David Capes mentioned a panel at the next SBL annual meeting, which I will have the privilege of being on, which will discuss Bart Ehrman’s forthcoming book How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee. Publishers know how to promote their books, and so Mike Bird and others have already come up with a response to Ehrman’s book even before advance copies are available, calling their book How God Became Jesus: The Real Origins of Belief in Jesus’ Divine Nature.
I called my post what I did because this reflects a showdown between two viewpoints – one which views Jesus as initially viewed as a fully human and not a divine figure, who is subsequently given an exalted status, and the other which views Jesus as considered the incarnation of God from the outset. There have been scholarly debates about this for a very long time, and so the big question at this stage is whether either book or both will actually advance our understanding of New Testament Christology, or will simply reiterate entrenched viewpoints that have been around for a long time.
And on a subject which Bart Ehrman wrote previously, namely mythicism, see the picture in Jim Linville’s recent post.