William Lane Craig Believes the Shroud Of Turin is Authentic

“A careful assessment of the evidence, especially concerning the tests recently concluded by a team of forty American scientists, however, render the forgery hypothesis [for the Shroud of Turin] extremely unlikely.  …Hence, there is just no known mechanism by which a medieval forger could have produced this image.  …If the Shroud is not a fake, then the next question is naturally:  is the man on the Shroud Jesus?  There seems to be little reason to doubt that it is.”


William Lane Craig, “The Son Rises”, (Copyright 1981), pp. 64, 66

From National Geographic:

“In 1988, the Vatican authorized carbon-14 dating of the shroud. Small samples from a corner of its fabric were sent to labs at the University of Oxford’s Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit (RAU), the University of Arizona, and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. All three found that the shroud material dated to the years between 1260 and 1390, more than a millennium after the life and death of the historical Jesus.”

Source:  here

Gary:  Those damned scientists!  Spoiling the orthodox/conservative Christian story line once again!

 

Update from reader “Liam”, November 16, 2017:

So here is a more recent comment from William Lane Craig, that a simple google search unearthed:

“The Church hasn’t agreed to letting it be done again, but until those carbon dating tests are reversed, I think one can’t say that the shroud is authentic. You would need to have those tests somehow shown to be erroneous.”

Source: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/popular-writings/jesus-of-nazareth/forum-on-the-resurrection-with-william-lane-craig/

Just search “shroud” and you’ll find the conversation pertaining to the shroud, duh.

Gary this is a dishonest post since you haven’t corrected it. Taking potshots at an article almost 4 decades out of date is intellectually dishonest at worst, extremely lazy at best.
WLC is open to new evidence and has changed his stance accordingly. You haven’t changed the name of the blog post article, or even admitted your error.

But you have that axe to grind don’t you?

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36 thoughts on “William Lane Craig Believes the Shroud Of Turin is Authentic

  1. Again, shouldn’t the title say ” WLC believED the Shroud authentic”?

    Since you’re reading a book published in 1981, and then cite studies from 7 years later, you’d need to find references to WLC claiming the Shroud authentic post-1988, like in the last two or three years to be accurate.

    Has WLC stated that the Shroud is (likely) authentic in the last few years. I’m pretty sure he hasn’t, but stand open to correction.

    And I dunno – reviewing a book 35 years out of date, and then criticising it for being out of date, just seems… silly.

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    1. I’m trying to make a point: William Lane Craig has a habit of overstating the strength of the evidence for the Christian supernatural claims. He essentially calls them facts. This situation shows that one should not trust WLC’s swagger.

      Just as the experts have proven that the Shroud is a forgery, I believe that one day it is highly likely that the majority of scholars will come to the conclusion that the Empty Tomb Story is a fictional story (forgery?) of the author of Mark.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. And hey, sorry not to get back to the blog, been a crazy week. I see that you post tons… Not the usual blog with an entry, comments for a week, then new entry…
    So dunno how much gonna be able tk engage on any given day. Sick kids, work and life and all.

    Dunno if you ever responded to my comment about Bart Ehrman and the “Gospel according to Bart” etc.. guess will track it down to see some time.

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  3. I think it’s likely that the Turin Shroud goes back to 6th century Edessa or earlier.
    One can trace its history that way as several Christian scholars have.
    I believe that the carbon dating is misleading when it says it was made in the 13th to 15th c. One of the carbon dating scientists later changed his opinion on this, saying that the carbon dating took a sample from a known medieval patch job on the shroud. That is what I think happened.

    The true story of the Shroud, whatever it is, would be a very interesting one to learn.

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  4. Interesting. I thought Gary Habermas was the only well-known evangelical apologist that believed in the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin.

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    1. Well, as Liam said, in 1981 WLC believed in the authenticity of the Shroud but that was quite a few years ago. Maybe he has changed his mind since.

      I wouldn’t bet the farm on it, however.

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  5. As someone has said above, citing a statement by someone and then citing evidence from 7 years after the fact is ridiculous. In 1981 the scientific evidence was pointing in the direction of the Turin Shroud being legitimate; in 1988 the evidence was pointing the other way.

    I don’t mean to be rude but it seems to me that you are not familiar with basic standards of hypothesis testing and general scholarship. I read your bio. If you abandoned a long held faith due to your exploration of logical or factual issues I would say that you should probably reconsider as you seem unfamiliar with the standards by which things are judged.

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    1. Thank you for your comment.

      I accept scientific expert opinion. And last I checked, the majority of scientists believe that the Shroud of Turin is a fraud. I realize that there will always be some scientists (almost all of whom are Roman Catholic believers) who will disagree with the majority opinion. If you have a source that provides proof that the majority of the scientific community now accepts the Shroud as the authentic burial cloth of Jesus, please provide it. I am always willing to change my position based on expert opinion and evidence. Nothing is inerrant to me. Please do NOT direct me to a source that simply voices a minority opinion.

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  6. There is no “majority scientific consensus” about the Shroud of Turin (either being fraud or not). Majority of scientist who openly accept it to be a fraud, do it because they accept the resurrection itself to be a fraud, so this just follows. Or is it that you have checked with the majority of scientists in the world and they all agree (after doing the testing)? Carbon dating done is problematic for multiple reasons, one being the scientific fact that the Shroud was repaired throughout the history as well because it has burn damage. Further, there are now great historical evidence (ex. Hungarian Pray Codex) that show that the Shroud has existed prior than the 13th century. Also, since you accept only the scientific evidence, and since you claim that the Shroud is a work of art, than please do provide a scientific explanation of how it was made.

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    1. No, the testing performed in the 1980’s proved it is a fraud. And as a side note, when the Shroud first “appeared”, the then pope said it was a fraud. Secondly, if the Catholic Church can officially recognize miracles by alleged saints and healings at Lourdes, it could officially recognize the Shroud as authentic. It has not. Why? Answer: the evidence for its authenticity is poor.

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    2. Gary, if the testing performed in 1980 proved it is a fraud, than they have also shown how it was made (how the fraud had been done). One can’t be without the other. So, I guess that you know how the image was made?

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    3. I tell you what: When the pope and the Church declare the Shroud authentic, then I will take it more seriously. Until then, it is a fake.

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    4. So you believe the Apocrypha to be the inerrant word of God because the Catholic Church declared it so?

      And you should believe all the church’s doctrines too.

      (I am not Roman Catholic, I don’t believe the apocrypha to be Scripture, but you’re the one suddenly on this one issue declaring they have the authority to declare something authentic or not. Really weird.)

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    5. Sarcasm, Liam. I was being sarcastic.

      I did not say that I would automatically BELIEVE the authenticity of the Shroud when the pope and (Roman Catholic) Church declare it authentic. I only said “I will take it more seriously”. The fact that the Roman Catholic Church is not willing to stick its neck out and declare the Shroud authentic speaks volumes about the strength of the evidence for this thirteenth century relic (hoax?).

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    6. Gary, it would take more than that to convince me. Any authenticity of the shroud is nothing but wishful thinking on the part of the religious.

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    7. Gary, I have never read a book in which virgins were impregnated by ghosts and dead bodies reanimated to fly off into outer space.

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    8. Gary, yes I have read a book of a single virgin bearing a child of the God. I see no problem with the person that had invented the entire universe, including human anatomy, would lack the knowledge or skill to give a child to a woman. I principle even us could do it, provided that we figure a way to insert one mail reproductive cell into a woman’s reproductive cell (by needle or some other way). There is a huge difference between that and virgins being impregnated by ghosts.

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    9. Well said Goran. If Gary can only muster straw-man descriptions of what he doesn’t believe in, well, that speaks volumes of the intellectual vitality (or rather lack thereof) of his arguments.

      Also it makes me wonder what it is he used to believe, if he doesn’t even seem to grasp fundamentals of Christianity.

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    10. Typical cult behavior: Attack the ex-member’s intelligence and alleged lack of knowledge of the “profound” concepts taught by the cult.

      Virgins cannot become pregnant by invisible beings using magic invisible sperm, Liam. It’s a medical fact. Your belief is an ancient MYTH. Abandon your cult. Come out of the darkness of superstition and into the light of science and reason!

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    11. So you DO believe that ONE virgin was impregnated by ONE (allegedly “holy”) ghost.

      Therefore, you believe that virgins can be impregnated by ghosts.

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    12. No, I believe that one virgin bore a child of one person that happen to have created the universe. What part of that confuses you?

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    13. Sorry, my comments keep turning up in the wrong places. I don’t like wordpress at all. You should delete them from where they don’t belong to.

      Gary, seriously, this is both straw man (informal) fallacy and equivocation fallacy. It is a very wrong way of making a conversation. Ghost in a sense that you try to present your argument, and a Holy Spirit as God’s way to influence the world are two entirely separate things with no commonalities for you to make any such argument that you are trying to make. So I will try to spare you any further intellectual embarrassment and end any further discussion to this topic.

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    14. So how does a (negative) image of a man show up on a thirteenth century piece of cloth, Goran asks:

      Short answer: Scientists cannot say for sure at this time. There are some theories, however. See the following article which to me takes an unbiased look at the evidence:

      http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33164668

      And here is another interesting article which claims that a man recently reproduced a similar image on a cloth by wrapping it around one of his students:

      http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/10/07/italy.turin.shroud/

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    15. Gary, you switch from scientism to accepting what Vatican has to say, to presenting news articles. I think that this is a very steep decline, since each has less credibility then the previous one.

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    16. And you believe an ancient collection of books which claim that virgins can be impregnated by ghosts and dead bodies can be reanimated to fly off into outer space.

      Who is the more irrational?

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    17. Gary, seriously, this is both straw man (informal) fallacy and equivocation fallacy. It is a very wrong way of making a conversation. Ghost in a sense that you try to present your argument, and a Holy Spirit as God’s way to influence the world are two entirely separate things with no commonalities for you to make any such argument that you are trying to make. So I will try to spare you any further intellectual embarrassment and end any further discussion to this topic.

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    18. The Holy Ghost is a ghost. A ghost is a ghost is a ghost. The fact that you believe that your ghost is the Ruler of the Cosmos and the Master of all Creation does not change the fact that he is a ghost.

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    19. Strawman.

      “Ghost” has way different connotations now – hebrew and greek words: spirit, breath, wind.

      If you mean “deceased person’s immortal soul wondering the earth” guess who’s wrong?

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  7. So here is a more recent comment from William Lane Craig, that a simple google search unearthed:

    “The Church hasn’t agreed to letting it be done again, but until those carbon dating tests are reversed, I think one can’t say that the shroud is authentic. You would need to have those tests somehow shown to be erroneous.”

    Source: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/popular-writings/jesus-of-nazareth/forum-on-the-resurrection-with-william-lane-craig/

    Just search “shroud” and you’ll find the conversation pertaining to the shroud, duh.

    Gary this is a dishonest post since you haven’t corrected it. Taking potshots at an article almost 4 decades out of date is intellectually dishonest at worst, extremely lazy at best.
    WLC is open to new evidence and has changed his stance accordingly. You haven’t changed the name of the blog post article, or even admitted your error.

    But you have that axe to grind don’t you?

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    1. The title still says “Believes” – to get more hits? Traffic?

      That’s still incorrect in light of the evidence Gary. Why six months to change it?
      Well, still not changed.

      ANYWAY! have a great weekend

      Like

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