In April 2013 I published a post about a skeleton found under a parking lot in England. Shortly after the initial discovery it was assumed the skeletal remains belonged to King Richard III. The link above relays what the investigation revealed.
Documentary and historical proofs proclaimed by the media were:
- William Shakespeare described the young king as a hunchback.
- Historical records stated Richard died in battle and was buried near a church in Leicester.
The two immediate knowns of physical evidence at the site were:
- The skeleton was most likely that of a young man with scoliosis (curvature of the spine).
- The skeleton was found in the historical area of Richard’s burial.
These are insufficient to verify identity especially a historic figure of English royalty. Identity is confirmed by a thorough investigation of multiple types of evidence. The greater number successfully examined in combination increase the probability of identification or elimination.
The English forensic experts did make a timely, and thorough investigation.
Some evidences used in conjunction with each other were:
- Historical records
- DNA analysis and comparison to known relatives
- Carbon dating
- Forensic analysis of weapon damage to the skull
Based on the investigation Dr. Turi King believes, with a conservative probability of 99.999%, the skeleton is that of King Richard III. I applaud the work in this investigation. However as much as I would like to say otherwise, examination of physical, circumstantial, and documentary evidence can only go so far. After all, the certainty of 99.999% leaves .001% uncertainty. Any investigation of evidence proves only to a degree.
I made such an investigation myself regarding Jesus Christ. I found the evidences more than enough (at least to 99.999%) to prove His claims true to myself and give Him Lordship of my life.
Dr. King’s faith in the evidence secures her 100% belief that the skeleton is Richard’s. I have no reason to disbelieve her. The choice to believe pushes a scientist, judge, juror, or follower of Christ to 100% certainty. A determined choice to not believe will negate the reality found in any evidence.
God would not have it any other way. He gave us free will to love and follow Him, or not. We believe by choice—by faith—or we do not. The changes in my life (personal, physical, relational) that appeared after I chose to follow Him propelled my certainty far beyond 100%. Jesus is the Son of God, the Messiah, the Christ, and the Lord of my life. He is King.
If you have made the choice to believe as I do, I would love to hear the how, why, and when of it. If you haven’t I’d like to hear from you as well.