That this confession is an early Christian, pre-Pauline creed is recognized by virtually all critical scholars across a very wide theological spectrum.^44 There are several indications that reveal this conclusion.

44 See Reginald Fuller, Resurrection Narratives, p. 10; Oscar Cullmann, The Early Church: Studies in Early Christian History and Theology, ed. by A.J.B. Higgins (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1966), p. 64; Pannenberg, Jesus, p. 90; Wilckens, Resurrection, p. 2; Hengel, The Atonement, pp. 36–38, 40; Bultmann, Theology, vol. 1, pp. 45, 80, 82, 293; Willi Marxsen, The Resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, transl. by Margaret Kohl (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1970), pp. 80, 86; Hans Conzelmann, 1 Corinthians, transl. by James W. Leitch (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1969), p. 251; Hans-Ruedi Weber, The Cross, transl. by Elke Jessett (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1978), p. 58; Dodd, “Risen Christ,” pp. 124–125; A.M. Hunter, Bible and Gospel, p. 108; Raymond E. Brown, The Virginal Conception and Bodily Resurrection of Jesus(New York: Paulist Press, 1973), pp. 81, 92; Norman Perrin, The Resurrection According to Matthew, Mark and Luke(Philadelphia: Fortress, 1977), p. 79; George E. Ladd, I Believe in the Resurrection of Jesus(Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975), p. 104; Neufeld, Confessions, p. 47.

First, Paul’s words “delivered” and “received” are technical terms for passing on tradition. As such, we have Paul’s statement that this material was not his own, but received from another source.^45

Second, a number of words in this creed are non-Pauline, again indicating another origin of this material.^46 Jeremias, a leading authority on this issue, notes such non-Pauline phrases as (1) “for our sins” (v. 3); (2) “according to the scriptures” (vv. 3–4); (3) “he has been raised” (v. 4); (4) the “third day” (v. 4); (5) “he was seen” (vv. 5–8); and (6) “the twelve” (v. 5).^47