The Resurrection of the Son of God (Christian Origins and the Question of God, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Resurrection of the Son of God (Christian Origins and the Question of God #3)

4.52 of 5 stars 4.52  ·  rating details  ·  943 ratings  ·  63 reviews
Why did Christianity begin, and why did it take the shape it did? To answer this question – which any historian must face – renowned New Testament scholar N.T. Wright focuses on the key points: what precisely happened at Easter? What did the early Christians mean when they said that Jesus of Nazareth had been raised from the dead? What can be said today about his belief?


Paperback, 817 pages
Published March 1st 2003 by Fortress Press
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Resurrection of the Son of God, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Resurrection of the Son of God

Jesus, Interrupted by Bart D. EhrmanMisquoting Jesus by Bart D. EhrmanThe Jesus Puzzle by Earl DohertyThe Challenge of Jesus by N.T. WrightNot the Impossible Faith by Richard Carrier
Best Historical Jesus Books
12th out of 87 books — 49 voters
Mere Christianity by C.S. LewisThe Screwtape Letters by C.S. LewisThe Reason for God by Timothy KellerThe Great Divorce by C.S. LewisConfessions by Augustine of Hippo
The Christian Intellect
121st out of 456 books — 431 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,479)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Ryan Manns
Excellent book. 5 stars worth of historical information on the resurrection, 5 stars for making a case for Jesus being the Son of God, 3 stars for length (could have made his argument in half the number of pages), and 3 stars for confusing wording at times. Overall 4 stars and I would recommend this to anyone looking at examining the truth behind the resurrection of Jesus.

Ok so here is my review on this excellent book. As I said initially I thought Wright could have made his case in half the nu...more
Chauncey Lattimer
Wow!, again. This was one of the best Christmas presents I have received from my wife. (Especially since I had to go buy and read NTPG and JVG before starting this book.

Wright brought home to me once again the absolute necessity of understanding the 2nd Temple mindset. In that frame of reference, resurrection can ONLY mean getting a new body.. not 'life after death', but life after life-after-death!

Of particular interest was his development of the sufficient and necessary causes in relationship...more
This was a phenomenal though quite lengthy and dense book. N.T. Wright is one of the foremost New Testament scholars of our time and I believe this book is something of a "rite of passage" for those curious of the historical case for the resurrection of Jesus. This comprehensive work is referred to by many other Christian apologists which is why I picked it up.

To try to summarize this book seems unwise. However, I can summarize some points as they stuck out from my perspective:

1. Beliefs on deat...more
Essential reading for anyone, Christian or not, which places the resurrection of Jesus in its historical and Biblical context. Through surveying just about every piece of Christian and Jewish religious literature ever written up until the second century (including a lot that didn't make it into the Bible), as well as the writings of the Greeks and the beliefs of the Romans, Egyptians and other ancient cultures, Tom Wright puts the idea of the resurrection of Jesus thoroughly into context. Throug...more
This is Wright's third of what will be 5 (at least for now) volumes in his "Christian Origins and the Question of God" series. When I see the size of these things, I get an overwhelming sense of stupidity and laziness. I don't think I can even thoughtfully read as much as he has written.

This volume tackles the doctrine of resurrection, and does so extensively. Wright analyzes the Christian belief about resurrection in the context of ancient Pagan and Jewish beliefs, and he attacks the notion th...more
Jacob McGill
This book does a great job of defending the Christian position of physical resurrection, and for that it gets 4 stars. I was close to giving it three though b/c the book gets quite repetitive, especially in Part 1. This book is touted very highly by the conservative evangelical camp b/c it defends the resurrection better than they are able to, but I would say that it is overrated. Conservatives like it b/c it 'proves' the liberals wrong, but does not propose much new for Christian thought. JVG i...more
Perhaps the best New Testament scholar of this age, Wright explores the historical setting of the Resurrection of Christ. Looking at the understanding of death, the afterlife and the idea of “resurrection” in the various settings of the ancient Near East (pagan, Jewish, etc.) Wright argues that the claim of the followers of Jesus was radical and unheard of. Wright begins with an objective tone, and slowly moves through the text toward subjectivity, arguing a level of belief and involvement when...more
Started this book. Wright, as usual, is a force of character and rhetoric. His arguments are convincing and fastidiously researched. One of the best volumes on this subject.
Benjamin Alexander
Doug Wilson was gracious in letting me sub out a Greyfriar's book for this one
One of the most enlightening and edifying books I've ever read. It was a hard slog at times--it had over 2,000 footnotes--but thoroughly worth it. Wright spends about the first 500 to 600 pages setting up his 100 to 200 pages of argument that the most reasonable conclusion to the historical evidence of Jesus' resurrection is that it actually happened. I would do no justice to his thorough defense of his position if I attempted to summarize. Wright is a first class scholar (Cambridge, Oxford) and...more
Josh Meares
This is book 3 of N.T. Wright's huge work entitled Christian Origins and the Question of God. It examines the key historical questions of a belief in the resurrection of an individual. What does resurrection mean? Are there precedents? What did surrounding cultures believe about death? How could this belief have started? When did it start? This book is well-written and well-researched, which means it is a long read, but not too terribly boring. Once I get an ebook reader, this will be on my shor...more
Adam Smith
From my blog (

Here we are finally at the conclusion of the three volume series (thus far) of the epic "Christian Origins and the Question of God". In this third (and longest) volume of the three, we find a well-reasoned, well thought out historical study of the resurrection of Jesus.

As usual, N.T. Wright is at his best when writing history. On the theological front, Wright is no slouch either. He deftly weaves together historical references and theologica...more
Andrew Barlow
This is Wright's comprehensive historical argument for why the bodily resurrection of Jesus is the best explanation of what actually happened on Easter Sunday. It is the historical explanation that fits best with the NT biblical data and with the OT theology of a Creator God who is the source of all life. It is the explanation that lies in continuity but also in some discontinuity with the inter-testament hope of a general bodily resurrection. It explains best the rise and shape of the early Chr...more
Rick Boyer
Were it possible, I would give this book ten stars... that's how important and well-written it is. "The Resurrection of the Son of God" is a scholarly tour-de-force of the highest caliber, in which Dr. Wright brilliant makes his case: that by far the best explanation for the rise of Christianity, and the source of the early Christian claim that Jesus had risen bodily from the dead, is that God did, in fact, raise Jesus from the dead! That fact, experienced by the first disciples via the empty to...more
This book was simultaneously frustrating and amazing. It was boring in many parts, and sometimes repetitive. The book is over 700 pages long, and its not full of fun stories and anecdotes. Its a historical scholarly work, and as such gets pretty dry in some parts. But the huge asset this book is to the church far outweighs its deficiencies. Wright is one of the most brilliant writers I have ever encountered, or ever will encounter. His knowledge of pagan, Jewish, and Christian beliefs around the...more
This is the best book on the resurrection I have read. Now that could be because I have not read a whole lot of books directly on the resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, but there is no doubt that this is a wonderful book.

Much Wright's work in this book is the tearing down of Gnosticism and proto-Gnostic heresies and tendencies. The resurrection from the dead destroys all hints of "the body is bad and the spirit is good" as well as "let's get the hell of the earth to get to heaven and let it burn...more
During my Bible school and seminary days it seemed that all one could find with regard to works on the credibility of belief in the resurrection were focused on a variety of apologetic arguments found here and there regarding the details of the rise of Chrsitianity and the various writings from those outside the faith referencing the growth of this movement. N. T. Wright's third volume in his opus on Christian origins provided what I believe to be the most masterful and lucid assessment of how t...more
Josh Shelton
This series by N. T. Wright is without parallel. Probably the greatest series of theological books that I have ever read. I found this book to be the best book on the resurrection that I have ever come in contact with, and ironically, because of how good the first two books are, I found this to be my least favorite of the three (albeit still 5 stars).

1. NTPG was the most fun. He laid foundational principles, discussing epistemology, post-modernity, history as a non-neutral enterprise, the mode...more
This hefty book is NT Wright's comprehensive examination of the idea of resurrection in the ancient world in general, and the resurrection of Jesus in particular. Wright surveys what ancient people (basically, people who lived before and during the time of Jesus) thought about life after death and the notion of a "resurrection" from the dead. A major thing that Wright makes it a point to emphasize is the uniqueness of the Jewish view of resurrection that was adopted and modified by the early Chr...more
Daniel Wright
To my mind the finest in N. T. Wright's magisterial series Christian Origins and the Question of God (though admittedly I haven't finished Paul and the Faithfulness of God yet), this book surveys an enormous range of historical, theological and other material from the ancient world about the subject of death, the possibility of life after death, and most controversially, the possibility of what Wright calls 'life after life after death' (emphasis original). Having done this, he proceeds to exami...more
Chad Gibbons
The most comprehensive study on the resurrection to date. Wright surveys all the relevant Greek and Jewish background material as well as the early Christian writers to try to get to the bottom of the questions: Why did early Christianity take the shape that it did? What event made pious Jews switch their day of worship from Saturday to Sunday? What made their theology take the form it did? Why did people claim that Jesus rose from the dead in the first place? What did they mean by it?

This book...more
Floyd Schneider
THE definitive answer to all the preconceived objections to the historical resurrection of Jesus Christ AND the implications. Not a quick read, but a person who plows through the entire book will never be the same. There are other books that cover the subject well, but not with as much detail. This book covers every question imaginable. And Wright is an excellent writer as a writer. Very enjoyable English.
Simply first rate. Hell of a dense read, and a bloody difficult one too. It's academic level history, will a full 60-70 page bibliography and footnotes out the wazoo. But dear Lord, is it worth the effort.
Incredibly thorough treatment of the resurrection of Jesus. What would "resurrection" have meant to an ancient palestinian? What good/bad explanations are there against the resurrection? What does the various parts of the Bible teach about the afterlife. NT Wright presents an argument for the bodily resurrection of Jesus, and for the bodily resurrection of believers after their rest asleep in the Lord. This is not a light book. But for me, such an important topic needs a book like this one. Seri...more
Greg Hess
For how much I loved this book, I must admit I'm not going to finish it.

Wright tackles the issue of resurrection: what it means & whether we have any reason to believe it may have happened before.

Most time is spent on the bit about what the term means and a wise reader will not be troubled with the details (hundreds of pages laying out proof after proof to leave no doubt, even though a handful of examples are quite sufficient for most people).

The real meat, in my opinion, is the last bit...more
Bradley Davis
Simply brilliant. Wrights arguments are forceful, leaving no room to deny the bodily resurrection of Jesus in the arena of NT history. His argument is tedious at times, drilling the same facts over and over. That's what makes the book simultaneously frustrating and wonderful. The reader gets tired, but recognizes that so much detail has been given the argument is as close to full-proof as it can get. Anyone who wishes to wrestle with the topic of resurrection, whether to affirm or deny, absolute...more
Daniel Anderson
The value of this book is incalculable. It is a historical tour de force on the Christian belief in Jesus’ Resurrection and therefore the resurrection of our physical body at histories end. I would not argue with other reviewers who have pointed out some of the books minor flaws. Those points, however, do not impact the scholarly value of this detailed work. As my father said when he gave me this copy, “As far as I am concerned this is the preeminent work on the topic of the Resurrection availab...more
Whoa. More information than one can possibly use but well presented and interesting. Not an easy read.
Jeffrey Backlin
An excellent conceptual treatment of the views on resurrection and the afterlife and its jewish context.
I went into this book with these thoughts, "In the resurrection narratives, it happens over and over that someone does not recognize Jesus. I've never really understood that. Hmmm, I wonder what N.T. Wright thinks about that?" So, I dive in. Marvelous book, etc. etc., and after a few hundred pages I finally come across a section where N.T. Wright tackles the question, "Why do people have such a hard time recognizing the risen Jesus?"
You know what his answer is?
"I don't know."
That was one of the...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 82 83 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony
  • Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament
  • The Crucified God: The Cross of Christ as the Foundation and Criticism of Christian Theology
  • The Historical Reliability of the Gospels
  • The Mission of God: Unlocking the Bible's Grand Narrative
  • Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions
  • The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate
  • The Christian Tradition 3: The Growth of Medieval Theology 600-1300
  • The Moral Vision of the New Testament: Community, Cross, New CreationA Contemporary Introduction to New Testament Ethic
  • Warranted Christian Belief
  • An Introduction to the New Testament
  • Canon of Scripture
  • The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God (Theology of Lordship)
  • The Gospel in a Pluralist Society
  • Exclusion & Embrace: A Theological Exploration of Identity, Otherness, and Reconciliation
  • Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation in Spiritual Theology (Spiritual Theology #1)
  • The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited
  • Christian Theology: An Introduction
N. T. Wright is the former Bishop of Durham in the Church of England (2003-2010) and one of the world's leading Bible scholars. He is now serving as the chair of New Testament and Early Christianity at the School of Divinity at the University of St. Andrews. He has been featured on ABC News, Dateline NBC, The Colbert Report, and Fresh Air, and he has taught New Testament studies at Cambridge, McGi...more
More about N.T. Wright...
Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense The Challenge of Jesus: Rediscovering Who Jesus Was and Is The New Testament and the People of God (Christian Origins and the Question of God, #1) Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters

Share This Book

“There is no reason in principle why the question, what precisely happened at Easter, cannot be raised by any historian of any persuasion. Even if some Christians might wish to rule it off limits, they have (presumably) no a priori right to tell other historians, whether Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, New Agers, gnostics, agnostics, or anyone else, what they may and may not study.” 0 likes
“Though my approach throughout the book will be positive and expository, it is worth noting from the outset that I intend to challenge this dominant paradigm in each of its main constituent parts. In general terms, this view holds the following: (1) that the Jewish context provides only a fuzzy setting, in which ‘resurrection’ could mean a variety of different things; (2) that the earliest Christian writer, Paul, did not believe in bodily resurrection, but held a ‘more spiritual’ view; (3) that the earliest Christians believed, not in Jesus’ bodily resurrection, but in his exaltation/ascension/glorification, in his ‘going to heaven’ in some kind of special capacity, and that they came to use ‘resurrection’ language initially to denote that belief and only subsequently to speak of an empty tomb or of ‘seeing’ the risen Jesus; (4) that the resurrection stories in the gospels are late inventions designed to bolster up this second-stage belief; (5) that such ‘seeings’ of Jesus as may have taken place are best understood in terms of Paul’s conversion experience, which itself is to be explained as a ‘religious’ experience, internal to the subject rather than involving the seeing of any external reality, and that the early Christians underwent some kind of fantasy or hallucination; (6) that whatever happened to Jesus’ body (opinions differ as to whether it was even buried in the first place), it was not ‘resuscitated’, and was certainly not ‘raised from the dead’ in the sense that the gospel stories, read at face value, seem to require.11 Of course, different elements in this package are stressed differently by different scholars; but the picture will be familiar to anyone who has even dabbled in the subject, or who has listened to a few mainstream Easter sermons, or indeed funeral sermons, in recent decades.” 0 likes
More quotes…