Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up?

A Debate between William Lane Craig and John Dominic Crossan

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Based on a debate held at Moody Church in Chicago between John Dominic Crossan, former co-chair of the Jesus Seminar, and evangelical William Lane Craig, Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up? is the first book to present, in one volume, a dialogue between evangelicals and members of the Jesus Seminar on the resurrection of Christ. Skillfully moderated by William F. Buckley Jr., this volume includes responses from Jesus studies experts such as Craig L. Blomberg, Ben Witherington III, Marcus Borg, and Robert J. Miller to round out the discussion.


"The debate by William Lane Craig, a leading evangelical apologist, and John Dominic Crossan, a founder of the Jesus Seminar, found in Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up? provides a helpful introduction to the issues involved in the modern discussion of the historical Jesus. The additional articles by four representatives scholars responding to the debate help raise the key issue of whether 'the resurrection of Jesus' refers to something that happened to Jesus (Craig) or to his followers (Crossan)."
--Robert H. Stein, Ernest and Mildred Hogan Professor of N.T. Interpretation , The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; author of Jesus the Messiah

"Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up? offers readers a clarifying and insightful comparison and contrast between the Jesus Seminar, on the one hand, and evangelical theologians, on the other. This book brings into sharp relief the contours of the debate and should serve well the Christian community-conservative and nonconservative alike."
--Craig A. Evans, Professor and Director of the Graduate Program in Biblical Studies, Trinity Western University, British Columbia, Canada; author of Jesus, Studying the Historical Jesus, and Jesus in Context

"Genuine dialogue between evangelicals and members of the Jesus Seminar is very rare. This book is notable for the fairness of its format, and the forthright nature of the exchange, which is candid yet always civil in character. One could hardly find a better representative of the Jesus Seminar than John Dominic Crossan, and William Craig may be the best apologist for orthodox Christian faith at work today. The additional commentators and the final summaries of Craig and Crossan are extremely helpful. What the debate format may cost in clarity and precision is more than made up for by the liveliness of the exchange. An exciting, helpful book."
--C. Stephen Evans, Professor of Philosophy and Dean for Research and Scholarship, Calvin College; author of The Historical Christ and the Jesus of Faith

"Much current discussion of Jesus seems to be a dialogue of the deaf. In this book the different positions start listening to each other, probing, challenging, explaining, exploring. The informal setting of the dialogue is far more revealing, and truly interesting than the average scholarly monograph. This book will help people to get to grips with what is really going on, and what is really at stake, in the contemporary debate."
--N. T. Wright, Dean of Lichfield, author of Jesus and the Victory of God

"Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up? gathers together an unprecedented range of persons involved in the contemporary study of Jesus. Placing these key voices on the stage together, so to speak, gives us a feel for the texture of the discussion that belies typical us-and-them, black-and-white categories. The result for the reader is unparalleled access into how historical assumptions, faith commitments, and philosophical premises shape how we 'read' the historical Jesus."
--Joel B. Green, Asbury Theological Seminary

"In Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up?, the reader is treated to a 'cutting edge' debate that takes us to the heart of what is being called the Third Quest for the Historical Jesus. We have the opportunity to look on while crucial aspects of the current debate are being discussed by several of the major participants, over a large range of topics. Thanks are also due to Baker Books for publishing noteworthy scholarly volumes when others have balked at the opportunity."
--Gary R. Habermas, Distinguished Professor, Liberty University

The Author

  1. Paul Copan

    Paul Copan

    Paul Copan (PhD, Marquette University) is the Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida. He is the author of several popular apologetics books, including Is God a Moral Monster? and lives with his wife...

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"Brings the reader effectively and movingly into the heart of the contemporary fideist-evidentialist debate about the reality and meaning of Jesus' life and teachings. . . . Readers of many different convictions will find ample food for thought here."--Library Journal, January 1999

"Lively, relevant, and up to date."
--Virtuosity Digest (August 6, 1999)

"The debate is helpful in clarifying some major contrasts between orthodox Christianity and liberal Christianity. . . . The debate and follow-up reflections are nontechnical and readily accessible to nonspecialists. The informal nature of the book should make it useful as a reader for introductory courses on Jesus and Christianity. Recommended for all religion collections. General readers; undergraduate and graduate students."--Choice (November 1999)

"Beyond all debate, editor Paul Copan and Baker Books are to be commended for publishing this dialogue and the attending responses. This was a rare and extraordinary confrontation between the two principal schools of NT interpretation: the conservative versus the liberal, the literalist versus the figurative, the traditional versus the revisionist, the evidentialist versus the fideist."--Andrews University Seminary Studies (Autumn 1999)