The Late Ex-Atheist Flew On Resurrection Of Jesus

Antony Flew(1923-2010)

In Atheist Becomes Theist: Exclusive Interview with Former Atheist Antony Flew, the author described Flew as “a legendary British philosopher and atheist and has been an icon and champion for unbelievers for decades. His change of mind is significant news, not only about his personal journey, but also about the persuasive power of the arguments modern theists have been using to challenge atheistic naturalism.”

This is an excerpt  from  An Exclusive Interview with Former British Atheist Professor Antony Flew(2004). Gary Habermas, a philosopher and historian from Liberty University,  interviewing Flew on different issues.

HABERMAS: You and I have had three dialogues on the resurrection of Jesus. Are you any closer to thinking that the resurrection could have been a historical fact?

FLEW: No, I don’t think so. The evidence for the resurrection is better than for claimed miracles in any other religion. It’s outstandingly different in quality and quantity, I think, from the evidence offered for the occurrence of most other supposedly miraculous events. But you must remember that I approached it after considerable reading of reports of psychical research and its criticisms. This showed me how quickly evidence of remarkable and supposedly miraculous events can be discredited.

What the psychical researcher looks for is evidence from witnesses, of the supposedly paranormal events, recorded as soon as possible after their occurrence. What we do not have is evidence from anyone who was in Jerusalem at the time, who witnessed one of the allegedly miraculous events, and recorded his or her testimony immediately after the occurrence of that allegedly miraculous event. In the 1950s and 1960s I heard several suggestions from hard-bitten young Australian and American philosophers of conceivable miracles the actual occurrence of which, it was contended, no one could have overlooked or denied. Why, they asked, if God wanted to be recognized and worshipped, did God not produce a miracle of this unignorable and undeniable kind?

HABERMAS: So you think that, for a miracle, the evidence for Jesus’ resurrection is better than other miracle claims?

FLEW: Oh yes, I think so. It’s much better, for example, than that for most if not of the, so to speak, run of the mill Roman Catholic miracles. On this see, for instance, D. J. West.

You can download a full interview here in PDF