The Archbishop of Wales, John Davies, has been accused of ‘sowing confusion’
One of Britain’s leading Anglican clerics has sparked controversy by casting doubts over the Resurrection of Jesus – just days before Easter.
The Archbishop of Wales, John Davies, has been accused of ‘sowing confusion’ over the biblical story that will be celebrated by millions around the world today.
Asked in an interview about the New Testament account of Jesus rising from the tomb, the Archbishop said: ‘I don’t think any of us actually knows, quite frankly.’
He told online magazine Christian Today that it was ‘terribly hard’ for people to grasp the idea of a bodily resurrection.
The 65-year-old Archbishop, who was elected in September to head the Church in Wales – the Welsh equivalent of the Church of England – said something ‘radical’ had happened that had changed people’s lives.
But he then referred to one of the Church’s most contentious theologians, the late Bishop of Durham, David Jenkins, who was accused of blasphemy for questioning the physical nature of the Resurrection when he described it as ‘a conjuring trick with bones’.
Three days after Dr Jenkins was consecrated as a bishop in York Minister in 1984, the cathedral was hit by lightning and gutted by fire – an event some blamed on divine displeasure.
Echoing Bishop Jenkins’ remarks, Archbishop Davies, a former solicitor, said the Resurrection was ‘about something far more than a dead body coming back to life – it is the complete renewal of the being of Christ’.
Although surveys have found that a significant number of Anglican clergy doubt or disbelieve the physical resurrection of Christ, it is rare for senior leaders to openly express such reservations, particularly at this time of year.
Former Bishop of Rochester Michael Nazir-Ali said there was plenty of evidence in the Bible to support the ‘simplest explanation’ of