From Bultmann to Banana Man

Today is the birthday of Rudolf Bultmann, a great New Testament scholar and thinker about the Christian faith. As with most great thinkers, he had ideas that have not stood the test of time. But so much of what he proposed is insightful that he is still very much worth reading. Conservatives have probably heard him criticized, and never read him for themselves, and so will not realize how much of every kind of New Testament scholarship and thinking about the nature of Christianity has been shaped by his contribution, and by discussions that he helped spark.

The volume that he and some conversation partners assembled, Kerygma and Myth, can be read online as a pdf or at Religion-Online. And you can get his biography for Kindle for less than $10.

Hemant Mehta interviewed Ray Comfort on his blog, and it is well worth reading. Also about evolution and pseudoscientific varieties of creationism, Paul Braterman blogged about the peppered moth and creationism as conspiracy theory, Clarence Menninga blogs about his new book on the BioLogos blog, an Intelligent Design book sets a new quote-mining record, RJS blogged about the origin of life, and the NCSE launched its new Science League of America blog.

Finally, Chris Ayers noted that it is not atheists, nor even liberal Christians, who first noticed absurdities in the Bible. It can be traced back to Augustine, and even earlier.

  • Jeff Carter

    Ray Comfort can’t be Banana Man. Eric is Banana Man!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3dPnGFdMrW4

    • arcseconds

      Hurrah! I was going to link this, but you’ve saved me the bother :-)

  • http://lotharson.wordpress.com/ Lothars Sohn

    Whilst I believe we ought to consider the Bible like every other religious book, I’m quite open to the supernatural, as well in the present as in the past.

    Consequently, the theology Bultmann developed differs radically from mine.

    Nevertheless, I don’t exclude the possibility he might have himself deeply experienced God and the risen Christ, even if he doubted his “bodily character”.

    Would you say many of your ideas are close to those of Bultmann?

    Lovely greetings from Germany.
    Liebe Grüsse aus Deutschland.

    Lothars Sohn – Lothar’s son
    http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

      I do find Bultmann helpful, and so would say that I am certainly influenced by him – more in his theology than his specific exegetical conclusions, although we’ll see what happens when I fully revisit the question of the Mandaeans and the New Testament! :-)


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