Beyond Death by Gary Habermas and J.P. Moreland

A review.

The Authors

Gary Habermas is Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy and Theology at Liberty University. He is the author or coauthor of 12 books including The Case for the Resurrection of Jesus with Michael Licona, In Defense of Miracles with Douglas Geivett, and Forever Loved.

J.P. Moreland is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. He has authored or coauthored 16 books including Kingdom Triangle, The Lost Virtue of Happiness, and Scaling the Secular City. Both authors have dedicated their professional lives to making disciples by teaching them to think carefully about their faith, or in the words of one of Moreland’s titles, to “Love the Lord with all your mind.”

Synopsis

In Beyond Death, Habermas and Moreland examine several lines of argument and evidence for life after death, the Christian worldview, and the implications for this present life.

The book is divided into three sections. Part One lays out the case for immortality by offering reasons to believe in the existence of God, the case for substance dualism, the case for the resurrection of Jesus, and accounts of near-death experiences (NDEs.) Part Two explains the Biblical view of the intermediate state between death and the final resurrection, responds to the case for reincarnation, and describes Heaven and Hell. Part Three lays out the implications for these things for how we ought to live, face death, and the implications for bioethics with respect to edge-of-life issues.

Analysis

Beyond Death is a thorough treatment of questions concerning ultimate reality. Habermas and Moreland show how the evidence points to their conclusion without whitewashing things that don’t fall neatly into place. While they acknowledge NDEs in which the NDEr had a religious experience, they do not press these very far given the inability to verify the claims, as well as the inconsistency of them. Moreover, in their response to evidence of reincarnation, they are willing to explore explanations that some may not feel comfortable with.

Beyond Death is especially helpful in that while there are many books and articles making the case for the Christian worldview from philosophy and history, this book offers credible, contemporary experiential evidence. The book is accessible to the high school level reader. I recommend it for personal or group study.

Author: apologeticsminion

Daniel has an MA in Christian Apologetics from Biola University. He is married and has four grown children. Professionally, Daniel is a sign language interpreter.

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