On the Historicity of Jesus

On the Historicity of Jesus
  • Author : Richard Carrier
  • Publisher :
  • Pages : 712
  • Relase : 2014-06-03
  • ISBN : 1909697494

On the Historicity of Jesus Book Review:

The assumption that Jesus existed as a historical person has occasionally been questioned in the course of the last hundred years or so, but any doubts that have been raised have usually been put to rest in favor of imagining a blend of the historical, the mythical and the theological in the surviving records of Jesus. Carrier re-examines the whole question and finds compelling reasons to suspect the more daring assumption is correct. He lays out extensive research on the evidence for Jesus and the origins of Christianity and poses the key questions that must now be answered if the historicity of Jesus is to survive as a dominant paradigm. Carrier contrasts the most credible reconstruction of a historical Jesus with the most credible theory of Christian origins if a historical Jesus did not exist. Such a theory would posit that the Jesus figure was originally conceived of as a celestial being known only through private revelations and hidden messages in scripture; then stories placing this being in earth history were crafted to communicate the claims of the gospel allegorically; such stories eventually came to be believed or promoted in the struggle for control of the Christian churches that survived the tribulations of the first century. Carrier finds the latter theory more credible than has been previously imagined. He explains why it offers a better explanation for all the disparate evidence surviving from the first two centuries of the Christian era. He argues that we need a more careful and robust theory of cultural syncretism between Jewish theology and politics of the second-temple period and the most popular features of pagan religion and philosophy of the time. For anyone intent on defending a historical Jesus, this is the book to challenge.

Questioning the Historicity of Jesus

Questioning the Historicity of Jesus
  • Author : Raphael Lataster
  • Publisher : BRILL
  • Pages : 508
  • Relase : 2019-07-01
  • ISBN : 9789004408784

Questioning the Historicity of Jesus Book Review:

This volume explains the inadequacy of the sources and methods used to establish Jesus’ historicity, and how agnosticism can reasonably be upgraded to theorising about ahistoricity when reconsidering Christian origins.

Proving History

Proving History
  • Author : Richard C. Carrier
  • Publisher : Prometheus Books
  • Pages : 340
  • Relase : 2012-04-03
  • ISBN : 9781616145606

Proving History Book Review:

This in-depth discussion of New Testament scholarship and the challenges of history as a whole proposes Bayes’s Theorem, which deals with probabilities under conditions of uncertainty, as a solution to the problem of establishing reliable historical criteria. The author demonstrates that valid historical methods—not only in the study of Christian origins but in any historical study—can be described by, and reduced to, the logic of Bayes’s Theorem. Conversely, he argues that any method that cannot be reduced to this theorem is invalid and should be abandoned. Writing with thoroughness and clarity, the author explains Bayes’s Theorem in terms that are easily understandable to professional historians and laypeople alike, employing nothing more than well-known primary school math. He then explores precisely how the theorem can be applied to history and addresses numerous challenges to and criticisms of its use in testing or justifying the conclusions that historians make about the important persons and events of the past. The traditional and established methods of historians are analyzed using the theorem, as well as all the major "historicity criteria" employed in the latest quest to establish the historicity of Jesus. The author demonstrates not only the deficiencies of these approaches but also ways to rehabilitate them using Bayes’s Theorem. Anyone with an interest in historical methods, how historical knowledge can be justified, new applications of Bayes’s Theorem, or the study of the historical Jesus will find this book to be essential reading.

The Historicity of Jesus

The Historicity of Jesus
  • Author : Shirley Jackson Case
  • Publisher :
  • Pages : 370
  • Relase : 1912
  • ISBN : HARVARD:HNU1FI

The Historicity of Jesus Book Review:

Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed at All

Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed at All
  • Author : David Fitzgerald
  • Publisher :
  • Pages : 248
  • Relase : 2010-10-01
  • ISBN : 0557709911

Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed at All Book Review:

Why would anyone think Jesus never existed? Isn't it perfectly reasonable to accept that he was a real first century figure? As it turns out, no.NAILED sheds light on ten beloved Christian myths, and, with evidence gathered from historians across the theological spectrum, shows how they point to a Jesus Christ created solely through allegorical alchemy of hope and imagination; a messiah transformed from a purely literary, theological construct into the familiar figure of Jesus ' in short, a purely mythic Christ.

Did Jesus Exist?

Did Jesus Exist?
  • Author : Bart D. Ehrman
  • Publisher : Harper Collins
  • Pages : 368
  • Relase : 2012-03-20
  • ISBN : 9780062089946

Did Jesus Exist? Book Review:

In Did Jesus Exist? historian and Bible expert Bart Ehrman confronts the question, "Did Jesus exist at all?" Ehrman vigorously defends the historical Jesus, identifies the most historically reliable sources for best understanding Jesus’ mission and message, and offers a compelling portrait of the person at the heart of the Christian tradition. Known as a master explainer with deep knowledge of the field, Bart Ehrman methodically demolishes both the scholarly and popular “mythicist” arguments against the existence of Jesus. Marshaling evidence from within the Bible and the wider historical record of the ancient world, Ehrman tackles the key issues that surround the mythologies associated with Jesus and the early Christian movement. In Did Jesus Exist?: The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth, Ehrman establishes the criterion for any genuine historical investigation and provides a robust defense of the methods required to discover the Jesus of history.

Jesus from Outer Space

Jesus from Outer Space
  • Author : Richard Carrier
  • Publisher : Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA)
  • Pages : 232
  • Relase : 2020-10-20
  • ISBN : 9781634312080

Jesus from Outer Space Book Review:

The earliest Christians believed Jesus was an ancient celestial being who put on a bodysuit of flesh, died at the hands of dark forces, and then rose from the dead and ascended back into the heavens. But the writing we have today from that first generation of Christians never says where they thought he landed, where he lived, or where he died. The idea that Jesus toured Galilee and visited Jerusalem arose only a lifetime later, in unsourced legends written in a foreign land and language. Many sources repeat those legends, but none corroborate them. Why? What exactly was the original belief about Jesus, and how did this belief change over time? In Jesus from Outer Space, noted philosopher and historian Richard Carrier summarizes for a popular audience the scholarly research on these and related questions, revealing in turn how modern attempts to conceal, misrepresent, or avoid the actual evidence calls into question the entire field of Jesus studies--and present-day beliefs about how Christianity began.

The Christian Delusion

The Christian Delusion
  • Author : John W. Loftus
  • Publisher : Prometheus Books
  • Pages : 422
  • Relase : 2010-04-20
  • ISBN : 9781616143183

The Christian Delusion Book Review:

In this anthology of recent criticisms aimed at the reasonableness of Christian belief, a former evangelical minister and apologist, author of the critically acclaimed Why I Became an Atheist, has assembled fifteen outstanding articles by leading skeptics, expanding on themes introduced in his first book. Central is a defense of his "outsider test of faith," arguing that believers should test their faith with the same skeptical standards they use to evaluate the other faiths they reject, as if they were outsiders. Experts in medicine, psychology, and anthropology join Loftus to show why, when this test is applied to Christianity, it becomes very difficult to rationally defend. Collectively, these articles reveal that popular Christian beliefs tend to rely on ignorance of the facts. Drawing together experts in diverse fields, including Hector Avalos, Richard Carrier, David Eller, and Robert Price, this book deals a powerful blow against Christian faith.

Is This Not The Carpenter?

Is This Not The Carpenter?
  • Author : Thomas L. Thompson,Thomas S. Verenna
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Pages :
  • Relase : 2017-09-19
  • ISBN : 9781134946143

Is This Not The Carpenter? Book Review:

The historicity of Jesus is now widely accepted and hardly questioned by most scholars. But this assumption disarms biblical texts of much of their power by privileging an historical interpretation which effectively sweeps aside much theological speculation and allusion. Furthermore, the assumption of historicity gathers further assumptions to it, shaping the interpretation of texts, both denying and adding subtext. Scholars are now faced with an endless array of works on the historical Jesus and few question what has been lost through this wide-spread assumption of historicity. Is This Not the Carpenter? presents a very valuable corrective: a literary rereading of the New Testament.

Did Jesus Exist?

Did Jesus Exist?
  • Author : George Albert Wells
  • Publisher : Prometheus Books
  • Pages : 241
  • Relase : 1975
  • ISBN : 9781615923809

Did Jesus Exist? Book Review:

Professor Wells argues that there was no historical Jesus, and in thus arguing he deals with the many recent writers who have interpreted the historical Jesus as some kind of political figure in the struggle against Rome, and calls in evidence the many contemporary theologians who agree with some of his arguments about early Christianity. The question at issue is what all the evidence adds up to. Does it establish that Jesus did or did not exist? Professor Wells concludes that the latter is the more likely hypothesis.This challenge to received thinking by both Christians and non-Christians is supported by much documentary evidence, and Professor Wells carefully examines all the relevant problems and answers all the relevant questions. He deliberately avoids polemic and speculation, and sticks so far as possible to the known facts and to rational inferences from the facts.

The Resurrection of the Son of God

The Resurrection of the Son of God
  • Author : Nicholas Thomas Wright
  • Publisher : Fortress Press
  • Pages : 864
  • Relase : 2003
  • ISBN : 0800636155

The Resurrection of the Son of God Book Review:

Why did Christianity begin, and why did it take the shape it did? To answer this question -- which any historian must face -- renowned New Testament scholar N. T. Wright focuses on the key points: what precisely happened at Easter? What did the early Christians mean when they said that Jesus of Nazareth had been raised from the dead? What can be said today about this belief? This book, third in Wright's series Christian Origins and the Question of God, sketches a map of ancient beliefs about life after death, in both the Greco-Roman and Jewish worlds. It then highlights the fact that the early Christians' belief about the afterlife belonged firmly on the Jewish spectrum, while introducing several new mutations and sharper definitions. This, together with other features of early Christianity, forces the historian to read the Easter narratives in the gospels, not simply as late rationalizations of early Christian spirituality, but as accounts of two actual events: the empty tomb of Jesus and his "appearances." How do we explain these phenomena? The early Christians' answer was that Jesus had indeed been bodily raised from the dead; that was why they hailed him as the messianic "son of God." No modern historian has come up with a more convincing explanation. Facing this question, we are confronted to this day with the most central issues of the Christian worldview and theology.

Sense and Goodness Without God

Sense and Goodness Without God
  • Author : Richard Carrier
  • Publisher : AuthorHouse
  • Pages : 444
  • Relase : 2005-02-23
  • ISBN : 1452059268

Sense and Goodness Without God Book Review:

If God does not exist, then what does? Is there good and evil, and should we care? How do we know what’s true anyway? And can we make any sense of this universe, or our own lives? Sense and Goodness answers all these questions in lavish detail, without complex jargon. A complete worldview is presented and defended, covering every subject from knowledge to art, from metaphysics to morality, from theology to politics. Topics include free will, the nature of the universe, the meaning of life, and much more, arguing from scientific evidence that there is only a physical, natural world without gods or spirits, but that we can still live a life of love, meaning, and joy.

The Gospel According to Mark

The Gospel According to Mark
  • Author : Anonim
  • Publisher : Canongate Books
  • Pages : 64
  • Relase : 1999-01-01
  • ISBN : 9780857860972

The Gospel According to Mark Book Review:

The earliest of the four Gospels, the book portrays Jesus as an enigmatic figure, struggling with enemies, his inner and external demons, and with his devoted but disconcerted disciples. Unlike other gospels, his parables are obscure, to be explained secretly to his followers. With an introduction by Nick Cave

The Truth about Jesus

The Truth about Jesus
  • Author : Mangasar Mugurditch Mangasarian
  • Publisher :
  • Pages : 295
  • Relase : 1909
  • ISBN : HARVARD:HN1E2N

The Truth about Jesus Book Review:

The Resurrection of Jesus

The Resurrection of Jesus
  • Author : MICHAEL R LICONA
  • Publisher : Inter-Varsity Press
  • Pages : 718
  • Relase : 2020-05-21
  • ISBN : 9781789740196

The Resurrection of Jesus Book Review:

The question of the historicity of Jesus' resurrection has been repeatedly probed, investigated and debated. And the results have varied widely. Perhaps some now regard this issue as the burned-over district of New Testament scholarship. Could there be any new and promising approach to this problem? Yes, answers Michael Licona. And he convincingly points us to a significant deficiency in approaching this question: our historiographical orientation and practice. So he opens this study with an extensive consideration of historiography and the particular problem of investigating claims of miracles. This alone is a valuable contribution. But then Licona carefully applies his principles and methods to the question of Jesus' resurrection. In addition to determining and working from the most reliable sources and bedrock historical evidence, Licona critically weighs other prominent hypotheses. His own argument is a challenging and closely argued case for the historicity of the resurrection of Jesus, the Christ. Any future approaches to dealing with this 'prize puzzle' of New Testament study will need to be routed through The Resurrection of Jesus.

Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?

Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?
  • Author : Matthew Levering
  • Publisher : Oxford University Press
  • Pages : 256
  • Relase : 2019-02-21
  • ISBN : 9780192575616

Did Jesus Rise from the Dead? Book Review:

The Resurrection of Jesus is at the very root of Christian faith; without belief in Jesus Christianity dies. In this thought-provoking work, Matthew Levering defends the credibility of the claim that Jesus rose from the dead. Drawing on the work of N. T. Wright, Levering shows that the historical evidence vindicates this assumption, and reveals that the Gospels were backed by eyewitnesses who were living and telling their stories even during the time of the writing of the Gospels. The author also emphasises the importance of evaluating the Old Testament to validate Jesus' Resurrection. By highlighting the desire—both in the ancient world and now—to make the Resurrection more comprehensible by spiritualizing it, Levering argues that the fact that the disciples themselves did not do this provides a further clue to reliability. Finally, the author addresses the question of why Jesus does not continue to show himself in his glorified flesh after his resurrection, which is often seen as a strong case for scepticism. However, he shows that Jesus' entire mission is predicated upon helping us to avoid cleaving to the present world over God. He is leading us to where he is—the kingdom of God, the beginning of the new creation at the Father's right hand. By developing these arguments for the historical reality of Jesus' Resurrection, this ground-breaking study expertly draws together historical and theological reasons for believing that Jesus' Resurrection happened.

Behold! the Lamb of God

Behold! the Lamb of God
  • Author : Kyle Butt,Eric Lyons
  • Publisher : Apologetics Press Inc.
  • Pages : 220
  • Relase : 2006
  • ISBN : 0932859933

Behold! the Lamb of God Book Review:

The personality of Jesus Christ is the most outstanding manifestation of God's care that our lost world has ever witnessed. This well-documented book, positive case for the historicity, Deity, and uniqueness of Jesus, entitled "Behold! The Lamb of God," proves the existence of God and the inspiration of the Bible. We will be forced to answer the question: What do you think of the Christ?

Zealot

Zealot
  • Author : Reza Aslan
  • Publisher : Random House
  • Pages : 336
  • Relase : 2013-07-16
  • ISBN : 9780679603535

Zealot Book Review:

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “A lucid, intelligent page-turner” (Los Angeles Times) that challenges long-held assumptions about Jesus, from the host of Believer Two thousand years ago, an itinerant Jewish preacher walked across the Galilee, gathering followers to establish what he called the “Kingdom of God.” The revolutionary movement he launched was so threatening to the established order that he was executed as a state criminal. Within decades after his death, his followers would call him God. Sifting through centuries of mythmaking, Reza Aslan sheds new light on one of history’s most enigmatic figures by examining Jesus through the lens of the tumultuous era in which he lived. Balancing the Jesus of the Gospels against the historical sources, Aslan describes a man full of conviction and passion, yet rife with contradiction. He explores the reasons the early Christian church preferred to promulgate an image of Jesus as a peaceful spiritual teacher rather than a politically conscious revolutionary. And he grapples with the riddle of how Jesus understood himself, the mystery that is at the heart of all subsequent claims about his divinity. Zealot yields a fresh perspective on one of the greatest stories ever told even as it affirms the radical and transformative nature of Jesus’ life and mission. Praise for Zealot “Riveting . . . Aslan synthesizes Scripture and scholarship to create an original account.”—The New Yorker “Fascinatingly and convincingly drawn . . . Aslan may come as close as one can to respecting those who revere Jesus as the peace-loving, turn-the-other-cheek, true son of God depicted in modern Christianity, even as he knocks down that image.”—The Seattle Times “[Aslan’s] literary talent is as essential to the effect of Zealot as are his scholarly and journalistic chops. . . . A vivid, persuasive portrait.”—Salon “This tough-minded, deeply political book does full justice to the real Jesus, and honors him in the process.”—San Francisco Chronicle “A special and revealing work, one that believer and skeptic alike will find surprising, engaging, and original.”—Jon Meacham, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power “Compulsively readable . . . This superb work is highly recommended.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

The Historical Jesus in Context

The Historical Jesus in Context
  • Author : Amy-Jill Levine,Dale C. Allison Jr.,John Dominic Crossan
  • Publisher : Princeton University Press
  • Pages : 456
  • Relase : 2009-01-10
  • ISBN : 9781400827374

The Historical Jesus in Context Book Review:

The Historical Jesus in Context is a landmark collection that places the gospel narratives in their full literary, social, and archaeological context. More than twenty-five internationally recognized experts offer new translations and descriptions of a broad range of texts that shed new light on the Jesus of history, including pagan prayers and private inscriptions, miracle tales and martyrdoms, parables and fables, divorce decrees and imperial propaganda. The translated materials--from Christian, Coptic, and Jewish as well as Greek, Roman, and Egyptian texts--extend beyond single phrases to encompass the full context, thus allowing readers to locate Jesus in a broader cultural setting than is usually made available. This book demonstrates that only by knowing the world in which Jesus lived and taught can we fully understand him, his message, and the spread of the Gospel. Gathering in one place material that was previously available only in disparate sources, this formidable book provides innovative insight into matters no less grand than first-century Jewish and Gentile life, the composition of the Gospels, and Jesus himself.

The Historical Evidence for Jesus

The Historical Evidence for Jesus
  • Author : George Albert Wells
  • Publisher : Prometheus Books
  • Pages : 265
  • Relase : 1982
  • ISBN : 9781615924110

The Historical Evidence for Jesus Book Review:

In this thoroughly researched study, G.A. Wells has squarely faced the question of whether a man named Jesus lived, preached, healed, and died in Palestine during the early years of the first century of the Christian era - or indeed, at any time.Building on the biblical studies of Christian theologians, Dr. Wells soberly demonstrates that we have no reliable eyewitnesses to the events depicted in the New Testament. He publicizes a fact known to theological scholars but little-known in the average Christian congregation: that the order of books of the New Testament is not an accurate chronological arrangement. Indeed, Paul, who never saw Jesus, wrote his epistles to early Christian congregations before the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and John were written.It may come as a great surprise to Christians and other monotheists, to agnostics, atheists, and humanists alike, that the earliest references to the historical Jesus are so vague that it is not necessary to hold that he ever existed; the rise of Christianity can, from the undoubtedly historical antecedents, be explained quite well without him; and reasons can be given to show why, from about A.D. 80 or 90, Christians began to suppose that he had lived in Palestine about fifty years earlier.The Historical Evidence for Jesus is not a frontal attack on Christians per se; rather it is an easily understood but scholarly examination of the evidence for many long-accepted notions about the biography of the man called Jesus. This book takes up and quotes extensively from the Epistles and the Gospels of the New Testament, thus letting the evidence speak for itself in words familiar to every Bible reader. For example, Wells closely compares what Paul said about Jesus with what the author of Matthew, who lived later, wrote of him. Then he explains why these discrepancies apparently exist. Startling indeed is his proof that earlier writers sometimes make statements which positively exclude the idea that Jesus worked miracles, delivered certain teachings, or suffered under Pilate.There is also interesting material on the topics of Jesus' supposed family, the so-called Shroud of Turin, and the myth-making that even today surrounds the figure of Jesus. Dr. Wells does not, however, attempt to demolish belief in God or the ethical precepts held by Christians. His presentation is always fair and couched in moderate tones.