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IX. The Belief in Jesus' Resurrection

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the content of the belief in Jesus' resurrection in the earliest period of the Church, that is, in the time of Paul and earlier. It examines the earliest traceable phraseology and ideas concerning the belief in Jesus' resurrection. Accordingly, Jesus' followers believed that God had raised Jesus into heaven directly after his death to vindicate him over against those who had killed him. This martyrological resurrection was supposed to take place soon after the death of the martyr. The resurrection which is attributed to the martyrs in Maccabees is a resurrection into heaven. The language and the concepts used to express the belief in the heavenly resurrection of the martyr in Maccabees agree with those used by the earliest Christians to express their belief in the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus' followers interpreted his death in terms of this tradition of the heavenly vindication of the martyr.

Keywords: Jesus' resurrection; Maccabees; martyrs



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