Date

5-2017

Department

School of Divinity

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Chair

Ed Hindson

Keywords

Evidential, Historical, Messianic, Prophecy

Disciplines

Biblical Studies | Christianity

Abstract

The primary purpose of this dissertation is to establish if critically acceptable historical-evidential reasons exist for believing that Jesus Christ is the direct fulfillment of the specific OT messianic texts included in the study. The study presupposes many of the conclusions of historical-critical scholarship and employs historical-evidential criteria to evaluate the evidence and attempt to establish the historical warrant for affirming such belief. Secondarily, this study seeks to find minimal facts related to these specific OT prophetic texts. To qualify as a minimal fact, two conditions must be met: (1) there must be more than adequate scholarly evidences usually consisting of several critically ascertained lines of argumentation; and (2) there must be agreement among the majority of contemporary scholars about the historicity of the event or the specific claim the minimal fact affirms. This investigation envisions the existence of three possible outcomes for each prophecy examined: (1) Jesus directly fulfilled the prophecy and sufficient historical evidence establishes the claim as probable, (2) Jesus directly fulfilled the prophecy, but the available historical evidence is insufficient to establish the claim as probable, and (3) sufficient historical evidence exists to refute the claim that Jesus directly fulfilled the prophecy. The historical-evidential approach employed by this study yields the probability of two direct fulfillments and the emergence of fifteen minimal facts. The author thus concludes that the historical evidence supports the probability that the two specific OT passages affirmed in this study, (2 Samuel 7:13, 16; Micah 5:2), directly prophesy regarding some aspect of Jesus’ life and ministry. On three other occasions (Psalm 2:7; Psalm 16:10; Malachi 3:1), a distinct possibility exists that these texts directly prophesy regarding some aspect of Jesus’ life and ministry.

Available for download on Tuesday, May 15, 2018

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