Is Jesus a zombie? While many find this question laughable, if zombies could / do exist, the story of any person who was certainly dead walking about again would raise suspicions. For those who believe in zombies or their possible advent this is a warranted question. It has also become popular to make fun of and antagonize Christians by referring to our God as "Zombie Jesus." While such derisive comments are hardly worthy of response, they have brought the question and image into popular culture, and thus deserve an explanation.
Does Zombification (becoming a Zombie) explain Jesus' Resurrection?
There are two main ways of addressing this question: from the Bible or from generally accepted zombie theories. From either perspective, it can be determined quite soundly that Jesus most certainly is not a zombie in any of the multiple senses of the term.
According to original zombie lore, born mainly out of Haitian Voodoo, a zombie is a body which is reanimated by a sorcerer or "bokor." In this case the zombie is without a soul – simply a body being controlled by the sorcerer or inhabited by a demonic spirit. According to biblical accounts, Jesus was recognized as Himself after His resurrection by how He spoke and His way of conducting a meal (Luke 24:31-32, 35). This would not have been possible if Jesus had been without His soul.
Having become its own sub-genre of horror, literature, and film, zombie lore has been greatly expanded, making it sound more plausible scientifically speaking. From out-of-control viral experiments to specific combinations of toxins, the barely-explicable condition creates either a body which roams about searching for human flesh to eat, surviving all injuries and levels of rot aside from actual decapitation, or a mutated being which is terrifyingly strong and no longer anything like human. If Jesus had been seen after His death in a similar state, He would either have been unrecognizable as a mutant, or continuing to rot from His already extremely injured state after having been crucified three days prior. Neither of these descriptions match the biblical accounts. Also, such a visage would not have been accepted as anything less than demonic in the first century. Jesus' glorified body was just that – a perfected, fully healed, eternal body that He still inhabits in heaven, and will for all eternity. It is a perfected human body, recognizable as such, and is eternal not because of mutation or disease, but because of glorification.
The Bible presents Jesus' resurrection, for which there is extensive evidence, as just that: the return to full life in a glorified body. Not a resuscitation or a return from unconsciousness. That Jesus lives is essential to the Christian faith, giving us hope and faith. Far from being a zombie in any sense of the word, Jesus is the only perfect human being, in both life, death, and resurrection, that has ever existed, as well as very God incarnate. Jesus did not return as a zombie.
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