Michael Licona has written a response to Al Mohler. He holds his ground as he should until he is convinced that his interpretation is incorrect! In doing this he argues both for his interpretation legitimacy within the confines of the doctrine of inerrancy and he provides the logic for how he reached his conclusion. Near the end Licona says the following:
“The text in Matthew 27:52-53 has puzzled many New Testament scholars for years and will continue to do so. I remain puzzled but continue to seek a better understanding of what Matthew intended to communicate here. The calls of Drs. Geisler and Mohler for me to retract my opinion that it is possible Matthew intended for his readers to understand the raised saints in Matthew 27:52-53 as apocalyptic symbols is not helpful. Instead, such premature calls stifle scholarship and authentic quests for truth. I will be happy to retract my opinion once I am convinced that Matthew’s authorial intent was to communicate that the raised saints are to be understood as an event that occurred in space-time. So far, I have found the arguments offered by Drs. Geisler and Mohler to be unpersuasive and misguided.”
I concur with Licona. This method is not the means to show that they’re interpretation is correct. If he is going to change his view it should be because he concludes that it isn’t what the text is saying. If you haven’t read Al Mohler‘s article yet for context then read, “The Devil is in the Details: Inerrancy and the Licona Controversy.”
Peter Lumpkins comments on how this could impact the SBC.
Randy Everist attempts to reason through how this debate relates to inerrancy and interpretation.
Michael Bird has written in defense of Licona’s interpretation being consistent with the doctrine of inerrancy. When you read this post make sure to read John Byron‘s comment explaining why he sees this as different than the evidence provided by the Apostle Paul for Jesus’ resurrection. Also, he says that this debate is an example of why the doctrine of inerrancy is not useful. Nick Norelli has written a response to Byron.