Some members of the Jesus Seminar, following other more radical scholars, appear to echo views like those of Bultmann. Regarding Jesus’ miracles, Seminar Co-Founder John Dominic Crossan asserts that Jesus “did not and could not cure that disease or any other one . . . .”^8 He continues later: “I do not think that anyone, anywhere, at any time brings dead people back to life.”^9 Jarl Fossum comments on the same subject, including a derisive jab at conservatives: “Or it can be asserted that Jesus really did raise the girl from the dead—which would only reflect fundamentalist naivete.”^10

Like Bultmann, the Jesus Seminar extends this same sort of criticism to Jesus’ resurrection. They assert: “Whenever scholars detect detailed knowledge of postmortem events in sayings and parables attributed to Jesus, they are inclined to the view that the formulation of such sayings took place after the fact.”^11 But it appears from their work that they have more than a mere “inclination” to rule out any post-death details from Jesus’ life. In fact, they rule out every saying from the resurrection narratives. Later they provide insight into their thinking: “By definition, words ascribed to Jesus after his death are not subject to historical verification.”^12

1. A priorirejection of miracles

One characteristic of Bultmann’s rejection of the supernatural is that he failed to provide any actual reasons for his rejection; he simply assumed that such things do not happen. We have already seen in an earlier chapter how John Macquarrie, a leading commentator, specifically chides Bultmann for rejecting the resurrection due to “an entirely arbitrary dismissal . . . because of some prior assumption in his mind.” Macquarrie then adds that “Bultmann does not take the trouble to examine