Why Jesus Never Rose from Death, Science FTW

We all know the story of Jesus and his resurrection. Woo Hoo! It's a miracle! Well, it would have to be. And not just that he rose, but that other biological processes didn't happen. So let's talk about death and what happens from the moment of death. Fair warning, this won't be pretty. 


At the nearly the moment of death, Flies are attracted to your body. Shortly after death they will lay eggs in the openings of the body so that their larva can feed on the body tissues. Fly larval gestation is 24 hours. At this point the larva are feeding on their eggs and eventually the surrounding areas until they can reach the dry air where metamorphosis can take place. This process is usually four days of feeding. So if Jesus was dead in a cave for three days, surely he would have been food for maggots by this point. 


The second side of the story is that we are virtual bacteria factories. We have between 500 and 1000 forms of bacteria in our digestive systems. As soon as we die, that bacteria wants to escape the digestive tract. It will feed it's way out of the intestines into the rest of the body and feed upon it and it's enzymes that generate after death. You know how the body will begin to bloat after only 4 to 10 days, this is the gas produced in the rest of the body with nowhere to escape.


Then we have Rigor Mortis. From 3 hours to 12 hours in, Rigor Mortis will settle in and the body will become stiff. Basically all of the muscles harden up to a constricted state due the lack of oxygen flow. The resulting chemical process hardens the muscles and this wont relax for about three days when the digestive enzymes have eaten away at some of the muscle mass. In three days the body has been overcome by the bacteria.


To make matters worse, Lazarus made it four days, so what is so impressive about Jesus? But really, the writers of the Bible didn't understand the science of death. You don't die and keep the flies away. You don't die and keep the bacteria in their place. These things only happen in living people. So either Jesus didn't die, and where is the miracle? Or his body was already being consumed. "He is risen... and he has worms and bloat!"      

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Comment by Dustin on April 25, 2011 at 7:37pm

Gaytor, I understand what the texts say.  But that isn't what Christians believe about it because that's why it's called a doctrine ... not a textual criticism that you are trying to make.  


Basically , if God wanted to raise somebody from the dead and have them magically appear out of thin air in front of large crowds (I slightly remember this happening in the bible ... POOF , it's Jesus!)  .. then I am pretty sure God would be able to stop a couple flies from laying larva and bacteria from eating his organs and even reversing rigor mortis.  


The holes in Jesus's side and his scars or whatever else is showing from his crucifixion are apparently things that God would obviously decide NOT to cover up and hide and reverse if Gods main intention was to use Jesus as a means to prove his resurrection , yes?  


If Jesus did not return with holes in the wrists (hands?) and a spear wound in the side , the apostles may have thought another person subbed in for Jesus or that it never happened and that Jesus was at home turning water into wine perhaps?  


To summarize , there is really no practical objections I see even as a Skeptic with this blog post of yours , in relation to the doctrine of the resurrection.  As I already pointed out my explanations to your questions.  


Please feel free to call me out on anything :)  

Comment by Dustin on April 25, 2011 at 7:38pm
God , reading my refutations of your post , I am starting to feel like William Lane Craig here :P
Comment by Dustin on April 25, 2011 at 7:45pm

Ohhh , one last point.  My little point aboutJesus being at different places at different times.  I may be wrong about it , but I remember reading some arguments once about how Jesus appeared before multiple people , multiple Apostles at different times in different Gospels ... somehow he would have had to evaporate and reassemble himself at a new location because the timeline wouldn't make sense.  Like , he couldn't just walk to each place in the time given ... he had to be supernaturally put there .. Kind of like Goku in Dragonball Z , where he develops the power to 'think' himself into any location he chooses in the Universe :P  


But I guess , technically , it wouldn't be 'at the same time'.  But he sure as hell knows how to go lightspeed when revealing himself.  

Comment by Tha Lord on April 25, 2011 at 8:25pm
I would offer doubt that Jesus existed at all.  The story of Pilate finding Jesus innocent and then allowing his execution by referendum seems a fabrication.  Roman governorship did not operate in this manner.  Then again, the entire text of Christianity that is held to be historical in nature seems fabricated as well.
Comment by rationalrevolution on April 25, 2011 at 9:55pm

This is not the reason that Jesus never rose from the dead. The reason that Jesus never rose from the dead is because the whole entire story is made up, none of it ever happened.


This is one problem that is common in scientific and skeptic circles, trying to ether come up with naturalistic explanations for things or naturalistic critiques of things which aren't even verified in the first place. It's like these silly History Channel specials that try to provide naturalistic explanations for events in the Old Testament, like the plagues of Egypt of the crossing of the Red Sea, when the need for such explanations relies utterly on the assumption that the Bible is an accurate historical account anything in the first place.


The fact is that the best archeological evidence suggests that none of the stories of the Torah are even remotely grounded in history, and the whole first 5 books of the "Old Testament" are complete fabrications which were written some time in the 7th century BCE, and that the accounts were pure political mythology. There is no need to come up with a naturalistic explanation for the crossing of the Red Sea because it never happened. There is nothing to explain any more than we need to explain how Harry Potter "actually defeated" Voldemort. 


The same is the case with the Jesus story. See my analysis of the Gospel of Mark here: http://www.rationalrevolution.net/articles/gospel_mark.htm


It's like these fools who try to explain how Jesus could have actually walked on water, as if the account of "him" "walking" on water (actually its more like the flew down from a cliff in the gospels) is even credible and needs to be explained in the first place.


There is no more need to account of Jesus walking on water than there is to account for how Poseidon walked on water.

Comment by Gaytor on April 25, 2011 at 11:20pm
So how long has ThinkAthiest been a biggest cock contest? Have I just not noticed before?
Comment by Discern on April 26, 2011 at 12:05am

Dustin and rationalrevolution:  I agree with pretty much everything you guys said. Man those particular type of documentaries piss me off. They are useless to the believer and the skeptic alike.  Instead of wasting all that time and effort explaining natural reasons of how Moses could've crossed the Red Sea, how about just getting to the bottom of it and proving it didn't happen in the first place? (eg no evidence of one-million-plus people wandering around in the desert for 40 years).


There's also those silly arguments like "haha you christians believe in a talking snake!! lolz".  If the God you believe in is omnipotent and created animals in the first place, then a talking snake and talking donkeys are fully possible. It fits in with the mythos. If you want to counter the talking animal stories, then you need to find a scriptural/doctrinal reason why it couldn't happen. Otherwise find another angle to attack from.


Comment by Dustin on April 26, 2011 at 12:31am
lol @ Gaytor.  This is an Atheist site and as you know , we do not all automatically hit the like button just because something may trash religion in some way ;P
Comment by Gaytor on April 26, 2011 at 12:33am
I was like member 750 here. I've never seen such off the wall responses.
Comment by Dustin on April 26, 2011 at 10:21am

'Off the wall'?  


Forgive me for saying , but that response seems to be off the wall.  But it is possible that my response , or someone elses response is off the wall , but you seem to be making some claims about our responses without justifying it.  I actually agree with most of what everyone else has commented about on this blog post..


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