A 30-year-old German tourist was walking along a trail next to Woolshed Creek in New Zealand with her husband on Wednesday, April 16, when she slipped into the rushing waters and was swept away around 4 pm local time. Authorities in the Mid-Canterbury park raised an alarm shortly afterwards to gather a search party.

Since she had been swept away in the area known as the Impassable Gorge, the search party did not have any hope of finding her alive, and assumed the search would be a recovery of her body instead of a rescue. During the search that used a helicopter as well as people on foot, they found several items in deep pools in the gorge area, such as a pack, that they believed belong to her.

Nearly four hours into their search, the authorities were dumbfounded when the woman showed up at the car park in the area, having somehow managed to not only get out of the rushing stream, but to also make it back on her own to the car park by walking. At the time the local constable shared the good news of her miraculous rescue, no exam by a doctor had been done but Constable Mike Jackson said she appeared to be without any serious injuries. He estimated she had been taken 2-3 km (approx. 1.2-1.9 miles) by the stream, which also has a waterfall, though it isn’t clear if she encountered it.

Her survival defied science (the laws of physics among other things) and proves once again that we live in a world where miracles happen. Since miracles happen, it’s not at all a stretch to believe a Supreme Being more powerful than this physical world, including death, really exists. Which brings me to another news story. Apparently there are some “religious” people calling themselves Christians who are saying Christ’s resurrection was not meant to be taken literally, but is merely allegorical, according to a Washington Post article today.

The WaPo claims that accepting a real physical resurrection is “[t]he struggle [that] keeps some Christians from fully embracing the holiday [Easter].” Episcopal Bishop John Shelby Spong (retired) states in the article, “I don’t think the Resurrection has anything to do with physical resuscitation. I think it means the life of Jesus was raised back into the life of God, not into the life of this world, and that it was out of this that his [spiritual] presence was manifested to certain witnesses.” This guy is proof that attending seminary won’t help you if you don’t know Jesus personally.

1 Corinthians 15 explains in detail that in order for both physical and spiritual death to be defeated, which was brought on by Adam, then Jesus would have to be raised bodily from the dead. Hebrews 6 also tells us the physical resurrection of the dead is a basic tenet of Christ’s teachings. Are people like this Episcopal Bishop really Christians? It seems to me if someone really follows Christ, they would cling to his and his apostles’ teachings, which clearly state there is a bodily resurrection.

Sources:

Erin Tasker. Miraculous escape for woman swept away. New Zealand Herald. Thursday, April 17, 2014.

Kimberly Winston. Can you question the Resurrection and still be a Christian? WashingtonPost.com. Wednesday, April 16, 2014.

Harry A. Gaylord

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