"The Body" film 2001

Film 2001 starring Antonio Banderas.

They find a body in tomb buried under someone’s basement in Jerusalem. Catholics are all desperate for something to prove this is not Jesus. One old priest who is also a scientist is losing his mind.


Sorry. It is hard for me to understand. I have no need to believe the physical body got up and walked out of the tomb. It is hard for me to grasp why this is so important that the Christian faith of some would come tumbling down from such a discovery.

I would be skeptical of such a discovery - to find something so perfectly matching the description in the Bible. But my faith would not be on the line.

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Hi @mitchellmckain,
Could you explain more about why you think Jesus’ physical resurrection is not important to you? As far as I understand it’s long been seen as essential to the Christian faith. Paul seemed to think it was pretty important.

1 Corinthians 15:17
And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.

My impression from your posts is that you have thought this out thoroughly. But I don’t understand how you came to this conclusion.



Remember I started out with the scientific worldview, so I could never take seriously an understanding of the Bible contrary to science. From science we learn that the matter of the body is part of a natural cycle and constantly changing – being reused over and over again by other living things, and thus shared by all. So the idea that the matter of the body suddenly becomes important at death and is needed in the resurrection make no rational sense to me whatsoever.

For me it was a bit the other way around… struggling to see why the resurrection was so important… one of the last things I figured out. I never understood the preoccupation with the resurrection until I read Paul in 1 Cor 15. Then I could explain why Jesus’ resurrection is important. But then I would go with Paul’s explanation in 1 Corinthians 15 – a bodily resurrection not to a natural/physical body but to a spiritual body made of the stuff of heaven rather than the dust of the Earth.

This distinguishes two different meanings of the word “physical.” One meaning bodily as in “physical education” and the other meaning in accord with natural law as in “physical properties.” Clearly Jesus’ resurrection is only the former and not the latter. Most people probably default to the first definition, but as a physicist I tend to default to the second definition. Thus the phrase “physical resurrection” sounds nonsensical to me and only when I read Paul speaking of a “bodily resurrection” and making a clear distinction between the two meanings of the word “physical” did it make sense.

Since the spiritual body is not made of the dust of the earth, the body in the tomb (which is only matter) has no importance, and this resolves a host of paradoxes with the idea of a physical/natural resurrection.

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I feel like it’s pointing towards the corpse came back from the dead because of the whole showing the wound thing but Moses also showed up in a vision and it says God did something with the body of Moses and that Michael and Satan was arguing over it. So as far as I know, and I’m perfectly fine with, is that Jesus’s corpse was hidden by god or something and that a new type of physical heavenly body is why appeared to them that they could touch and interact with. But I’m not positive. I don’t have much skin in the game either way. I also don’t think it matters if my corpse comes back from the dead or if it stays in the ground or disappears and I’m given a new heavenly body that can also interact with this world or whatever. I guess for me since I know it’s impossible to understand I know it’s pointless to be that invested in a stance.


Thanks for this explanation. I’ll think some more about it.

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"Science is only good for repeatable phenomena. And most of life, the most interesting parts, don’t repeat. So, science doesn’t recognize it.” [Source: Television series, "Evil, Season 1, Pilot.] A resurrection is not a humanly repeatable phenomenon.


So God hid the corpse and fooled the disciples.

EDIT: What you are describing is reincarnation.

This is the same sort of redneck mentality that equates evolution with communism. And by which I can claim that you believe Jesus was a vampire or a zombie.

Nothing He described was reincarnation.

Reincarnation, also known as rebirth or transmigration, is the philosophical or religious concept that the non-physical essence of a living being begins a new life in a different physical form or body after biological death. Resurrection is a similar process hypothesized by some religions, in which a soul comes back to life in the same body. In most beliefs involving reincarnation, the soul is seen as immortal and the only thing that becomes perishable is the body. Upon death, the soul becomes transmigrated into a new infant (or animal) to live again. The term transmigration means passing of soul from one body to another after death.

What He described was according to the Bible in which there is no such thing as the immortal soul of the Gnostics or reincarnating religions – nothing which can animate a body by being inserted into it. Instead there is according to Paul in 1 Corinthians 15 a spiritual body growing from the physical like a plant from a seed which can be brought to life after the physical body is gone – the matter the physical body rejoining the natural cycle of the earth in which all matter is shared by all living organisms. Those atoms don’t need to be ripped out of puppy dogs and babies in order for someone to be resurrected because there is nothing special about that matter of the dead body and the spiritual body isn’t even made of the same stuff.

I’m not describing reincarnation. Has nothing to do with fooling anyone. It’s taking other similar stories and applying it here.

When Moses died it and God took him body.

Deuteronomy 34:5-6
New American Standard Bible
5 So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, in accordance with the word of the Lord. 6 And He buried him in the valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth-peor; but no one knows his burial place to this day.

In the early creation myths we also see that perhaps another was taken by Yahweh in a unique way.

Genesis 5:24
New American Standard Bible
24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

There was also the whole chariot of fire thing.

2 Kings 2:11
New American Standard Bible
11 And as they were walking along and talking, behold, a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and they separated the two of them. Then Elijah went up by a whirlwind to heaven.

So in the Bible we see Yahweh doing some weird mornings with bodies.

We also see some of these people showing back up in visions later on.

So I don’t have any particular reason to not leaving the door open that Yahweh did something with the body of Jesus and still brought back Jesus who appeared as a vision to others. After all he appeared to Paul in a vision and was able to talk him and took away his sight.

It’s perfectly compatible with the other examples we see.

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But I think Paul would have a problem with this idea of the resurrected Jesus only being a vision which people had. He clearly believed in a bodily resurrection even if it wasn’t a physical/natural body getting up and walking out of the tomb. Paul’s teaching is compatible with the account in the gospel because the spiritual body is more powerful – more capable than the physical body rather than less. And thus He could be touched and He sat with the disciples and ate with them. But in the end He left, because that spiritual body doesn’t belong to the physical world.

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@SkovandOfMitaze and @mitchellmckain , what do you do with accounts of people like Lazarus and other resurrections that Jesus performed? These have long been pointed to as confirmation of Jesus’ divinity. His own bodily resurrection has long been seen as proof of it.

I’m trying to grasp where you’re coming from on this issue. I understand, Mitchell, that physical resurrection doesn’t fit with physics, conservation of matter, reuse of matter, your understanding of the soul, etc. And I understand you are very resistant to explanations that don’t square with science. But it feels like you have to leave out a lot in order to make these conclusions.

I’m not looking for a dust up, but a better understanding of how all the pieces fit in your views.


What I do is not worry about it in all honesty. Just because Lazarus corpse came back to life does not mean that is what happened with Jesus. After all Lazarus did not float away into the sky and many other things.

The simple fact is that no one knows. Saying God his his corpse and Jesus came back as a tangible vision made up of a heavenly body is no more insane than saying Jesus corpse came back.

But if it was just the corpse that came back , it does not explain why he could walk through doors, float away or disappear and so on. But if it’s a different body, or a vision that can be felt and heard then it seems to make better sense how he could do those things.

When we read of encounters with angels in the Bible sometimes it says in a vision and sometimes it seems like it was before them. Seems like maybe for some beings appearing as a tangible vision is the same as showing up as a mysterious flesh. But it seems like it could not have just been the corpse brought back since we can’t float and stuff like he did.

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These are not in any way similar to Jesus… who did not continue His physical life. Those cases you mention are far more similar to what doctors do or someone giving CPR to a drowning victim.

But Jesus made it absolutely clear that His divinity was not about having special magical powers.

John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do,

I think this is all derived from a completely human obsession with power. God became a man, 100% human, to show that power was of no importance.

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Thanks, Mitchell,

No question at all that humans are obsessed with power, and we see every possible variation of that lust in every possible corner of human activity.

I’m still not sure I see your explanation working for Lazarus in particular, whose body had been thoroughly handled in preparation for burial and then laid in the tomb for days. I imagine, however, you have already thought this through.



Yes, I have. We are talking about a time before modern medicine and all the distinctions we make between death-like conditions and what we now call actual death as confirmed by an MD (and even MDs can make a mistake and people revive after being pronounced dead). Of course someone couldn’t remain in a coma indefinitely without supplying various bodily needs. But I think 3 or 4 days is a possibility. I would still call it a miracle. But don’t think God has to suspend the laws of nature to do miracles any more than doctors and magicians.


Your response does not surprise me. I recall that some years ago you got mad at me because you assumed that I didn’t think the mermaids in your tv show should be given rights.

Mi suggested that God hid the corpse of Jesus, and then got a new body appeared to the disciples, with no continuity with the old body.

And I think you’ve been misreading Paul.

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Do you think he brings back out bodies? What about bodies that are just dusty bones? Or what about bodies whose flesh was eaten by animals and then the rest decomposed and the same body became nutrients for trees and the same atoms ended up as apples and so on? Or bodies blown apart in war? Does he collect all the gore snd stuff and bring it back together? I mean obviously he could… I just think those bodies are gone and a new body is made. A body and existence that can be physical and experienced as a vision all at once.

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I don’t think God makes artificial bodies for people. I think bodies grow. The first one grows in the womb from the genetic contributions of the parents and the second one grows in the spirit from the physical body and its choices. That is how Paul describes it – without self-appointed interpreters dictating meaning different from what the words say because they want something magical and nonsensical. Frankly, I think Paul was smarter than these interpreters.

Or ripped from babies and puppies because that is what they deserve when they steal atoms which belong to some dead body some time in the past for apparently that dead person has claimed permanent ownership of those atoms no matter where they may wander in the world. I guess atoms leaving the body while it lives are apparently free for anyone to use, but if someone dies then those atoms belong to them alone and it is just to bad if you commit the terrible sin of using those atoms for your own body. But I must wonder if any puppies or babies can escape shredding for after so long history how many atoms are unclaimed? (sarcasm font)

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Sounds like my wife, when we first met, some 47 years ago.


Yes, we get a new body, but it has some continuity (and discontinuity) with the old body. What I’m objecting to is your idea that God hid the corpse of Jesus and made him a new body. I don’t believe that Jesus ever had two bodies at any point in time.

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