes the Shroud of Turin Q&A I hosted with John and Rebecca Jackson and Russ Breault and a Board Room Interview with Derek Gilbert. Packaged in a slim case, the DVDs are priced at US$25.00 each, which includes USPS Priority Mail shipping & handling in the continental United States. Overseas orders please add US$10.00 for a total of US$35.00 each. Please allow up to 4 weeks for delivery. [NOTE: Quantity pricing is available. Contact STERA, Inc. for details].
You may safely order this item directly from this website using your credit/debit card via our "Secure Order Form." If you are unable to access the "Secure Order Form" or do not wish to send your credit/debit card information over the Internet, see the "Alternate Order Form" for detailed instructions on telephoning or mailing your credit/debit card order.
A new video, just published on August 8, 2014, seems to be a reading from a July posting, 10 Controversial Relics Associated With Jesus Christ, on the TopTenz blog. They are, according to the video: 1) The Holy Nails, 2) The Crown of Thorns, 3) The Shroud of Turin, 4) The Sudarium of Oviedo, 5) The Veil of Veronica, 6) The Blood of Christ, 7) The Holy Lance, 8) The Holy Prepuce, 9) The Image of Edessa, 10) The Holy Grail
Of course, I think number 3 and 9 are the same thing. And some even think number 10 is the same thing as well. This is not a carefully researched presentation.
Here is the transcript part for the shroud that begins at the 1:47 mark:
The Shroud of Turin is perhaps the most studied, popular and controversial relic in Christian history. Officially, the Catholic Church does not have a position as to whether the shroud is authentic or not. However, the Church does acknowledge its importance to the Catholic world. In fact, the Vatican has made arrangements for the public to view the relic. It was during the 14th century that the first documentation regarding the shroud appeared. Historical accounts show that it was passed down from one person to another until it was finally placed in the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist in Turin, Italy, in 1578. In 1988 the shroud underwent radiocarbon testing to determine its date of origin. To the dismay of many believers, the results showed that the shroud might have been made between 1260 and 1390. Three independent laboratories conducted the radiocarbon testing, and all of them arrived at the same conclusion, thus proving that the shroud is fake (although some experts argue that their results are inaccurate). Regardless, believers worldwide still venerate the iconic relic.
Hat tip to Joe Marino for spotting this.
Paul Maier is retired professor of ancient history at Western Michigan University. He also attended Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. I’m not sure when the talk was actually given, but it was put on Youtube on 5/11/13.
Maier is very entertaining. He once wrote an historical novel in which the Shroud was mentioned as having been proven a fake. I started corresponding with him and he used to receive my print newsletter and also my email bulletins.
Since he was discussing archaeological evidence for the existence of Jesus, I thought he might mention the Shroud or I thought someone would bring it up in the Q & A. Neither happened. Granted, the Shroud isn’t "new," but I would have thought it was worth a mention.
He did mention several interesting things not directly related to the Shroud. Regarding the date of the crucifixion, he mentions 2 things. He said that Josephus wrote that James the Just was murdered 29 years after Jesus’ death. Everyone gives the date of James’ death as 62, so that would put the crucifixion in AD 33. He also said that a Greek writer named Phlegon recounted a darkness at noon and an earthquake in Nicea in the 4th month of the 4th year of the 202nd Olympiad, which Maier says matches to April, 33 AD.
He also said that the Jordan River Excavations show that the Strata from 33 AD indicates there was an earthquake disruption. I’m not sure how you get a Strata for a specific year.
The whole thing is about 1 1/2 hours but it’s very informative and very entertaining.
The mocking of Fred Zugibe is particularly nasty.
Sometimes I don’t get the way Facebook works – or is it that I never do. Just this morning I took a quick look at the page for The Holy Shroud Guild. The topmost recent post was dated May 5th. That was followed by one from just a few hours ago (I’ll get to that in a subsequent post), then one from later in May and then things seemed to settle down with normal posting sequences going from recent July down the page to the oldest entries.
It’s a good thing it happened because I had missed the May 5th posting by Danusha Goska. It was important. It was a link to something she wrote, Christophobia on Campus, Penn Jillette and Joseph Goebbels, and Shroud of Turin Talk Update, in her Save, Send Delete blog. She wrote (and you should read the whole posting):
Jillette and Teller’s performance was hateful. It was comparable to the kind of material that Joseph Goebbels used to produce. Goebbels also took distinctively religious icons – in his case Jewish ones – and associated them with derision in order to facilitate violence and hate.
I’ve often heard New Atheists complain that they have a bad reputation. They wonder why.
It was a good thing, too, to read what Danusha wrote because four days ago a reader had written to me about the video. It was making the rounds on New Atheist blogs and such. He sent a link to a mid-July entry in The Thinking Atheist. Had I seen it? No! It was two and a half years old. So what, the reader said, it is out there and getting attention; you should show it. No, I won’t, I thought. Why advertise it?
Having read, Danusha’s posting, yes, I will. The readers of this blog are intelligent. I’m not promoting it since it is written by bigots for idiots and there are no idiots here. Maybe the comparison to Goebbels is a bit strong. Even so, Danusha makes an important point. The mocking of Fred Zugibe is particularly nasty.