It is not the purpose of this book to take an in-depth look at these alternative theories proposed to explain away the facticity of Jesus’ resurrection. Suffice it to remark here that, as with Paulus’ theory, each of the naturalistic theories was disproven by the liberals themselves. By this process, and by the critiques of others outside their camp, the weaknesses of these attempts were revealed. In other words, each of the alternative theories was disproven by the known historical facts.^47

It is also instructive to note that twentieth century critics usually rejected these theories wholesale. Rather than deal with each proposal separately, the naturalistic attempts to disprove the resurrection were generally dismissed in their entirety by recent critical scholars. For example, Karl Barth, probably the most influential critical theologian of this century, listed the major naturalistic theories and concluded that “Today we rightly turn our nose up at this,” a conclusion derived at least partially from “the many inconsistencies in detail.” He also notes that these explanations “have now gone out of currency.”^48

Similarly, Raymond Brown also provides a list of these theories and then concludes: “the criticism of today does not follow the paths taken by criticism in the past. No longer respectable are the crude theories . . . popular in the last century.”^49 These are just examples of the many contemporary critical theologians who, in spite of their diverse theological persuasions, have agreed in rejecting the alternative theories against the resurrection.^50

Therefore, not only were the naturalistic theories disproven by the historical facts, but nineteenth century Liberals critiqued these views individually, while twentieth century critics have generally dismissed them as a whole. These