BORG: "Resurrection could, but need not mean that the corpse had been affected; a corpse coming to life is not the point....Speaking as a Christian, I regard these stories not as straightforward events that you could capture on video".

HANS KUNG: "The disciples never appeal to the evidence of the empty tomb in order to strengthen the faith of the Church or to refute and convince opponents".  

The gospels say that a miracle healing man called Jesus Christ lived. They say he died by crucifixion and three days later he rose again. The tomb he was placed in was found wide open with the stone that had been across the entrance moved back and the tomb was mysteriously empty. His body was gone. Certain witnesses claimed that Jesus appeared to them as a resurrected being.  Jesus took a piece of fish and ate it after he rose from the dead but we read that the angels in the Book of Genesis ate too!  Jesus denied he was a mere ghost but that depends on what he meant by ghost! 

Christians say that the resurrection of Jesus is central and core and indispensable Christian doctrine for it manifests what our lives are all about.  God wants to save us from sin and vulnerability and death and give us bodies that are able to pass through dangers untouched and that can traverse one end of space to the other instantly and which are beautiful and glorious and live forever.  Jesus supposedly had a body like and gave us a taste of what to expect and above all manifested God's eternal plan.

Most Christians hate the idea that Jesus rose spiritually from the dead for that makes the resurrection less believable. For example, occultists and mediums claim to routinely cause spiritual resurrections and the world is full of ghost stories in which people died and no body was ever found but they seemed to be back in bodily form after their deaths. But if the Bible doesn’t teach the resurrection these Christians want, nothing is to be gained by pretending different. 

Jesus himself said nothing about what his resurrection body was like.  The doctrines about the ghost style body are based on speculation.  The New Testament gives no evidence from witnesses that he had. 

A vision of a Jesus who appears in a ghost like body does not mean Jesus has a ghost like body.  Even in Catholicism, apparitions are done by different methods.  It is thought by some that Mary did not appear bodily in Lourdes but was seen by remote vision.  The Bible believers always really believe in their own theories and speculations and interpretations rather than in the Bible.
The gospel says the apostles were in a boat and seen a ghost that turned out to be Jesus walking on water and he gets in the boat with them.  So it seems Jesus acted like a ghost long before he rose again.  Many ask if the story of Jesus walking on water in fact originally a post-resurrection story that has been put in the wrong place?  Jesus acted like a glowing ghost during the transfiguration.  Mark 9:1 tries to make out that the prediction of the son of man coming in power referred to the transfiguration. This is very forced for the prediction fits the idea of the second coming best. It does not really fit the transfiguration at all which was not even a coming. However the problem shows that Mark was written after the death of the last apostle of Jesus. It is trying to show that Jesus did not make a false prophecy when he said he would return and be seen by people of his generation.  The transfiguration could be a post-resurrection legend deliberately shoved back into Jesus' pre-resurrection "history."

The risen Jesus though he acted like a ghost, is still said to have been able to move things around physically and he supposedly even ate some fish. We cannot ascribe any importance to such claims. Ghost stories presented as true, are always embellished with elements to deflect any suspicion among one's listeners that it was a hallucination, a mental illness episode or imagination. One such element is the ghost maybe touching you or moving something around. It is strange if a ghost walks through a wall and is able to pull your bedclothes off! It is a contradiction. But it avoids the teller saying merely that they seen something - people believe it better if the entity was not only seen but if it touched or moved something. It seems to allay the suspicion that the teller had an illusion. This is a manipulative tactic. If you see Jesus lifting your kitten off the floor, it does not mean the kitten really was lifted. If Jesus can walk through walls he can easily give the impression that he really lifted the kitten. So you have no right to manipulate people in saying he lifted the kitten therefore he was not just a ghost.

The notion that a spiritual body means a physical body that was able to teleport and vanish and do without food and act like a ghost without being a ghost is interesting. Why not just say it is a ghost? Maybe that is the way the New Testament is saying it! The body doesn’t do anything different from what a ghost does! The spiritual body being physical means nothing for a ghost is often seen as being physical in some way too which is why we are all afraid of ghosts. The resurrection of Jesus is less convincing when one realises that nobody was ever saying the body rose entirely. It seems to have provided the seed for the new body which was more like a ghost or an apparition than a body. There have been countless ghostly resurrections in the world similar to it. It’s not unique. Scientist William Crookes testified that Katie King had been raised from the dead at Florence Cook séances. We know the man and who he was better than any of those mysterious New Testament writers. Makes more sense to trust him than them - though I am not saying we should.

Origen held that the resurrection body is a sphere and is shape-shifting and is glorious like the body of the angel. It is a body that in a sense has nothing like human flesh. For him, the angels in the tomb were no different from the risen Jesus. Clement of Alexandria said that Jesus appeared in a phantasmal shape and his body has no feeling so it is very different from a human body. Read his Miscellanies 6.

I wish to end with a quote from Rutherford, president of the Jehovah's Witnesses, a faith that affirms Jesus did not rise bodily but returned as a spirit, about Jesus missing body, "Jehovah God disposed of that body in his own way, just as he disposed of the body of Moses, who was a type of Christ Jesus; but no one knows how." Though God had nothing to do with it this religion is not too far from the truth!!


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